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Margaret’s Diary

Cass Arellano has written a short story inspired by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s novel “Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus”, read it here!

Author’s note: The following text is a collection of extracts from the dairies from one Margaret Walton Saville. These journals were found hidden between the walls of a Victorian flat in the outskirts of London. The content here might be disturbing to some. Reader discretion is advised.

12/11/17XX

It has been two months since the last time my brother wrote. The last time his letters arrived, it was accompanied by a diary recounting the story of one Victor Frankenstein. The life of this peculiar and mad doctor left me quite unnerved. I just can’t imagine trying to play god in the way Dr. Frankenstein did. Ever since the letters arrived, I have been having nightmares of the horrible creation of this mad man. My husband says this is all nonsense and that my brother went mad on his journeys, but this idea scares me more. 

In some good news, William, my little boy, has been so full of joy these last few weeks, he has even started playing with an imaginary friend of sorts.

27/11/17XX

Today I have received the most tragic letter. A couple of days ago, the body of my dear Robert was found near a port in Russia. He was completely naked with an open wound in his stomach from where seagulls were feeding. The last person to see him alive was the patron of a pub where Robert was drinking heavily. This man says my brother was babbling about an inhuman creature that had broken his promise, that he was still walking about, that he hadn’t killed himself as he said he would, that it was coming for his sister because she was the only other one that knew. Why these horrible details were written in a letter to his sister, I can’t say. 

This last detail made chills run throughout my body. I let the letter fall and gave one of the most blood-curdling screams. Percy, my husband, came running to the living room ready to protect me, but when I told her what the matter was, he got angry and that I was letting the stupidity of my drunk brother torture me. He then calmed down and told me he was sorry for Robert’s death and would do whatever was necessary to bring his body home. 

In other news, little William stays playful as always. Mr. Tall Man, his imaginary friend, has come up multiple times in conversation. I wished he could retain this innocence forever, but I know this horrible world will corrupt him, as it corrupts the rest of us. 

08/12/17XX

Percy managed to recover Robert’s body. Yesterday it finally arrived. I arranged for him to be laid to rest next to our mother’s grave. The place where we used to play when we were little. We never could recover the body of our father, so at least I know now that my mother is no longer alone. At least something good has come out of all this tragedy.

Despite all of Percy’s efforts, I still fear that Frankenstein’s creature will come for us. I can barely sleep at night. When a storm is raging on, and I look at the window, lighting creates shadows that probably aren’t there. I fear that even little William has noticed. He tells me not to be afraid, that Mr. Tall Man will protect us. This child has become my only beacon of hope. 

30/12/17XX 

A new year is upon us. All I can hope is that it brings with it a new light into my life. I miss Robert terribly, every day I visit him, but my conversations with his gravestone are far from the discussion we used to have. 

I have befriended someone on my daily visits; he is this tall, mysterious man who visits his uncle daily. He is soft-spoken and has sadness in his eyes, even though he covers most of his face. He told me he would soon stop coming because he would embark on a journey into the wildest parts of the Americas. I told him my brother died on a trip of that sort; he told me he couldn’t be the last one. 

07/01/17XX

Grief has consumed me completely. Percy told me he couldn’t keep up with my madness; he left me.

09/02/17XX

I’m going completely mad. Today I saw William playing with his imaginary friend. I saw them, both of them. Mr. Tall Man is this horrible creature, a pallid monster with long black hair and yellow eyes. I suspect he is the creature of the late Dr. Frankenstien. He has come for me at last. But the worst part isn’t that, but the fact that this monster is my friend from the cemetery. He has been stalking me. He will soon strike.

I need to protect William. I need to kill this creature. God, I need to kill this creature. 

27/04/17XX 

I did it. I finally did it.

God forgive me, but I have killed the monster.

I saw him playing with William and took the sword of my late husband, and I struck with all my might. He looked scared, so did William. 

With his last words, he told me he just wanted friends, that he just wanted someone to tell his story, that I was the only one who knew about him, so I was the only choice. He told me he was just trying to be human once again. 

Little Willaim ran away, and I can not find him.

Maybe I am the monster; perhaps we all are

Final note: According to the records, Margaret Walton Saville died by her hand some days after her final entry was written. Her son was never seen again. 

Recommendations:

  • Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley 
  • Frankenstein or The Modern Prometheus comic adaptation by Bernie Wrightson 
  • Frankenstein (1931), directed by James Whale
  • Young Frankenstein (1974), directed by Mel Brooks 

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