Mr Goodsir looked up from his book at Dr Stanley’s question. It was not directed at him however, but at the ship’s boy who had appeared in the doorway, accompanied by one of the stewards.
“George Chambers, sir. Took a fainting fit just now and by all accounts been off his rations a couple of days,” the steward said.
Goodsir closed his book at that. Loss of appetite, especially in one of the younger lads, was never a good sign.
“Get undressed,” Dr Stanley said to George in an exasperated voice. “Haven’t you been drinking your squeezed lemon?”
“I have sir. Every night, just like everyone else,” George insisted, shrugging off his shirt. “And I didn’t faint, I was just taken a bit dizzy.”
“It is beyond me why the ship’s boys in this crew cannot keep themselves well,” Dr Stanley said, rolling up his sleeves. “They are no doubt polluting themselves with self abuse. Well if the lemon juice is having no effect then I shall have to apply the internal remedy. Fetch it please,” he said to the steward, who disappeared in the direction of the mess.
“Come along then - all of it off,” he said to George who stood in his long johns.
George slipped the final item of clothing off and stood pale and naked in the light of the gas lamp.
Dr Stanley began his examination. Teeth, tongue, eyes, ears. Goodsir noticed the slightly grey cast to the boy’s teeth and made a mental note to himself to look at them again later.
“Turn around. Hands on the table,” Dr Stanley said. He manipulated the boy’s stomach. “You are passing solids as usual?” he said.
“Yes sir,” George said, shifting his stance a little. Dr Stanley placed a firm hand on his back to forced him downwards and slid his finger to the knuckle into the boy’s anus.
George hissed in pain and pulled away, earning himself a slap on the side.
“Behave yourself,” Dr Stanley said. He pressed further in.
“Oh, sir,” George said desperately. His pale face had flushed dark pink and his cock had gone from flaccid to erect in a matter of seconds. Stanley continued his intrusive inspection, and Goodsir watched as liquid gathered at the tip of George’s cock, dripping onto the floor. It was a reaction he’d noticed in himself whenever Mr Collins pressed fingers into Goodsir’s…but he should not think of that now.
“Oh for God’s sake,” Dr Stanley snapped, noticing the boy’s distress. Removing his finger, he scooped up a handful of ice from the bucket they used to clean their implements and applied it directly to the boy’s crotch. George whimpered in pain and tried to wriggle away, but the doctor held him firmly by the back of the neck, keeping the handful of ice in place until he was satisfied of the effect.
“There,” he said, taking his hand away at last. George panted, his cock limp and bright red. He cupped it in his hand as though to warm it.
“Keep your hands off the damned thing. Sit down there,” Dr Stanley said indicating a low bench. He turned and yanked open a drawer, sending the metal implements inside it rattling. Rummaging impatiently, he took out a small contraption.
“Mr Goodsir, if you would care to assist,” he said, holding it out.
“Is this really necessary, doctor?” Goodsir tried to protest. The boy was already half frightened out of his wits; surely fastening his member into this device would only panic him more.
“He quite obviously has deviant reactions to internal stimulation,” Dr Stanley said. “How old are you?” he barked at George.
“Eighteen, sir,” George said.
Dr Stanley looked faintly disgusted. “You really should have achieved some control over yourself by this age,” he said. “Nevertheless. Mr Goodsir.” He motioned Goodsir forward.
Goodsir crouched by George’s feet, casting him an apologetic look. “This won’t hurt,” he reassured in a low voice. “But it will feel strange. Keep as still as possible and I’ll be done in a moment.”
Fastening the steel cage around George’s cock and testicles took a no time at all. But Dr Stanley had rather sadistically selected the contraption with the urethral insertion, and this took Goodsir a couple of tries, for George let out a gasp and wrenched away on the first attempt.
“Be still,” Goodsir said, trying to sound calm and reassuring. He placed a hand on the boy’s trembling thigh for a moment, before deftly sliding the final part of the contraption home. George’s chest heaved and he gripped the edges of the bench he sat on, looking to Goodsir for reassurance.
“Right then,” Dr Stanley said. “Over you go. Knees on the bench, hands on the floor. This won’t take long if you behave.”
George obeyed. Dr Stanley uncovered the dish that the steward had brought in and lifted out the peeled knot of root ginger within it. Goodsir started forward with a vial of oil but Stanley waved him away, and with no preparation of the patient at all, he pushed the ginger deep into the trembling boy.
George cried out, reaching a hand around as though to pull it out of himself. Stanley took his hand in an iron grip and pressed it back to the floor.
“Keep your hands on the ground and that is an order. Unless you want me to put you in irons,” he said. He checked his pocket watch. “You’ll stay there till seven bells.”
Stanley took a chair by the desk. He always watched when this remedy was applied - not that they’d done it often - and seemed utterly unmoved by the procedure, but there was a certain tightening of his jaw and a flush to his cheek when the patient began to suffer the side effects.
George was quiet for now. Goodsir watched the rise and fall of his skinny back as he breathed. It took a few minutes usually for the effects to begin, and a few more before discomfort set in. He took his own watch from his pocket and laid it on the desk. Only fifteen minutes until seven bells.
Three of those had ticked by when George began to fidget. He shifted his knees apart, then closer together. He leant forward onto his hands and then pushed back again, thighs flush with his calves and Goodsir heard his breathing become louder and more urgent.
Another two minutes passed and George was squirming in earnest. His face had reddened again and Goodsir could see his cock was trying to harden in its prison and his testicles to draw up. George obviously had a proclivity to react to this particular treatment.
“Mr Goodsir,” George whispered turning his head, “Sir, can I take it out now? It...it doesn’t feel...”
“Seven bells, Mr Chambers,” Stanley said. “I’m certain you shall endure.”
George turned away, his eyes closing, his face a picture of distress. It did seem to Goodsir as though poor George was thoroughly roused. He had spread out his knees again, and Goodsir could see his anus contracting around the plug of ginger as his cock pressed against the sides of the cage. Shifting position again and again, George panted with the sensation.
The pants soon became gasps and moans as the ginger burned within him. George's movements became frantic, and as Goodsir watched, George's caged cock jerked as though someone had tugged at it. George gave a long groan and trembled, his arms half collapsing beneath him as a stream of fluid trickled from the cage. The poor boy had climaxed - was still climaxing, in an unsatisfying, broken way - and yet the plug within him would burn relentlessly for another five minutes.
George could not attempt to stifle his cries now. Over and again he moaned and writhed, his legs shaking. When his moans turned to sobs, Stanley reached out and laid a hand on Goodsir’s arm.
“Worth it for the cure,” he reminded Goodsir. Goodsir watched as sweat ran down George’s back as he endured his torment.
“Please sir,” he was begging. “I can’t. Oh, I can’t, I can’t. Please Mr Goodsir. Doctor.”
Goodsir could not merely look on. Crossing the room, he placed a cool hand onto George’s lower back. “Don’t distress yourself George,” he said. “A moment more and I shall remove it. Only think of the improvement to your health.”
“Let me up,” George begged. Goodsir looked to Stanley who nodded. Goodsir helped George turn over. The boy’s face was a mess of tears and sweat. He’d bitten his lip to bleeding and there was spend on his stomach.
“Only a moment more,” Goodsir reassured, willing seven bells to ring out with every fibre of his being. George buried his face in Goodsir’s shirt front and gave in to sobs.
Seven bells rang at last and Stanley stood. “Take it out,” he said to Goodsir. “George, I’d like to say you were a model patient, but that would be a flagrant lie. Clean yourself up and I do not want to see you back here with any more complaints.”
Goodsir eased the ginger from George quickly, casting it aside. Then he took off the cage as gently as he could, though George moaned in pain and shuddered as it was removed from his urethra.
“There now,” Goodsir said, taking a cloth and cleaning the boy gently. He helped him pull his shirt back on. “You endured very well. Up on the bed, and I shall request us some tea.”
George got up on the bed, wincing a little. “Shall I…” he hesitated. “Shall I live now, Mr Goodsir?”
“Of course you shall,” Goodsir said, trying to ignore the foreboding in his heart.