Archive for May, 2020

By harmonising the animal and the civilised we project a personality that is inspiring, creative and self-confident, while displaying a deep warmth and paternal nature towards others and the natural world. We gain the skills to thrust our power and desires into the world when necessary, while remaining benevolent and nurturing when needed.
Strength Card p.107 Phantasmagoria

We had been so busy reminiscing on the night Silas arrived that I had not had time to carefully inspect the small gift he had given me. Of course, when he did give it to me Silas warned me about its power and about opening it too often.

It goes without saying that I was intrigued. Despite having read Clarissa Pinkola Estes chapter about Blue Beard and knowing that within “a single human being there are many other beings, all with their own values, motives, and devices” (Estes 1992, p. 39), as dawn rose at Shadwell and the light woke me, I took the compact and carefully opened it.

A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.” Christopher Reeve

“This card teaches us that we have the inner strength and power to endure and triumph. The strength is solar in nature, as this card is ruled by the sun. It is a steady, invigorating power that is all-encompassing and exuberant in nature. Like the sun it penetrates all around it with its vibrant energy – an energy both fiery (active) and watery (inactive) in perfect balance” p.105 Phantasmagoria

As I looked directly into the compact’s mirror and saw an image forming I reeled. A surge of fire fuelled emotion swept through me and it took all my will to maintain composure and self control as I grasped that the mirror was showing me that I really do possess magic powers, that I have had the strength to persevere, endure and triumph.

When the Strength card appears, it usually indicates that we must engage with our unique vitality and personal power, allowing it to shine forth with enthusiasm and glory, while remaining benevolent and composed. The strength represented here is one of love and forbearance, a love for others yet also a love for our own power and creativity.
P. 105 Phantasmagoria

As I gazed at the reflection I considered that receiving a message like this is like drinking ‘the blood of life’. Consuming this kind of blood is undeniably a quality of life issue and  necessary for sustaining energy. I could, quite literally, feel my energy surge as I contemplated the message. ” I must dedicate myself to this task with passion, creativity and joyful energy” I said to myself. “I must fight for my interests and the interests of others”.

Being here, having this place is so energising that I am sure someone will tell me its illegal. After all, the raging panther who is alongside me is such a fierce animal and he clearly has tremendous power and strength. Such potent energy needs to be tethered. No wonder Silas told me to be prudent in my use of this enchanted compact, a compact that has the power to identify, to confront me with the other beings who live within me.

While the Priestess is concerned with spiritual matters, the Empress often denotes the physical realm. She is the gateway from which new life and creativity is born, and like nature, her character is one of tender love for all forms of life…. her lightness and love pervade all life and her gentle devotion nourishes and cultivates everything in its passive unfolding. As Venus she is the love and the source of all life, encompassing. the whole cycle of life
Phantasmagoria p. 73

Silas and I stayed up late plotting, planning and catching up on what we had been doing over recent years. I decided to show him photos I took at Kutna Hora in the Sedlec Ossuary, a chapel adorned with human skeletons. He was suitably impressed.

For his part Silas was circumspect and did not reveal much about what he had been doing over the years and I gathered he had actually been living as a hermit in a remote, isolated part of the world.

Even after consuming copious amounts of the ‘blood of life’ Silas emphasised that “our actions and behaviour should be measured, and we must apply meticulous attention to detail” as we planned. (p. 285).

It was quite late when I asked him who he believed we should invite to join us. He thought carefully and did not answer for awhile. Then he rose to his feet and stood, with the skull over his head. He seemed to be in a trance as he performed a ritual. Captivated I watched as what looked like electric energy emanated from the glass he had been drinking from.

Finally he announced that it was the Empress who initially must be invited if we wanted our new venture to be blessed and bear a rich harvest.

I clapped my hands together with delight! “Of course!” I said. “She is the ideal guest. I will have the housekeeper makeup a full apartment for her.

The Empress is the planetary trump of Venus and the goddess of love. She is the creative beauty in nature that blossoms and delights, unfolding its treasures softly, like a warm summer breeze. She can be seen around us in the wonder and beauty of nature. p.74 Phantasmagoria

Before Silas arrived I did send out word that I was moving into Shadwell and Fergie, my bestie, never one to miss out on the action is coming. She has just finished working, making this advertisement for Dr Pepper. Needless to say not all of my Clan members approve of this friendship but I did notice that Silas’s eyes lit up when he heard she was coming.

Given that Fergie will arrive soon I decide to check out some online stores for us to do a spot of retail therapy. The Dark Store is just the place to meet our needs.

Note: I am not an affiliate for Dr Pepper, the Dark Store or anyone else. This is unbridled play!

Silas Arrives

Posted: May 29, 2020 in Tarot of the Vampyres

The Eight of Skulls can arise when we are engaged in a project in which we are completely absorbed. This card calls for us to continue with our efforts at a steady pace giving time and attention to the details. Study learning, knowledge, and wisdom are all denoted by this card. Particular attention must be paid to self disciplined diligence, as we are at a position where patience is a virtue.
Phantasmagoria p. 285

“Heavens to Betsy!” I exclaimed as I saw the carriage, led by two black stallions, pull up in the circular drive and watched as Silas, carrying his signature skull step out.

I watched, totally fascinated, as he strode confidently up the stairs while his man heaved one of those vintage, late 1800’s, leather, wood and iron trunks that must have set Silas back more than a few dollars, up the stairs.

Here I was, hardly dressed, having barely pulled the covers off the furniture and low and behold, a highly regarded member of my Skull Clan (p. 55 Kith & Kin Clan of the Skull) was arriving. Word had clearly got out that I have taken up residence here at Shadwell and I sensed that more of these characters would soon be arriving. My Clan has a very effective way of passing on the word. The unkind might accuse them of gossip but what can I say? They are kith and kin!

“Get the kitchen operational and have the maids make up some rooms” I called to the housekeeper who I knew would be within hearing distance. “We need to get the show on the road and Silas is just the Vampyre to help us make it all happen.

Silas, who is a distant cousin, twice removed, has become well known for his self-discipline and for being addicted to work. There is nothing Silas loves more than getting everyone organised. He takes pride in his work and his capacity to focus on each step of a journey. He knows to apply his skills of organisation and concentration in order to complete the task, whatever that task might be.

The nature of this card means that often it represents a time of introspection, where we are hidden away or absorbed in our own endeavours. This time of inner questing can uncover long-hidden abilities and open up new possibilities.
Phantasmagoria p. 285


From medieval castles to Victorian mansions, Gothic architecture is as varied as it is imposing. Hallmarks of this dramatic style include vaulted ceilings, arched windows and ornate details, such as flying buttresses and the occasional leering gargoyle. 

Every self respecting Vampyre needs a mansion to live in and host lavish banquets, masque balls and general free for all likeminded kindred spirits.

I have been on the look out for the right property for some time. The Villa de Vecchi, known as the “Ghost Mansion” of Italy, was built between 1854 and 1857. It was meant to be the summer home of a Count named Felix De Vecchi, who was head of the Italian National Guard. The home had all the modern amenities of the time, including indoor heating pipes and a large pressurised fountain.

However it was home to a mysterious family tragedy. In 1862, the Count killed himself after he came home and found his wife murdered and his daughter missing.

Relatives continued to live at the mansion until World War II, but the mansion was left uninhabited by the 1960s. The home’s grand piano is said to be played at night by “a ghostly entity.”

I do like the ghostly story but, quite frankly, Vampyre I may be but I need something that requires a bit less restoration – somewhere I can move in and put the kettle on, where I can put my feet up, invite all my friends, have lavish parties and drink many ‘morning after’ Bloody Mary’s.

The ‘exemplary’ Shadwell Court in Norfolk might be just the place!

In the world of cocktails, the Bloody Mary is very much a contradiction. Instead of being blamed for a hangover, it is used as the cure. And rather than being consumed at night, the spicy concoction is best imbibed the morning after.



45ml vodka

20ml lemon juice

Dash of Tabasco sauce

5-10ml worcestershire sauce


Tomato juice

Stick of celery

Slice of lemon

Pepper (to taste)


Build the drink in a tall, ice-filled glass with vodka, lemon juice, Tabasco, worcestershire sauce and salt. Top with tomato juice. Stir. Garnish with a stick of celery, a slice of lemon and some ground pepper on top.