Dorothy Astor



Although you have an
unfettered and romantic imagination,
you are uncomfortable in most social
situations, with increasing discomfort
arising from increasing formality. You
take your social cues from those you
admire intellectually, which does not
always advance your best interests and
probably explains your spinsterhood.
Even so, you spend little time
worrying about your social status,
because time spent away from your
writing and correspondence is all too
often time wasted.


Walter Winston was

one of your most dedicated readers.
He began corresponding with you after
your second book. An anecdote of his,
concerning some sex cult, ended up in
your third book. Come to think of it,
much of your research for your first
series was really just things you picked
out of his letters, changed some names,
and embellished on. That Walter
himself never really picked up on this
was a surprise to you; he probably
just thought they were similar tales
that worked to confirm his own. The
letters stopped coming back in 1924,
but you still sent him a gratis copy of
every volume of the next two series
you wrote.



It started as a joke,
really. Books about the supernatural
and the occult — readers would just
eat them up. Mix a few folk tales,
your mom’s superstitions, and the
tiniest bit of research, and you were
writing one best seller after the
next. You never claimed they were
to be taken seriously. And then the
correspondence started happening.
Readers began writing letters to you
by the truckload, so convinced that
you held a kernel of truth about the
afterlife or South American curses.
They believed you. They corroborated
your stories with anecdotes of their
own. Of course you always took them
at face value; you didn’t want to insult
them. And they weren’t all children or
particularly simple. Graduate students
— even professors — started quoting
you in their papers. You started to
believe you were on to something.
What’s more: you couldn’t really
prove you were wrong. Someone in
a newspaper called you the leading
authority on mysticism the other day.
There’s no going back now.

Dorothy Astor

Trail of Cthulhu: Eternal Lies DanielReed