Ah. Nightmares, is it…

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.

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First Things

I have often cursed myself for lack of proper foresight and never moreso than now as I realize this journal should have been started months ago, when I first arrived in Fallen London. Of course I ended up in New Newgate, just like everyone else, penniless, clueless, friendless, frightened out of my wits yet so determined not to fail. One is not permitted the niceties of pen, paper and ink in prison, nor is a properly bound journal at the top of the priority list when the struggle for survival is one’s entire world. But oh, the adventures I had! Such excitement, which now can only be recorded through the veil of memory — the unexpected kindnesses, the successes and the setbacks — unfortunately, with all the internal editing that must occur in a memoir.

That’s what this is, as much memoir as journal, a place to record those things for which Fallen London has no space. It’s my history, my narrative, mine and mine alone, as we are all inevitably alone here. Though I have betimes attempted to bridge these lonely gaps, to reach out to others in hopes of creating shared narratives, I’ve found little interest in it so far among my friends and comrades in the Neath. Perhaps they don’t feel the loneliness as I do — I could envy them that, if it’s true.

I only hope it shan’t be boring. Of all the things that sometimes plague me here, I find I fear boredom the most.

Tomorrow I go back to work, having been sucked into an archaeological expedition in the Forgotten Quarter and investigating the security around the Museum of Mistakes. My friend @narcissus_echo has asked me to look into the acquisition of a few rare coins for him and I find that the challenge keeps me occupied and content — thus out of the Singing Mandrake and The Parlour of Virtue.

At least, for now.

If you are a resident of Fallen London and would like a mention over in that column to the left, leave me a note in the comments saying so — I’m delighted to make your acquaintance, or further the one we already have.