(© Biswapriya Purkayastha)
canít mean it!" little Miss Frankenstein said with a delightedly shocked
giggle. "She married a zombie?"
"Yes, she did." Mrs
Jekyll leaned confidentially across the table. "Of course, it was aquite unsuitable
match. Her family was shocked!"
"Did they disinherit
her?" Miss Frankenstein asked, shivering deliciously. "I heard her parents
are very strait-laced."
"I donít know," Mrs
Jekyll admitted reluctantly. "They donít have any other children, though, so
Miss Frankenstein pulled a face, but not too much in case it smudged her
makeup. "Itís so...dťclassť. I mean, who marries a zombie these days? Youíd
have thought sheíd have had the taste to at least choose a werewolf or a
vampire," Mrs Jekyll said firmly. "My sister was in a relationship with one.
She had to break up with him in the end."
"Why?" Miss Frankenstein
asked. "Theyíre so sexy. Those dreamy eyes, and the pale skin to die for. And
Iíd just melt if one touched my neck with his fangs, my dear."
"Ha!" Mrs Jekyll snorted.
"You donít know the half of it. Oh yes, itís all very nice from the outside,
but when youíre together, thatís when the trouble starts." She looked around
conspiratorially. "My sister told me that vampires look great,
but thatís all that can be said for them. You know they canít see themselves in
a mirror? So they canít even shave themselves. Each night, my sister had to
"Well, that doesnít sound
"Wait, I havenít finished
yet. Then, they canít eat anything, just drink blood. His fridge was filled
with bottles and bottles and bottles of blood. She said there
wasnít even room for a slice of cucumber between them. And sheís a vegan. She
took it up as a fashion statement last year."
They both contemplated
the horror of this for a moment. "A vegan," Miss Frankenstein repeated, aghast.
"And she loves garlic,"
Mrs Jekyll said, "but she couldnít even have it on her breath when she was
"Imagine that," Miss
Frankenstein murmured, shuddering.
"Then," Mrs Jekyll
continued with relish, "you canít go for a day out with them, of course. My
sister so wanted to go for a picnic with him...kept badgering him until he gave
in, saying heíd do it as long as she made sure he wouldnít burn." She paused
Frankenstein asked breathlessly, holding up her part of the drama.
"She got a sunblock for
him...positively slathered him with it, from top to toe...but
she missed the insides of his nostrils. The insides of
his nostrils. So when they went out, the hairs inside his nose
started burning, and he began breathing fire."
"Itís nothing to laugh
about," Mrs Jekyll said severely. "He could have had a nasty burn. So they came
in again immediately, and agreed to go out at night to the West Bank to see the
"But...?" Miss Frankenstein
"But he couldnít cross
the river. Running water, you know."
"Iíd still choose him
over a zombie," Miss Frankenstein said mutinously. "You know what
zombie hygiene standards are like."
Mrs Jekyll laughed
unpleasantly. "I havenít told you that he slept in a coffin on a bed of
graveyard dirt, did I? No," she sighed, "it would never have worked. Iím so
glad she found a new lover."
"Well, whoís he?"
"A centaur. She rides
him, and they eat all kinds of vegetation together, and, my sister tells me, as
for his, um..." She looked at Miss Frankenstein dubiously and shook her head.
"Not for your tender ears, my dear."
Miss Frankenstein, whose
face had been pink with excitement, looked disappointed. "Well, Iím glad sheís
happy," she said. She returned to the original topic. "But how anyone could
marry a zombie..."
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