Horror Writing Month: SANDRA HARRIS

ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA… A VERY GOTHIC JOURNEY

by SANDRA HARRIS

hammer-horror

You could say that my ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA stories came about organically. They were the obvious next step on a journey that started over Christmas of 2013. I’m not kidding you, dear reader and fellow horror fan, when I say that the whole thing not only took me by surprise but it also kind of blew the roof off my head, turned me upside-down and inside out and set me back on my feet again as well, only this time with a specific destination in mind. This time, you could say that my feet knew exactly where they were headed.

A short season of late-night Hammer Horror films during Christmas 2013 unlocked a part of me that I’d only previously been aware of in a sort of hazy, peripheral way. It was a part that adored all things Gothic, things like ruined castles and abbeys, bloodsucking vampires and beautiful women with heaving bosoms who fall prey to all manner of monsters, ghouls and things that go bump in the night. I acquired a copy of Bram Stoker’s Gothic masterpiece, DRACULA, from my local Tesco when it came free with a daily newspaper. (The book, that is, not the supermarket.) I devoured it from cover to cover. I loved it, as surely anyone must who takes the time to read it.

Bram Stoker was Irish, same as myself, I told myself wonderingly afterwards. If he could do it, maybe I could do it…? Obviously not on the same scale, I reasoned. Probably not something that would be remembered in a century’s time like Stoker’s DRACULA but maybe something a bit sexy, a bit titillating, something that gave people a kind of illicit thrill when they read it…? Sexy and titillating I can definitely write. Hell, sexy and titillating I was born to write. Hmmm. It was food for thought, anyway.

lee-5I watched and re-watched all the Hammer Horror DRACULA films I could get my grubby little mitts on. Hammer Horror, by the way, is the name given to the horror movies made by the British film production company formed in 1934 by William Hinds.DRACULA (1958) is arguably Hammer Films’ most famous and successful production, created during the golden years of Hammer Horror. Christopher Lee, born in London in 1922, played Hammer’s Dracula in their superb series of films about the evil- but handsome- Transylvanian count.

Here we must depart from the strictly factual for a moment and move into the realms of personal opinion. Christopher Lee in his heyday was a big ride, as we say here in Ireland. Or, a big roide, if you want to be truly authentically Irish about it. He’s still a big ride, in my humble opinion, and always will be. In his role as Dracula, he is pure sex. If I were going to write my own little version of the famous story, he was always going to be my Count of choice. Ooooh, the things I could write about with Christopher Lee as my leading man! Ideas were formulating in my twisted and deviant little brain. Naughty ideas. Wickedideas. Erotic, kinky-as-f**k, downright filthy-dirty sex-meets-horror-meets-sex-again kind of ideas.

In June of 2013, I wrote my first piece of Dracula fan-fiction for a Creative Writing workshop I was taking. It went down well with the class, so I typed it up and put it on my newly-created horror movie review blog with the title ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA. The response was encouraging so I decided to keep going, just to see where the story would take me and how far I could go with it. At the time of writing this piece, I’ve written and posted over thirty instalments of the story and the readers and followers of my blog are still enjoying it and clamouring for more, so I’ve every intention of continuing to write it, at least until it comes to a natural and satisfactory conclusion. (Though I’ll be gutted when it does!)

drac_1513745c1Let me give you an overview of the plot. Lady Anna Carfax (yes, that’s a reference to Carfax Abbey!) is young, rich and beautiful and living in Victorian London in the time of fog-wreathed, gaslit streets, hansom cabs and Jack The Ripper. She lives a sheltered, fairly boring life and so she’s thrilled skinny when Count Dracula makes a nocturnal visit to her virginal bedchamber in the autumn of 1888. This period, by the way, is known to all Jack The Ripper fans such as myself as The Autumn Of Terror because of the murderous shenanigans of the aforementioned JTR, who gets a mention in the story. See, there’s a bit of actual history in there as well…! Anyway, Dracula is sternly handsome, commanding and authoritative and, the way I write him, he’s a stone-cold expert on female sexuality.

Dracula is responsible for Anna’s awakening as a vibrantly sexual woman with needs and desires that, naturally, only he can satisfy. (Clever bastard, isn’t he, fixing it that way!) In her bedroom at Richmond House, her family home, he teases her and toys with her until she’s practically begging him to take her away with him so that they can be together properly. When he eventually spirits her away to his heavily-fortified castle in a remote part of the English countryside, she is both fascinated and horrified to find out exactly what men and women do behind closed doors on their wedding nights.

Dracula takes Anna’s virginity, turns her into a vampire and instills in her a twisted desire for pain, sexual humiliation and physical punishment that only serves to complicate her life and ensure that she is further in thrall to her master, the Count, than is strictly good for her. (Thrall, that’s a real word, right…?!) As a woman, Anna submits to Dracula completely and utterly, but the newly-formed vampire in her needs to find an outlet too, and believe me when I say that that’s going to cause some problems down the line for the D-man…

ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA is peopled with an eccentric, sex-mad cast of characters who are in and out of each other’s beds with the single-minded determination of a dog who’s spied himself a particularly juicy cut of meat. We have Thomas Renfield, the young footman at Richmond House who’s so easy on the eye he’d be a Hollywood movie star if he were around today. He can’t make up his mind between Hester Price, Anna’s personal maid, and little Bessie Stoker, one of the kitchen maids, so he’s doing himself a favour and having them both.

Hammer Dracula Christopher LeeThere’s Sir Blaise Carfax, Anna’s older brother, who likes prostitutes, and rich, boorish swell Sir Daniel Rochester, who also likes prostitutes. It was Victorian London, okay? A lot of men liked prostitutes. Don’t blame me. Take it up with the Victorians, the prostitute-loving lot that they were. Now, if I may return to the subject of prostitutes for a moment… What? Oh, I never left it…? Oh, all right then. We’ve even got evil Nicholas Flint, who gets his kicks from strangling prostitutes and blaming it on poor old Jack The Ripper, and Vera Stoker, Bessie’s mother, who has to work as a prostitute in order to keep a roof over her kiddies’ heads and food in their hungry little tummies. Jeez Louise. Looking back, there was a whole heck of a lot of prostitution in Victorian times. You’d think somebody would have done something, wouldn’t you…?

Any-hoo, I’m including an extract from ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA in this blog post, but it won’t be sexually explicit so as not to offend the good people who prefer their horror to come without the dirty bits. If you want the full-on, undiluted version of the story, then go to my horror film review blog. You’ll find the links below in my author bio. I’m off now to think up yet another saucy situation in which a Victorian lady, gentleman or vampire- or prostitute- might find themselves. The possibilities, dear reader, are literally endless, the combinations and permutations stretching over the horizon to infinity. In other words, I’m going outside and I may not be back for some time. See you all in the next cartoon…

 

 

ANNA MEETS COUNT DRACULA…
PART 31.
AN EROTIC TALE BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©
STRICTLY FOR OVER-EIGHTEENS ONLY.

Count Dracula had changed into fresh linen and was combing his slicked-back dark hair, edged with grey at the temples, when Valeria quietly entered the room. No-one, not even the nude handmaidens who normally did all the cleaning and tidying of the castle, was allowed into Dracula’s private dressing-room except for Valeria. Not even Anna, who for the most part was confined to her bedroom while she impatiently awaited the Count’s nocturnal visits.

“Does my Master require anything?” Valeria murmured as she approached him now. At six feet five inches in height, the Count towered over her as he did most people. Valeria, though she had served him for a long time, was always struck anew by his sternly handsome appearance each time she encountered him.

His eyes were so dark as to be almost black, and they were magnetic. Magnetic and compelling. They made Valeria feel as if she could get lost in them. His cheekbones were high and sharp, a direct result of his Eastern European heritage.

His lips were well-shaped and his jaw perpetually shadowed with an imminent growth of dark stubble, though he shaved every evening upon waking. He was the most handsome and charismatic man Valeria had ever known, and also the most suavely dangerous.

The Count shook his head.

“Not at the moment, Valeria,” he said.

“Master looks fatigued after his trip,” ventured Valeria then. Only her long-standing as chief among his female servants emboldened her to make such a personal remark.

“It’s been a fatiguing few days,” the Count replied with a short, humourless laugh.

“How are things at Richmond House?” asked Valeria, referring to the house in London in which Lady Anna lived with her mother, Lady Grace Carfax, and her older brother, Sir Blaise Carfax. Had lived, Valeria corrected herself. Since her abduction by Count Dracula, Lady Anna now lived with Dracula in his castle in a remote spot in the English countryside, a place where it was unlikely she would be found. Unlikely, though not, Valeria supposed, impossible.

“Investigations into Lady Anna’s sudden disappearance are continuing apace,” Dracula replied with another short bark of a laugh. “Though not very successfully, I might add,” he went on as he fastened his cufflinks. “The Metropolitan Police are scratching their no doubt worthy heads in bafflement at the complexity of the case. I rather fancy that Lady Anna is quite safe where she is at present and that we have no immediate cause for alarm.” He had travelled to London incognito to check personally on the status of the investigation.

“That is indeed good, Master,” said Valeria. “And… and what of the new arrivals to Richmond House?” she continued, lowering her eyes demurely so that Dracula should not see the excitement in them. “Lady Athena Carfax and Lady Abigail Carfax? Did you… did you see them while you were there?”

“Yes, my dear Valeria, I saw them,” replied the Count, his dark eyes alight with mocking amusement. “And yes, they are as beautiful as you have heard. But no, I have no immediate plans to bring them here to the castle to join their pretty cousin, so you must swallow your disappointment as best you can and content yourself with being permitted the continued care of Lady Anna.”

Valeria flushed. She might have known that Count Dracula, who knew everything about her and who could read her thoughts as easily as if they were the printed word on a page before him, would be aware that she was desperate to get her hands on- and fangs into- the beautiful Carfax sisters, both cousins of Lady Anna’s.

Valeria’s preference in life had always been for soft, yielding female flesh. Lady Anna was truly a vision of beauty, but Valeria wanted the sisters too, and Count Dracula would not permit her to go to Richmond House to feast on them nocturnally there. She wondered if perhaps he was planning on keeping the delectable sisters for himself. It would not be the first time that that had happened.

Now she shrugged, feigning an indifference in which Dracula would be unlikely to believe.

“Is Master certain that he requires nothing further for the moment?” she said, easing the straps of her white Grecian-style gown down over her shoulders and baring her perfect, snowy-white breasts. “That he has no needs which he requires satisfying…?” she continued as she dropped to her knees in front of him. “Needs which Valeria can perhaps assist him with…?”

**********

This story is a work of fiction and comes (almost!) entirely from the imagination of Sandra Harris. Any resemblance to any persons living or un-dead is purely coincidental. This story is copyrighted material and any reproduction without prior permission is illegal. Sandra Harris reserves the right to be identified as the author of this story.Sandra Harris. ©

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

sandra-1fixedSandra Harris is a Dublin-based performance poet, novelist, film blogger, sex blogger and short story writer. She has given more than 200 performances of her comedy sex-and-relationship poems in different venues around Dublin, including The Irish Writers’ Centre, The International Bar, Toners’ Pub (Ireland’s Most Literary Pub), the Ha’penny Inn and The Strokestown Poetry Festival.

Her articles, short stories and poems have appeared in The Metro-Herald newspaper, Ireland’s Big Issues magazine, The Irish Daily Star, The Irish Daily Sun and The Boyne Berries literary journal.

She is addicted to buying books and will swap you anything you like for Hammer Horror or JAWS memorabilia, and would be a great person to chat to about the differences between the Director’s Cut and the Theatrical Cut of The Wicker Man. You can contact her at:

sandrasandraharris@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/SandraHarrisPureFilthPoetry

http://sandrafirstruleoffilmclubharris.wordpress.com

http://sexysandieblog.wordpress.com

http://serenaharker.wordpress.com

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