t’s raining again and a hurricane may be on the way. I think most people are terrified of hurricanes when they see the destruction they can cause. It makes sense, but I’m always disappointed when we go a year without a decent one. Nothing brings a community together like wandering around town after a storm, trying to find out who has power and which Tim Hortons is open. I hope we get one decent storm this year, so I can share it with you. Hopefully it’s not too catastrophic. We’ve had a few bad ones, but when you’re on a little peninsula stuck out over open ocean, you’re bound to have to endure what the sea wants to throw at you now and then.

Compared to a lot of places, Nova Scotia has pretty chill weather. The summers aren’t super hot and the winters aren’t super cold, it’s just damp and slushy. That said, please don’t move here. We’ve had a population boom since the pandemic and now many lifelong residents—who have always been chronically poor—have nowhere to live since rich come-from-aways are buying all the property for twice the asking price or more, not to mention the fact that no one has a doctor and the waitlist just keeps getting longer as newcomers pour in. Tents multiply in public parks as the unhoused numbers grow in time for storms and snow, and the government does nothing except continue to woo more rich out-of-towners.

Well that was a depressing ramble to start today off with. Sorry!

September 10

Dr. Lobotomy wakes to the touch of Van Helsing and they both go together to check on Lucy. She looks horrible, and Van Helsing calls on Dr. Lobotomy for a blood transfusion. Van Helsing also gives her a little morphine so she doesn’t wake in the middle of an “operation” as they keep calling it. Dr. Lobotomy is thrilled to see his own blood bringing color back to Lucy’s skin.

No man knows, till he experiences it, what it is to feel his own life-blood drawn away into the veins of the woman he loves.

This is an interesting thought. I guess we don’t usually get to be there for blood transfusions. I wonder how it feels to be there to give your lover a kidney?

Van Helsing stops the transfusion before Dr. Lobotomy can give as much blood as Arthur did, because he is her lover and Dr. Lobotomy has important work to do, he needs to stay on his feet. As Van Helsing wraps him up and sends him downstairs for a break and wine (!!), he adds that they shouldn’t tell Arthur that Seward gave Lucy his blood, or else he might get jealous.

This may be true but it pisses me off anyway. Oh the insecurity of men.

Dr. Lobotomy admits he feels weak and takes a nap while wondering about Lucy’s blood loss and the puncture marks on her neck.

Eventually he and Lucy both rouse and Van Helsing leaves her in Dr. Lobotomy’s care as he goes to send a telegraph. Lucy, seeing Dr. Lobotomy’s condition, tells him he should get a wife to look after him, then blushes and swoons about it since she has so little blood to spare. “Not enough blood to blush” sounds like a cool idiom.

When Van Helsing comes back he sends Seward home, saying he’ll stay up with Lucy. No one else should know about her case, as Van Helsing has his theories he is still reluctant to share.

As he leaves, a pair of maids ask Dr. Lobotomy if they can sit up with Lucy as well. They’re disappointed when he tells them Van Helsing wants to keep her care between the two of them.

Perhaps it is because I am weak at present, and perhaps because it was on Lucy’s account, that their devotion was manifested; for over and over again have I seen similar instances of woman’s kindness.

Dr. Lobotomy is moved by the kindness of women, which I mention because really, this book is kinda obsessed with womanhood while also snarking about the “New Woman,” and it’s so fascinating. I hope I can articulate a thesis about this later.


September 11th

Dr. Lobotomy goes back to Hillingham (where Lucy lives) to find everyone doing well. Van Helsing gets a package of white flowers and there’s this exchange which is so cute I will just paste it in full.

“These are for you, Miss Lucy,” he said.

“For me? Oh, Dr. Van Helsing!”

“Yes, my dear, but not for you to play with. These are medicines.” Here Lucy made a wry face.

Van Helsing talks about putting these flowers all over the place and Lucy realizes they are garlic flowers. I had to stop here because I’m a plant nerd and I thought garlic flowers were purple. Apparently they can also be white.

Lucy assumes she’s being pranked which pisses Van Helsing off. He’s never joked or played a prank in his life. He spooks her and then reassures her that this will help and yes, they are going to dress her and her room in garlic. They come from Haarlem, from a friend named Vanderpool, who grows things year-round in a greenhouse. I only mention this in case someone is reading whose name is Vanderpool or comes from Harlem so they can get excited and say, they we do in Finland, “torille.”

Van Helsing makes a garland of flowers to go around her neck, and rubs the rest over the doorways and such. Dr. Lobotomy is like, “If I didn’t know better, I’d think you were doing some rites to protect us from spirits.” And Van Helsing is like, “Maybe I am!”

They see Lucy to bed and Van Helsing makes her swear not to open the door or the window. Lucy promises, and they leave.

As we left the house in my fly, which was waiting

I’m baffled about what this means and looking it up is an exercise in futility. There’s a fly called the “Dracula fly” that rules all potential search results. Maybe someone will comment. It sounds like he means a carriage or something, but I’d love to solve this slang.

Van Helsing is excited to get some sleep and plans to meet with Dr. Lobotomy to visit Lucy again in the morning. Dr. Lobotomy, to his credit, has gotten his hopes up many times by now and is reluctant to do it again.


September 12th

This diary from Lucy reads like it was written on the 11th. She feels safe and secure to sleep, promising not to mind any flapping at the window.

She compares herself to Ophelia in Hamlet which seems like a horrible and cursed thing to do???? She died, Lucy! And the line Lucy even uses: “virgin crants and maiden strewments,” refers to flowers laid on her at a funeral. RIP Lucy. I wonder if the 12th is her last day alive. If only Mina were here to save her!

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