The Very Secret Diary of Henry Tilney, Part the Fourth


It’s been much too long, I know, but in honor of Valentine’s Day, the pairs skating short program in the Winter Olympics, and oh yeah, the rebroadcast of NADublin, at last we finish this one up. For those new to AustenBlog, previous entries in Mr. Tilney’s Very Secret Diary may be found here: Part the First, Part the Second, Part the Third

Hold me like you did by the lake at Beechen CliffDay 19: Big storm last night. V. picturesque. Eleanor and I cleaned out nest of undead hiding in the offices. Bit tired this morning, not up to flirting with Miss M. Fortunately the governor’s taken himself off to London. Time for training to start in earnest.

Day 20: Took Miss M. to Woodston. Was v. excited about showing her training facility disguised as “cottage” in orchard. Remembered at last minute that vampyres killed housekeeper whilst incompetent curate was cowering under bed and place is a mess. Contented self with sort of pointing at house as we rode past. Oh well, it’s not like I’m going to marry her or anything.

Day 21: Found one of those sparkly American vampyres swanning round the hermitage walk in broad daylight. Gave me some bollocks about being a “vegetarian.” As though I haven’t heard that one before. Whinged about having the skin of a monster until one was positively embarrassed for it and staked it out of compassion.

Day 22: Am having difficulty communicating facts of Abbey and her destiny to Miss M. She seems to understand something is going on, but just as I am about to tell her something important, I turn it into a joke. I don’t know why, though after all, a secret explained loses all of its charm. Perhaps am just obsessed with being the wittiest. Perhaps am just a simp.

Day 23: Emergency message from curate; must make trip to Woodston. Eleanor promised to explain all to Miss M. while I am away.

Later: Incompetent curate incapable of coping with one young vampyre. Took care of it. Too bad Miss M. not quite ready, as it would have been excellent for training. Found Collins in old-womanish hysteria, no longer wants to be curate. Says he has obtained a new situation far from hellmouth. Probably for the best, though I’ve heard strange things about Rosings.

Day 24: Returned to Abbey, found Miss M. skulking about near Mamma’s room. Questioned her, discovered she has completely misunderstood the governor’s idiotic comments. Somehow thinks she has stumbled into a Radcliffe novel instead of proper hellmouth. Not the time to explain properly, so acted like prat and made her cry. Am so not the wittiest.

Later: Should have been more understanding. If not prepared to tell Miss M. that she is The One and has a special destiny, should have led her gently; should have appealed to her good common sense and her understanding, should have called her “dearest Miss Morland.” Daresay that’s a bit subtle for a 90-minute low-budget telemovie, so only thing to do now to save situation: marry Miss M. But first, back to Woodston to redecorate sitting-room.

Day 25: Letter waiting for me at Woodston. Freddy says he has “neutralized” the succubus. Probably stole her shoes as well.

Day 26: Arrived back at Abbey, ready to offer hand, heart, and newly-papered sitting room to Miss M. only to find the governor came back unexpectedly and has tossed her out on word of werewolf. I’m done with him. Vampyres had a positive party in the shrubbery. Eleanor and I were up half the night cleaning up. Must go after Miss M.

Day 27: Arrived at Fullerton. Explained all about Abbey being hellmouth to Miss M. She has agreed to marry me nonetheless. Should be an excellent situation for training. Snogging in shrubbery also quite agreeable.

Day 28: Low-budget telemovie, blah de blah, parental scruples, blah de blah, months of clandestine correspondence, blah de blah, rush rush rush, blah de blah. Things are moving fast. Good thing sitting-room redecoration is well in hand.

Day 29: To begin perfect happiness at 18 and 26 is to do pretty well. Miss M.–that is, my dearest Catherine—and I shall endeavour to cope as we breed our own little team of vampyre slayers.

And a thousand points that don’t mean anything to the first person who recognizes the two references in the LOLAusten.

The Very Secret Diary of Henry Tilney, Part the Third


Part the First, Part the Second

Tilney, Frederick TilneyDay 13: Miss M. came to dinner. The governor drunk as usual, nearly gave away the game with his comments on the “elasticity” of her walk. Eleanor and I on tenterhooks waiting for him to reveal too much to Miss M. Afraid was not the wittiest.

Day 14: Frederick came to Rooms with us tonight. Pulled me out of set to ask if I knew that my girlfriend’s brother was engaged to a succubus. Said he would “take care of it.” Typical Freddy, swanning off with the pretty succubus with that “Tilney…Frederick Tilney” His-Majesty’s-Secret-Service rubbish while the rest of us are actually battling the demon hordes. Must admit it always works, but bloody annoying.

Day 15: Met with Sir W— E—. Had to wait while he fixed his hair in at least three looking-glasses before he dismissed the servant and could get down to business. Trifle weary of his act. Percy Blakeney left his card, wants his schtick back, blah de blah. Sir W— troubled to hear about werewolf and succubus, suggested take Miss M. into country, said N. Abbey perfect place for training ground. Does he think I’m going to marry her or something?

Day 16: Freddy came back from Pump Room, said Miss M. was arguing with succubus for switching her attention from Mr. M. to Freddy. Full of himself now. Wager he just wants to get into the succubus’ petticoats. Literally. Eleanor has invited Miss M. to N. Abbey next week. Must prepare training regimen. Horseback riding, toss apples at her to sharpen reflexes, the usual. Curious that we have apples on trees in April. Must have something to do with Abbey being Hellmouth. We do get rather mild winters.

Day 17: Danced with Miss M. at Rooms tonight. She is still concerned about Freddy and succubus. Think I smoothed things over. Freddy better come up to scratch before succubus consumes Miss M.’s brother, or I’ll… I’ll what? Really, it’s not like I’m going to marry Miss M. or anything. Really.

Day 18: Drove to N. Abbey. The governor put Miss M. in curricle with me. Eleanor had to fight off demons that had hidden in chaise at Petty France. Fortunately Freddy left her some of his special “toys.” Gave opportunity to break news to Miss M. about vampyres at Abbey. Afraid she thought it a joke. Still the wittiest, but sometimes backfires.

The Very Secret Diary of Henry Tilney, Part the Second


So then I staked itBy request, and because it amuses us much more than it should. Part the First may be found here.

Day 7: Went to Cotillion Ball, danced with Miss M. The troglodyte tried to talk to her. Upon closer inspection, appears to be a werewolf. Definitely need to keep poor girl away from that one. Fortunately she appears to have understood the muslin bit. Still the wittiest.*

Day 8: Realized today that Miss M.’s particular friend is a succubus. Exposed upthrust bosom is dead giveaway. Remember tried to teach warning signs to Bertram at Oxford, but he would have none of it. Wanker.

Day 9: Received note from Sir W— E— in Camden-place. Typical story, hides true identity behind facade of upper-class idiot, blah de blah de blah. Thinks Miss M. may be The One. Lovely girl, but hardly demon warrior–though she DID go out driving with werewolf rather than take country walk with us; and perhaps has chosen succubus as particular friend in order to study method of defeating her. Hmm.

Day 10: Eleanor practicing with nunchuks in sitting-room. V. annoying when she shows off fancy ninja training, also frightens the servants. A good sturdy stake is all I’ve ever needed. Maybe a bottle of holy water as backup.

Day 11: Sir W.E. wants me to train Miss M. Beechen Cliff excellent spot. Saw Miss M. at theatre. Pretended to be annoyed with her for skipping walk–worked like a charm, she tumbled Mrs. Allen’s gown while assuring me that she has no regard for werewolf. Definitely understood the muslin bit.

Day 12: Walked at Beechen Cliff with Miss M. and Eleanor. Miss M. likes horrid novels. An excellent beginning.

*Full attribution to Sophie; too brilliant to not use.

The Very Secret Diary of Henry Tilney


(with apologies to Cassandra Clare for borrowing her schtick)

My Vampyre, Let Me Show You ItDay 1: Rode to Bath. Found lodgings. Went to Lower Rooms. Danced with Miss Morland. Pretty girl, suspect she might have misunderstood the muslin bit. Oh well, it’s not like I’m going to marry her or anything.

Day 2: Rode back to Northanger. Staked two undead in garden after tea. I really am sick and tired of all these vampyres. Totally out of holy water. What kind of Abbey do we live in, anyway, with no secret stash of holy water?

Day 3: Howling ghost kept whole castle up all night. The governor sneered at breakfast, “Can’t you do a simple exorcism, Henry? What good has that expensive Oxford education or cushy living I set up done for you? Frederick hasn’t cost me a cent since I bought his commission, except those bills for Madam Dominatra’s House of Lacy Unmentionables. The boy must be keeping half a dozen mistresses by the size of them. That’s my boy!” Mistresses! Ha! That’s what he thinks.

Day 4: Bloody hell. Vampyre hiding behind tapestry, in sliding panel. Staked him, but that was a sneaky one. Might be losing my touch. Perhaps should move to Woodston permanently. Leave for Bath tomorrow. Not a moment too soon.

Day 5: Went to Rooms, saw Miss Morland. Asked her to dance. She said she was engaged, but didn’t dance with anyone until the next dance, when she accepted a troglodyte out of obvious desperation. Looked like an ugly customer I staked in the hermitage walk last year. So did the girl I ended up dancing with, come to think of it. Miss M. definitely misunderstood the muslin bit. Oh well, it’s not like I’m going to marry her or anything.

Day 6: Eleanor came home from Pump Room and teased me about acquiring an admirer. She meant Miss Morland. Hmm. Perhaps she understood the muslin bit after all.

So, Gentle Readers, what did you think of the new film?

ETA: This blog post was made possible by a generous contribution from Period Film Pedants International, who remind you that while Miss Morland would no doubt be delighted to ride in a curricle with Mr. Tilney…THAT WASN’T A CURRICLE.

Screencap for macro ganked from Solitary Elegance, we hope with Heather’s forgiveness if not permission