Glencross Manor – Ruth’s Story

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Authors Note: Behold, a brand new story! A successful woman who longs to have a child of her own, but doesn’t want a man in her life, stumbles upon a rather unusual institution. As always, all characters are over the age of 18, and any resemblance to any persons either living or dead is unintended and entirely coincidental.

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There are a lot of women like me out there – far more than you’d think – women who are blessed with successful careers in business, but for whatever reason simply don’t have the time to form any meaningful relationships with men. My career, somewhat ironically given my predicament, was running my own online store that sold everything a mum or dad could ever need to help with bringing up their baby. We sold it all: baby foods, formulas, prams and strollers, baby clothes, cots, cribs, all manner of household safety devices to keep curious toddlers from accidentally injuring or electrocuting themselves at home, maternity clothes, oh, and nappies of course – we had an entire warehouse full of those! My business has been a resounding success, and by the time I was thirty years old I’d already amassed a fortune in excess of five million pounds. But the irony was that despite having become one of the biggest online suppliers of baby related products in the U.K, the one thing I didn’t have was a baby of my own.

The trouble was that when I was focused on building up my business I had very little time to forge any romantic relationships with men. I’d had flings here and there, but they were mainly just one night stands. A couple of times, though I’m a little ashamed to admit it, I’d even employed the services of a gigolo, just to have sex and ‘scratch the itch’ for a little while. Now, at the age of thirty four, with my business virtually running itself thanks to my full time staff of twenty people, I could finally take stock of my life – and I had become seriously broody!

There was however, a fly in the ointment – I didn’t actually want a man in my life. Now, before you start accusing me of being one of those horrid women who are anti-men, or even of being a lesbian, let me take this opportunity to assure you that I am neither of those – not that there’s anything wrong with being a lesbian (after all, some of my employees are lesbians). It was just that after living the life of a single woman for so long, I’d just reached the conclusion that having a husband, or even just a boyfriend, just wasn’t what I wanted in my life. You know that MGTOW thing? Men Going Their Own Way? Well, I guess you could say I was a WGTOW. I had many wonderful men in my life – I just didn’t want to be in a relationship with any of them.

But the inescapable fact that my biological clock was ticking was the reason behind many a sleepless night at that point in my life, so I decided it was about time I tried to see what options were open to me. Surprisingly, there were several, my friend and doctor, Alice, explained to me one afternoon over coffee in my kitchen in the large thatched cottage in the New Forest I called home. There was artificial insemination of course, and at the other end of the scale was adoption. I could even have some of my eggs harvested, fertilised by an anonymous donor and then carried to full term by a surrogate mother, thus freeing me from the ordeal of pregnancy and childbirth. I dismissed that particular option right away – I wanted to experience pregnancy for myself and be a proper mum.

The other options didn’t really appeal to me either – I’ve nothing against people who adopt other people’s kids, but it just wasn’t for me. If I was going to be a mum I wanted a child who was biologically mine. I swiftly ruled out artificial insemination as well – it was all far too clinical and impersonal for what I wanted. The idea of having straws full of some anonymous man’s semen injected into my womb in order to get me pregnant not only didn’t sound like fun, but I wanted to at least get to meet the father of my child, even if I didn’t want any kind of relationship with him afterwards.

“Well, there is one other option,” Alice said as she sipped her coffee and reclined back into her seat at the kitchen table.

“Such as?” I replied.

“Glencross Manor,” my friend answered simply.

“What’s that, when it’s at home?” I asked her for clarification.

“It’s run by a friend of mine,” she explained. “Well, more accurately, a friend of a friend of a professional colleague. It’s a place where, what’s the best way to describe it tastefully? It’s a place where professional ladies can come and select from a variety of different men to have a child with, and then, y’know, do the necessary with him in order to get pregnant.”

“Do the necessary?” I snorted in disbelief. “You don’t mean?”

“Natural insemination,” Alice replied in a typically clinical matter-of-fact demeanour.

“Having sex, you mean?” I answered, seeking clarification.

“Yes, basically,” Alice responded in the same professionally detached manner. “It’s by far the most effective ataşehir escort method of getting pregnant when you look at it. When it comes to conceiving, nature really does know best.”

“Where is it? This Glencross Manor place?” I asked.

“Ooh, I appear to have aroused your curiosity!” Alice replied with a slight chuckle. “It’s up in Scotland. A few miles inland from Fort William, to be exact. Hang on, I have a brochure somewhere.”

“They have a brochure?” I exclaimed in mild surprise.

“Sure they do,” Alice said as she rummaged around in her bag. “Ah, yes, here we are!”

She handed me a small booklet printed on glossy paper. On the front was a picture of a rather grand looking country house surrounded by pine forested hills and beautifully landscaped grounds. Below the picture the words Glencross Manor in elaborate lettering gave no hint of the services the place provided. However, the text inside the brochure was a little more forthcoming:

Glencross Manor, situated on the tranquil shores of Loch Ionadair, overlooked by the majestic summit of Ben Nevis, provides a discreet and professional service for couples and professional ladies who wish to make their dreams of starting a family become a reality.

The only centre of its kind in the United Kingdom, the Glencross Manor Clinic for Fertility and Human Reproductive Sciences was established in the 1980’s to cater towards a growing class of professionals from all walks of life who are either struggling to conceive, or simply require a willing donor.

It all seemed a bit unreal – how on earth could a place like this actually exist? One thing was for sure however, I was definitely going to look into it!

And so, a couple of weeks later after making the necessary arrangements, I found myself on the Caledonian Sleeper train, bound for Fort William.

* * * * * *

I opened the blind of my first class sleeping compartment to be greeted with the bleak and boggy expanse of Rannoch Moor in the milky early morning light. It was a strangely beautiful sight as the train ambled along the single track, and I was feeling a definite sense of cautious excitement as I grew ever closer towards my destination. The representative from Glencross Manor that I had spoken with over the phone, had explained that the best way to find out more about the place and the service they offered was to actually visit it and to meet with its founder, a Mrs. McEill. Also, it would give them the opportunity, should I agree to sign on the dotted line for their ‘unique and unparalleled service’, to allow them to conduct the medical tests that were required as a part of the contract. Also, the West Highlands of Scotland was a region I’d always wanted to visit and had never had the opportunity before, so I didn’t really need much persuasion to come and see Glencross Manor for myself.

And the landscape certainly did not disappoint, with its mixture of bleak moorland and majestic hills and mountains. I went to the restaurant car for breakfast just as the train pulled in to Corrour station. Arguably the remotest railway station in the whole of Britain, it was miles from the nearest road and only existed to serve the nearby hotel and a shooting lodge some miles away at the top end of Loch Ossian. As remote as it was, I couldn’t imagine a more peaceful place to come and visit. It was also, I later discovered, where a scene from one of my favourite movies, Trainspotting, was filmed.

After finishing breakfast whilst the train wound its way amid forests, mountains, and past the shimmering waters of Loch Trieg, I returned to my compartment to pack up my belongings and sit and enjoy what remained of my journey to Fort William.

In stark contrast to lonely but very beautiful Corrour, Fort William station felt like Grand Central Terminal in New York by comparison, even though it only had two platforms. It was shaping up to be a beautiful day, with the early morning mist giving way to bright sunshine in a blue sky peppered with white fluffy clouds overhead. As I wheeled my small suitcase along the station platform after disembarking, with my laptop bag slung over one shoulder and my handbag over the other, I came across a smartly dressed man in a suit and tie holding up a small placard with my name on it.

“Ruth Vyne?” he asked me as I approached. “Good morning, my name’s Karl and I’m to be your driver for today. Welcome to Fort William.”

“Why, thank you, Karl,” I replied as he took my case and laptop bag from me. “It’s certainly beautiful around here!”

“You’ll be seeing a bit more of it once we make our way to the Manor,” Karl said as he led me out of the station.

A smart metallic black Range Rover awaited us on the station forecourt. Glancing at its license plate, I noticed that it was practically brand new – Mrs. McEill, the owner of Glencross Manor, was clearly not short of money, I noted to myself. Whilst Karl put my bags in the back, I sat in the passenger seat and took in the luxurious kadıköy escort interior of cream coloured leather, polished wood and brushed aluminium.

“How long will it take to get there?” I asked Karl as we pulled out from the station.

“Not long,” he answered. “It’s only a few miles out of town, shouldn’t take us more than half an hour at the most. Of course, in winter it’s a different story – if the snow gets bad we can get cut off for days. Although we do have a tractor that can usually get through all but the very worst snow.”

“I expect it’s beautiful in the snow,” I said a little wistfully.

“It is,” Karl said as he navigated us out of the small town. “A pain in the backside for getting to and from town, but very pretty to look at.”

We sat and made general small talk as we travelled along the road. To be honest though, I was more focused on taking in the landscape – it really was a most beautiful place. After a while, Karl slowed and turned off the main road through a sturdy looking granite gateway with ornate black wrought iron gates. Carved into the stonework, the words Glencross Manor – Strictly Private stood out in White against the grey granite. Karl pushed a button on a device attached to the sun visor, and the gates opened before us.

There was still a couple of miles of driveway to navigate before the house finally came into view. I’m no expert on architecture, but I recognised the Scottish Baronial style, with its distinctive stepped gables, round turrets, tiled roofs and whitewashed walls. On one turret a Saltire, the flag of Scotland, fluttered in the breeze. On the turret next to it flew a second flag that I assumed was either a family, or in this part of the world, a clan crest.

Located a short distance away from the main house was a campus of more modern two and three storey buildings. There were a few people out and about, probably making the most of the nice weather, and I noticed that most of them were men, although there were a few women as well.

Karl pulled up outside the main house and retrieved my bags for me.

“Well, here we are,” he said brightly as he helped me out of the car. “Welcome to Glencross Manor. I’ll go take you to meet the owner, Mrs. McEill, and while you’re with her I’ll take your luggage to your room.

“Thanks, Karl,” I said to him as he beckoned me to follow him.

On entering the house I found myself inside a large hall, dominated by a huge fireplace at one end. The walls were festooned with numerous stags heads, large paintings of former clan chieftains bedecked in swathes of tartan, and an ornamental display of claymores, axes, swords and muskets arranged in circular patterns either side of the huge stone chimney breast. It was all very Scottish, I guess would be the best way to describe it.

A rather demure looking woman, possibly in her seventies, appeared in one of the doorways that led out from the hall.

“Mrs. Vyne to see you, Mrs. McEill,” Karl announced.

“Ms. Vyne, actually,” I corrected him.

“Thank you, Karl,” the woman smiled. “If you could take Ms. Vyne’s bags up to her room and then report to Mrs. Clarville’s room – she’ll be ready and waiting for you.”

“Yes, Mrs. McEill,” Karl replied to her. “Duty calls, I guess!”

And with that he took his leave, taking my bags with him and leaving me in the company of Mrs. McEill.

“Permit me to introduce myself, my dear,” Mrs. McEill said in her gentle Scottish accent as she led me into an adjoining room. “My name is Elspeth McEill, chieftain of the Clan McEill, and owner of this rather unusual facility.”

“You’re a clan chieftain?” I asked her.

“I had no brothers or any other male relatives that could inherit the title,” she explained. “So when my father died I was his only heir. Still, at least the Clan McEill line will continue with my son. He lives in the states these days, heading up our American operation.”

Mrs. McEill showed me into a spacious drawing room with an ornate plasterwork ceiling and rich wood panelled walls.

“Now I’m sure you have plenty of questions about what we do here, so let me explain as best I can,” the kindly woman said as she took a seat in a comfortable armchair beside the fireplace and invited me to take a seat opposite. “As it mentions in our little brochure, we offer a discreet service to people who wish to conceive a child. Most of our clients are professional ladies like yourself, although we also cater for couples – both mixed and same sex. In laymen’s terms we are a community of people who strive to help others to have children, either because they are experiencing difficulty conceiving, or simply wish to enjoy motherhood without wanting to have a man in their life. Our philosophy here is that nature knows best, so virtually all donations are via natural insemination – having sex, basically.”

“I see,” I replied. “So, how exactly does it work? Beyond the, erm, obvious.”

“Here at Glencross Manor we have over three hundred bostancı escort men that you can choose from to father your child,” Mrs. McEill explained. “They come from all manner of different ethnicities and cultural backgrounds, and all of them have been assessed and vetted for their suitability as sperm donors. They are all well educated, come from stable backgrounds and are free from any chronic or congenital health issues. They are, in short, perfect specimens of masculinity.

“As part of our complex here, we have a fully equipped medical centre that allows us to conduct regular health screenings, and all donors must undergo a full physical examination and submit a sample of their semen for analysis once a month.

“They must also adhere to a strict regimen of exercise and their diet is also closely monitored – the food served at our cafeteria here is first class and provides the men with a perfectly balanced diet. Now, should you agree to our terms you may select a man from our roster – I dislike using the word ‘catalogue’, but that’s basically what it is. After that I shall personally introduce you to each other and you can spend some time getting to know one another. If he meets with your approval, we can set up an appointment for you to ‘do the deed’ with each other. By tracking your menstrual cycle for a few months we shall be able to reasonably predict the three day window when you are at your most receptive, and during that window you may have sex with your selected donor as many times as you wish. Or rather more accurately, as many times as he can do it!”

“So, are these men paid to do this?” I enquired.

“Of course they are,” Mrs. McEill replied patiently. “We divide their fees on a 60/40 basis – sixty percent of the money goes to the donor, the remaining forty percent goes to the clinic to pay for administration, upkeep and all the boring stuff. Plus of course, some handy profits for yours truly and the other shareholders.”

“And the men don’t mind this?” I asked her. “That you make money out of basically selling them for sex?”

“Of course they don’t mind!” Mrs. McEill chuckled. “This isn’t a brothel, as you’ll find out later. Not only do they receive the larger share of the fees, they are also provided with accommodation and all their meals – they want for nothing while they’re here. They receive only the very best healthcare here and enjoy the use of all our facilities, including a fully equipped gym, swimming pool and health spa, a library stocked with all manner of books, movies and games. There are football and rugby pitches, tennis and basketball courts. We have everything they could possibly need. And before you ask, they are not prisoners here either – they are free to travel into town whenever they want, when they aren’t being engaged by a client of course. And they are free to quit whenever they want – it’s just a job like any other, after all. Or rather, a job unlike any other, depending on how you look at it.”

“So, Karl? Was he?”

“One of our donors? Yes,” Mrs. McEill affirmed. “One of our very best, as it goes. Wonderful man – very fertile and with such a good nature to go with it.”

“So, he’s not just the chauffeur then?” I asked.

“All the men here have second jobs in addition to their role as donors,” Mrs. McEill explained. “They help maintain the upkeep of the place, do any manual work that needs doing around the estate, staff the kitchens and help run the sports and leisure facilities. All the technical, laboratory and medical staff are women, however. I strongly believe in women being given a chance to work in science and technology, and over the years we have had some truly gifted female embryologists and fertility consultants pass through our doors here.”

“So, these monthly physicals you mentioned – they’re all conducted by women?” I enquired. “Don’t the men object to that at all? Wouldn’t they rather be examined by a man instead?”

“My dear, you are full of questions, aren’t you!” Mrs. McEill chuckled. “I suppose to begin with the thought of being intimately examined by a woman is a little daunting for the men, but they soon get used to it. Like I said, this place is no brothel, and the men are free to leave whenever they wish. Nobody is pressured into anything, but if a man does not wish to be examined by a woman then he has no place here.”

Mrs. McEill rang a small bell that sat on a small table beside her chair. A few moments later a young man appeared, dressed smartly in a dark blue suit and tie.

“Yes, Mrs. McEill?” he said as he stopped before us.

“Ah, Jason – could you be a dear and fetch some tea for myself and my potential client here?” she asked him politely.

“Yes of course, Mrs. McEill,” Jason answered. “Will you be wanting your usual blend?”

“No, I think some Darjeeling would be nice today,” Mrs. McEill replied and then turned to face me. “I’m afraid I take my tea very seriously! I have just about every single blend you can think of – most grand houses like this have a wine cellar, but since I don’t drink I had to fill it with something else instead. So I have what’s probably the only tea cellar in the highlands!” she chuckled towards me. “How about you, my dear? Is there particular blend of tea you’d like?”

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