A/N: Written for the lotrips100 challenge, and because I have a lasting obsession with the history of theatre. According to Neil Gaiman, it's historically accurate: the boys who played female parts, back when women weren't allowed to act, often had male admirers who would go as far as sleeping with them and still not consider themselves anything other than straight and perfectly normal. Presumably, such boys lost their appeal when they grew up and became undeniably male...
The company have got a new boy in, to replace Orlando now his voice has broken and he can't play the women's parts any more. His name's Elijah, and he's a right pretty one, all big blue eyes and pale skin.
Orlando suspects he's losing the attention of his patron to the new boy. He'd known the day was coming, of course, but it still rankles. Nothing to be done: he's too old now, too masculine, too male for Mr Mortensen's taste.
He knows he'll get more respect, playing men. But he'd give anything just to be two years younger.