(post dated) Thursday, August 11th, 1870

Dear Diary:

After what you might imagine was a very sleepless night, I awoke feeling quite ill. I told myself it was the tea… but you know Matilda. His hands are positively magical. He never brewed a tea unfit for all of the gods on Olympus. No, I imagine my frequent recourse to the wc more likely to be a symptom of the condition sniffed out by Danyell than caused by anything Matilda did in the kitchen.

After first asking after Kylerra’s condition, which proved stable, I chatted amiably enough with Doctor Hyde. He is a new neighbor and a friend of the Wytchwoods, after all. I like him. He treated me to a nearly endless supply of his family’s signature sweet. Apparently, his mother touched the Platonic ideal of the cookie. Matilda will be sent round for the recipe directly.

Niceties dispensed with, I proceeded to broach the subject on which my visit truly hinged. It is not that I dislike the man. Indeed, I find the doctor rather charming. My immediate concerns merely tended toward his trade. Suffice it to say that he confirmed Danyell’s suspicion.  Nice or not, I wanted to punch him.

So there I sat: nauseous, bloated from eating too many cookies, and my complexion marred by dark circles around the eyes. Of course, that is when a gentleman from the club should come calling. God, I could have fainted! The visit passed pleasantly enough. I daresay I shall have a return client should I choose to continue the association. But should I? That is the question. Not only did the man display an appalling lack of reflection in my bathroom mirror (and a temperature tending toward tepid, by the by), but my condition will soon manifest itself in a manner all too obvious. Is my chosen vocation entirely practical at present?

My eyelids begin to droop. I apologize for my lack of detail or eloquence. I can barely hold my pen. I long for only one lover’s embrace tonight: the solitary comfort of my bedclothes.

Goodnight, dear Diary. Wish me well in my dreams, for my waking hours are full of uncertainty.

Your Exhausted,

–Miss Palabra Puddlegum–

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