Excerpts from the Diary of Tegan Dawson

A GRITFic

By Time Lady

November 4, 1975

dear diarie

i talkt to Uncl Joe on the fone today. hez in new york. he askt how Im doin in skool. i sayed gud. My teachr, Segenorida Aldo, is nice. I told him she sayed I talk gud Ďtalan, Ďspeclly cuz I just startd 4 munts ago. I cudnt talk long, cuz Daddy wantd to talk to Uncl Joe. I know itís not nice to lisson in when Daddy iz on the fone, but I cudnt help it. He tol Uncl Joe he waz prowd of me. I cudnt lisson any more cuz my stoopid bruther Adam startd buging me. i am *so* glad we dont go to the same skool. I go to one a few blocks away. Evrywon talks Ďtalian there. My dum-dum bruther diddn lurn enuf Ďtalian and has to go to a pecial skool uther kids that talk just engulish go to, so they can learn in engulish. i gotta go diarie. Daddy wants to help me practice german. one thing I wanna know. Its one of the things I heard Daddy and Uncl Joe talking about. Whats a wacher?

June 12, 1976

Dear Diary,

Weve been in Germany a week now. Mommys helpin me with my writing in english. She says its importnt that I learn good english, because good eglish will help me learn other languges good. The partment Mr. Lafarge got us is really nice. Daddy said Adam and I wont go to school here because in August, were going to go to London, England. Iím kinda glad. I dont need to learn a new language. But I heard some radio and saw some tv programs from England. They use funny words sometimes. Like they call a truck a ďlorry.Ē Dont know why. Daddy got me a book on birds. He said that maybe on the weekend, we can go bird watching. I wonder if thatís what being a watcher means?

October 31, 1976

Dear Diary,

I didnít do too good on my spelling test. Mrs. Smythe, whoís really picky that we spell her name with a ďyĒ and an ďeĒ at the end, complains that I use American spellings and need to learn the right ďEnglishĒ spellings. I can never remember that they stick a ďuĒ in ďcolor,Ē and stuff like that. Mommy says my other writing is getting better, and not to let the teacher bug me. After school, we went to see Mr. Lafarge. He said he was sorry we couldnít have Halloween like we do in the states, but he gave Adam and me huge bags of candy. Then we all went for fish and chips. Though theyíre really not like potato chips. Theyíre french fries. I couldnít eat alot, because the smell of the fish made me sick. Mom says Iím lergic to fish, that I ate it once when I was little, and they had to take me to a hospital. So not liking the smell is reminding me that eating itís gonna make me sick. Mr. Lafarge also gave me and Adam a record of Japanese lessons and a book of writing. He said weíre going to be going to Japan at the beginning of the summer. He wants to start a new office in Tokyo, so we might be there a while. I donít mind. Learning Japanese looks like it might be fun. Especially the writing. Daddy said weíll keep going bird watching there, and that we might get to see birds that we donít in other countries. Oh, I almost forgot. Last night, when I was trying to go to sleep, I heard Daddy talking to Uncle Joe again. He said something about me going to be a good watcher. Is there such a thing as watching birds as a job?

June 23, 1977

Dear Diary,

WOW! Japan is *so* cool! Mom took me and Adam sight seeing. We saw a temple that was supposed to be really, really old. One of the men there was doing a funny prayer. We bought something that another man said would give us good luck. I hope so. Our apartment is big enough that I have my own room. Mr. Lafarge says we need to be comfortable because we are going to be here for a while. Thereís a nice girl downstairs named Ayuni. She also has a big brother, whoís also a pain. He and Adam should also be good friends. School here is kinda different. Momís taking me there to see it tomorrow. I have to get some uniforms. The uniform here is kinda like a sailor suit. I wish I could wear the uniform from my school in England. I liked it. Dinnerís almost ready. Iím going to have one problem here in Japan. Fish is really popular. They even like *raw* fish here. Ewwww.... Mom said I have to remember to tell people Iím allergic to seafood. Thereís a sauce here used for flavor thatís made from fish. Eating it might make me sick. I hafta be careful. Momís calling again. Gotta go, Diary.

September 15, 1977

Dear Diary,

I canít write long Diary. Iíve got a *ton* of homework, then weíre going to go somewhere with Mr. Lafarge, so we probably wonít be home till bedtime. Not alot to say now. Iím really glad I have a lock on you. I caught Adam trying to open it. Daddy says if he trys it again, heís grounded. My teacher said Iím doing a good job on learning to write in Japanese. Whatís really funny is that my best class is the English class. She said I really donít need to be in it, but itís an easy ďA,Ē and I help the teacher with some of the students thatíre having trouble. Oh, Daddy gave me some new Nancy Drew books. I like Nancy. Maybe Iíll be a detective when I grow up. Or a translator. My teachers say I do a good job with language. Gotta go. Momís calling me.

July 26, 1978

Dear Diary,

I am now officially 10 years old. Uncle Joe called to wish me happy birthday. So did Grinny. You know, Great Aunt Annie. Uncle Joe sent me some mystery books. Grinny sent me a new Barbie and Ken, and some Barbie clothes. I got to have a party. Ayuni, Mika, and Kokoro came. So did some other people from my class. I got some more new books, a bracelet, and a pair of earrings. Daddy gave me a pair of binoculars. He said itís for our bird watching. Iím getting a little bored with bird watching. Iíd rather read some of the mangas I got. The *coolest* thing I got was from Mr. Lafarge. He knows how much I love the Wizard of Oz. He gave me a set of books and said they were *FIRST EDITION* books. The dates on them are *really* old. Iím going to have to be very careful and take good care of them. I told my friends about the Wizard of Oz. Theyíre going to see if thereís copies of Wizard of Oz in Japanese. I hope so. I like it here in Japan. I have really good friends. I like having my own room. I even like school. Iím going to stop now Diary. Iím really tired.

April 10, 1979

Dear Diary,

Today was *awful*! It started out ok. Sentara-sensei gave my group an ďAĒ on our science project. After school, I went to Mikaís apartment with Mika, Ayuni, and Kokoro. Mikaís cat had kittens a few weeks ago. Her mom said that if it was okay with my mom, I could have one of the kittens. I ran all the way home. I couldnít wait to ask Mom. Daddy was home early. He said Mr. Lefarge, his boss, let him off early. I wrote about Mr. Lefarge before. Daddyís been working for him since before Adam was born. I was glad that Daddy was home early, so I could ask him about having one of the kittens. I gave Daddy a hug and tried to be *really* nice. Then I asked him if I could have a kitten. Iím not mad that he said I couldnít have a kitten. Iím mad because he said weíre *moving*! Weíre going to Egypt, then China, then Greece. I canít help it if I yelled. Iím really mad! I donít want to move! I yelled at Daddy that it wasnít fair. Why should we have to move? Just because Mr. Lafarge said so? It *isnít* fair! They *never* ask me what I want to do! They donít care about *my* feelings! I got so mad I ran out of the apartment! I was crying my head off. I just kept running till I got to the park. Since it was nearly dinnertime, no one else was around. I was kinda glad. I didnít really want to talk to anyone. You know Diary, this was the first time I could ever remember staying in one place so long. It was nice staying at the same school. Having friends for more that a few months. Not having to learn a new language every few weeks. Now Mom, Daddy, and Mr. Lafarge are going to take it all away from me. I sat down on one of the swings and cried. Itís not fair. A few minutes later, Daddy found me. I didnít want to talk to him. He seemed surprised that I was so upset. He said he didnít know that I felt this way. I told him he never asked. He said we had to move, because Mr. Lafarge needed to take care of business in other countries. I was still crying. He said because weíd be moving so much in such a short time, that Mom would teach me and Adam. He still doesnít get it. I told him I still didnít want to move. He said weíd be going to Australia after New Yearís. And staying for 6 months. He promised weíd figure out something more permanent. Iím going to hold him to that promise. Itís still not fair. But there isnít anything I can do about it. I donít think I like Mr. Lafarge anymore. Heís the one making us move. Iíd like to tell him, but Daddyíd get mad. Iím really tired Diary. But I donít know if Iíll get any sleep tonight. Iím too upset.

June 30, 1979

Dear Diary,

Today is our last day in Japan. My friends had a going away party. They promise to write me after I sent them the new address in Cairo. I still donít want to go. My friends gave me a bunch of mangas to take with me. Somehow, I donít think theyíll keep writing. Iíve got to stop now Diary. Mr. Lafarge is flying with us. His limo is here to pick us up. Usually Iíd be really excited about getting to ride in the limo. Heís also putting us in first class, so he and Daddy can talk. Right now, I couldnít care less. Next time I write Diary, Iíll be in Cairo, Egypt.

July 26, 1979

Dear Diary,

Another birthday is here. I donít feel very happy about it. I donít feel happy about most things anymore. Weíve been in Cairo for almost a month now. There arenít any kids my own age around here. If there are, I havenít met them. Thereís nothing good to watch on tv. Arabic is kinda hard. Maybe Iím just not interested in it. I just stay in my room a lot and read. Sometimes Adam and I are bored enough to play Monopoly or Scrabble together. Thatís really desparate. Home schooling is ok. Momís letting me study a lot of mythology. I like mythology. The Egyptian gods are much more interesting than the Greek gods. I am also learning about hiroglifics. I think thatís how they spell it. I could look it up, but I donít feel like it right now. Daddy keeps giving me all these problems. Good for learning logic, he says. Daddy hasnít taken me bird watching since we got here. Heís been busy with Mr. Lafarge. He also said that it might not be safe, because of terrorists. I think itís because there arenít any interesting birds here. But it doesnít really bother me. I was getting sick of bird watching. Because it was my birthday, Mr. Lafarge took me and my family to a very big museam. He said itís really hard to get to go on tours here, because itís a really important one. I think heís trying to make up for making me move. He knows Iím mad at him. I kinda liked looking at the mummies. Adam tried to scare me. There were some *really* nice statues. One of the statues was really interesting. The sign said it was a statue of Bastet, the cat goddess. It was a gold statue of a woman with a catís head. The eyes were supposed to be real emeralds. Looking at the statue made me feel strange. Not bad strange. A good strange. Like warm. Like someone understood me and cared about what was happening. It was the first time I felt really good since Daddy told me we were leaving Japan. Then my idiot brother had to ruin things by sneaking up behind me. I slugged him one good. Mom threatened to take us home. Mr. Lafarge said it was all right. I think he likes watching me and Adam sometimes. I looked back at the statue again, but I didnít feel anything. They had a copy of the statue in the museam gift store, made from some metal painted gold. I wanted to buy it, but it was kinda expensive. Iíd have to ask Daddy for three monthís allowance in advance. I have to admit, I was kinda surprised that Mr. Lafarge bought it for me. Daddy said it was too expensive, but Mr. Lafarge insisted. He musta seen how interested I was in the real statue. Mr. Lafarge said it was my birthday gift. I still think he feels guilty about making me move. The statueís on the end table next to my bed now Diary. It gives me a good feeling to look at it. Not really the same feeling I had looking at the real statue, but good enough. Iím still not talking to Adam.

September 30, 1979

Dear Diary,

Another day, another country. Daddyís kinda mad at me, because I havenít spent too much time practicing my Chinese. I told him ďWhy bother? Weíre only going to be here for a month.Ē Daddy blew his stack. I spend most of the time in my room anyway. So itís not like Iím out talking to people. I havenít had a letter from anyone in Japan for a while. Mom says itís because weíve moved, and the mail might be slow catching up. I donít think so. Iíve been feeling really down alot Diary. It doesnít last, though. Thereís a couple of kids around. They laugh at my bad Chinese. In another few weeks, Iíll never see them again. So it doesnít matter. Eating something helps me feel a little better. Mom says Iím eating more because Iím growing. But food makes me feel good. At least food never laughs at me.

December 24, 1979

Dear Diary,

Uncle Joe and Grinny have both come to Greece to spend Christmas with us. Iím glad theyíre here, but Iím having a lot of trouble getting excited about Christmas. Why should I? Itís just another lonely day for me. Maybe the foodís a little different. At least there will be lots of cakes and cookies. Grinny came into my room to talk to me. She said she thought something was wrong. I started crying, and told her everything. It felt good to tell someone. Writing is one thing. Talking about it is another. I canít talk to Mom or Daddy about it. And Adam just doesnít understand. Grinny said I could come live with her in the states, if my parents would let me. Weíre going to ask them the day after Christmas, so if Daddy gets mad, he wonít completely ruin Christmas. Grinny is the first person who seems to understand how I feel.

December 26, 1979

Dear Diary,

We asked Daddy and Mom if I could go live with Grinny. Daddy exploded. He said there was no way on earth heíd let his daughter live with a 70 year old woman who hangs out with bikers. Iím a little too down to write much today Diary. Iím going to go take a bowl of ice cream. Maybe that will make me feel a little better.

January 1, 1980

Dear Diary,

I thought the New Yearís Party at the British Embassy was going to be a total bore. I wasnít totally wrong. All I wanted to do was stay by the dessert table. There were some really good cakes and pastries there. But I got stuck with some other girls my age. They wouldnít leave me alone, and dragged me off to a corner to talk. They wanted to hear about travelling from country to country. I really didnít want to talk to them. Then one of them mentioned something *really* interesting. She said she went to whatís called a ďboarding school.Ē She actually lives at the school, then visits her family on holidays. The other girls, whoís parents also worked at the embassy, said they did the same thing. They told me about living at the boarding school. They think Iím crazy, but boarding school sounds like the answer to my prayers. After things settle down, when we get to Australia, Iím going to ask Mom and Daddy about it. I havenít felt this good in months. On the down side, Grinny and Uncle Joe both leave for the states in another couple of days. I told Grinny my plan. She agreed that I shouldnít rush things. She said to try to butter up my dad. Maybe Iíll ask him to take me bird watching. We havenít done it since we left Japan.

February 17, 1980

Dear Diary,

I canít believe he said no! He is *sooooooo* unfair! We were all in the kitchen. Adam was stuffing his face. Mom and Daddy were reading the paper. It seemed like the perfect time to ask them about boarding school. They all thought I was kidding! Mom asked me if I knew what was boarding school was. I told her everything that the other girls told me, and everything I managed to find out after that. I didnít mention Grinny had sent me a few brochures from some schools. I am *soooo* mad at them! Daddy promised weíd figure things out when we got to Australia! He wonít even *consider* sending me to boarding school! So I said he should quit working for Mr. Lafarge. He promised me weíd do something! Daddy just totally blew up. Adam just sat there like a bump on a log listening to me and Daddy fight. Well, now Iím grounded. Not like it means anything to me now. Itís not like I have anyplace to go or anything to do. I havenít heard from Ayuni, Mika, or Kokoro. I think Iím just going to go curl up under my blanket. I donít even want to be in the same room as my father.

March 26, 1980

Dear Diary,

Iím just feeling worse and worse. Itís not like feeling sick, like a cold, or the flu. But I almost hate getting up in the morning. Whatís the use? I just go to school, then come home and sit in my room until dinner. Then I go back into my room. Miss Burton, my teacher, asked me if anything was wrong. I donít think I can tell her. Itís not like she can do anything. I should be doing my homework. I donít feel like it. What good does it do me? Next school I go to wonít even be covering the same thing. I donít know why I bother any more.

April 10, 1980

Dear Diary,

Mom took me to the doctor today. I put on weight since my last doctorís visit. He said Iím too heavy for a girl my age. He wants me to go on a diet. Diet is ďdieĒ with a ďtĒ on the end. If I go on a diet, I will just die. Food is the only friend I have, besides my stuffed animals and my books. Food makes me feel a little bit better. Daddy already said weíre moving to France for the New Year. He gave me some French tapes. I havenít listened to them. What good will it do me? I failed two spelling tests, and not because Iím having problems remembering the English and the American spellings. I also failed a math test and a history test. Studying is just too much effort. Daddy said if I fail another test Iíll be grounded. Heíll have to take away my books and the radio then, or lock me in a closet. I donít do anything other than sit in my room and read anymore. Sometimes all I do is just sit there, not even reading. I just stare at the statue of Bastet that I got back in Egypt. Diary, sometimes I wonder if living is even worth it.

April 15, 1980

Dear Diary,

Miss Burton sent a note home to Mom and Daddy. She wants to see them. Theyíre going to see her after school tomorrow. I have to go with them. I talked to the school cousellor today. She just asked me a bunch of stuff. Part of me wanted to start crying. But Iím all cried out. It stopped making me feel better a few weeks ago. Sheíll probably talk to Mom and Daddy too. Iíll let you know what Miss Burton says.

April 16, 1980

Dear Diary,

Today was the meeting with Miss Burton. The counsellor was there. She asked me to go into the hall. I could still hear them talking. Miss Burton asked them if anything was wrong, because all of a sudden I seemed to have completely lost interest in school, and that my grades had dropped over the last month. Mom said she thought I was having trouble with all the moving. And that I was missing my friends in Tokyo. Then the counsellor said she thought I was depressed. Is that what Iíve been feeling these last few months? The counsellor said that if Mom and Daddy needed, they could recommend a psychologist that helped children. I think Daddy started to get mad. I couldnít hear anything else. He yelled at me on the way home. He said I was doing it on purpose. Mom told him to stop it. I didnít say anything. I just went into my room. I can hear Mom and Daddy arguing in the other room. Theyíre talking about what to do about me. I donít care anymore. Tomorrow is Saturday. Iíll probably just spend the whole day in my room.

April 17, 1980

Dear Diary,

I *canít* believe it! Daddy and Mom told me they decided to send me and Adam to boarding school! They were up all night talking. When Adam and I both got up and were having breakfast, Daddy told us that he and Mom decided boarding school might be the best thing for both of us. Me, because I need something more stable, and Adam, because it wonít look good when he applies for college if heís been jumping from high school to high school. I guess the talk with my teacher worked! If I would have known, I would have asked her help in the first place! I wish I could have gone to live with Grinny, but Daddy says a 70 year old woman shouldnít live like a 19 year old hippie. Whatever thatís supposed to mean. And Uncle Joe goes out of town too much to take care of me and Adam. I donít care that much. I canít wait. Daddy said heís going to talk to Mr. Lafarge about taking time off after school ends, so we can go look at schools. They want us at a school where Grinny and Uncle Joe can reach us quickly if thereís an emergency. They also want it to be a school where we can visit relatives for the weekend. I wonder if I should give them the brochures Grinny sent me? Diary, I havenít felt this good in a *long* time. I gave Daddy a big hug. Adam didnít seem to care about going to boarding school, but I canít wait!

June 29, 1980

Dear Diary,

Weíve finished visiting schools. A couple of them, I didnít like. The headmasters werenít that nice. Neither were the teachers. There was one I really liked. The buildings were pretty, and the teachers seemed nice. Itís about an hour away from Grinnyís apartment. They have some really neat classes that are like extra classes you can take after the regular ones. If I go there, Iím going to take the cooking classes and the writing classes. They said the school is ďco-educational,Ē which means both boys and girls go there, which Mom and Daddy like, because it means Adam and I will be at the same school. Iím glad the building where the boys live is on the other side of the grounds from where the girls live. The rooms were nice. But you have to share with two other girls. Thereís not going to be enough room for me to bring everything I want to. There is a *huge* library though. Weíre all going to sit down and decide which school tomorrow. I wish Adam would say something, or at least show a little interest.

August 15, 1980

Dear Diary,

Iím finally settled into my dorm room. I couldnít bring a lot of things. I wound up leaving most of my stuffed animals and half my books at Grinnyís place. She says when I go visit her, I can trade off my books and keep changing what I have. I did bring Papa Bear. Thatís the new bear Uncle Joe gave me for my birthday. He said itís to keep me company at school, so I couldnít leave it anywhere else. I also brought my statue of Bastet with me. My roommates, Jennette and Maryanne, think itís crazy. I donít care what they think. Theyíre both kind of snobby. But Iíve also managed to impress them by being able to speak several languages. I think they want to keep on my good side, so I can help them with their language homework. They remind me of the girls that I met that told me about boarding schools in the first place. We each have a bed, an end table, and a weird sort of armoire. It has a long cabinet on side for hanging our uniforms, and other clothes we might need to hang, and a bunch of small drawers on the other side. Weíre allowed to store things under our beds, so Uncle Joe helped me get some boxes that are the right size to slide underneath. Thatís where Iím going to keep my books. School starts in another three weeks, but Mom and Daddy are in the middle of moving to France, so I came a bit early. Daddy had to admit, it was easier getting everything set up in the new apartment when he didnít have to move me and Adam too. Iíve signed up for some after school classes. Cooking looks like itís going to be really fun. In the winter, theyíre giving an ice skating class. I might take it. The doctor said I need to get some more exercise. I need to go now, Diary. Thereís a good program on in the TV room.

October 12, 1980

Dear Diary,

Adam and I are having *so* much fun spending the weekend with Grinny. She let Adam ride on her motorcycle. I didnít. It kind of scared me. Motorcycles just remind me of monster bicycles. Like the one I fell off of and broke my arm when I was little. We went to lunch in a place where there were all sorts of Asian markets. We found a store that sold some Japanese mangas. I was in 7th heaven! I have to admit it. In a way, sometimes I miss seeing Adam all the time. Today reminded me of why I *donít* miss him. He can be such a pain sometimes. Itís been nice, having a weekend away from my roommates. They like to giggle and talk about boys and clothes. Boring stuff. I usually have to go to one of the silent study areas to get away from them. I met a few other girls that are pretty nice. We have a lot of the same interests. Maybe next year, we can see if we can get to share a room. Tomorrow afternoon Adam and I are going back to school. Iíll write more in the evening.

March 4, 1982

Dear Diary,

Boy, were those tests tough! I studied, so I think I did well. Iím just writing a quick message before Uncle Joe picks up me and Adam for the weekend. Uncle Joe said weíll have fun. I hope so. Itís always nice to get away from school for the weekend. Iím not complaining, mind you. I love boarding school. Itís just being at school every day and every night gets monotonous. Iíve been practicing my Spanish. Weíre going to spend the summer in Spain with Mom and Dad. Dad said Mr. Lafarge might just rent a big villa for the summer, and let us stay in one of the wings. Should be interesting. Adamís been practicing his Spanish with me. Says he wants to meet a pretty senorita. Yes, Diary, my brother has officially gone girl crazy. Have to go now. Adamís telling me Uncle Joe is here.

June 15, 1983

Dear Diary,

Everyone is here to see Adam graduate, even Mr. Lafarge. Iím amazed Adam manged to pull it off. Of course, he had me helping him. Itís going to feel really weird here next year, without Adam around. Itís funny. Iíve been watching Mr. Lafarge. Heís had girlfriends, but never married. Iíve never met any of his family. In a way, I guess weíve been his family. Heís kind of like another uncle. Dadís been working for him since before Adam was born. He and Mr. Lafarge must be really good friends. I guess Iíve forgiven him for making us move all the time. His company is so big that he needs to take care of it, and Dad is like his right hand man. I guess, Diary, that the last couple of years have been the best. I still get to visit different countries in the summer and Christmas and Easter, but I always have the same place to come back to. And I like that.

December 1, 1984

Dear Diary,

Remember that book I wrote about? The one that like covered a personís life for 200 years? The one Uncle Joe asked me to read? I thought that was a piece of fiction. Uncle Joe told me today that it was real! That it actually happened to a person! I said there was no way, since people donít live to be that old. He told me, and all of this is between you and me Diary, that there are people called Immortals, that live for hundreds, even thousands of years! A bunch of different people wrote the book as they followed this one Immortal. He told me that the people who wrote the book were called ďWatchers.Ē Their job is to record what happens to the Immortals. Then it hit me! I asked Uncle Joe if Dad was a Watcher. He said yes! He said he was one too! And then I asked if Mr. Lafarge was an Immoral. And he is! Once he told me that, so many things fell into place! Like putting together a puzzle. All the stuff Dad used to teach me when I was little. Logic. Investigating. Even the bird watching. Itís like, he was training me to become one too. Grandpa Joel, and my great-grand aunt Mary were also Watchers. Uncle Joe said that there has been a Watcher from every generation of our family. We talked a little about me becoming a Watcher. I said I wanted to maybe become a translator. He said I could be a Watcher and a translator. As a translator, I could work for an Immortal. Like the way Dad works for Mr. Lafarge as his assistant. Uncle Joe told me to think about it. I donít know Diary. Is it really what I want to do?

May 4, 1985

Dear Diary,

Today Uncle Joe took me to a place he called Watcherís Headquarters. I couldnít believe all the books! Each one is a section of history from the life of an Immortal. There were even some scrolls dating back to ancient Egypt! I was afraid to touch them, in case they would fall apart. Dad sounds proud that I know about the Watchers and Iím learning more about what they do. He really wants me to become a Watcher too. Because Adamís studying pre-med, he said itís important for me to continue the family tradition of being a Watcher. Iím not too sure about this Diary. After Headquarters, Uncle Joe took me out to eat. He pointed out a man to me. I donít know how he knew, but he said that man was an Immortal. I guess if I join, Iíll learn how to tell. I still donít know.

June 21, 1987

Dear Diary,

Graduation is over and done with! Now, off to college! Iím going to miss Nancy and Ellen. Theyíre going to school in Washington, D.C. Iím staying right here. Iím all ready enrolled and registered for classes. Iím taking the usual English and Math. Iím taking a ceramics class, a foreign language class, and a class on introductory investigation. I hope I donít regret the last one. Uncle Joe and Dad seem thrilled that Iím studying things that will help me be a Watcher. I told them Iím still not decided. Weíre going to spend the summer in Switzerland. Canít wait. Adam isnít coming though. Heís got an internship for the summer. I need to start saving my money. I want to get a car. I also want to go back to Japan. I doubt Iíd find any of my old friends, but Iíd still like to just go and look around. For old times sake.

April 4, 1988

Dear Diary

Uncle Joe took me on a ďwatchĒ with him tonight. It was kind boring, but kind of exciting too. He is assigned to watch an Immortal named Duncan MacCleod. We followed him around, which was kind of boring. The exciting part was trying to do it without being caught. Immortals arenít supposed to know about Watchers. If youíre around for hundreds of years, I donít see how you can not figure it out. Oh well. Iím dead tired. Iím going to pass out. Then I have to get up and finish reading 5 chapters for a history class. Andrea, my roommate, wants me to go shopping with her tomorrow. I donít know which is worse sometimes. Watching or shopping.

October 31, 1989

Dear Diary,

Andrea and I went to the school Halloween carnival. Itís a charity fundraiser. I won a few things at the booths. At least the food was good. Andrea dragged me over to the ďauthenticĒ fortune teller. I wasnít really concerned about the future, since I know Iím going to be a Watcher. But I did ask the fortune teller about one thing. Iíve always thought it was weird that guys didnít ask me out on dates. According to the fortune teller, thereís one man out there for me. When we meet, weíll know it. She said there were higher powers at work on my love life. If there are, Iíd like them to mind their own business. I hate seeing all my friends going out with guys, while Iím stuck sitting around reading. But then, the bar scene doesnít quite appeal to me. Neither does the frat scene.

February 19, 1991

Dear Diary,

Uncle Joe took me out on a watch with him again. This time was very different than the others. Itís hard for me to explain. It was almost too weird. Iíve seen Duncan MacCleod meet other Immortals and talk, go out to dinner, even fool around (with some of the female ones). He even had a guy that was a new Immmortal that he was teaching about being an Immortal. Tonight, Duncan met up with a really nasty type. The two of them got into a sword fight. I know this is natural, and that in the end, there is only supposed to be one Immortal. But I never thought Iíd actually see it happen. Duncan was almost down a few times, but he managed to get the better of his opponent. Then he - he cut off the other guyís head! I couldnít believe it! Then all this lightning and thunder came out of nowhere. It all struck Duncan. Then he got up, wiped off his sword, and walked away like nothing happened! I guess Iím still in shock about it. Uncle Joe said it was normal, and called it a ďquickening.Ē He said that the energy of the other Immortal was transfered to Duncan. Something tells me I made the wrong decision.

August 4, 1991

Dear Diary,

Now that Iím officially finished with my post-graduation vacation, Uncle Joe has started me on a full time Watchers training program. Itís too late to turn back now. I stood up before 10 veteran Watchers and swore an oath of secrecy and non-interference. Then I got a tattoo on the inside of my left wrist. I feel like Iíve been branded. Uncle Joe took me out to celebrate. I spoke to Dad on the phone. He sounded very proud of me. I like it when Dad is proud of me, but I donít feel like Iím doing what I want to do with my life. I met a few people whoíve been Watchers for 40 years. Can I keep doing it that long?

September 17, 1992

Dear Diary,

Today, I begin two things at once. My first real job as a translator and my first watching assignment. His name is Jacob Taylor. He looks like heís about 50, but heís supposed to be 120 years old. Someone in the Watchers pulled a few strings, and got me hired as his translator. Mr. Taylor seems nice. I hope I can handle this on my own. You know, Diary, I still think about what that fortune teller said a few years ago. About me and men. Iím wondering if itís true? Iíve never been on what could be considered a date. Iím feeling very lonely. I havenít felt like this since before I started boarding school. I hope itís just temporary.

May 31, 1994

Dear Diary,

Oh God! Today was awful! Mr. Taylor ran into another Immortal. One of the nasty ones. I wish I could have warned him! Poor Mr. Taylor couldnít stand up to him. I really donít feel up to writing now Diary. This has just been too devistating. Uncle Joe said thatís how it feels the first time you lose your Immortal. He said you get used to it. Heís been watching Duncan MacCleod for around 10 years now. I wonder if heíd say the same thing if it was Duncan?

July 6, 1994

Dear Diary,

Iíve finally been reassigned. Her name is Janelle Mercur. She was born in France and is around 200 years old. Sheís a fashion designer and travels between New York, Hollywood, France, and Italy. Iíve been hired as her personal secretary. I hope this isnít going to be a repeat of the last time. Iím going to call this an early night Diary. First day of work is tomorrow.

November 15, 1996

Dear Diary,

Janelle is dead. Another Watcher reported it. I still have the flu. He said that Janelle and his Immortal had crossed swords in the past and had some bad blood between them. I didnít need this. Uncle Joe told me to take it easy for a few days. I feel even sicker than before. But Iím almost glad I didnít see it. I donít think I could handle seeing her die. Janelle was a wonderful woman. She had a zest for life, and treated her Immortality like a blessing from Heaven. Iíll really miss her. I swear Diary, that if I lose another Immortal, Iím quitting the Watchers. I canít keep dealing with losing them like this.

December 12, 1996

Dear Diary,

Iíve arrived in China. Iím still trying to find my new assignment. His name is Keido Morisato. Heís 19, and been Immortal for a few weeks. This time, I want to try to watch from a distance. Maybe if I donít get involved, it wonít hurt so much. Tomorrow morning, Iím going to a place called Jusenkyo. Keido had last been spotted there. Last time I was in China, I was a kid. When I was completely depressed. Too bad I didnít try to learn too much Chinese. I could use it now. They said the guide thatís going to show me around Jusenkyo speaks Japanese, so weíll be able to converse some. I better get a good nightís sleep tonight. Iím going to be doing a lot of walking tomorrow.

December 13, 1996

Dear Diary,

This has got to be the *weirdest* day of my life. The car I hired dropped me off at this little cottage, where I met the Jusenkyo guide. The guide said that he had been sitting out by the pools fixing signs. Suddenly, out of nowhere, the guy Keido falls into one of the springs. The guide then proceeded to tell me about the pool, in which he said a moogle drowned a few hundred years ago. Then he said the guy suddenly disappeared. I didnít know what to do. But I was there, and I figured that, if I looked around, maybe Iíd find some clue. The guide warned me to be careful walking around the pools. It was muddy. A little slippery due to some recent rains. We got to the spring of drowned moogle. As I was walking around, I started to get the strangest feeling. To be honest, I felt like I was walking over my own grave. I didnít find anything from Keido around there. A cliff was hanging over us. I thought maybe he fell from the cliff. I decided to take a closer at the cliff. Big mistake. As I was walking towards the cliff, I slipped and landed in one of the pools. It was pretty shallow, but it looked like it had once been a lot deeper. Suddenly I felt very strange. I looked down at my hands. They were covered with black fur. I had claws instead of finger nails. My clothes were inexplicably 5 sizes too big. I tried to brush some hair off my face when I realize that my hair is now a shade of pink somewhere between bubblegum and shocking. Then I felt something brushing against my leg! I had a tail! I was starting to freak out when the guide came over to me. He said I fell in the spring of drowned mystical catwoman, then told me the tragic tale of a catwoman who fell off the cliff, was pinned under rocks, and drowned 998 years ago. Thank God he told me hot water would change be back to normal. Thatís the good part. The bad part is that whenever Iím hit by cool water, Iím going to turn into a cat woman. Complete with ears, tail, claws, etc. After I calmed down and got back to the hotel, I decided to check this out a little more carefully. So I got undressed and splashed myself with cold water. The fur on my arms just comes up to my elbows. Like a fur glove. On my legs it comes up to my knees. Thereís also black fur on my ears, tail, and a few stripes on my body. But whoever this cat woman was, she was in good shape. Oh God Diary. I havenít a clue as to what to do next. The guide told me that most people with Jusenkyo curses wind up in the Nerima District of Tokyo. He also said Iím fairly lucky. Not that I was thinking anything of the kind. But he said at least my curse was still female. And still human. Somewhat. I may wind up going to Nerima. But first, I want to see what I can find out about these curses.

January 21, 1997

Dear Diary,

Iím still trying to cope with this curse thing. Not only have I figured out that I can turn into a cat, but Iíve also figured out a few things. I always wondered how cats seem to move so quickly and get places, even if you donít see them. Now I know. Itís called cat space. When I turn into a cat, I can go into this other dimension. I canít enter it as a cat woman, but I can open up ďportalsĒ and store stuff there. Itís very handy. I think I figured this out by accident. Thatís what I want to call it. It almost felt like something in the back of my mind was telling me how to do it. I wonder if the memories of the springís first victim can affect subsequent victims. This curse might not turn out to be so bad. If I donít want my Immortal to know Iím tailing him, I can change into my cursed form. I can even follow him as a cat. Speaking of Keido, Uncle Joe told me today I need to get back on the trail. I guess Iíll follow the Jusenkyo guideís advice and go to Japan. If nothing else, I can probably find someone who can tell me more about Jusenkyo curses. Iím leaving tomorrow morning. Iíll just have to see what happens next.