Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Margaret Jones' Rival

Another Margaret Jones piece, this time when she's at Cambridge University studying Botany she makes an enemy, who will one day ruin Margaret's career...



Hilary May Bishop loved being at Cambridge University. She had gone from being the most popular girl at her Academy to the most popular girl at University. Not a day went by when a boy didn’t ask her out for lunch or one of her girl friends complemented her hair, or clothes, or make up, or shoes, or jewellery. Her father knew many of the professors, having studied there himself and now being on University’s board, so even they treated Hilary May wonderfully. Many of the professors marked her work very highly, she was receiving the highest grades in class, well, nearly the highest.

‘Margaret Jones, 94% on your essay on ‘Nipplewort: Common Weed or Deadly Disease?’ an original and entertaining topic. Well done.’ Professor Gladstien said handing Margaret her essay.

Hilary May looked through her own essay entitled: ‘Should Hedge Mustard Be Used By Herbalists Once More?’ She had received 89% and the only comment Professor Gladstien had written was, ‘Good sentence structure’. Hilary May glared at Margaret as she returned to her seat and was congratulated by her surrounding classmates. How come Hilary May was being outdone by such a moronic twerp? There was absolutely nothing special about her. Hilary May was so much better. She should be the one being congratulated on her top mark. She was the smarter one, the charming one, the prettier one. Margaret Jones was hardly pretty. Her hair was an unruly brown bush that clouded her face and her thick glasses made her look like an oversized bug. Her clothes were no better; her burgundy woollen jumper and tan corduroy skirt looked atrocious together, and then coupled with her out of fashion, clearly hand-me-down 1960’s vinyl kitten heels, Hilary May was trying her best not to throw up. Hilary May smoothed her golden hair, looked down at her beautifully painted nails and straightened her lavender cardigan, which matched her skirt and shoes. She was so perfect. Why on Earth was she feeling so threatened by this bug-eyed dweeb? She had absolutely nothing to worry about.

***

‘Yes, my boyfriend sent them all the way from Thailand, he goes travelling a lot you know, it would be too expensive for normal people but he works for the government so he can afford it. What department does he work in? Oh, it’s top secret I couldn’t possibly tell you. But don’t you just love the flowers, they’re such a beautiful colour and they smell fantastic!’ Hilary May barely stopped to breathe as she gushed about the bouquet she had received this morning. Many of her class members gathered around to catch a glimpse of such an interesting specimen of flower, even Professor Gladstien looked impressed. Hilary May beamed as they complimented her and said how she was so lucky to have such a wonderful boyfriend. She was so pleased with herself that she didn’t notice when Margaret Jones walked into the class and joined the crowd.

‘Oh, what a delightful bunch of flowers you have, Hilary Jay.’ Margaret said leaning in to sniff the flowers.

‘It’s Hilary May,’ she corrected but Margaret didn’t appear to hear her. ‘My boyfriend bought them for me, they come from Thailand.’

‘Yes,’ Margaret agreed, leaning in for another sniff, ‘they’re the Excrementum Odoratus Redigere, which is literally translated as Excrement Odour Reducer. They were originally grown around tribes’ toilet area, commonly a ditch dug into the ground, to reduce the smell of faecal matter, hence their strong fragrance.’ Margaret did not notice the silence that followed her precise and matter of fact explanation. Everyone was staring at Hilary May. ‘Perhaps,’ Margaret continued in her factual tone, ‘your boyfriend is trying to suggest something to you.’

Hilary May looked at Margaret with pure hatred as every person in the room burst out laughing, including Professor Gladstien.  Margaret looked around at everyone, smiled bewilderedly, and simply went to sit down at her desk. Hilary May could not believe what Margaret had just done. She had made her the laughing stock of the Botany department and didn’t even seem to realise! Hilary May was going to get Margaret back for this; she better watch her back. 

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

The Reading List Revisited

I posted my Reading List over a year ago now and I wanted to see how many books I have read from my list since, I also added a few books that I read and thought they just had to go on the list too! I have read 9 this year but started many more and have read many that aren't on the list. So far in total I have 49 from the list and have started 15 more. Luckily, I now have most of these books on my Kindle so I better get cracking!

 If anyone has any other suggestions please feel free to comment!



  1. 2001: A Space Odyssey, Arthur C. Clarke 
  2. The Adventures of Huckleberry Fin, Mark Twain 
  3. The Adventures of Thomas Sawyer, Mark Twain 
  4. Aesop’s Fables, Aesopus 
  5. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll 
  6. American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis 
  7. Animal Farm, George Orwell 
  8. Atonement, Ian McEwan 
  9. The Beach, Alex Garland 
  10. The Bloody Chamber, Angela Carter 
  11. The BFG, Roald Dahl 
  12. Brave New World, Aldous Huxley 
  13. Bridget Jones’s Diary, Helen Fielding 
  14. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres 
  15. Carrie, Stephen King 
  16. Casino Royale, Ian Fleming 
  17. Catch 22, Joseph Heller 
  18. The Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Salinger 
  19. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl 
  20. Choke, Chuck Palahniuk 
  21. A Clockwork Orange, Anthony Burgess 
  22. Cloud Atlas, David Mitchell 
  23. The Color Purple, Alice Walker 
  24. Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky 
  25. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, Mark Haddon 
  26. Day of the Triffids, John Wyndham 
  27. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, Philip K. Dick 
  28. Dracula, Bram Stoker 
  29. Emma, Jane Austin 
  30. The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje 
  31. Far From the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy 
  32. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Hunter. S. Thompson 
  33. Fight Club, Chuck Palahniuk 
  34. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson 
  35. Gone With the Wind, Margaret Mitchell 
  36. The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck 
  37. Great Expectations, Charles Dickens 
  38. The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald 
  39. Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift 
  40. Haunted, Chuck Palahniuk 
  41. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams 
  42. The Hobbit, J. R. R. Tolkien 
  43. The Hound of the Baskervilles, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 
  44. Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo 
  45. I, Robot, Isaac Asimov 
  46. Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice 
  47. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte 
  48. Journey to The Centre Of The Earth, Jules Verne 
  49. Just So Stories, Rudyard Kipling 
  50. Kafka on the Shore, Haruki Murakami 
  51. A Kestrel for a Knave, Barry Hines 
  52. Lady Chatterley’s Lover, D. H. Lawrence 
  53. Life of Pi, Yann Martel 
  54. A Little Princess, Frances Hodgson Burnett 
  55. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott 
  56. The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-ExupĂ©ry 
  57. Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov 
  58. Lord of the Flies, William Golding 
  59. Lord of the Rings Trilogy, J. R. R. Tolkien 
  60. The lovely Bones, Alice Sebold 
  61. Memoirs of a Geisha, Arthur Golden 
  62. Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck 
  63. Middlesex, Jeffery Eugenides 
  64. Misery, Stephen King 
  65. Moby Dick, Herman Melville 
  66. My Sister’s Keeper, Jodi Picoult 
  67. The Never Ending Story, Michael Ende 
  68. Never Let Me Go, Kazuo Ishiguro 
  69. Nights at the Circus, Angela Carter 
  70. Nineteen Eighty Four, George Orwell 
  71. The Notebook, Nick Sparks 
  72. Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens 
  73. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Ken Kesey 
  74. Oryx and Crake, Margaret Atwood 
  75. Perfume, Patrick Suskind 
  76. Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie 
  77. The Picture of Dorian Grey, Oscar Wilde 
  78. The Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunya 
  79. The Postman Always Rings Twice, James M. Cain 
  80. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen 
  81. Remains of the Day, Kazuo Ishiguro 
  82. The Reader, Bernard Schlink 
  83. A Room with A View, E. M. Forester 
  84. Schindler’s Ark, Thomas Keneally 
  85. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett 
  86. Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen 
  87. The Shining, Stephen King 
  88. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Robert Louis Stevenson 
  89. A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens 
  90. The Talented Mr Ripley, Patricia Highsmith 
  91. Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy 
  92. The Time Machine, Thomas Hardy 
  93. The Time Traveller’s Wife, Audrey Niffenegger 
  94. Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There, Lewis Carroll 
  95. To Kill A Mockingbird, Harper Lee 
  96. To The Lighthouse, Virginia Woolf 
  97. A Town Like Alice, Neville Shute 
  98. Trainspotting, Irvine Welsh 
  99. Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson 
  100. Ulysses, James Joyce 
  101. Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray 
  102. Vertigo, W. G. Sebald 
  103. War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy 
  104. The War of the Worlds, H.G. Wells 
  105. Whistling for the Elephants, Sandi Toksvig 
  106. The White Tiger, Aravind Adiga 
  107. Wise Children, Angela Carter 
  108. Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte 
  109. The Yellow Wallpaper, Charlotte Perkins Gilman 

Monday, 23 January 2012

Stockholm


Oh God, oh God! I’m going to die, I know it. He’s going to kill me. What did I ever do to deserve this? Why God, why? I just want to go home. I want my mum. Oh, mum! I’ll never see her again. And she’ll never know where I went. Mum, mum, I’m so sorry. If you ever read this I’m sorry and I love you…

Day 1
I’m not sure how long I’ve been here. I passed out after I wrote that last passage and I’m not sure how much time has gone by since. So, I guess this will be day 1 then.
I’ve realised that I need to calm down, there is no point in crying to myself, it will only give him satisfaction. I suppose that’s the only good thing – he hasn’t killed me yet. In fact, I haven’t seen him at all. I don’t even know if he is a he! I don’t remember anything about him. I don’t really remember much from that night at all. I know I was on the train, back from university. It was pretty late; I’d had to stay behind to some research at the library. I was tired. I had my headphones in. I didn’t really notice anyone else on the train. I was thinking about my coursework. My stop was next. I was getting ready to leave and then it all went black. I really don’t remember anyone else on the train. Why? Why can’t I remember anything? Why is he doing this to me?

Day 3
I still haven’t seen him but sometimes I can hear him walking around outside the door. Food is just pushed through a flap at the bottom of the door randomly. Yesterday I didn’t get any. Today it was cat food. I ate it.
I want to know why I’m here, what he’s waiting for. Is he holding me for ransom? Does he want to kill me, or worse? Oh God, I can’t bear to think about it. He’s probably getting some sick pleasure out of this. He might be watching me right now. Or maybe he waits till I’m asleep and then reads this book; I did wonder why it was in here. Well, if that’s his plan then I just won’t write in it anymore.

Day 6
I can’t help it, there’s nothing else to do here. I don’t want to write in this at all but I can’t stand another day of lying on that disgusting mattress staring at the ceiling. I must have counted all the stains a million times by now. I’ve searched the room, too. I thought maybe there would be a way out – a loose brick, a crack, just something. But apart from the door, which is metal, the room is perfectly sealed. The only things in the room are my dirty mattress and a bucket. Though, now I wish there was a window as my bucket is starting to smell pretty bad.

Day 7
It’s been over a week now, at least the bucket was emptied sometime when I was sleeping, so he does come in here at night – how do I not hear him?
I can’t help but wonder if my parents are worried. Have they got people out looking for me? Do they have any idea where I am? I don’t even know where I am. For all I know I have been taken hundreds of miles away. I wonder if my parents know I miss them. Do they still think I’m alive?

Day 9
I’m so hungry. There’s been no food for two days now and I haven’t left the mattress in three. I can barely move. I’m so hungry. So hungr…

Day 10
Food came today. A ham sandwich.  I could barely make it to the door and I only had two mouthfuls before I was sick. But it was food and I saved the rest for later, just in case.

Day 12
It was a good thing I saved the sandwich, even if it was mouldy, as no food came yesterday. I doubt any will come today, either. I don’t know what kind of pervert this guy is. I can’t help but think that’s the worst thing about all of this: the unknown. What is he going to do to me? What is he planning? Will I make it out alive?

Day 14
That bastard. That sick, twisted fuck!  Instead of food today I got a radio. It was a news programme and my parents were on it. They’re still looking for me, they still love me. If anyone knows any information about my whereabouts could they get in touch, please? What does that fucking bastard want? Does he want me to cry again? Well, I’ll give him something he won’t expect.
I smashed his stupid radio, with my bucket.

Day 16
As expected I haven’t got any good food for a couple of days now, just cat food again, but I find that I’m not very hungry anyway. I haven’t heard anything from behind the door in a while either. I’m worried that my bucket stunt cost me a little more than I had planned it to.

Day 17
I’m really worried now. I think he’s left me. Left me here to rot. Obviously I wasn’t worth the time. Why couldn’t he just let me go instead of leaving me here? I don’t want to die.

Day 19
I’m sorry for what I did. Please don’t leave me here. Please come back. I need food, I need water, please. Please…

Day 22
He’s back! I can hear him. He came back for me. I knew he couldn’t leave me here forever.

Day 23
He let me out today, can you believe it? After he left me for so long he came back to treat me. Today with my sandwich came a blindfold and a note made out of cut up newspapers saying I should put on the blindfold and wait by the door. If I did I would be rewarded.  I wasn’t sure what he would do, but anything would be better than sitting here. He came for me a while later, he helped me around the house and he was surprisingly gentle. He didn’t speak though, and he didn’t let me see his face, either. But I got to have a shower and use a proper toilet for once! The door was locked from the outside but I was allowed to take off the blindfold. The bathroom didn’t have any windows or clues to who he was, it was completely bare. But it feels so nice to clean again.

Day 27
I got chocolate today, a whole bar. I only had two squares before wrapping up the rest and saving it under my pillow. I’ll have some this evening, too.

Day 28
The blindfold came back again today. I instantly put it on and sat by the door. He came for me a while later and guided me around the house again. I know he’s a man now; his hands are large and manly and yet so soft. He sat me at the table and boy it smelt so good. He let me take my blindfold off, but I had to look forward at all times. The table was laden with delicious food; there was a huge roast dinner with extra stuffing and a giant slice of hot chocolate fudge cake with a scoop of ice cream. I was so hungry and yet so sick at the same time. He stood with his hands on my shoulders as I ate; they gently massaged me throughout the meal. I hadn’t felt this pampered in such a long time.  I was sad to go back to my room.

Day 33
Food has been coming regularly for the last few days; I’ve had chocolate, crisps, and biscuits - anything I could have wanted!  I can’t eat most of it so I’ve been saving it, though I no longer fear going hungry. He’s so lovely. He’s been letting me out for showers again, and one time I even got to have a bath. As soon as the blindfold comes through the door my heart jumps. I know he doesn’t speak to me but it’s nice to be in his company. I hope I can have another shower again soon.

Day 37
The food has stopped coming. I didn’t get any yesterday and none has come today either. Thinking about it I haven’t heard from him in a while either. No blindfolds, no notes, not even footsteps from behind the door.  He hasn’t left me again, has he? I hope he comes back soon. I miss him.

Day 39
I’m glad that I saved all that food; he hasn’t given any to me for days. I think he’s gone for good this time. It must have been something I did. I’m sorry if it was. Please come back to me. I need you.

Day 40
He finally came back. But he came back with her. That’s right, he brought back another girl. He was gone so long just to find a new girl. A blond one. She’s with me now. All she does is cry. She’s sat on my mattress crying her eyes out. Her makeup has smudged down her face and her hair’s a mess.
It’s been hours and she’s still crying. She hasn’t stopped since she arrived. I tried to talk to her but all she’s does is cry. In fact, she seemed to cry harder when I told her everything’s okay and it’s actually all right here after a while.

Day 41
She cried all night as well and she didn’t even offer to let me sleep on the mattress. Then when the food came today she ate the whole thing and didn’t even think of me; and I can’t get to what’s left of my store of food because she’s in the way. She’s only spoken to me once, it was to ask where we go to the toilet. When I told her it was the bucket she just wailed some more. I think her crying is putting him off; I haven’t heard him by the door at all today.

Day 43
Two blindfolds came today. But the note asked for her not me. I just had to put mine on so I couldn’t see anything. I can’t believe that she got to go outside after only being here for 3 days, I had to wait 23 days. And guess what? She cried the whole time she was putting on the blindfold. I told her this was a good thing; she could wash off all the tacky makeup and do something about her hair. She doesn’t seem to listen to me at all though.

She came back a lot later. I had eaten the food I had saved and rested on the mattress. She wasn’t crying anymore and she looked a lot cleaner. She even had a new outfit on, bit trampy for my tastes though. My clothes are the same ones I was wearing on the first day. They’re quite dirty and smelly now. Actually, I look pretty rough. I haven’t been offered a shower in nearly 10 days. I tried to talk to her again but she just sat in silence. But at least she wasn’t crying for once.

Day 46
We have a sort of routine, this girl and me. One night I have the mattress and the next night she has it. We now share the food that comes through the door, too, not that any of us eat that much. She hasn’t cried at all lately but she hasn’t spoken at all, either, despite the fact that he comes for her each day. I wish you’d come for me.
I don’t know her name still. I told her mine, and how long I’ve been here, and what’s happened to me since being here, everything! Yet, she still sits in silence. She is so rude.

Day 49
Every day you come for her. And every time she comes back silent. All she does is huddle in the corner of the room. I used to think it would be nice if she wasn’t crying but her silence is more annoying. I don’t understand it. Doesn’t she like having showers? I would go instead of her if she wanted. I said this to her but she just stared at me blankly. She doesn’t deserve her showers. She doesn’t deserve the new clothes. She doesn’t deserve your attention. I deserve it.

Day 51
You still haven’t come for me. Have you forgotten about me? Every day you come for her. And every day that blindfold comes through the door she flinches. I would do it. I would go with you gladly. I’m the one you should want.

Day 52
Today she came back and just lay on the mattress. I saw that she had bruises on her wrists. Surprisingly, this time when I asked her what happened she burst into tears. She hasn’t cried in so long that I was shocked. She cried for ages. I gave up asking.

Day 54
You took her this morning shortly after we woke up and she still isn’t back. I don’t understand why you haven’t come for me again. I thought you liked me. What has she got that I haven’t? It was all good until she came here.

Day 55
She came back this morning; she had been gone for a whole day and night! Did she get to sleep in your room? Has she heard your voice? Seen your face?

Day 56
She finally spoke to me today. She said that she doesn’t have nice meals and showers when the blindfolds come. She says that you take her to your room. She says that you undress her. She says that you make her do horrible things. She says you’re rough and mean. She asks how I can like it. She asks how I am still sane. She asks how have I not gone mad yet? The more she talks the more I want her to shut up. How could you do that with her? Why do you not want to do that with me? Why is she so much better than me? Why is she so special? Is it because she’s blond?
She’s crying again. Crying and crying. She should just shut up, the stupid slut. Slag. Whore.
She just wouldn’t shut up. I couldn’t help it. She kept crying. She kept telling me horrible things about you. She doesn’t appreciate your love like I do. She didn’t deserve you. She doesn’t love you. I love you!
I couldn’t help it.
I just wanted her to shut up. I grabbed her by her stupid blond hair. I smashed her sluttish face into the wall.
I couldn’t help it.
Blood ran down my arms. I did it again and again.
I really couldn’t help it.
And again.

***

Now that you have read this I'm sorry to say that you shall never fall in love with your kidnapper, as once you know about Stockholm Syndrome you cannot suffer from it! 

Thursday, 19 January 2012

The Diary of Lucy Van Helsing

This is one of my favourite pieces I have done so far and it is my very first First! Hurray! Here is the original draft if you would like to see how much I edited and reworked the piece.


The Diary of Lucy Van Helsing

1 November
He’s doing it again. It’s one of those days; Dad’s gone crazy. Okay, I’m exaggerating a bit it’s not as bad as last time. At least he hasn’t got the stakes and crucifixes out again. Well, yet. This time he’s ranting about how those ‘disgusting Twilight books make sweet young girls want to become unholy monsters’; his words not mine. This all happened because he heard a group of girls talking in the supermarket about how they wish their boyfriends were vampires, apparently they’re better in bed. I only know what the Twilight saga is about because all my friends are obsessed with it. If my Dad caught me even looking at the cover I know he’d flip out. To be honest, I can’t even stand vampires anyway, not after living with my Dad. I was forced to read Dracula when I was like seven years old; it’s practically my Dad’s Bible. He’s still ranting, now it’s about how ‘we Van Helsings have fought against vampires for many generations and it’s things like Twilight that makes our jobs so much harder’. Again, his words not mine. Personally, I don’t give a crap about Twilight, vampires or about being a Van Helsing. If anything it’s just made my life worse. Not being allowed out after dark, having to take a stake to school, and worst of all having my Dad throw holy water at any of my friends that I bring home. Obviously, I don’t invite friends over any more.
Oh, he’s calmed down now; well at least, he’s gone to the basement (yes we have a basement!) to sharpen his stakes. That’s the nearest to calm he’s going to get.

3 November                                                                                                                              
There’s a new boy at school. He’s recently moved here from somewhere in Europe. People are saying he’s from somewhere in Romania. It explains why he’s so pale. Wait, is Romania a sunny place? I’ll Google it when I get home. There’s already a nasty rumour going around that’s he’s a Romanian orphan adopted by a rich English couple who can’t have their own kids. But I don’t really believe that as there’s no rich people that live around here. He does have an air of mystery about him though. His name is Dimitri.

11 November
I’ve gotten to know Dimitri quite well over the past week. He’s in all my classes, and we get talking quite a lot; he’s got such a sexy voice, I think it’s the accent it makes me weak at the knees!  He’s from a small town in Transylvania. He’s not adopted but he’s not living with his parents, they’re travelling, so he’s living with his aunt and uncle. He says his parents weren’t really the maternal type anyway, so he doesn’t miss them too much. Sometimes I wish my Dad would go travelling. Dimitri says he likes living in England. He likes that it’s not too sunny; apparently he’s allergic to the sun. He says it gives him terrible rashes. Dimitri’s really good at sports, as well. He’s already on the cross country team. My friend says she saw him practicing the other day and that he was the fastest person she’s ever seen. I wish I could have seen him running, I bet he looks really good in shorts.

14 November
Dimitri walked me home this evening. He says that night time can be very dangerous; it wasn’t really night time though, it was just pretty dark after school. But like I was going to say no. Looking back, I probably should have said no. First of all, I live on the very edge of town; it’s practically in the middle of nowhere, which is great when you haven’t got a driving licence yet. And secondly, my house is one of those old manor houses, you know from the Victorian era or something, and well, my Dad’s gone a bit OTT on the recent renovations, we’ve got stupid gargoyles and weird little turret thingies. It’s the most embarrassing thing ever. Maybe it’s a good thing we live in the middle of nowhere after all.  But either way letting Dimitri get that close to my home was a big mistake. My Dad saw him, and we all know what my Dad’s like with new people, especially boys. But I’ve never seen him this bad before. In fact, he’s only just stopped questioning me. He was all like ‘who was that boy? How do you know him? Where’s he from?’ When I told him he was a new student from Romania he went mental. He instantly jumped to the conclusion that he was a vampire. Of course, how did I not see that? God! But then he was all like ‘have you seen his reflection? Are his teeth sharper than normal? Does he love to drink blood?’ I said that he was crazy, that he shouldn’t think everyone was a vampire just because they come from weird places in Europe. He then asked if I had ever seen his neck, where there any puncture wounds. Well, I hadn’t seen his neck at all, he always has shirt buttoned up to the top and with his tie done up properly. But like I was gonna let my Dad know that. So instead I was all like ‘God, Dad! I’m going to my room!’ But I heard him yell after me that I was never allowed to see him ever again.
I can’t stand him anymore. He’s always trying to ruin my life with his stupid vampire slaying crap! We may have the last name of Van Helsing but he doesn’t have to take it so seriously! God, sometimes I wish he would just stake himself.

18 November
Dimitri’s been offering to walk me home all week, but I don’t think I could deal with my Dad’s crazy so I’ve been saying no, I told him my Dad is a bit fussy about boys. I know it’s an understatement; Dad would probably kill Dimitri for touching me just as much as he would if he turned out to be a vampire. But it’s for his own good. I really like him though. He’s so sweet, there’s no way he could be a vampire; not that I ever thought he was, of course. He doesn’t even seem fussed by my last name. Surely if he was such a big bad vampire he would be scared of my name. Dad’s clearly mad. For the past couple of days he’s just been interrogating me about him more and more: is he strong, can he control dogs and rats, have I ever felt hypnotised by him? Well, sometimes I feel that when he looks into my eyes he is looking into my soul but I’m sure that’s not what my Dad really means. But he will just not stop going on about it. He’s got all his weapons sharpened and ready as if vampires are going to be banging down our doors with Dimitri as their leader. I don’t even know why he has all this stuff anyway; he’s never even used it. Though I have heard him sneaking out a few times after midnight; I think he’s going out to the graveyards to pretend he’s some fantastic slayer. Sometimes I wish Bram Stoker had thought of another name for his stupid vampire expert rather than Van Helsing.

20 November
Dimitri came to my house today. He said he waited for my Dad to go out in the car before he came near the house. He was so polite, too. Said he’d have to be formally invited in otherwise he wouldn’t feel comfortable. It must be a Romanian thing. It was so nice seeing him outside of school, he’s so funny, and clever, and beautiful, and I can’t believe Dad thinks he’s a vampire! But while my Dad was out things got pretty heavy, Dimitri is just so hot, I couldn’t resist, I invited him up to my room. It’s like I couldn’t control myself when I was around him. And you know what he is really good kisser, but don’t tell anyone! I’ve never experienced anything like it; I just wanted to give myself to him. He even gave me a hickey! I’m definitely going to wear a scarf now; Dad will probably stake me in the heart if he sees it! Thank God it’s winter. But the best thing about the whole day was that just before he left he asked me to be his girlfriend! Can you believe it? I finally have a boyfriend! Finally! I don’t think even my Dad could ruin this moment.

26 November
It’s been a week since Dimitri asked me out and it’s been great. We sneak off during lessons to make out. He’s even given me more hickeys. I feel so bad. Dad went out again today, probably to buy more holy water, so I invited Dimitri over. And this time was so much better than last week. This time we went straight to my room. Dimitri said I was the most beautiful person he had ever met. He said that he had never felt this way about anyone before. He said that I was special, that he loved me. This time I really couldn’t control myself, I just wanted to be with him forever so I gave myself to him. And it was amazing. Though he got a little rough, instead of just a hickey he actually bit me.

Later…

It was my fault, really. I was so happy that me and Dimitri had done it that I forgot to wear a scarf, or at least something to hide the bite. As soon as Dad saw me he jumped to conclusions. He screamed at me. He told me how I was ‘completely irresponsible and stupid, and this just proves that Dimitri is an unholy demon. He had used his dark sexuality to seduce me and I was stupid enough to fall for it’, again, his words not mine. He inspected my neck thoroughly before deciding I was safe and that Dimitri hadn’t taken enough of my blood to change me. But he still made me bathe it in holy water. He also gave me a crucifix necklace to wear to school and some weird garlic perfume thing he had made; like I was going to use that! This time he forbid me to see Dimitri and that I was grounded. He then sent me to my room. God, I hate my Dad so much sometimes. He doesn’t understand teenage girls at all!

30 November
Weirdly enough Dad told me to ask Dimitri over for dinner Friday night. He’s been acting funny since Monday, to be honest. He said that he overreacted the other day and he shouldn’t be so obsessed with vampires if he wanted to be a good father. He even went as far as to say they didn’t exist! He also said that he understood how much teenagers wanted relationships and that sex was a part of that. (he actually said the word sex, cringe!) He said that to be a good father he would have to get to know Dimitri better, and that’s why he wants him to come to dinner. I thought he might be drunk or at least high but he smelt fine. I wasn’t sure whether to believe him or not, I mean he is usually vampire crazy and despises any sort of sexual act, even holding hands in public! Besides, I wasn’t sure if Dimitri would even want to come over, anyway. Ever since the other day he’s been avoiding me. He hasn’t sat next to me in class or at lunch, he hasn’t even spoken to me! Is that normal for boys, to have sex with you and then ignore you? I Googled it and did you know that it actually happens a lot? The best explanation I got was men are from Mars and all that junk. I have my own idea though. I don’t like thinking this, but sometimes I think he’s ignoring me because of the crucifix I’m wearing. No, that’s just stupid. He’s probably just focusing on his studies or something. Yeah, that’s it. I will ask him to come to dinner and I bet everything will be fine.

2 December
Dinner is going great! I can’t believe I thought Dimitri wouldn’t come. He was actually really pleased to be invited. Said he wanted to make a good first impression on my Dad. I didn’t tell him that he already thought he was some evil vampire only after my blood.  But Dad really has cleaned up his act; he hasn’t even hinted about vampires tonight or mentioned anything embarrassing about sex, which are both firsts for him. And Dimitri has been so nice and polite. Dad cooked us steaks, if you can call it cooked; they were practically raw! But Dimitri ate it down anyway without saying a bad word about it. I wanted to say something but I thought Dimitri might think I was a spoilt brat so I ate as much of mine as I could. I’m supposed to be getting the desserts right now but I just had to write this all down. I’m just so happy! For once my Dad isn’t acting completely psycho.

Later…

Oh God! Oh God! It’s all gone horribly wrong. I don’t know what to do! Oh God! I came back with the desserts to find Dad with a stake pointing at Dimitri’s chest. He had a crazy look in his eyes that I had never seen before and it was terrifying. And oh God, Dimitri was unconscious on the floor, what had he done to him? I screamed at him to stop but he just turned to me calmly and said: ‘Oh good, Lucy you’re back. I’m going to prove to you now that vampires are real.’ I screamed at him again, I begged and pleaded, I tried to pull him away. Dimitri was still out of it. Oh god, it was horrible. And then…and then…Dad turned back to me and he said:
‘I know Lucy, how about you do it? Yes, you can slay your first vampire. Come on Lucy. Come here.’ I didn’t want to do it, I tried to get away but he grabbed me, and he’s a lot stronger than me. He placed the stake in my hand and directed it at his chest.
‘Come on, you can do it. Do it, Lucy. Do it now! Do it, Lucy! DO IT NOW!’
He grabbed my wrist and together we drove the stake into his chest. There was no bursting into flames, no explosion of dust, nothing. My Dad let me go and I fell to the floor. He groped Dimitri’s chest and pulled his shirt open. The stake was wedged into his chest, and, God, there was so much blood. It was everywhere. It was all over his clothes, the floor, on Dad. But that didn’t stop him. Dad pulled the stake out and plunged it back in again. I screamed at him but he kept saying that ‘he is a vampire I know he is, he is a vampire, he is, he is!’ over and over again. 
I know people say that Dads can be overprotective and not like their daughter’s boyfriends but my Dad had actually just staked my first ever boyfriend to death.