So I read this story a whole lot of years ago. I can remember it clearly
enough to know I adored it; not enough to actually remember the bloody
title. Or author. Or any character names.
Our hero: distant, brooding English movie actor with a secret childhood
trauma. His speciality? Horror movies (including the Slasher Charlie series,
Blackbeard, and Dybbuk, which was his breakout role). He plays monsters, in
short. Totally gone off women because of all the women who wanted to sleep
with the monster. He shagged most of them, then went off them once he
realised they didn’t want him, they wanted safe!scary sex.
Our heroine: Competent, intelligent and the only organised person in a
horde of artistic personalities. Helping friends out by taking a low paying
job as part of their production of a play. She drives a temperamental MG,
which has somewhat of a starring role in the story.
There is also a (secretly) crazy director and a plump and comfortable best
friend of the hero, who is an actress in the play, and the BF’s husband
(also an actor?).
Our setting: the aforementioned play, which is about a monster, before
opening night. It’s set in the US somewhere.
Our story unfolds and heroine sees hero; uncomfortable attraction on her
part, distant disdain on his. Things progress, it is literally a dark and
stormy night, her beloved MG won’t start, she ends up at his place, a big
old house in which he grew up. Mutual but unexpressed attraction occurs.
Crazy director discovers the visit occurred and warns her our hero is
Sometime later, she goes to a marathon of our hero’s movies, despite being
genuinely scared by horror films, and returns to the dim and deserted
theatre…only to encounter our hero, shirtless, experimenting with
greasepaint as he works on the monster’s makeup for the play. He guesses
she’d been to see his movies; she reluctantly admits it. Sex ensues, hot
but uncomfortable as they are on a prop bed. They finish, he leaves without
a word. She is embarrassed/ashamed/what have you; he is deeply pissed off
and storms home, thinking her just another woman who wants to bang the
monster. Then suddenly! Revelation! She had sex with him not because she was
afraid of him, but in spite of it!
Time runs on, our heroine gets minorly hurt in a bunch of accidents at the
theatre which crazy director implies may not have been accidents at all.
Duhn duhn duhn…
She ends up at our hero’s house in (or maybe after?) a moment of crisis,
and enters his unlocked abode. There is a darkened stairway and a creepy
closet on a landing halfway up. So of course she goes to look in it.
Suddenly, she’s pushed inside and the door slammed and locked behind her!
It’s scary and oh so dark, but she finds some matches on the floor and
lights one. The inside of the closet is covered in monsters, scribbled in a
child’s hand. She is super scared and panicky (claustrophobic?).
Eventually, our hero finds her, and there is much relief and meeting of the
minds and romance and revealing of childhood secrets (his mother used to
lock him in the closet for hours at a time and the monsters were his
protection from the terrifying dark. Then his parents were killed in a car
wreck and he wasn’t found for several days). Much compassion and love and
Later, she’s almost killed in an ‘accident’ and then the theatre burns
down (maybe only partly?) and for a moment, she believes it might have been
our hero. Mortally offended, his trust betrayed, our hero spurns her.
It turns out to have been crazy director all along and after a series of
events I don’t remember, they end up on a plane to England together. And he
promises to have her beloved MG shipped after them.
The facts: It appeared in a book with two other stories (I think it was
first?) that made absolutely zero impression. The book might have had a
yellow cover with a creepy stalkerish inset picture, and possibly was a
Anyone have any ideas as to title/author? HABO, ‘cause I’d love to read
That is so much detail, I bet some half asleep Bitchery reader will name it within .02 seconds. Why aren’t there more actor heroes, by the way? What’s up with that?