FANGS AND FOREPLAY… THE EROTIC ADVENTURES OF DRACULA: THE TRANSYLVANIA YEARS. BOOK 5- PART 8. AN EROTIC HORROR NOVEL BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

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INTRODUCTION TO BOOK 5.

The year is 1891, and Count Dracula and his sex-and-spanking-crazed harem of beautiful handmaidens are still camped out in Dracula’s ancestral castle in Transylvania. Dracula’s brother Vladimir’s head currently adorns a spike on the castle battlements. His brother Nikolai’s head, while for the moment still attached to his shoulders, is filled with resentment for Dracula and a continuing desire to depose him as head of the family.

Dracula’s beautiful wife Anna and his demanding mistress –– and cousin –– Carmilla are each jockeying for position as his Number One squeeze, and he has two newly-acquired sons he doesn’t have a clue what to do with.

Meanwhile, the genteel young ladies of the nearby Miss Peabody’s Exclusive Academy For The Education And Refinement Of The Daughters Of Gentlefolks are all still waiting impatiently for Dracula to fly through their bedroom windows at midnight, to endow upon them the sexual awakening of a lifetime and an introduction into Dracula’s twilight world of pleasure deliciously commingled with pain.

Add to this his domineering mother, his four sex-mad sisters, his temperamental nude handmaidens and a cartload or two of angry villagers, and you might just have an idea of why, for this year at least, Dracula’s dance-card is fully filled out…

This book, as all the ‘ANNA’ books are, is based on characters created by fellow Irish authors Bram Stoker and Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu, and is dedicated with much love to the late Sir Christopher Lee, whose performances in the HAMMER ‘Dracula’ films inspired every word of it. May he rest in peace… until he rises once more from the crypt in which he rests…

FANGS AND FOREPLAY… THE EROTIC ADVENTURES OF DRACULA: THE TRANSYLVANIA YEARS. BOOK 5- PART 8.

AN EROTIC HORROR NOVEL BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

When Vanessa opened her eyes after her swoon, it took her several moments to take in her surroundings fully. She felt so terribly woozy and light-headed, and yet so far she had not herself partaken of any strong alcohol, unlike her foolish husband Edward! The thought of Edward made her gasp and sit up straight, and it was then she noticed that she was in a bed.

It was a double bed, in a bedchamber quite unlike the room she shared with Edward at the inn. The furniture here was old, very old, but not cheap, like the furniture at the inn. Here, the four-poster bed, the huge twin wardrobes, the two dressing-tables on either side of the bed, one for the male, one for the female, and the chairs and armchairs all looked as if they had stood here for a hundred years and more. They were made of a quality and a superior wood one did not often come across nowadays.

Full-length drapes of the heaviest wine-colored velvet hung at the window, which stood open and allowed a light breeze to permeate the room. A small fire crackled brightly in the grate, and over the mantelpiece hung a huge portrait of a very imposing woman, with a magnificent bosom in a low-cut gown of midnight blue and a trickle of blood running from one corner of her red full mouth.

‘I see you’re admiring the portrait of my esteemed Cousin Elizabeth Bathory,’ said a cultivated male voice from somewhere to the left of her. ‘What an admirably single-minded young woman she was, and how many other young women she was more than prepared to sacrifice in pursuit of eternal youth and beauty! I still correspond regularly with her descendants, you know. Remind me to tell you sometime of their exploits. They make for some rather interesting listening, I can assure you. A singularly bizarre lot, the Bathorys.’

Vanessa jumped. Good heavens, she was not alone! She stared in fearful amazement at the extremely tall man she just about remembered meeting in the Great Hall before her swoon. He was undressing to the left of her, placing his dark clothing casually on a chair. His long black cloak, a fabulous piece of workmanship lined inside with red satin, was hanging on the outside of the wardrobe. The clasp looked to be made of real silver, and a heavy, ancient silver at that.

For the first time since opening her eyes, Vanessa realised that she was not wearing the beautiful bronze-coloured gown she had worn to visit the castle and meet the Count and his no doubt charming wife and family.

And indeed how could she be, since it was currently hanging on the outside of the second twin wardrobe, in tandem with the Count’s billowing black cloak! They looked quite at home together, the two garments, as if they had been accustomed to hang together thus, side-by-side in familiarity and companionship, for many a long year.

Vanessa looked down at herself and shrieked. Under the bedclothes, she was clad only in her long petticoat of white lace. Why, she was indecent, practically naked, in the presence of a strange male! Edward would be horrified, scandalised, mortified!

Her pale white breasts heaved in embarrassment over the low neckline of the petticoat, which action only served to make them more prominent and, though this mortified her further, more appealing to the watchful male eye.

‘Did… did you undress me?’ she asked the Count, her eyes downcast from shame and her tones tremulous.

‘Is that a problem for you, my dear Mrs. Wintergreen?’ he asked her quizzically, quirking one eyebrow at her in an unmistakeable gesture of amusement. ‘Surely a man has seen you naked before?’

‘Only Edward, and even then, he has never seen me without my nightgown!’

‘Well then, perhaps it is about time you learned to be properly naked in front of a man. A real man.’

He grinned, casting away his final item of clothing to stand fully and unashamedly unclothed in front of her. Vanessa’s blue eyes widened at the sight of the tall, lean strong body covered in a fine layer of black hairs, with that thing of his standing up perpendicular to his body the way Edward’s must have done too, but Edward’s thing had never looked so long, so heavy, so veined, so big! Vanessa could not, for the very life of her, have wrenched her eyes from it. It was a veritable monstrous beast of a thing, and she both feared and craved it.

‘You are not a virgin, I understand,’ he said, as he climbed into the big comfortable bed beside her, ‘but of course such things cannot be helped in the case of married woman. You are familiar with the act of sexual intercourse?’

‘I… I think so,’ breathed Vanessa, feeling a tingling in her nipples and a moistening sensation in her lady-parts at the proximity of such a paragon of maleness. The nearness of Edward had never felt like this. This feeling was electrifying, it made her feel like all her nerve endings were tenderly, exquisitely, agonizingly alive, and she never wanted the feeling to stop!

‘You think so?’ Dracula laughed superciliously. ‘I see that the actions of the esteemed Mr. Edward Wintergreen in the boudoir have made a great impression upon you, my dear. Well, we shall have to see what we can do to erase your memories of his inadequate schoolboy fumblings from your mind forever.’ He laid her back down against the pillows and began to methodically undo the tiny delicate pearl buttons on her petticoat.

‘Where… where is my husband?’ Vanessa asked him. ‘What have you done to him?’

She barely managed to get the words out. She felt like the power of speech was slipping away from her gradually, along with the ability to remember her own name and Edward’s and the reasons why they were there, in Castle Dracula in the Carpathian Mountains in the wilds of Transylvania, instead of at home in jolly old England, taking tea on the terrace of their house in Windsor Grove. On the terrace when it was fine, in the parlour when it rained or was windy or cold. How far away all that silly politeness and pointless adherence to silly old customs and traditions seemed now.

‘Do you care?’ Dracula asked her brutally as he pulled the petticoat over her head and tossed it aside. His hands immediately covered her breasts, those pale, perfect orbs he had coveted since first observing them peeping out from beneath the fur stole she had worn with the bronze-coloured gown.

Vanessa shook her head and moaned with pleasure. ‘I don’t care,’ she whimpered.

‘What about now?’ he said, as the enormous pale stalk that had stood out from his body so erect and upstanding pushed forcefully past any lingering hint of a maidenhead and penetrated straight to the very core of her being.

She shook her head and whispered: ‘I don’t care.’

‘What about now?’ he said again. The fearsome fangs she had glimpsed earlier were in evidence again now as he bit down hard on the left side of her tender neck, immediately drawing blood.

‘I don’t care, I don’t care, I don’t care!’ she screamed, before falling into a dead faint with her bare arms flung out on either side of her in a grotesque parody of the Crucifixion.

Dracula, satisfied, began to feed.

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, poet, short story writer and film and book blogger. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, women’s fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO

You can contact Sandra at:

sandrasandraharris@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/SandraHarrisPureFilthPoetry

https://sandrafirstruleoffilmclubharris.wordpress.com

http://sexysandieblog.wordpress.com

http://serenaharker.wordpress.com

https://twitter.com/SandraAuthor

THE HUNGER. (1983) REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

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THE HUNGER. 1983. BASED ON THE BOOK ‘THE HUNGER’ BY WHITLEY STRIEBER. DIRECTED BY TONY SCOTT. CINEMATOGRAPHY BY STEPHEN GOLDBLATT.

STARRING CATHERINE DENEUVE, DAVID BOWIE, CLIFF DE YOUNG, SUSAN SARANDON, BETH EHLERS, DAN HEDAYA, WILLEM DAFOE AND BAUHAUS.

REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

(First published here in 2016.)

I took this film out of the library recently (yes, there are still those of us who do that, like cave-people who’ve never heard of Netflix…!) and the librarian laughed as he checked it out and remarked that the director really had ‘a thing for billowing curtains.’

I had to laugh too. There certainly are a lot of billowing curtains in this visually beautiful and arty erotic vampire film, along with classical music and classical statuary and paintings. The director was definitely trying to create something artistically eye-catching and in this he’s succeeded, but the film’s not without its problems or, indeed, its stern critics.

Despite its being obviously sexy and stylish, film critic Roger Ebert described the film as ‘an agonisingly bad vampire movie.’ That’s one way of looking at it, I suppose, but it’s found itself a cult following amongst the goth subculture so the news isn’t all bad.

Me personally, I love this film and think it’s one of the best non-Dracula vampire movies ever made, along with INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE and SALEM’S LOT, based on the internationally bestselling books by Anne Rice and Stephen King respectively.

Now to the plot. Miriam Blaylock, played by well-preserved French actress Catherine BELLE DE JOUR Deneuve, is one hot momma. In one way. In another, she’s a stone-cold bitch who also just so happens to be a vampire. That’s right, she’s an ageless and beautiful vampire who is hundreds, maybe thousands of years old.

She lives in Manhattan in a fantastic old house filled with the aforementioned priceless objets d’art. She doesn’t need to go out to work because she’s as rich as Croesus, although she poses as a teacher of classical music along with her handsome younger husband. By the way, did I forget to mention that this classy lassy with the bottomless bank account is married in the film to the Thin White Duke…?

Yep, her hubby John, an eighteenth-century cellist, is played by musician-actor David Bowie, who sadly passed away earlier this year and- as some people maintain!- unintentionally sparked off a chain of celebrity deaths that had us reeling and railing against the Grim Reaper till midsummer at least. It’s been a bad year for celebrity deaths.

He’s a vampire too like his missus but he’s a very tragic figure in this film. When we come in, he’s unfortunately started to age at the rate of knots, even though Miriam, that lying, manipulative bitch, had promised him eternal life and also eternal youth when they first got together back in the eighteenth century.

She may have been telling porkies about the eternal youth thing, but it seems that she was telling the brutal truth about his living forever, which is extremely bad news for her hubby John who’s now so ancient in his appearance that he makes Grampa Simpson from THE SIMPSONS look young…!

Before long, Miriam is callously locking him away in a coffin in a room at the top of the house where, incidentally, she keeps the rotting corpses of her other lovers. She’s pledged eternal love to all of them but we quickly learn that ‘eternity’ for Miriam can end in a heartbeat the minute she tires of you or you can no longer satisfy her. The corpses are doomed to lie there, awake and aware, for all eternity because she’s too goddamn selfish to let them die. That bitch. I told you guys she was cold…!

Things start to get really gruesome after poor, poor old David Bowie has been put in his ‘forever’ box in a heartbreaking scene that would make you feel very angry with Miriam on behalf of John and the other boxed lovers.

The sexually insatiable but horrifically selfish Miriam then turns her attentions to Dr. Sarah Roberts, the author of a dreary but terribly worthy tome called SLEEP AND LONGEVITY who carries out ageing experiments on monkeys, of all things.

Dr. Roberts, a gerontologist consulted by an agonised David Bowie before his incarceration in Miriam’s attic, is played by a freakishly young-looking Susan Sarandon with a painfully ‘Eighties hairstyle. Poor David Bowie thought that maybe she could slow down or even stop altogether his dreadful ageing process but it was no dice, sadly. Science hasn’t advanced that far yet, if it ever does.

Sarah can’t help being mesmerised by Miriam, who is quite simply the last word in feminine allure. The two have lesbian sex in Miriam’s gaff. (Well, what other kind could they have…?) Yes, you do see boobs; Sarah’s, but not Miriam’s…!

The sex is all very artistically-shot and stylish, and by the end of it, Miriam has co-mingled their respective bloods, in a disgustingly non-consensual act of what we’d today probably refer to as rape, and Sarah is on her way to becoming a fully-fledged vampire.

Sarah gets as sick as a dog as her body comes to terms with its new situation. I love the scene in which Miriam tells her new lover that she’ll sleep for six hours out of every twenty-four and she’ll need to ‘feed’ once a week. Just give the girl the instructive pamphlets entitled SO YOU’RE A VAMPIRE NOW or VAMPIRES 101 or VAMPIRES FOR DUMMIES or even SO YOU’VE RUINED YOUR LIFE and let her figure it all out for herself, lol. 

Sarah becomes so desperate for blood when ‘the hunger,’ as Miriam puts it, is upon her, that she kills her own scientist lover when he comes looking for her at Miriam’s place, and she joins in the gory fun when Miriam rips a young male pick-up limb from limb.

Sarah’s scientist friends are alarmed when they examine her blood medically and discover that her bloodstream has actually been invaded by a foreign, non-human blood strain, which is winning the battle for dominance over Sarah’s own normal blood.

It’s extremely frightening for Sarah (‘What have you done to me…?’), and it’s also almost impossible not to think of the way in which the AIDS virus is transmitted. This was, after all, the time when AIDS was rearing its ugly head for the first time. The passing of the vampire gene resembles the transmission of a blood infection. Christopher Lee never had this issue, lol.

In fact, when I first used to watch the devastatingly handsome and sexually dominant Christopher Lee as Dracula in the HAMMER HORROR films, I wanted nothing more than to be a vampire too.

I’d live with him in his crumbling Transylvanian castle and drink blood from a jewel-encrusted goblet brought to me nightly by my new husband’s naked, full-bosomed handmaidens. It was going to be sweet. This film put me off the idea of being a vampire for good.

All that sweating and being sick and looking as if you’re dying with the ‘flu while your body craves human blood changed my mind about it, along with the decidedly unsavoury sight of Susan Sarandon in her yucky grey sweat-socks sweating buckets through her old grey T-shirt.

I only ever wanted the glamour and the sex with Dracula, anyway, not so much the other stuff. I certainly never wanted to do my own killing, and I’d only ever be pushed about immortality if I had someone decent to share it with. But, when it comes down to it, isn’t that what Miriam wants for herself…?

So anyway, do Miriam and Sarah live happily ever after for all eternity, or is eternity just too long a time even for a vampire…? There’s a neat little twist at the end that I can’t tell you about, but I thought it was a strange ending to an already strange film. Apparently, some members of the cast were disappointed in the ending but some viewers will think it’s only right and proper.

There are some plotholes in the film, which is so painfully ‘Eighties it looks a bit dated now, but the plotholes, I suppose, are of secondary importance compared to the look of the thing. Willem Dafoe makes a brief cameo as a man who wants to use the pay-phone after Susan Sarandon’s finished with it and the violin-playing kid is really, really annoying. ‘Eighties band BAUHAUS make an appearance and the monkey experiments stuff gets quite confusing after a while. I didn’t enjoy that bit too much.

The first half-hour drags a bit and things don’t really get going until David Bowie is locked away in his coffin, but the hour or so after that is required viewing for fans of the vampire genre. Based on the novel by Whitley Strieber, there’s not one mention of the ‘v’ word in the film, however, which is interesting. Watch this if you enjoy vampire flicks. If you can overlook the flaws, it’s a real little cracker, I promise you.

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, poet, short story writer and film and book blogger. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, women’s fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO

You can contact Sandra at:

sandrasandraharris@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/SandraHarrisPureFilthPoetry

https://sandrafirstruleoffilmclubharris.wordpress.com

http://sexysandieblog.wordpress.com

http://serenaharker.wordpress.com

https://twitter.com/SandraAuthor

THE SPANISH VERSION OF DRACULA. (1931) REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS.©

spanish dracula carlos 2

THE SPANISH VERSION OF DRACULA. (1931) BASED ON THE BOOK BY BRAM STOKER. DIRECTED BY GEORGE MELFORD. PRODUCED BY CARL LAEMMLE JUNIOR AND PAUL KOHNER. DISTRIBUTED BY UNIVERSAL PICTURES.

STARRING CARLOS VILLARIAS, LUPITA TOVAR, BARRY NORTON AND MANUEL ARBO.

REVIEW BY SANDRA HARRIS. ©

‘He cut open a vein in his arm and forced me to drink from it.’

Sometimes when I watch this film I almost fancy that I prefer it to the Bela Lugosi version, and the Bela Lugosi version is one of my all-time Top Three favourite film versions of the story ever. (It keeps company with Hammer’s 1958 DRACULA starring Christopher Lee, and Werner Herzog’s NOSFERATU THE VAMPYRE from 1979. It’s in very good company, I hope you’ll agree.)

This Spanish version was made concurrently with the Bela Lugosi/UNIVERSAL version. It was even made on the same sets, except that the Spanish version was made by night and the English version by day. As one cast and crew trooped out, finished for the day, another cast and crew would troop in, ready for their night-shift using some of the most memorable and iconic sets in cinema.

Carlos Villarias, the Spanish El Conde Dracula, seems at first glance almost too smiley and goofy-looking to play the most evil villain in cinema history, but he soon proves himself more than capable of the level of menace required to play such a deliciously pernicious character.

It’s true that he lacks the handsome sophistication of Bela Lugosi and Bela’s Eastern European air of mystery, but he makes a damned good Dracula just the same. I would even say that his performance is the equal of Bela’s, just slightly different obviously as he’s a different person/actor and hails from a different country, a warmer country where the people are reputedly of a more passionate nature than some other of their European counterparts.

The story moves along the same lines as the English language version, with Renfield the estate agent’s clerk travelling to Dracula’s Castle in the mountains in Transylvania against the advice of the locals, who themselves wouldn’t go near the place if you paid them.

He does manage, however, to get a carriage-driver to get him to the infamous Borgo Pass at midnight, where Dracula’s carriage awaits and conveys Renfield to the castle. He finds Count Dracula- El Conde Dracula- a little eccentric but charming and cordial, even if his castle is ramshackle and creepy and belongs to the Dark Ages.

Renfield has, as requested, brought the Count the deeds to Carfax Abbey, Dracula’s intended new home in England. Dracula informs him that they’ll be leaving for England by ship on the morrow, along with Dracula’s ‘three boxes,’ the only luggage the strange Count intends to carry with him.

If he was bringing his three wives, of course, the level of luggage might be an entirely different story. You know women, lol. There’d be hat-boxes and cosmetic boxes and jewellery boxes and boxes of knick-knacks and rails of dresses in plastic safety coverings and the whole shebang. That ship would have sunk like the Titanic.

By the time the ship docks in England, Renfield’s mind is all but destroyed by Dracula’s special ‘kiss’ and he’s clapped straightaway into Dr. Seward’s Sanatarium for the mentally ill. The security there, mind you, is every bit as lax as in the English version of the film and he’s allowed to wander the house and grounds as he pleases, pursued half-heartedly by Martin his minder.

He even ventures into the private quarters of the wealthy Dr. Seward and his family, which consists of just himself and his beautiful daughter Eva. Renfield is now all about the catching and devouring of flies and other small creatures with blood in them- ‘Blood is life!’- and getting excited about the proximity of his ‘Master,’ whom he both adores and fears.

Dracula, meanwhile, has contrived an introduction at the theatre to his neighbours Dr. Seward and Eva, and also Eva’s best friend Lucia Weston and Eva’s fiancé Juan Harker. All four of them are impressed by the Count’s courtesy and good manners.

Before long, Lucia, who’s fascinated by the enigmatic foreign Count and his mysterious remarks on the subject of death, has succumbed utterly to the Count’s blood-sucking ways and become a vampire too, one of Dracula’s terrible ‘cult of the un-Dead…’

Now the ravishing Eva is starting to feel unwell also and eminent physician Dr. Van Helsing is extremely quick to diagnose ‘vampirism.’ His suspicions are confirmed when the suave Count Dracula pays a social visit to the Sewards and Dr. Van Helsing is able to observe that the Count casts no reflection in a mirror. This, of course, is one of the sure signs that someone is a vampire.

That, and a terrible fear of garlic and wolfbane, the two plants guaranteed to keep the vampires away, and also of all or any religious iconography, especially crosses. If you don’t have a cross handy, don’t worry your head about it.

You can always fashion one out of two sticks, or two pokers, or two matches, or even two of your own fingers. It’s only the merest suggestion of the cross that’s needed, according to some Hammer films, lol. Even the shadow of a cross will do at a pinch. (See the finale of BRIDES OF DRACULA…!)

Dracula is pissed off by Van Helsing and tries to bring the doctor’s mind under his control but Van Helsing only just manages to hold his own. It’s down to the good doctor, then, and Juan Harker, Eva’s distraught fiancé, to try to save Eva’s immortal soul from Count Dracula.

Eva is his real object. Lucia was just the starter, the aperitif, the warm-up act. It’s Eva he wants to be his wife, his companion, down through all the long, cold millenia to come. Count Dracula’s intended monstrous act of selfishness will cost Eva her life with her boyfriend and father, and in the end her soul too.

The sets and costumes are gorgeous, and the final scenes, set in the eerie dungeons of Carfax Abbey, are as thrilling as in the English language version. The final scenes are longer here, however, and the ending isn’t as sudden as in the Bela version.

There’s even a nice extra touch in the Spanish film in that Dr. Van Helsing keeps a promise he made to Renfield to free that poor old fella’s soul from Dracula’s rancid grasp from all eternity.

The Spanish film is every bit as atmospheric and fog-wreathed as the Bela Lugosi version and, because it’s a good thirty or so minutes longer, you get a bit extra into the bargain. By the end of it, you don’t even query why everyone in England is speaking such fluent Spanish, lol. And Spanish is such a lovely, musical mellifluous language as well, and some of their words sound very similar to our own, you’ll have great fun figuring out which ones I mean.

Lupita Tovar is wonderful as Eva Seward, and in fact she only died recently, having lived to be well over the hundred-year mark, a remarkable feat in itself. I was delighted to find that she was still alive when I first discovered the existence of ‘The Spanish Version Of Dracula’ a couple of years ago, and then gutted when she died not long after in 2016. Still, fancy living to such a ripe old age! Maybe Dr. Van Helsing didn’t manage to purge all of Dracula’s black magic from her veins after all…

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY OF SANDRA HARRIS.

Sandra Harris is a Dublin-based novelist, film blogger, poet and book-and-movie reviewer. She has studied Creative Writing and Film-Making. She has published a number of e-books on the following topics: horror film reviews, multi-genre film reviews, womens’ fiction, erotic fiction, erotic horror fiction and erotic poetry. Several new books are currently in the pipeline. You can browse or buy any of Sandra’s books by following the link below straight to her Amazon Author Page:

http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B015GDE5RO

You can contact Sandra at:

https://www.facebook.com/SandraHarrisPureFilthPoetry

https://sandrafirstruleoffilmclubharris.wordpress.com

http://sexysandieblog.wordpress.com

http://serenaharker.wordpress.com

sandrasandraharris@gmail.com

https://twitter.com/SandraAuthor