February 17

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Miskatonic asked for help.

It’s not often that the university asks for assistance. Rarer still is when I agree to lend a hand.

The university had sent a pair of students to my home. They were young men, fear-filled and bandaged. According to them, they had been in the theology department when a carved stone box had arrived from Palestine.

One of their friends managed to finagle the box open and suffered for their curiosity. When it was opened, a woman climbed out.

In a heartbeat, she was devouring one student’s face. The others tried to intervene, but she’d beaten them back easily. As she had all others who were sent against her.

When they’d fled, she had laughed and promised to eat her way through town.

It was more the threat to my town than anything else that moved me. In a short time, I gathered extra ammunition and my Bowie knife before going out to climb into their automobile.

When we arrived at the school, the theology building had been cordoned off, and there were a few townsfolk with bird guns and hunting rifles. They were men who had served in the Great War and others who had fought the Spanish.

I greeted them with a nod, loosened the Colts in their holsters and cocked the hammers back.

I entered the building with the knife drawn and held down to my side. In a few moments, I passed by a corpse stripped down to bare bones, the innards cast off to one side. Soon after that, another pair of bodies lay against the wall, and bloody footprints turned into a nearby room.

The woman was in there, scooping the eyes out of a skull and popping them into her mouth.

She grinned at me, set the head down, and walked to me. The moment her hands touched my shoulders, I drove the knife up at an angle into her chest. The blade slid beneath the sternum, and she tried to pull back, a look of horrified shock on her face.

I twisted the knife, jerked it hard to the right, and then pushed it down, opening up her whole belly.

She lasted about a heartbeat longer and then collapsed. Unrecognizable organs spilled out, stinking and wet on the floor.

I didn’t worry about that, though.

Killing was my work, and my work was done.

#love #horrorstories

Published by

Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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