A.F. Stewart is the author of the vampire novella, ‘Chronicles of the Undead’, as well as a dogged writer of speculative short fiction and poetry.
Here is part 2.
May 9, 1793.
Eliza has arranged for a family outing tomorrow evening. She insists we take the children to Vauxhall. I am sure Flora will enjoy it and I am equally certain Edmund would much rather be carousing with his friends. I would prefer to stay at home, but Eliza insists. She says this will be one of the few times we have together as a family before Edmund goes off to Oxford.
May 10, 1793.
Vauxhall was tedious, crowded and a wasted expense. Of course Eliza loved it, and Flora was swept up in the whole garish entertainment. Edmund strayed from our little party, no doubt trysting in the shadows with some gullible young lady.
May 11, 1793.
I ran into Henri today at the bookshop. It seems we have similar taste in books; we both take an interest in the works of William Blake. We shared the walk back to Holburn Street, and had the most lively, invigorating discussion.
May 12, 1793.
The vicar was in rare form this morning at services. He preached soundly on morality and family, a subject I heartily approve, but I would have preferred to do without the lecture on the sins of the brothels. There is nothing wrong with a gentleman indulging on occasion.
I will say though, the vicar did hold the congregation spellbound; even Edmund did not fidget in the pew. Perhaps that year abroad has instilled some decorum in the young man. My darling Flora was the perfect angel, as always. She has become quite the lady at seventeen, with her mother’s fair and delicate features. Thank heavens she has not inherited her disposition. Eliza even managed some cheer; the vicar had informed her before services she was on the ladies’ committee to raise funds for foundlings.
Disappointing that neither Henri, nor Eleanor came to services. The vicar thinks they may indeed be Catholic after all; such a pity. I hope I can overlook that flaw, for Henri is such an interesting gentleman.
May 15, 1793.
The vicar visited this morning. He was rather disturbed regarding some neighbourhood disappearances that have happened recently. It seems that some vagrants have gone missing. I do not know why he is so concerned, they were just hired labourers. Most likely they simply left. That type is always so ungrateful.
May 17, 1793.
Eliza held another of her soirees last evening. A dull affair, but at least Henri put in an appearance. He provided good conversation and pleasant company; we have a great deal in common.
May 27, 1793.
I must say Henri is becoming rather an agreeable friend, and I have taken to spending at least one afternoon a week in his company.
A pity that Eleanor has not fostered quite the same relationship with Eliza, my wife could use someone to keep her occupied.
June 4, 1793.
We spent a quiet family evening last night. It was agreeable to have everyone gathered together. With Edmund off to school soon, and Flora near to a marrying age, it will be nice to have such pleasant memories when they are no longer under this roof.