Grew Up… without many friends. Barbara’s loneliness has warped her expectations of any kind of human relationship, and, as a result, she lacks knowledge of social norms.
Living… by herself in a dingy flat on Archway Road in North London. She’s lived with what she describes as “the drip-drip of the long-haul, no-end-in-sight solitude” for too many years. She’s in desperate need of a friend.
Profession… history teacher. Barbara is a reviled figure at her London comprehensive school. Neither the students nor the staff seem to think much of her.
Interests… writing in her diary. Barbara confesses all of her thoughts and desires in her nightly journal entry, including her secret plot to capture the new art teacher, Sheba Hart, as a friend.
Relationship Status… none, though Barbara claims not to believe in relationships. As she understands it, “People languish for years with partners who are clearly from another planet. We want so much to believe that we’ve found our other. It takes courage to recognize the real as opposed to the convenient.”
Challenge… finding a way to trap her fellow teacher, the young Sheba Hart, into a lifelong friendship. Barbara just wants to have someone to talk to in the evenings. After finding out that Sheba has a nasty secret, Barbara manages to trick and control her into a strange relationship.
Personality… lonely, manipulative, and borderline psychotic. Barbara’s solitude has driven her a bit mad. Her melancholy loneliness has forced her to do terrible things for a bit of human companionship. As she explains, “I’ve such a dread of ending my days alone.”
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