Do you track a tag or check some out?
Not really! I pretty much only use tumblr for shit posting now lmao but if you ever want me to see a post, you can either send it to me or just tag me in it! :)
As to why exactly the letters cover "the span of [Jonathan's] life", my reasoning is that the Count still needs to be in good relationships with Hawkins and have all of his documents correct in order to take possession of his house, and he plans to keep Jonathan around until he leaves for London just in case. He calculated that he will be leaving for London hopefully by the first letter's date, and that he would be there surely by the third, so that he'll have a solid alibi (he *is* telling the truth on that, it used to be pretty common to write letters in advance and tell the post office to send them only on specific days, thought it was mostly done for business reasons, e.g. payment reminders etc.).
Also consider that rn Dracula is also acting as Jonathan's caretaker and protector - when Dracula leaves for London, even if he doesn't kill Jonathan beforehand, Jonathan will be vulnerable to the evil ladies as well as at risk of starving or dying of exposure.
Basically: the "span" Jonathan is talking about refers to the date Dracula is due to leave for London, which probably falls around the time of the *first* letter, not the last.
Gawkers and rubberneckers who slow down traffic, or even stop, to take photos of accidents and victims, are becoming an increasing problem at incident scenes and have even led to deadly accidents. That’s why more and more ambulance vehicles are equipped with QR codes on their sides. Recent smartphone camera software automatically detects QR codes and opens a browser window linking to the URL https://gaffen-toetet.de/ (gaffen = to gawk, to rubberneck; töten = to kill). This way, people are getting blocked from taking photos of accident scenes.
Taking photos of accident scenes can be a criminal offense in Germany. The penal code provides for a monetary penalty or imprisonment of up to two years “for the production or transfer of image recordings that display the helplessness of a person and violate the person’s most intimate privacy” Since 2020, the law also applies for dead bodies. Unnecessarily slowing down can be fined as a dangerous intervention in road traffic with a monetary penalty and confiscation of the driver’s license for up to one year. Gathering at an incident scene and not following orders by police, firemen or medical helpers to disperse is a petty offense and can be fined with up to 1000 €.
OKAY, so as a former lit major (with, to be clear, a master's in literature), I have some really fun information to share with the class for this last installment of Daily Dracula.
Now, first thing's first, I'm going to post the section I'm talking about specifically so we can refer back to it more easily. Namely:
In a voice which, though low and almost in a whisper seemed to cut through the air and then ring round the room he said:—
"How dare you touch him, any of you? How dare you cast eyes on him when I had forbidden it? Back, I tell you all! This man belongs to me! Beware how you meddle with him, or you'll have to deal with me." The fair girl, with a laugh of ribald coquetry, turned to answer him:—
"You yourself never loved; you never love!" On this the other women joined, and such a mirthless, hard, soulless laughter rang through the room that it almost made me faint to hear; it seemed like the pleasure of fiends. Then the Count turned, after looking at my face attentively, and said in a soft whisper:—
"Yes, I too can love; you yourselves can tell it from the past. Is it not so? Well, now I promise you that when I am done with him you shall kiss him at your will. Now go! go! I must awaken him, for there is work to be done."
... They simply seemed to fade into the rays of the moonlight and pass out through the window, for I could see outside the dim, shadowy forms for a moment before they entirely faded away.
Then the horror overcame me, and I sank down unconscious.
Now there is a Lot to unpack here, and a lot of people have already pointed out the surface layer homoeroticism (I mean, he says "love" outright and clearly means it), but there's some stuff I haven't seen anyone mention yet.
First of all, if you haven't seen it yet, please take a look at this post which shows Bram Stoker's notes on the novel. The important takeaway is that Bram Stoker had one line of dialogue from pretty much the very beginning: "This man belongs to me." It repeats thrice, and well before the characters are more than "Old Count."
What this says to me is that Stoker was, like any of us, writing his novel to write that One Scene that just fucks so hard. This scene was written to be horny. It is meant to be. Stoker wrote this scene with his whole dick in the way of all the horror greats. He's my hero. By this time, Stoker had already at least acknowledged his own leanings (see Stoker's love letters to Walt Whitman, the first of which was written well before he wrote Dracula), so we can guess that he had this image and wanted to see it on paper for himself. (Good for him, and Same.)
Straight audiences would have seen Jonathan's feminization by the narrative and the Count's clearly sexual interest in him as horrifying (cowards), but queers are and have always been queer. And I suspect they all read this scene in the same way we're reading it now. BUT they had an extra bit of info that we've since lost track of.
In the peak of epistolary writing, there was a bit of well-known shorthand. (If you've seen Mamma Mia, this is the equivalent to the "dot dot dot" in the mom's diary from her slut phase.) In epistolary novels, when your heroine is alone with a man, and she says she swoons... She got laid. Now, how far it went, I couldn't say, but this was At Least heavy making out, if not full on sex (I suspect it may have been up for interpretation, but I don't know). My professor pointed this out with a young woman swooning while alone in a carriage with a guy she was kind of seeing. "She says she swooned because this letter is to her father figure, but the audience would have known exactly what she meant."
So Jonathan swoons, and when he wakes up, he is undressed and in his own bed. The readers at the time would have immediately read this as a sexual assault.
For a long time, I was confused by how passive Jonathan is throughout this part of the novel, but he is playing the role of the maiden fair, trapped by the diabolical (and much older) seducer. And then, he is in survival mode as he is assaulted more than once, his virtue stolen before he can marry his beloved.
I mean, God, you have this whole romantic build, the count saves the maiden Jonathan and plans to "awaken him, for there is work to be done." And then Jonathan swoons, and the Count carries him to bed? Not to put too fine a point on it, but... well, it really only makes sense if Dracula DID wake Jonathan up and... made his claim abundantly clear. Clear enough, too, for Jonathan to feel like his "gloomy" rooms are in fact his only sanctuary. And like... Jonathan was undressed by the Count. That really does mean exactly what it sounds like.
So uh. Yeah, after that supremely possessive display and declaration of love, the Count fucks Jonathan (as with all maidens of the time, his consent is... dubious. Would he consent if he were able? We'll never know tbh) and carries him (undressed) to bed. Bram Stoker knew EXACTLY what he was doing, and I hope you all enjoy that fact. I know I will. ;D
ETA: Sources for my information about swooning are in my reblog, but you can also find them here, here, here (this blog post is referred to in more than one article), and here, and this one references this exact scene directly.
Honestly so far Dracula could just be set in modern day with little alteration. First time lawyer is hired to do some work for some old European nobility and treks all the way out only to not have any internet or cell service. Idk exactly what’s to come but I’m sure it’s not majorly counter to modern day.