Dear God. The nightmares about the burning children are the worst. I need a river of laudanum afterward.
Let me say here, before begin — well, before I continue, at least — that my last foray into the Museum of Mistakes was an unmitigated success. I treated myself to an evening spent in the Parlour of Virtue to celebrate. I must be something of a favorite there, for they did not charge me the full fare and then let me out a side door to escape scandal. How extraordinarily kind of them.
I understand that the most serious nightmares here are all of the same order. Death by water, the reflections in the mirrors, the game of chess — and the fire sermon. The first three I can usually shrug off with the usual devices — laudanum, intimate companionship, a bit of peace and quiet in a park someplace. The last one… that is the one that will send me running for any stimulation, any diversion, anything so that I will not have to risk reliving a personal horror in my sleep.
I thought I might be able to write about it now, but I cannot force myself to sit still long enough to keep my pen moving across the paper. I’ve sent notes to some of you, asking for your help in allaying these horrid night terrors. I’ve sent for several bottles of laudanum too, for I dare not leave these rooms until the terror has abated.
Would that it could be enough, this time.