I don’t think Danielle Kipling wanted anything more than to be loved by an artist.
In January of 1909, a young man by the name of Keith Macomber moved to Cross and took up residence in a small apartment several buildings up from the Cross Historical Society. Starting in March, I often saw Danielle walking along the road and up to his home. He was, I learned, a young man recently returned from Paris, where he had studied under some formidable masters whose names I never cared to learn.
Keith was not a man I was fond of. There was something off about him, and I disliked the way he looked at women in general when he was out and about the town.
On December 10, I watched Danielle walk to his building, but she was noticeably absent the following two days. December 13, her sister was worried for her. It was unlike Danielle to stay out at night.
Without alerting anyone as to my suspicions, I went directly to Keith’s apartment and forced the door. What I found was disturbing.
Keith Macomber was dead, which was no loss as far as I was concerned.
He was, however, seated in a chair with his hands nailed to the table, and his eyes gouged out. They, and his tongue were on a plate in front of him and Danielle was singing softly to him, her eyes wide and her expression one of pure madness.
There is, I am afraid, only one cure for that form of insanity, and I applied it as mercifully as I could. She died easily, and I hope, in her last moments, she believed that he loved her.
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