If this “little note”, penned by Michael Scott Stephen, is the one that sent Elvira into such paroxysms of delight (see https://elvirabarney.wordpress.com/2011/12/01/elviras-love-letter/ )  then one can only marvel at the level of Elvira’s infatuation or her need for approval and affection. The police linked these two letters together, but this one seems more of a spur of the moment “surprise” – there is no mention of the jealousy or Michael’s illness. It does refer to his ill-treatment of her so I may be wrong. If I am, then I feel rather sad that she could be so moved by something as slight and insubstantial as this distinctly third-rate billet doux.

It is written on headed notepaper with the address struck through and the words “Love Hut” super-imposed.

“Baby, Little Fatable

This little note is to be awaiting your arrival in the place in which I’ve been happiest all my life – Be brave my dear dear Darling and take care of yourself for me – cos your mine’. Don’t forget your “Mickums” – I’ll be thinking of you always. (you came downstairs here, Honey, so I had to hide this under my coat so’s you wouldn’t see it) Hence the smudges…….. Forgive me all the horrible things I’ve done Baby – I promise to be better and kinder so’s you won’t be frightened any more. I love you, only you, in all the world, little One’s


You’ve just called

what are you doing so must stop”

So much for a classical education at Shrewsbury ( unless Love Hut is a reference to Keats’ Lamia which, I doubt – although Elvira as Lamia is an intriguing idea.). Did Elvira and Michael really talk like this? Elvira and Michael’s dialogue would appear to owe more to True Romance than Firbank or Waugh.

“Fatable” is, I presume, “Eatable”  – if not, it as a decidedly odd “pet name”. Michael is scribbling away downstairs while Elvira is upstairs so why will the note be awaiting her “arrival”? What were the “dreadful,horrible things”? As with most aspects of this case, the letter raises more questions than it provides answers.

Yet there is something about its mixture of awkwardness and intimacy that adds to our knowledge of the couple’s relationship. The eroticism, the volatility, the extremes of anger and sentimentality are exactly as described in court but there is an immaturity and a helplessness about this letter (and Elvira’s, for that matter) that suggests a chaos that neither party has much control over. If you add to this copious amounts of alcohol and a fair old quantity of cocaine then disaster was never likely to be far away.

All this depends on whether we think Michael was as sincere  (and foolish) as Elvira, Popular opinion did not see it that way and to no little extent Elvira’s acquittal was based on Michael being portrayed as a gigolo and low-life hustler. That he was something of a “shit” I am reasonably positive, but I can’t find enough intelligence or artifice in his note to suggest the work of a schemer.

Lamia and the Soldier