On May the 31 of this year, the noted Professor Herman Albategnius caused himself and five unfortunate companions to be launched from the mouth of a specially constructed cannon of immense proportions, with the express intent of journeying to the Moon. The hapless adventures were housed inside an elegantly appointed egg-shaped vessel that Albategnius termed a ‘Space-Ship’. The cannon, which is claimed to be the largest such engine ever constructed, was completely destroyed in the explosion that occurred shortly after match was put to fuse. The report temporarily deafened witnesses, shattered nearby windows, and is said to have been heard as far off as the continent. As for the vessel, christened Athena by the Professor, and its six occupants, there remains no trace. We can only assume that Prf Albategnius, his wife the Lady Matilda Albategnius, Lord Briarwhip and his manservant, and the Ladies Miss Elisa Makepeace and Miss Betsy Lovejoy have perished, blown to bits and scattered throughout the stratosphere, a sad end to six promising young lives, and a testimony to the Foolish Ambitions and Hubris of Man.
June 1, Ano Domini 1865
According to the instrumentation, the forces exerted on us and our craft during the launch were almost exactly what I had calculated. The intensity of those forces however, and their affect on the frail human body, were far beyond anything I had imagined. We were all six knocked quite unconscious by the initial blast, crushed like a child’s poppet into the plush velvet gravity couches I had caused to be constructed for our comfort during the launch, never dreaming for an instant that those very couches would save our lives. We are all suffering from severe headache and nosebleeds and spells of nausea, particularly my dear wife Matilda. The Lady Makepeace cracked two of her ribs, as a direct result of the violence of our launch, but she bears it stoutly and bravely, like a man, with not a word of complaint. I suspect these ailments shall pass shortly. I am confident that the consequences would have been far more dire had we not all been so gently swaddled.
I was the first to wake. For a moment, I thought that I was dead, that we had all perished in the fiery violence of the launch. I knew from the start, as did all my companions, that this was a perilous venture we were undertaking. I was gratified, therefore, to discover myself not only alive, but uninjured and in good health.
When I unstrapped myself from the soft confines of my couch, I received the first of what I am certain will prove to be many surprises of this fantastic journey: I was as weightless as a fish in a pool of water. The sensation was wonderfully freeing, though I was a little puzzled as to how to move around. I quickly discovered that attempting to swim through the air was useless; the best technique was to grab hold of a convenient handhold, take aim, and simply push off. In this manner, I conducted myself, not without a few minor mishaps and bruises, to the stern of our craft, which I have named Athena for the Greek Goddess of Wisdom. Peering eagerly through the rear portholes, I beheld what I believe no man before me had seen yet: the entire disk of our home planet Earth, shrouded in clouds, blue oceans and green continents, all within the field of my view, like a child’s marble. It appeared to be so close I could reach out and touch it with my hand. So wondrous was this sight that it quite literally took my breath away, and I could only stand (or rather float) and stare for several minutes.
I made my way, rather more proficiently this time, back to the passenger compartment, where the others were just starting to stir. I was already feeling much better, my nosebleed had abated and my head was starting to clear, so I was able to help the others adapt to the new environment that we found ourselves in. All were in high spirits, though my wife Matilda continued to suffer from dizzy spells and nausea long after symptoms had disappeared for the rest.
I awoke early. Early, that is to say, according to the chronograph; aboard the Athena day and night have no meaning. The right, or starboard, side of our craft basks in perpetual unfiltered sunlight; the left (port) side is exposed to the frigid humors of the abyss. It is only six inches of stout English oak, caulked with tar and oakum, which protect us from the unfriendly environs of the aether outside.
The Athena is a well-appointed, comfortable craft, but she is by necessity small, and privacy is at a premium. As I made my way forward (still not entirely accustomed to the art of moving in null-gravity), I happened to spy Lord Briarwhip and his boy Tobi engaged in an act so intimate that I cannot bring myself to describe it here, in pen and paper. Suffice it to say that the boy, a pleasant young Hindoo lad of some intelligence, is surprisingly flexible and accommodating. I was startled at the sight, but perhaps not as surprised as I might have been. I am not going to say anything to the others. ‘Live and let live’ shall be my motto, and it is far from mine to cast the first stone.
We gathered around the galley table, floating like dandelion seeds on a breeze, for a rousing break-fast. The company was in high spirits, all: we were on a journey unlike any other in the History of Mankind. Only Matilda and Lady Makepeace were still suffering any ill-effects from the trauma of our explosive escape from the maternal bosom of Earth and the clutches of her gravitation, and they were both cheerful, though Matilda was unable to eat much, and Lady Makepeace winced whenever she swallowed.
After breaking our fast, we set about unfurling our craft’s wings, which had been intricately folded up and stored in hermetic compartments on either side of the ship in order to survive the violence of the launch. They were an enormous affair, made of bamboo and silk, constructed at great expense in Japan and shipped across the oceans in a steam-ship, the creation of Dr. Miyamoto Toyoda, a Yellow Man and a brilliant scientist in his own right. Once deployed, the wings (manipulate from inside Athena by pulling on an ingenious set of levers and pulleys) should allow us to navigate through the aether; making any necessary course corrections, maneuver like a bird in flight, and eventually glide through the lunar atmosphere to a soft landing on the Moon.
Our marvelous ascent up the Well of Gravity robbed us of most of our forward momentum, but we are still travelling at quite a respectable speed, and I calculate that the voyage to the moon will take the best part of a month.
June 2 (pm)
The general consensus of my companions is that modern ladies’ garments, as dictated by polite society, are simply incompatible with the realities of living in close quarters and in null-gravity. The female members of our party have rebelled, refusing to don the dresses, corsets, hats, and etcetera that would otherwise be expected of them, for the remainder of the voyage. Perhaps needless to say, neither myself, nor Lord Briarwhip have voiced any objections. Though upon reflection, I am not sure the Lord Briarwhip particularly cares either way.
I confess I was rather surprised by my wife Matilda’s lack of objection; she has always been modest and proper to a fault. And yet here she is at dinner, chatting merrily away with the company, dressed only in her shifts. The Ladies Makepeace and Lovejoy have taken the idea rather further, dressing only in soft white cotton duck trousers, in the fashion of old British sailors, naked from the waist up and the ankle down. No-one else seemed to find this strange or unusual in any way, so I said nothing, though I had to suppress the urge to make some witticism about how two heavenly bodies had been added to the cosmos. Fortunately, I restrained myself.
Matilda woke up early with another spell of vomiting and nausea. Fortunately the fit has now passed, and she is in good spirits, but it does concern me. She is the only one among us who is still suffering any ill-effects from our launch. Lady Makepeace’s ribs are healing apace; she giggled coquettishly when I inspected the wound, and made her (considerable!) bosom shake like a pair of ripe, exotic fruit hanging low from a tree. In the non-gravity, they jiggled quite pleasantly, like a couple of pale white hasty puddings. If I didn’t know better, I would feel certain that she was doing it a-purpose, to tease and torment me. If that was her purpose, then she was by all means successful. Even now, I marvel at the loveliness of her bare flesh, unhindered by clothing and unhampered by the force of gravity! It is hard to remain stoic and scientific under such circumstances.
I have made some observations and checked the instruments: we are precisely on course for our destination: the Moon! Even now, the disc of the earth has receded visibly in the aft portholes. When she finally spirals into view, the Moon will take up full a third of our field of vision!
We attempted to use Dr. Toyoda’s wings to perform a simple maneuver, more as an experiment than out of any necessity, as our trajectory appears to be perfect to several decimal places. Despite all our exertions, the wings failed to have any affect whatsoever upon our craft’s attitude. Perhaps the aether between the great spheres is simply too insubstantial for them to find any purchase.
After a substantial and pleasant dinner – Matilda appears to have regained her appetite – I retired to the study to make some celestial observations and recheck my orbital calculations. I had only been working a short while when I heard a commotion coming from the room that we had somewhat ironically dubbed the Great Hall.
I floated into the chamber out of idle curiosity more than anything else; the noises were certainly not the sounds of distress, rather of raucous amusement. What I saw there would have stopped me in my tracks, had I been walking on two legs. Instead, I drifted dumbly into the room, like an errant log floating in a river eddy.
Lord Briarwhip and his boy were naked as savages, locked together in a tight embrace, floating in the center of the room, slowly rotating along their long axis. If Lord Briarwhip was facing “up”, then young Tobi was pointing “down” and each had a mouth stuffed full of his partners’ reproductive organ. They were noisily and enthusiastically fellating each other, and our female companions, my wife Matilda and the Ladies, were loudly cheering them on, as if they were the spirited observers at some perverse cricket match.
I grabbed onto a handhold and stopped myself from wafting straight across the room. Matilda saw me and waved cheerily, before returning her eyes to the spectacle directly in front of us. The temperature in the Great Hall had grown notably warm.
Even as I watched, Lord Briarwhip seemed to reach a moment of crisis, bucking his hips and flailing his limbs. I was again amazed by young Tobi’s sword-swallowing ability. The lithe young Hindoo summarily wet a long slender finger, and deftly inserted it in his Lordship’s bunghole. Briarwhip bellowed out loud, letting Tobi’s cock slip out of his mouth, and spent directly into the hungry maw of his young companion, who eagerly devoured his master’s seed. The ladies all clapped enthusiastically.
The two disentangled, and in a very genteel fashion, Lord Briarwhip used his hand to bring Tobi’s penis to release. The lad’s member was long and thin and brown, and when he spent, he ejected shimmering globules of pearlescent spermatozoa that floated, quivering into the atmosphere.
I left them to their play, floating back to my own chambers, my head awhirl. I hadn’t known of Lord Briarwhip’s proclivities before the voyage –though I wasn’t particularly surprised, nor did it bother me; surely the more love there is in this world the better—and the ladies Makepeace and Lovejoy are young and highly spirited; but my dear wife Matilda had been enjoying the scene as much as any of the others.
Matilda had never shown any interest in carnal matters. Early in our marriage, she had performed her wifely duties willing, but without much enthusiasm. As time passed and no progeny were conceived, and as I became more focused on the science and art of ballistics, our bedroom activities slowed and finally stopped. I took occasional solace in self-pleasure, not wanting to impose myself on her, unwanted as it were. I came to believe Matilda was simply one of those people for whom sexuality is not a part of their make-up. I may now have to reconsider that position.
This morning, at breakfast, Lady Makepeace announced that she and Lady Lovejoy would put on a performance for the company later on. I was naïve enough to suppose that they meant a recitation or pantomimes or some such. I gave it not much thought, and blithely went about my day, taking celestial observations, making calculations, and fussing over the minute interior details of our spacecraft.
Matilda was in fine spirits all day, and only suffered a brief spell of illness. I believe she may be finally recovering.
After tea-time, we were all summoned to the Great Hall, in the nose of the Athena. The stars shone in, bright and unblinking, through the twin front-facing portholes.
I have already become accustomed to seeing the Lady Makepeace dressed only in her white duck pants. She stood (or rather floated vertically) on a little improvised stage in the center of the room. Lady Lovejoy floated at chest level next to her, completely naked but for a red silk blindfold. The soles of her feet were pressed together and bound at the ankle with red silk, causing her knees to spread in a most un-ladylike fashion, rather like a fakir; and a length of cord ran from her ankles up to her wrists, which were also bound in red. The two of them together made quite a sight, and I must have exclaimed audibly, because Matilda squeezed my hand and beamed happily at me, as if I were a child on his first visit to the carnival.
Once we were all seated, Lady Makepeace unfastened her trousers and cast them aside, and –behold!—she was also as naked as Eve before the fall. Strapped around her waist, perched just above the lush triangle of her sex, was an artificial phallus, carved of brilliant white ivory, which, when freed from the confines of her duck pants, jutted up and out like the horn of the fabled unicorn. We all applauded politely. Already, I could feel the carnal stirrings inside my own trousers, and despite myself, I discovered that I was as shy as a schoolboy. I glanced sideways at Matilda to see if she had noticed my state, but she was rapt, absorbed in the two Ladies’ performance.
With a flick of her wrist, Lady Makepeace spun Lady Lovejoy upside-down. In the null gravity, it was as easy as spinning a child’s toy. She smiled impishly, stuck out her tongue, and licked Lady Lovejoy directly across her sexual organ, which was covered with soft, curly hair the exact same shad of red as the hair on her head. Miss Lovejoy squealed out loud and struggled, in a not at all unhappy manner. Makepeace spun her around again so she was upright, and kissed her right on her rosy lips. She made a little bow to us, the audience, and slapped Lovejoy squarely across her spread and vulnerable fanny (and not gently either, the sound of it resonated!) with her ivory phallus. She then spun Miss Lovejoy inverted again, and repeated the whole process.
As I observed their antics, my own penis grew and stiffened until it was as hard as if it too had been carved from a piece of ivory. On my left, Matilda had discretely unfastened her pants, and had slipped one hand down between her legs; to my right Lord Briarwhip and Tobi were kissing and grappling shamelessly. I struggled to maintain decorum.
Lady Makepeace continued to lap at her lady friend’s quim, which became pink and wet and swollen with pent-up excitement; occasionally pausing to tongue her nether hole, or to amuse herself by presenting her phallus for Lovejoy to lick and suck on, like a piece of rock candy. Lady Lovejoy submitted to the ministrations without a word, though by and by she was all aquiver and whimpering with desire.
Then came the performance’s climax: with a flourish, Lady Makepeace unbound Lovejoy, removing the blindfold and casting her limbs free. She then summarily skewered the willing and eager Lady Lovejoy, burying her ivory phallus holus-bolus into the moist confines of the Lady’s sex. The two ladies thus conjoined, embraced, making a most lovely beast with two backs, kissing and encouraging one another until Lovejoy climaxed volcanically, with a display that would have put Vesuvius to shame.
For a curtain call, Lady Lovejoy knelt between Makepeace’s pale thighs, and gave her the pleasure of her agile tongue, until Lady Makepeace fairly cried out with passion. It was a most dramatic performance, and we all applauded heartily. I, for one, left the Great Hall in such a state of confusion and frustrated excitement that I hadn’t experienced since my juvenile years.
Dinner was a lighthearted affair, and then we all retired, to our several bedchambers. I couldn’t help but notice that the Lord Briarwhip and his boy Tobi joined the Ladies Makepeace and Lovejoy in their private chambers, and the thought of what must be happening in that bed-room made my loins once again swell with carnal thoughts.
I more than half hoped that Matilda might come and join me in my bed chamber, but she never did, so eventually I resorted to the act of self-pleasure. It was the first time in my life that I did so without the least twinge of guilt.
The atmosphere onboard the Athena has changed markedly. It now has the feeling of a pleasure-cruise; and a most hedonist cruise at that. The company is entirely more cheerful and relaxed as we voyage further and further into the darkness of space; from being a disparate group of near-strangers a mere week ago, we are as free and gay as if we were all lifelong friends.
Matilda had another episode of space-sickness. It was intense, but short-lived, and she soon recovered her spirits.
After supper, Tobi spontaneously amused us all with a little dance. Perhaps not surprisingly, the performance involved him slowly and artfully disrobing, and culminated with him blatantly seducing the not unwilling Lord Briarwhip.
Briarwhip took the lad from behind, anally as it were. Though receiving his Lordship’s affections that way appeared (to my eyes) uncomfortable to say the very least, especially given Briarwhip’s generous endowment, Tobi appeared to relish every moment of the treatment he was given.
It was, I had to admit, fascinating to watch. Briarwhip possesses amazing stamina. Every time he seemed to be on the verge of spending his seed, he would withdraw, his cock red and straining, and spank Tobi’s upturned brown bottom, lick his anus and his testicles, and vigorously slap the boy’s erect penis, before plunging back in with all the ardor of a hound on a fox-hunt. The boy grunted and wailed as his backside was so assaulted, but they were by no means to be mistaken for cries of distress.
I was so engaged in their coupling, I hadn’t noticed what was going on around me. The Ladies Lovejoy and Makepeace were no longer watching the male antics at all; they had both removed their duck-pants, and were floating nearby, wholly engaged with each other. Together, they were a sight that took my breath away, a beautiful, moving, kinetic Sapphic sculpture.
Even as I watched, my wife, Matilda, drifted over to where the two Ladies were frolicking. With a shy glance my way, she removed her blouse, setting free her own rather generous bosoms. I personally thought her breasts compared rather favorably with the more petite ones of the two ladies. She kissed the Lady Makepeace full on the lips, and then she kissed the Lady Lovejoy. Her hands found their way down between their legs, and started petting the two similar, but not identical, flowers; alternating kissing one and then the other, pausing occasionally to explore necks, ears, fingers, and breasts.
I was stabbed for a moment with a sharp dagger of jealousy, but this feeling was quickly overwhelmed by the sheer eroticism of the vision. The two beautiful young ladies were soon squirming and crying out under the ministrations of my lovely wife, and all three of them were becoming more and more frantic. I knew they must soon reach some sort of culmination. Across the Great Hall, Tobi and his Lordship were in similar straights. There could be no mistaking my current state: my erection made it’s presence clear as a jutting projection in the front of my pants, in need of urgent attention. I took my leave, leaving the lovers to their antics, and paid myself that much-needed attention in the privacy of my bedchamber.
Matilda came to me this morning before breakfast. She wanted to know if I was angry with her; I told her I was not. She asked me if I still loved her, and I told her that I do.
She told me that she’d never experienced these feelings before, that is to say sexual feelings; and she went on to say that if I was agreeable, she wanted to continue ‘experimenting’ with the Ladies Makepeace and Lovejoy. She said she would only do so, though, with my blessings.
I told her that I wanted for her whatever makes her happy.
She then told me that the company had been talking, and felt bad that I should be the odd man out. She said they had all agreed that I should feel free to pleasure myself, to masturbate, while I watched their games. An interesting development indeed.
June 8 (Later)
This afternoon, I spilled my seed across Lady Lovejoy’s naked breasts, while my wife and the Lady Makepeace pleasured her with their tongues, and Lord Briarwhip and his boy Tobi watched. The sensation of participating (if only tangentially) in this deeply erotic act, and of being watched while performing the most private and intimate of deeds was… freeing.
At the conclusion, I licked my spilt semen off of Lovejoy’s bosom, and she held her breasts up for me like a dining platter.
The moon is finally visible through the forward portholes. She is already bigger and more finely detailed than she would be through any earthbound telescope. We are filled with excitement at the prospect, now looming so large, of walking on the lunar surface; but I think we are all a little sad also, at the thought that this voyage through the aether will soon be over. I believe that the after this journey is complete, whatever marvels we find, we will no longer feel so free and close with each other. I think the isolation in the void between the spheres has made us free in a way that we will never be again, once we have returned to the world of gravity and civilization.
June 10, 1865
Matilda is dead.
We found her, still strapped into her bed, when she failed to come to breakfast yesterday morning. She looked peaceful lying there, just like a sleeping child, but her flesh was icy and blue.
I am still reeling from the discovery. I think of all the things I would have liked to tell her, and will now never have the chance to say. I can’t believe she is gone.
We placed her body in the cold storage room in the aft section of the Athena, and we will lay her to rest in the lunar soil once we reach our destination.
The others seem to be expressing their grief by fornicating, as much and as often as possible, but for now I cannot bring myself to partake of that fruit.
I fear there is some kind of contagion on board. We lost Lady Makepeace today.
We ate a muted supper, and toward the end of the meal, Lady Makepeace announced that she was feeling unwell, and excused herself to her chambers. Lady Lovejoy followed her a few minutes later, but she was already dead, still and blue.
We have placed her body in the cold room alongside Matilda, to be buried in the sands of the moon, if only the rest of us survive the journey.
With Lady Makepeace gone, Lord Briarwhip and Tobi and the Lady Lovejoy copulate incessantly, feverishly, almost madly; and I join in vicariously, with one hand wrapped around my sexual organ. To call it ‘Love-Making’ would be a sour joke. There is no joy in the sex, no light-heartedness; only manic visceral carnal pleasure.
They make a sandwich of young Tobi. He pleasures Lady Lovejoy with his tongue, lapping at her like a kitten devouring a saucer full of milk, while Briarwhip assaults him from behind; or they switch sides, and he sucks Briarwhip’s cock while she uses the ivory phallus on his rear end. Sometimes Briarwhip will slide his penis up inside her while Tobi lavishes attention on both of them with his tongue and his long clever fingers until all three are worked up to a frantic state of excitement.
I am just as guilty of escapism as they are: I watch, fascinated; and self-pleasure myself shamelessly, riding the brink of climax for hours until I can stand it no longer, finding forgetfulness in the twisted eroticism of the scene.
Briarwhip is dead, the latest victim of our strange plague. I wonder now if any of us will survive this journey.
Lord Briarwhip was floating in the Great Hall, in front of the forward portholes, as if he were still gazing at the Moon, which now looms so close. His eyes were still open, but his flesh had turned the same deadly shade of blue as Matilda and Lady Makepeace. He never exhibited any symptoms; at breakfast he was as lively and healthy-seeming as ever. Tobi is distraught; Lady Lovejoy and I are rather numb, going through the motions of normal shipboard life. Whatever that may be.
I have been remiss in my writing.
On a sailing ship, far out at sea, there is always work. The crew is kept busy doing a myriad of tasks, combating the unending assault of the elements on the rigging and the hull. In this way, the men are kept happy and peaceable, whereas if they were idle, melancholia and restiveness would inevitably result.
In Outer Space, there is virtually nothing to be done vis-à-vis our Space Ship: there is no sensation of movement, nor any maintenance or work to be done upon her, making it easy to dwell on our losses, and even to slip into depression.
Tobi and Lady Lovejoy have formed some sort of bond. She abuses the boy grossly; tying him up and whipping him until the blood sprays from his back, or roughly shoving all four fingers and a thumb up his arse-hole while cruelly squeezing his ballocks. I would put a stop to it, but the more she torments him, the harder his penis becomes, and the louder he cries out for more, more, more.
She amuses herself by binding him hand and foot, and capturing his head between her thighs, so that his face is pressed up against her sex, and floating like that, without regard for his comfort or even respiration, until he can bring her to climax. Alternatively, she will hover just above him, so that his tongue strains to reach her nether hole, and the muscles in his neck quiver with the effort, while she applies her fingers to herself, languidly bringing herself to peak after peak, while the poor boy labors fruitlessly. I find myself masturbating to these little scenes, and she encourages it bawdily, even offering me her own wet and slippery digits to taste and smell while I caress myself; and forcing poor Tobi to lap up my ejaculate. How he finds release, I do not know.
June 23, Anno Domini 1865, At Sea, aboard the Space Ship Athena
They are all gone. Dead. They are sleeping now, side by side in the cold locker. Soon I will lay them to rest in the lifeless lunar sand.
The Moon looms so close now, I could almost reach out and touch it. Looking out through the portholes, it fills the entire forward field of vision.
I had imagined that we would discover canals, lush forests, fertile fields, flourishing civilizations, even great cities with towers and spires. There is nothing. It is a wasteland, an endless desert, devoid of any comfort or life. It is beautiful though, a magnificent desolation.
Soon I will enter the lunar atmosphere, and the silk and bamboo wings of Dr. Toyoda will find purchase, and I will pilot the Athena through the thin air to a soft landing, and then I will step out of my Space Ship and be the First Man on the Moon. How I will get home, I know not; I had counted on being able to construct another canon to launch us back toward our Mother Earth, but I see now that is impossible. I will take the controls now, and fly, lofting my wings through the heavens like a modern-day Icarus, and may Providence guide my hand. I am alone. I have left everything behind me, in the cold blackness of Outer Space. I am the last of the Astronauts.