August 13, 1954


The air in the room was oppressive, weighing me down as I crossed the threshold. I paused, just inside the doorway, and listened. I heard a faint whisper, but the words were unintelligible. A deep compulsion arose within me, beckoning me forward, enticing me. When I reached the destroyed billiard table, I stopped again.

The words were spoken by a woman. Her voice was sweetness and light, amongst the unknown syllables and consonants, I heard soft, pleading words.

My head began to pound, and my mouth went dry as I moved forward again. Without knowing it, I drew both Colts. When I realized what I had done, I cocked the hammers and walked with stilted steps.

The voice grew louder, the pleading transformed into begging, a note of hideous want within the tones.

When I reached the doorway at the far end, I found her. An old woman, her eyes gouged out, her tongue lolling. Her nostrils flared when I stood before her. The dress she wore was little more than a tattered rag, the skin clinging to her bones was paper-thin and rustled as she moved. She asked me who I was, and I told her, staying out of reach and keeping both pistols leveled on her.

When I asked for her name, she told me.

Lorraine O’Henry.

She begged me to kill her, to free her from her bonds. The children, she told me, had trapped her and imprisoned her.

I asked if she knew Josiah Hauptmann. She flinched at the name, and I holstered my pistols. Her screams followed me out of the room, and I smiled and wished I had a harmonica.

#horror #CrossMassachusetts #monsters #supernatural #skulls #death #fear #evil #horrorobsessed #scary #ghosts #DuncanBlood #asylum #insane

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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