Elizabeth Bathory, better known as the infamous Blood Countess, was convicted of murdering over 650 young girls and then bathing in their blood to keep her skin young. There has been so much embellishment in her story that the true facts remain very ambiguious but I don't know... When I read that she was imprisoned for four years in a room and that she died in such a way my interest in her story became all-consuming. I don't sympathize with her but I am interested in her side of events, and what drove her to commit those crimes. This is just a fictional diary entry of her last days on earth. I don't know, I felt it had to be written. I hope I did this sort of thing justice. Enjoy and review please!

August, 1614

I have been a prisoner in this room for nearly four years and I know I will never see the light of day again. I feel it is important to record my last days of existence so that when they find my body they will know the torment I was subjected to as I found myself dying.

How shall I begin? The room in which I am imprisoned is cold and dark. They have bricked the windows up but I managed to dig a small hole in the stone. Now a thin, delicate stream of light can flow in. The stream of light makes me cry. It will most likely be the last thing I see before I die. I hope it is the last thing I see before I die. It is so frail-looking, as though a gentle breeze or a sweep of my hand will destroy it forever. I cry when the stream of light disappears as the Sun sets. I cry when the stream of light appears at dawn's first light. Next to the stream of light I have scratched lines into the stone, marking my days as a prisoner. I cannot even count how many lines there are. I used to love watching the stars and now I will die without seeing the heavens one last time. That, among many things, breaks my heart most of all.

I sleep in a large four-poster bed with crimson drapes. I sleep for most of the day. There is nothing else for me to do. I have also been left with a mirror, of all things. They seek to punish me so. If I am not sleeping, or watching the stream of light I stand in front of the mirror and look at myself. I look at how my skin greys, how my eyes have dulled. I stare at my hands and how creased they are. I am no longer youthful and beautiful. At my trial they apparently spoke of the dangers of vanity. All those girls were found, murdered and drained of their blood. They say it was me; they're calling me a monster. And so they punish me as a monster.

There is a small flap in the door large enough only for my plates of food. He who brings me my meals, I can hear his erratic breathing as he kneels in front of my door, as he must push his hand inside my room. When I was first locked up I once waited by the door for my meal and when his hand appeared I grabbed his and crushed his fingers in mine, so I could feel the warmth of his flesh. He yelled, began calling for the guards. I let him go. I have not touched another human since then. I want to, so desperately. I want to feel another's skin, to hear them breathe; to listen to them laugh and speak would bring me such joy.

Sometimes I used to press my ear to the hole in the wall and listen to the stillness outside. Now I don't. I don't feel anything anymore. I have not eaten in a week and yet I do not feel hungry, just hollow. I pace around my prison all day until I am exhausted and collapse to the hard wooden floor. I wonder if I will die soon. Sometimes when I fall asleep the peace that comes into my soul is spectacular: when I close my eyes and begin to drift away my mind becomes blank and I feel content. I haven't felt content in four years. I did not even feel content with my husband, though I loved him. At one stage I would have given anything to see him, to hold him. I would have cut my own arm off, given away anything one asked for. Now I do not even want that.

In winter they do not give me more blankets nor a fire. In summer the room becomes like an oven, frying my body. In summer I take all my clothing off and hold my body against the cold stone walls. I do not care if people can see me. I have none of the jewels of dresses or books I had as a Countess. How do I amuse myself, you may ask? I pretend I am at Court and chat to lovely Baronesses and Princesses about the issues du jour. I take down the crimson drapes and throw them over my shoulders and prance about. Pretending, however, can only take me so far from the desperation of my situation.

In the silence I used to talk sometimes. I would recite poems I know, or lessons I learned as a child. My voice, it echoed in the room and chilled me. I would hear them laughing outside when they heard me speaking. I used to talk to them, though they ignored me as per their orders. I used to ask them what color the sky was or what the Kings of Europe were doing. Sometimes I would become so frustrated with the isolation I would scream and kick at the door until my feet bled. Now I speak to nobody, now I do not want to speak to anybody. I have not used my voice in months.

Writing this has drained me of so much energy, mentally and physically. I can feel my mind slipping away as I scratch the quill against the page. I do not think I will live much longer. Each time I sleep I feel that inner peace becoming stronger, pulling me from life. I have said my prayers, prostrated myself on the hard wooden floor. They will not allow me to see a priest. Now there is nothing left for me. I wonder how my legacy will live on in future years. I wonder what will happen when I die, or who will find me.

I will finish this now and sleep again.

How sad that a Countess should end her life in such a way.

Báthory Erzsébet