But, writing wasn't Potter's main passion. She was mostly into science because it was the 1800s, and children either started studying or started digging coal. Potter used to go around and collect anything that moved, slithered, or hopped for her personal menagerie. Then, she would take it home, skin it, and boil the flesh off so she could study the skeleton. Young Potter going full horror on a dead fox was just the start of her rampage through nature. She killed a frog, had a gamekeeper shoot a squirrel out of the trees, and chloroformed the real life Peter Rabbit, all so she could dissect them. Notes on her drawings revealed they were the inspiration for her cuddly fictional characters, so, in a way, Potter's characters were all real -- it's just that their life was much more Hellraiser than Tiny Toon Adventures.
Public Domain Review
After this photo was taken, she slowly crushed the mouse in her hand without breaking eye contact.
To be fair to Potter, it's not like she was a budding serial killer making neighborhood pets vanish. Her techniques were standard for the time, and, if it wasn't for old-timey sexism, we might know her as a famous scientist who happened to write some cute little books. It's just unnerving to look at her whimsical watercolors and realize that beneath them lies an ocean of bone and boiled sinew.
The Tale Of Oh My God, They're All Dead, Oh God, Oh God, Why?