Young Writers Society

Home » Literary works » Novel / Chapter » Mystery / Suspense

18+ Language Violence Mature Content

How Do You Plead: 8.1

by CaptainJack


Warning: This work has been rated 18+ for language, violence, and mature content.

New Years parties had never been a good occasion for Winslow. So far, he was enjoying the end of 1937 and not looking forward to the events of 1938. The world had turned and twisted itself into a bad enough state without having to worry about a deranged American spy who might blurt it all to the press. He knew that he would never really lose his cool but the fear of his superiors was constantly present in his every thought. Twenty years on this horrid planet had taught him that the fears of others would often interfere with whatever confidence he managed to scrounge up.

“So are you enjoying the festivities so far, Lieutenant Smith?”

A hand clapped against his back to follow the gruff Scottish accent. Winslow turned to find Colonel Murray, more accurately Lord Murray, the host of this fine event. The lieutenant had only met the colonel on a few other occasions and he still wasn’t sure what he had done to garner an invitation to an event like this. It was filled to the brim with people from the high societies of every place imaginable. And in terms of high society…well that was something Winslow had never been a member of.

Still he lied, placing a fake smile upon his place as he said, “I’m enjoying it greatly, Colonel Murray. It’s not quite the type of party that I usually invited to though.”

The Scotsman gave a quick nod, clearly knowing the level of society that Winslow spent his time with. They exchanged slight glances for a moment, with the contemplation that only spies can feel. Winslow was wondering whether to say anything about the colonel’s male secretary and the colonel was surely wondering to say anything about Winslow’s seduction of the same male secretary.

“Yes, I do know the kind of parties that you go to Mr. Smith. My secretary, our mutual friend, has taken me to a few of them and shown me the fun that you boys have with all those artsy types.”

The man’s voice hitched a little bit as he commented on his secretary’s social life. Winslow felt a little twinge of guilt for seducing the man for the point of gathering information but he wasn’t allowed to think about it for very long.

“Ah here comes my pride and joy - my namesake and heir to all these grand rights - Maxwell Bruce.”

A young man in kilt had been striding across the great hall in the polar opposite direction to where the two of them were standing until he heard his father’s call. At this call, he took an about turn. Further examination of Maxwell’s face found a near spitting image of the colonel except for a few slight details. Winslow could tell by looking into the kid’s eyes that he was not a carbon copy of his father.

He observed the Colonel welcoming the young man with, “Maxwell, this is my work colleague Winslow. I think you two will get along well together for this party, seeing as you are the two youngest blokes here.”

Maxwell stretched out a hand to Winslow and politely said, “It’s a pleasure to meet your, sir.”

It was the same sort of relation that Winslow had with his own kin folk. It was a dynamic that he could recognize anywhere and it’s how he had made acquaintances over periods of time. He knew in his heart that queers would bond in their shared trauma and that anything bonded in that would absolutely spiral.

The old Scot must have had a fondness for clapping people onto the back as a form of greeting, as he did the same gesture to his son as he did to Winslow.

It took a few moments for Winslow respond to the young man, returning the firm handshake and waited for the continuation of the conversation. When no response came from either of the Murray men, he took the weight of the conversation onto his own responsibility.

“Just before you walked up, Maxwell, your father and I were talking about the types of parties that we’ve been to over our lives. Are you a partygoer yourself?”

Before the young Maxwell had a chance to answer, his father seemed to suddenly remember that there was a conversation to engage in. He quickly released the grasp on both Maxwell’s and Winslow’s shoulders.

“If you two think you can get on without me, I do have other guests to be getting to,” the elder Scot commented as he walked away. “And I better not see either one of you getting into any trouble.”

They both held their tongues as the Colonel walked away and Winslow could see the boredom in Maxwell’s eyes when watching his father move about the room. There was no answer to his inquiry about parties before the boy moved on to a new point of discussion.

“You know, sir, it’s true what they say about the Scots.”

“That you’re all a bunch of cheap bastards?”

“That we don’t wear anything under our kilts,” the young man coyly answered while pulling down the edge of his skirt. The soldier could see the outline of his hip, and an old scar covered up by a shabby tattoo. It sickened him in his stomach to think of this child - that’s all Maxwell was - a child trying to come onto him.

Winslow smacked the young man’s hold on his waistband and reprimanded him saying, “Don’t you dare try a trick like that. With me or anyone else.”

“Ow. What the bloody hell was that for?” Maxwell asked, turning his head up slightly to meet Winslow’s gaze. He continued, “I didn’t do anything wrong - I do know about sex you know. And I know what your type is after I saw you taking my father’s secretary.”

Winslow simply laughed at the young man, taking a drink of his whiskey and soda, and began to carefully formulate a plan for brushing the kid off. He ran his hands through his hair as he kindly stated, “You’re much too young for me and it would be in your best interests not to try that line on the older queers at this party. Some of them might turn out to be inverts that are actually interested in spring chickens like you.”


Note: You are not logged in, but you can still leave a comment or review. Before it shows up, a moderator will need to approve your comment (this is only a safeguard against spambots). Leave your email if you would like to be notified when your message is approved.







Is this a review?


  

Comments



User avatar
381 Reviews


Points: 16998
Reviews: 381

Donate
Sun Apr 26, 2020 6:17 pm
Dreamy wrote a review...



Hullo!

Oh, this such a contrast to the Winslow I knew from the previous chapter. Now I want to go back and start from the beginning, I want to know the conversations that James and Winslow had. With Winslow being so hard in nature, I want to know what made him lose himself to James like that. Again, it only proves my point that it must have taken a lot for Winslow to express his true feelings to James, and James shouldn't have let him hanging! (I know it's weird to have a point considering, I've only read a meager of a chapter. But I don't think I'm going to let it slide. haha)

Winslow was wondering whether to say anything about the colonel’s male secretary and the colonel was surely wondering to say anything about Winslow’s seduction of the same male secretary.


Ah, this is so tense. It made me tense. I was just imagining two hard looking men contemplating whether to inquire the other of the seduction. That'd be a fun picture to look at. Ah!

Further examination of Maxwell’s face found a near spitting image of the colonel except for a few slight details. Winslow could tell by looking into the kid’s eyes that he was not a carbon copy of his father.


Here, I thought you've already established that the son is not a 'splitting image of the father' in the first sentence. So the second sentence only felt repetitive and not as a sentence of confirmation.

Overall, a good job. Keep writing!

Cheers! :D




User avatar
1727 Reviews


Points: 94060
Reviews: 1727

Donate
Sun Apr 26, 2020 4:06 pm
BluesClues wrote a review...



So far, he was enjoying the end of 1937 and not looking forward to the events of 1938.


Good choice, to be honest, because we know what comes in 1939.

Twenty years on this horrid planet had taught him that the fears of others would often interfere with whatever confidence he managed to scrounge up.


Wait, how old is Winslow? He's older than twenty, I'm a thousand percent sure, but this also doesn't seem like the kind of story where he might have been off on a different planet for a decade or so.

They exchanged slight glances for a moment, with the contemplation that only spies can feel.


I like to think that this means that not only are they both spies but that everyone at this party is a spy. I'm probably wrong, but if I am, don't tell me.

Oh HEY, it's Maxwell! I know that kid!

“Maxwell, this is my work colleague Winslow. I think you two will get along well together for this party, seeing as you are the two youngest blokes here.”


Wait, is Winslow only twenty? I was imagining him at least well into his thirties, based on...well...*gestures at literally everything about Winslow* I don't know - the sheer amount of tragic, angst-filled backstory, the ex-lovers and ruined relationships, the fact that he's a cop and seems like a lead cop on this investigation, the fact that he's also a spy, everything just made me think he was fifteen or twenty years older than he apparently actually is. That's not to say young people can't feel this angsty, but I guess it's just the deep-seated angst combined with all the experience he seems to have in, like, every area of life.

Before the young Maxwell had a chance to answer, his father seemed to suddenly remember that there was a conversation to engage in. He quickly released the grasp on both Maxwell’s and Winslow’s shoulders.
“If you two think you can get on without me, I do have other guests to be getting to,” the elder Scot commented as he walked away. “And I better not see either one of you getting into any trouble.”


Not gonna lie, this makes it sound like the colonel is lowkey shipping them and hoping they'll hit it off, although if I remember correctly Maxwell is only seventeen.

It sickened him in his stomach to think of this child - that’s all Maxwell was - a child trying to come onto him.


See, like this. I appreciate the fact that Winslow is like "wow no you're a kid, no coming onto me," but him thinking about how Maxwell is a literal child makes him sound way older than I guess he actually is. Admittedly, I don't know if his age comes up in the first four chapters - if I already knew how old he was, maybe this wouldn't seem so jarring to me? I'm not sure.




User avatar
207 Reviews


Points: 2577
Reviews: 207

Donate
Sun Apr 26, 2020 2:05 am
Rin321 wrote a review...



Hello! Rin321 back yet again!

I can't believe you don't have more people reading and reviewing this, it really deserves it :(

So into it now:

I was really happy with the date clarification! I had a feeling that this was set some time ago but the era is a lot more clearly defined now so that helps a lot! I love that the flashback and clarification was subtle as well!

I can only imagine is position being himself in a party crowd of people like that. I myself can kinda relate, it's hard to fit in a party of people you're not typically around, but you can see in his character that he really is one to contain a lot of emotions to save face, hence the fake smiles and such.

This whole scene of the party was really interesting, I'm not used to reading about this timeline and location but it's really clear to picture in my head the way you write it!

Maxwell tsk tsk

That's a good line but not on Winslow nuh uhhhh
I miss James already haha

I like that Winslow still tries to help him though, he cares enough to want this guy to be on guard, which is valid because many would probably take advantage!

I'm off to the next chapter, this one was great!

Great job!
~Rin





People find it far easier to forgive others for being wrong than being right.
— Albus Dumbledore