4:05 AM January 1, 1931


I remember Goody Dunston.

She was kind, and she was sweet. She’d buried two husbands and eight children, as well as all three of her brothers. The fever had burned through her family shortly after she wedded David Dunston, and she spent two weeks burying her dead. I know because I helped.

She, like so many others, sought her refuge in religion. Goody did not place her faith in the hands of any man, but rather she began to read. Her father had allowed her to learn her letters, and in her hour of need, she put that learning to good use.

I lent her a great many books, helped purchase more for her, and connected her to collectors willing to let her peruse their collections.

In one volume, the title of which I’ll not write here, she found damnation.

The man who owned the book warned her about its properties, never believing she would be foolish enough to follow any of the steps outlined within.

But then, he was not a grieving mother. A grieving mother presented with the opportunity to bring her dead back.

He allowed her to visit at any time, even going so far as to give her permission to enter his house when he was not home. His servants were amicable, and they were more than happy to help the kind woman whenever she arrived.

One morning, when Goody knew he would be out, she went to his home with the items needed for the spell she wished to cast. Later that same night, I rushed from my farm to his home and found the horror Goody had stumbled upon.

I could hear her screams from down the lane, the man’s servants weeping by an old oak tree. The man’s pale face and fearful eyes greeted me as I reached the home. He gestured towards the open door, and I went in, armed and ready for hell.

It was worse than I feared.

Goody was the room.

Her flesh was stretched across the walls and the floor, her face spread over the ceiling. She’d gone blind, thankfully, and could not see the nightmare she had become. Her words were gibberish, but I could hear the pleading in the tone.

With a broken heart, I drew my knife and set about my chore.

It was hard and bloody work.

#books #horrorstories #supernatural

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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