April 24, 1930

A hanged man is a terrible thing to see.

In my travels, I have seen my share of lynchings and executions. The killing I stumbled upon this afternoon took me by surprise. I am amazed the Hollow can continue to shock me.

The man was in the uniform of a soldier, his hands bound and his neck stretched. Whether his crime was real or imagined, or whether it even warranted a hanging, I will never know.

For a short time, I stood and observed the dead man. In the trees near us, great ravens gathered, eager for their share of the hangman’s price.

Finally, I sat down near the dead man, took out some food and ate. When I finished, I cut the man down and dug a shallow grave with my hands. I laid him out as best I could, covered him with dirt and stones, and tried not to think of what his crime had been.

Brushing the dirt off my hands, I left the hanged man in his shallow grave and continued on my way, the screaming protests of the ravens ringing in my ears.

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Published by

Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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