“Nicole Brunelli, the first small town journalist receiving...” - no - “...the best journalist of Ludlow receiving the Pulitzer Prize! She is ambitious, determinated, fearless, unstoppable and this couldn’t be possible if she wasn’t like this otherwise she would never had revealed the macabre events of Bethlem Royal Hospital! Aaaaaaah”.
My name is Nicole Brunelli I’m 28 years old and I’m a journalist. My childhood wasn’t easy but what childhood was? My mom died when she gave me birth, and my dad... lo... my dad loved me too much until my 16 years old. By then I was starting college and I went to live with a friend of mine, we moved to Glasgow and we graduated together. We had the time of our life and I ended up marrying him, a few years later we moved to a small town called Ludlow, we had our precious first child and I became an unknown journalist. But now everything changed, this is what I was meant to do.
I research about Bethlem Asylum and some archive stuff just doesn’t make sense, death dates, nonexistent patients, witnesses like one man who lived in the area of the hospital attested to the “cryings, screechings, roarings, brawlings, shaking of chains, swearings, frettings, and chaffings to be heard from the outside.” and he also said something about the managers of the facility that were known as Keepers, and were seemingly as frightening as they sound. One such Keeper, Helkiah Crooke, a member of the medical department of the royal household, took over, ousting the former for being “unskillful in the practice of medicine.” It could be assumed that he would then handle the medical inattentions to the patients, but no records were ever made of any medical needs of the patients. He himself referred to the patients as “the poore” or “prisoners”. Something is not right I feel it and that is why I’m going there to scrutinize, and due to this I’m going to be the first and the best small town journalist receiving a Pulitzer.
My husband doesn’t really agree with this, but he knows how I am, he knows I’ll do everything for my Pulitzer, and to make him and our baby proud of me...
The time has come, this is it. My future is about to change, I am here now, after a bus ride to Bethlem that **** 3 hours and 45 minutes, I am here.
They refused to receive me! They don’t let me in! They don’t let me in and they don’t give me any information about their procedure on patients or anything! No, no, no, no. I gotta find another way to get in. I have to. I gotta find another way in. I’ve got to do this! I don’t know what to do, I was so close, so ******* close! I can’t give up, I can’t! I’ve got to do this! This is what I was meant to do!
One night passed and I was still there waiting for them to let me in until the night watch, where a nurse thought I was one of them trying to run, or at least that was what she wanted me think. For instants I thought “This is my chance! This is it” until I realised that once I get in, the difficult part is to figure how to get out.
Three days passed and I realised what they were doing there...people coming in aisle F as sanes or insanes and two days later coming out as vegetables or dead... They were using patients, human beings, and most of them weren’t even crazy at least when they got there, and they were using them as cavies for their experiences.
Of course, who would believe in crazy people?
After the seventh day as a patient in the Asylum I had earned the right to a guided tour to aisle D... where they give you shock therapy. Apparently I’m a messy patient, I talk to much and I refused to take some pills, so they sent me to see Mr. Cleymoore, the asylum shrink so he could diagnose me; he said that I would never see my family again, that I would never see my husband or my baby again, he said he knew all about me, and he wanted me to sign myself in the asylum but I refused to do that...So they faked my death. In my plug diagnosis my name was no longer Nicole Brunelli, now I was Lisa Coventry and I was diagnosed with hidden schizophrenia and double personality disorder, caused by the fire that killed my family when I was 16 years old.
But how would they know all of this? My family, my past, my whole life?! It doesn’t make any sense!
Three months passed and I had a tour to aisle D every week. This place was crazy, it makes me think who are the insane people here. The way they treated people! The way the “disturbed” were chained up to walls and posts like dogs. They slept on beds of straw only as the water supply did not allow for washing of linens. The way the rooms had exposed windows, leaving the patients in damp conditions at the mercy of all weather and utter darkness at night. The hospital itself was actually noted as “a crazy carcass with no wall still vertical,” offering only leaking, caved in roofs, uneven floors and buckling walls.
Under Crooke’s Keeping, the residents were not only filthy and unclothed, but malnourished to the point of starvation using a “lowering diet,” of intentionally slim portions of plain food only twice a day. It was meant to deplete and purge the madness out of the victims, while helping to conserve money.
There were no fruit or vegetables to be given. Mostly bread, meat, oatmeal, butter, cheese and plenty of beer was the menu. While all of this is terrible, the true horror was in the moneymaking scheme that kept it running at all. Originally, the hospital was open to the public in hopes that food would be brought to the inmates from the community. Quickly, money was charged, creating a sideshow where the public was invited to watch patients displayed in cages, laugh at them as they banged their heads repeatedly on the walls, and even to poke them with sticks and throw things at them.
Luckly I made a friend there, Mike Spencer was his name, he was the male nurse who used to do the night watches, he used to stay all night with me just talking and making promises; he knew I wasn’t crazy and that actualy helped me keeping me sane, at least for a while.
Six months passed and I wasn’t the same.
They are coming, they are coming...they are coming for me...they are coming for Lisa.
It’s cold, the cold tastes like blue. - Ahah - it tastes like blue! - Ahah...It’s cold... they are coming for Lisa, Lisa doesn’t want to go with them...
She said that she’ll keep me safe, she said she would take care of Lisa. Lisa is hearing them, They are coming! Lisa doesn’t want to go, no, no, no, NO.
She said they wouldn’t hurt me. YOU SAID THEY WOULDN’T HURT ME! They, gave me shocks again, they gave Lisa shocks.
It’s not my fault. They know. They know. They must know why am I here if they don’t know? It’s not my fault she made me do it! She said it was the best thing! Now they can’t have him. Now he’s safe. My unborned baby is safe. They can’t have him now.
She said she would protect me...She said she would protect Lisa. Shut the voices down! Shut the voices! She’s saying bad things. Lisa doesn’t like what she’s saying. She keeps telling me - “ You killed your mother when she gave you birth! it’s your fault that daddy loved you and used you to replace her! You know you liked when he used to play with you and love you. Everybody knows he used to did it what people didn’t knew was that you liked it! you wanted more! You know he only did it because you let him! And you certainly know who started the fire who killed him...” - SHUT UP! We need to shut the voices down! We need to shut the voices! shut...shut the voices...shut the... shut the voices down... shut the voices down... shut... shut the... shut the voices...
She said Mike promised. She said Mike promised Lisa to take me out of here... Mike promised.
Two more months passed and I was completly insane due the shock therapy, but Mike kept his promise and he took me out of there, in the middle of the night he gave me a coat and he drove me to South Hampton seaport, he gave me the ticket and said that that was the further he could go. Along with the ticket he also gave me his lucky neckless and told me he bought me a ticket to Cuba so I could be free. I left a friend in that seaport a really good friend but I needed to go I couldn’t go back to that place.
I had no lugagge, no shoes, nothing, just a coat, a neckless and a ticket to freedom.
I had to ****** adapt to the situation and try to go unnoticed and not to attract to many attention, so I went to my cabine and stayed there until the end of the cruise for the maximum I could.