Madness: Nov. 10, 1867

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Captain Elliot Brown was a drinking man.

On November the tenth, someone whispered in his ear and convinced him to drink his weight in blood.

Captain Brown’s ship, The Waking Dawn, was moored in the Cross Marina, and a few of the crew had gone ashore for the last of the supplies they would need to make the run down to South Carolina. When they returned near mid-morning, their cries of horror and surprise, punctuated by the heavy, flat crack of a ball and cap pistol, echoed across the water.

More than a few of us in town know when a situation’s bad, and the sound alone told us to move it quick down to the pier.

We came under fire near as soon as we got there, and I, being the only one who has a habit of going about town armed, was duly elected to board the ship.

I sprang from the pier to the deck, firing several quick shots and affording those sailors who were still alive the opportunity to get off the ship. It was they fled that Captain Brown made his appearance.

He was never a slight man, but I confess myself surprised at the sight of him naked and engorged, covered in blood from his chin to his groin. I could hear liquid sloshing with every step he took, and when I put a pair of rounds in his belly, he sprang a leak.

Bloody geysers erupted, spraying out over the decking, and he screamed in anguish and rage as he staggered forward, slipped, and crashed face-first onto the deck. Blood exploded out of his mouth, and his stomach ruptured, the dark fluid bursting of him.

A quick shot to the back of the head ended his suffering, and I went below deck to find two of his crew hung by their ankles. They’d been bled dry, and, by the looks of it, Captain Brown had stood there and had his fill. As I looked about the cabin, I saw a name written in delicate lines upon the wall.

I recognized the hand easily enough, as I did the name.

The name was ‘Duncan,’ and the hand had been my mother’s own.

#horror #fear #art

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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