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Scareapeutic Advice

I sat in the dark parlor of my scaredresser and best friend, Countess Dracula. It was time for my annual Bride of Frankenstein perm, and I needed something to raise my dead spirits.

“You look like death warmed over. What’s the matter, ghoulfiend?”

I hung my head as the countess draped a red gown over my simple black dress. The room was dark except for an occasional lightning flash through the intense winter rain.

She began placing electrodes on my head.

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“It’s not easy being the Bride of Frankenstein,” I said. “Still, I do everything a ghoul can for him.”

Tears filled my eyes.

“Frank’s changed so much--why, he’s become a monster! He never comes apart at the seams, never loses his head for no reason and never wakes up screaming from pleasant dreams anymore! He just sits in his electric chair all day whistling happy tunes. I’m so depressed.”

I pulled part of the gown and blotted my tears.

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“There, there,” the countess said as she put the last electrode in place. “Now hold still--don’t move a stolen muscle.” She walked toward the wall and flipped the handle of a horseshoe-shaped switch up and down.

Instantly, I felt a refreshing jolt surge through my head, and my long, thick black hair stood straight up.

“Beautiful!” the countess said. “While that sets, we’ll get down to the heart of the matter.”

She sat across from me in a straight-backed wooden chair, folded her arms and looked off into the distance.

“The count went through something similar,” she said. “It started about a year ago--we drove through Murder King for a midnight bite. But instead of attacking some poor helpless employee at closing time, he actually ordered a fresh garden salad, hold the blood-red tomatoes.”

A bright flash of lightning showed a tear glistening on her pale cheek.

“He just wasn’t in his fright mind. He didn’t even want a Murder Burger with fleas!”

She turned toward me and brushed the tear from her face.

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“We eventually found out,” she said, growing calmer, “that he was going through a mid-bite crisis.”

She rose, stepped over to the wall and flipped the switch one final time. The perm was complete.

“Ah, yes,” she said, again admiring her work. “Now I’ll just paint a shock of gray on either side. Yes, Gray Matter is the perfect color for you!”

That final surge of electricity through my head had made me feel better, but not completely. My fiend had piqued my curiosity.

“So--Drac’s better?”

“Oh, yes. Now he doesn’t have second thoughts--goes right for the jugular.”

“How did you . . .”

“I thought maybe both Drac and I needed to have our heads examined, so we took two of our favorite ones down from the shelf, and we all went to see a shrink.”

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She reached behind the low bustline of her form-fitting black lace dress and withdrew a brown business card.

“Dr. Werewolf’s the best.” She smiled and handed me the card. “I hear he can be a real lady killer. Unfortunately, I’m no lady, so he didn’t want to get his claws on me. But you, on the other hand . . .”

Her voice trailed off as I studied the card. I supposed it was worth a try if Frank and I were ever going to put ourselves back together and get our heads on straight. I smiled as I fantasized about what might happen . . . electric shock treatment, maybe a little bio-screamback . . . yeah, some psycho-scareapy would be just what we’d need!


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