A Haunted House Story

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I do not have a name, but I’ve been called many things. I have been called a demon, a ghost, a poltergeist, a spirit and even the boogeyman. However, I have no memory from before this incorporeal existence to confirm or deny any such names. I have no eyes yet I can see, I have no ears yet I can hear. I do not have a body, I have no shape. If I strain my will I can mimic a human’s. If I will it I can move objects with my thoughts. However, both take a great toll on me and grow more and more difficult as the number of witnesses increases. I do not know what I am, but I know am very old.

I can not escape the property of the house I was born in. An old 1937 American Foursquare. A very square looking home sitting in a rather average American suburb. My cage reaches as far as the sidewalk where I can watch people pass by but never follow. I do not believe I was born with the house as my memories only reach as far back as near the end of World War II. I lived with the Stockley family at the time. William Stockley was the master of the house and was married to his wife Ann. They had three children, two boys and a young girl named Ashley. Both boys joined the war and never returned. Like any young thing I craved attention and tortured the family with mischief. If the Stockleys could not find something, it was because I hid it. If they heard sounds at night, it was me banging on the walls.

My youthful antics never scared the Stockleys away. Time, however, made much faster work. Ashley had grown up, married and moved away. William and Ann stubbornly stayed in the home till they both grow old. One night, not long after the 70’s had started, William sat in his study reading while Ann slept. William suffered a heart attack and died on the floor. He did not join me as a spirit of any kind, he just simply ceased being alive and I could do nothing to aid him. It was the first time I truly realized how helpless my existence was. Ann moved in with her daughter and I never saw any of the Stockleys again.

I was left abandoned for a while after that. I felt loneliness for the first time. However, soon a new family moved into the home. I remember it was around the time a nuclear scare happened not far from the home. Protests were a topic of conversation as the Grahams had moved in. Donald and Maria Graham and their two children Mark and Robert. I was much more reclusive with the Grahams. I was much more brooding and withdrawn. Always watching, but no longer trying to be heard. I had long since stopped trying to test my limits.

The Grahams lived a rather uneventful life. I watched them for years go about their dull lives. I kept my distance, stayed unattached. They grow older and eventually left. They moved out west for a better job. This lead to the Youngs moving in. A modern family for a more modern age. Jane and Hank were the parents, both worked for a living. Elizabeth was their daughter, the kind of girl that would put posters of then-popular boy bands on her room walls. James was the youngest and most fascinating in the family.

James was broken and everyone else in the family ignored it. He was thirteen when I first met him. As I observed him, he observed others much the same way. He would spend hours alone and the rest of his family seemed happy to be away from him. His room was his sanctuary; a place he could be his true self. He changed when he left his room, he faked normalcy. Any breach of his sanctuary caused him to turn violent. The first time I saw this was when he nearly broke his older sister’s arm slamming it in the door. So his family avoided trying to break into his world.

As he grew older, James grew worse. He had a terrible fascination with death. What started with books and pictures grew into him sneaking corpses of small animals into his room. When he was fourteen he started to sneak out of the house at night. Going where I could not follow and coming back hours later. He had a habit of writing when he was upset. Often words or phrases in repeat like a mantra. Most often he would call his family and anyone else around him a liar. He seemed to think that everyone around him lied to him when they spoke of things like love and wanting the best of him. He hated them for it. He then started to collect knives.

It all came to a conclusion when he was fifteen. After one of his night trips out he came home with a handgun wrapped in a towel. The kind with a clip and sliding barrel, I had never seen one outside of what books and newspapers I could read around the house. He calmly grabbed a nasty looking knife with at least a 7-inch blade, out of a table drawer. He stuck the handgun in the back of his pants and calmly and carefully snuck into his sister’s room. He looked at her sleeping in her bed for a moment before grabbing a pillow and violently holding it over her face with one hand. He took his knife with the other hand and started stabbing the knife into the blankets his sister occupied. She screamed for a moment into the pillow but repeated stabs to her chest and lungs prevented her from giving much resistance.

When Elizabeth stopped moving James looked down at his work. After he was content he slowly started walking to his parents’ room. No longer comfortable just observing I tried to warn them. After a bit of effort, I managed to knock a lamp by their bedside off a table causing it to smash on the floor. They both awoke, but were completely unaware of the danger heading towards them. James walked into their room and saw that they were no longer sleeping. In a single motion, he dropped his bloody knife and pulled out his gun. It was still dark and his parents did not have time to figure out what their son was holding before he pulled back the slide on the pistol and fired several shots into each of them.

James looked at each of what used to be his parents and simply walked away. He went back to his room, pulled out another clip for his gun, collected his knife and started walking towards the front door. I realized he was not going to stop. He was going to keep killing till the police killed him. I was horrified and furious as he walked toward the end of my cage. I focused all of my will power on him, trying to stop him from moving. In a flash, my point of view had changed. I was now holding a gun and stopped several feet from the door. I had possessed him. I was in control of his body, but I did not know for how long. I pulled the slide back on the gun like James had done not long before and put the gun to his head and pulled the trigger. With a thud, I was once again watching a boy bleeding on the floor, lifeless.

The police arrived not long after. The house was closed off, the bodies collected. It all seemed to go by in a blur. It was not long till I was alone again. I could hear people talk as they passed the house. Another version of what happened emerged from the murder-suicide the police had reported. They said that this house is haunted. That a spirit had possessed the boy to kill his family and then himself. Perhaps it was because they could not comprehend anyone doing what James had done. However, I never felt more alone.

Red Doors

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It is easy for the lost and the outcasts to find solace in technology. When you are lonely, you grab hold of anything that grants you comfort and eases your pain. Robert was such a person. He spent his days on forums and comment sections seeking out validation in his existence. He has never met his closest friends, they exist only as words on a screen.

You can find the worst and best of humanity on the web. However, people like Robert rarely seek out the best. They spiral down dark corners looking at things worst than themselves. That is where he met John. Robert did not know much about John other than that he was a cynical person who enjoyed talking about the downfall of society and failings of mankind. He showed Robert images. Pictures of people in pain, or dying. Pictures of monks lighting themselves on fire, of little girls trapped in a flood. They were images meant to elicit a certain type of emotion, Despair.

Robert and John spoke to each other for nearly a month since the first meeting. Robert became fast friends with John and started to adopt many of his nihilistic views. As John had planned, Robert truly grew tired of his life and humanity around him and like a predator stalking prey, John carefully waited for the moment to strike.

“What if you could escape this reality?” John asked.

“That be nice,” Robert agreed.

“All you have to do is agree and I can show you something,” John replied.

“What are you talking about? Whatever show me,” Robert finished.

Rob immediately felt a dizzying sensation as the lights went out around him. For a moment the world went black, then his eyes adjusted to the dark. He was still sitting at his keyboard, but the screen had no power along with the computer. He tried switching the computer back on but it was useless, the desk lamp next to him also failed to turn on. He stumbled around his dark house till he found the front door. He looked outside to find that every house around him was much the same. No lights, no power. The streetlights were out as well. “A blackout?” he thought to himself. However, he saw no one else. It was cold, and the world seemed to glow lightly with the light of the moon, but he could see no moon or stars.

Walking outside, Rob could not escape the feeling of everything being slightly wrong. Walking to his car he noticed the color seemed slightly off and the body felt cheap. Like a poor imitation of what it should be. The sidewalk, street lamps, and even the windows of the houses and cars all seemed like cheap imitations of the real thing. Like a Chinese knockoff of a whole town. This surreal world only grew odder with the lack of the wind and any noise outside his own footsteps.

Rob walked the streets of this imitation world for several hours or at least what felt like hours as the passage of time seemed impossible to tell. It wasn’t till he saw a light at the end of an empty road did he have a direction. At first, it was simply a glow in the distance but as he approached he could make out the shape of a monitor. In the middle of the road sat a computer on a desk. The only thing with any power for miles.

This world seemed like a dream. Slight imperfections giving away hints that this was not his reality. None more so than the glowing computer screen that sat on a desk in front of him. On the screen was only a basic text program with a line of text blinking, waiting for a response.

“Hello, again Robert”. Rob instantly knew it was John.

“Where am I?!” Rob reached down to the keyboard and typed.

“You are still home,” John immediately typed back. “However, I suppose that is not what you wanted to hear. Your body is home, your mind is in another reality just like you asked,” John continued. “As long as you are not using your body, I will take it in the meantime. Enjoy the peace Robert,” John finished. As the last words appeared on the screen the power went out. The glow was replaced with darkness. Robert desperately tried to type back and turn on the computer but it was useless.

Once again Rob was left alone in this dark world. He had no sense of time and was unsure how long he had been there. The only thing he could think to do was walk. He tried opening doors to surrounding buildings but they were sealed shut like they were never meant to be opened. Windows only showed near empty insides with furniture that looked fit for a model house. He kept walking, never feeling tired or hungry as surely hours must have passed. It was as he walked that he found a small gray building fitted with a red door that looked completely out of place in this world. On the door, a white piece of paper with the words “Keep Out” in black ink sat.

Robert ignored the warning without any hesitation and opened the door revealing a completely dark room. The horrible smell of rot and death reached out. Still, without hesitation, Rob stepped into the room and as his eyes adjusted he could see what was making the smell. The building was one impossibly large room, like some sort of warehouse, with concrete floors. Stacked in the center were dead bodies all in deep stages of decomposition. Skin hung from them like leather.

“Ah, ah, ah, Robert, you should learn to read signs. No need to look on at your predecessors,” a voice rang in Robert’s head. The smell began to overpower Rob causing him to flee. As he walked away from the building the red door slammed shut behind him.

Unable to work up the nerve to try the door again Rob walked away. He found himself wandering endlessly in a daze. He no longer recognized any of the scenery. Architecture and age seem to change rapidly. Buildings in styles years apart sat next to each other. Yet, it all seemed fake. Like props on a movie set, they could pass for the real thing from afar but fail on close inspection. He could not escape the feeling of being watched as he moved along.

Continuing his journey Robert noticed other red doors like the one he saw before. They did not have any signs on them, but he still hesitated to touch them. His courage from before had faded. However, as time passed and any other options failed to reveal themselves he decided to try. The closest door was attached to an old stone building that seems fit for a long-lived city like New York or Philadelphia. Slowly opening the door he saw a deep darkness in what appeared to be a glass door holding it back, but it was not glass but a perfect slice of water. With a touch, Rob could feel water drip onto his skin, but the larger mass refused to fall out the door. With a deep breath, he smelled the nostalgic scent of the sea. Daring not to enter, Robert moved on looking for another door.

Another red door sat attached to a wooden cabin. A building completely out of place sitting between two brick buildings. Slowly opening it, Rob shielded his eyes as bright sunlight spilled out. Inside the door, a vast savanna spread out before him. A dry golden grass seemed to go on for miles only broken by the occasional small tree. He had ever only seen such a thing on TV and pictures of Africa. Looking at the gray world behind him and the golden one before him Robert stepped through the door.

The first thing to hit Rob was the oppressive heat. The change was drastic from the cold world behind him. Looking back, the door he stepped through seemed to sit attached to nothing. The world was much different than the one before. If the world before was a dream, this one was more a vivid memory. A sense of odd nostalgia entered Robert’s mind. Walking forward into the endless planes the red door behind him vanished. Despite the heat, he still did not feel thirst, hunger or exhaustion. He was fascinated by the vastness of the world before him. Besides the vegetation, not another living thing seemed to exist. That was why when he noticed the grass moving in front of him his eyes focused immediately. Time seemed to slow as a female lion burst out of the grass and sprinted at him at full speed. Rob only had time enough to turn away before it reached him and pounced on him. Hugging and grappling on to him with sharp claws. He hit the ground with a hard thud as his vision went black. A few moments later Robert was able to open his eyes once more. However, he was unable to move. He did not feel any pain but could hear the sounds of footsteps as the lion moved into his view. It looked into his eyes before opening its jaws and reaching down to bite him in the throat.

He awoke once more on the cold streets of the grey world before, gasping for breath. A dark voice laughed in Rob’s head once more.

“Curiosity can be a dangerous thing, Robert, it killed the cat after all,” John said with a laugh. “Am about done on this side, you will be home soon enough. You were a good sport so perhaps I’ll sate your curiosity a bit.” The red door before him opened again. This time, a different scene lay before him. A vast village made of sandstone sitting under a bright sun. “Am old Robert, very old.” The door closed again as John spoke, only to open again. This time to a small computer server room, electronics in black boxes lined the wall while a single computer screen and keyboard sat on a desk at the end. “However, even old things can adapt to the age, Robert.”

“It’s time now, I can’t stay here for long,” the voice of John spoke for the last time, “The human body simply can’t handle it.” The world around Rob started to fade, his vision blurred, it turned black with a familiar dizzying sensation. When light entered his eyes once more he found himself in a cold wooded area. Rob tried to center himself but he did not have the energy to stand. He was desperately thirsty, his whole body felt dry. When he finally glanced at his arms he tried to scream but his dry throat could not get a sound out. He could see his bones with leathery skin hanging off of them. The last of his energy left him as he collapsed completely to the grass floor. His eyes quickly dried to the point he could no longer move them, not a tear could escape. His body was already a long dead corpse that would never move again.

Sloth

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Gregg lived the life of a shut in. A recent college dropout something inside his mind had cracked from the social pressure. He convinced himself he only needed some time, time enough to sort out his life and get back on track. However as he waited his little apartment filled with trash, and the stink of unfinished delivery food. His savings dwindled by the day. The longer he stayed in the hole he dug, the harder it would be to climb out.

As he lay in his bed he stared at the ceiling. Contemplating his life and fate. A small black mark had caught his attention, a bit of dark mold in the shape of a circle. Gregg watched it, just one more problem in his life that needed to be fixed. Soon the young man dozed to sleep. A monotonous dripping sound becoming white noise. Drip, drip, drip…

That night dreams haunted the young man. Gregg found himself walking up an endless set of stairs. He did not know why he was climbing, but felt he needed to reach the top, such vagueness often being the nature of dreams. However no matter long it seemed he climbed he could never make any progress. Stopping or resting seemed to only cause him the sensation of falling further down the endless staircase.

Gregg awoke to a mild burning sensation on his leg. It was still night, darkness filled the room. Silence was only broken by the occasional passing car. Attempting to reach down and rub the area of discomfort he found that he could not move, his body was paralyzed. This realization fully awoke him. He felt groggy and sick. Fear growing in his mind as he tried but his efforts proved futile. The burning grow on his leg as a black ooze dripped one droplet at a time onto his bed.

The black mass grow on his lower body. Slowly seeping through bed sheets and onto flesh its acidic nature burning. Sheets, bed, and flesh all burned together sealing Gregg in. he could not scream nor move. He fell in and out of consciousness unsure of how much time had passed between each moment. His agony was slow and painful, made worse by the knowledge that there was no one who stop by any time soon enough to save him.
His landlord was the first to find the organic black mass on top of the bed. Worried parents had contacted him when they could not reach their son for days. He did not suspect it was once human at first, just a mass of black mold. The smell was rancid and the man felt the urge to vomit an urge he succumbed to when he saw what remained of a skull with bits of flesh still hanging to it. It seemed to stare at him, pleading for help.

Dreams

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I dreamed that I was in a room. I saw myself standing next to me over and over. They were all me, and I was them. All parts of a greater whole. I could feel what each of them felt, and think what each thought. Then suddenly one such copy of me was stabbed repeatedly with a long needle the size of a javelin. I could feel each blow as I watched myself die. Something I could not describe took his corpse and stood it back in place with a grin. I awoke feeling as if a part of me had died. That a parasite had latched itself to part of my soul, hiding within disguised as just another part of me.

–Inspired by a real dream.

A Haunted Doll Story

7/26/2010 - Jay Janner/AMERICAN-STATESMAN - A doll collection was destroyed in a house fire on Capitol View Drive near Onion Creek on Monday July 26, 2010.
photo by – Jay Janner

It’s absurd that I would die this way, its absurd anyone could die this way.It’s preposterous but I can feel the warmth of the flames grow closer, unable to move all I can do is search my memories and try to discover what I have done to deserve this fate.

My name is Elizabeth Downs. I am a twenty-four year old eccentric. I have an obsession with Victorian Dolls. They have just enough a mix of creepy and cute that I can not get enough of them. My friends mock me for it, and not everyone is thrilled to see my collection but I never mind it. I was never one to care what other thought.

A new antique shop had recently opened and I was paying it a visit after seeing a doll from the window. It had on a black dress with a white umbrella in her hand. I had to take a look. A middle age man in an old suit approached me as I walked up to the doll. “Do you like her?” He said. He listened intently as I told him my own fascination with such dolls. I don’t know why I felt so compelled to tell this stranger my own hobby with such enthusiasm. He seemed truly absorbed in what I had to say, waiting patiently for me to finish with a smile on his face. “I can show you an even better doll in the store if you like?” With glee I followed the man to a small room in the back of the shop before suddenly the world went black.

I awoke to a bright light. I could not seem to move and felt like I was being carried somewhere. As my sight adjusted I could see the antique shop’s owner’s face close to mine. It seemed huge, as he stepped back I realized it was huge. I was high up, I could not move my head but I could see the doll from earlier out of the corner of my eye. It now sat next to me matching my size. “A beautiful doll indeed” The man said in a sweet voice with a large grin on his face. The situation was deranged, I tried to yell out but my mouth would not move. I could do nothing but sit on my little shelf and watch as the man walked away.

Time was hard to keep track of. I was stuck in a plastic body with no way to move and left only with my thoughts. I know I would go mad if things kept up. I tried to entertain my mind by watching costumers come and go and the owner sweep and clean in-between. Every now and again he look over at me and smile. I was left with my hearing as well, but the sound of a little bell as costumers entered and exited and a few conversations with the owner were nearly all the sounds the store had to offer. Night had fallen twice, and I was left alone in the dark shop unable to even close my eyes. I could only wonder if anyone was looking for me, and if it was at all possible for them to find me in this state.

On the third day an older lady looked at me before walking off with the owner. They were out of my sight for a while before I heard the sound of the cash register. Then the owner walked up to me with a box in his hand. He picked me up and with surprise I could feel it. Why could I feel, hear or see anything in this plastic body? I was soon sunk into the darkness of the box. All light faded away as the top was closed. Claustrophobia soon set in. My mind panicked but there was literally nothing I could do. It’s hard to say how much time I spent in that box. Much of it has become blur of panic and sensory deprivation. My mind had floated away in that time.

Finally a light shone into my cage. It was blinding at first then someone pulled me into it. I saw the frowning face of a young girl. At least twelve or thirteen years old. She forced a smile on her face and turned to the old lady from the store sitting on a couch behind her. The words “Thank you Grandma” forced their way out of her mouth. Confusion made way for the realization I was some kind of gift. I wanted to scream for help, but it was useless. Soon I was shoved back into the box, thankfully the top left open so I was no longer surrounded by darkness.

Sometime later I was removed from the box once and unceremoniously thrown on top of a rocking chair.I landed hard against the wooden chair. Filling my body with blunt pain. The room clearly belonged to the young girl. It was decorated with pink colors, stuff animals, and all things girly. However despite the poor décor I saw an opportunity to try to communicate. Holding onto some slim hope that she notice me, or the me that was trapped in this body. Perhaps she did notice something, as time passed she stared at me. However my hopes died as she simply said “Creepy” and throw a pillow on top of me as she turned off the lights for the night.

Claustrophobia once again set in. Mixed with the frustration of all that has happened to me. Despite no longer having lungs I felt as if I was suffocating.I tried to will every bit of myself to move as my mind screamed. Then the chair rocked, just a little. Enough to knock the pillow off-balance and let if fall to the floor. I had somehow moved. Not by much but it was a small victory against my cursed fate. I could see the girl was already in bed sleeping. A small hope started to return that perhaps I would find a way out of this after all. I felt tired for the first time, and my mind drifted off to what I can only compare to sleep for the first time. I awoke some time later to see the girl standing over me. She had a scared look on her face “Serves her right” I thought to myself. A woman’s voice yelled “Alice” and the girl turned away and left the room.

As time passed I understood that their were rules to my condition. I could move only with great will power and only when no one was watching. It started with only an inch or so but grow the more I practiced. With this new hope I redoubled my efforts to try to seek help. It was one night that I managed to finally remove myself from the rocking chair. I had to drop with a thump to the floor. The impact hurt but I deemed it worth the pain. I sat facing the door to the room. Alice would notice me, she could help me if she know I was alive.

My plan worked, but held unforeseen consequences. Alice walked into the room and upon seeing me shrieked. A swift moment later her foot flow towards me kicking me across the room hard into a wall. The impact severed my plastic arm from my body. I was filled with mind numbing pain. I wanted to cry, scream, crumble in agony but once again I was unable to move. Alice moved towards me, I wanted to plead for her aid, for her mercy. She looked angry and I was scared. She picked me up, and took my severed arm in her other hand. “Enough of this” She said as she walked out of the room with me.

We walked through parts of the house I was seeing for the first time. I saw no signs of her parents or the old lady I first met. We walked into the homes back yard and I was set on a glass outdoor table. Alice moved towards a large metal bowl with wood sitting inside it. It was a fire pit. My heart sank. She picked up some matches from a nearby chair and lit them. With care she started a fire in the pit and watched it grow. “Always watching me” she said in an angry tone. I tried to will myself away, I tried to scream “I don’t want to die!” but it was useless. Soon, as the fire grew, she approached me slowly like an executioner to the gallows. I was picked up and marched towards the fire.

I am afraid…really afraid. Please…old lady, man from the shop… anyone. I can feel the flames growing closer, their warmth growing with each inch forward…Please Alice…

Doppelgänger

They say my family is cursed. That the children of house Amseli are fated to die young. A curse put on us because of a vile ancestor who was said to study alchemy or made a deal with Satan. My grandfather was said to have moved us to New England to escape our fate. I never truly believed such things. Coincidence becomes curses to the superstitious, after all my own father died when he was sixty-six years old. While not olden, he was no young man either. What was undisputed however was that there is very little left of my clan. A mix of deaths and a lack of children meant that there was few who could carry on the name. I did my part by marrying young and having a child ten springs past, young Walter. He was the pride of my life and his mother Olivia my joy, but a number of events recently have made me reconsider my stance on curses.

Britain and it’s war against Napoleon have spilled over to New England. American Sailors have begun to be imprisoned as they crossed the Atlantic. The situation meant I had little time to spend at home with my family. While traveling to trade meetings and seeing to the concerns of ship captains my mind longed to see my wife and son. That is why when I first saw the visage of my son that I blamed it on my own longing. While speaking to a captain at some shabby looking docks I saw the boy, chasing away birds without a care in the world. The young lad turned and looked me in the eyes. He more than just resembled my son, but looked exactly like him. I inadvertently called out his name but instead of responding, he turned and ran into a crowd of sailors. I gathered my senses, knowing that I was many miles from home and that could not have been my son. Longing for home even more I hurried my work along.

I returned home to find my son already wasting away with consumption. His death was slow, I put all I owned on his recovery. Doctor’s saw him weekly and nurses changed his bloody rags daily. His once lively room filled with toys and clean sheets had become dark filled with a terrible smell. Family and friends prayed daily for the boy but it was to no avail. I could no longer recognize my own son when he passed away his body barely skin and bone. We gave the boy a quick Christan burial for fear of further spread of the disease. My life soon turned into one of despair. I was filled with immeasurable grief. I understood many children die of disease, that many lower class family had many children in hopes a few may live to adulthood. But Walter was my child, my heir. Olivia was stronger than I. She grieved, yet managed to wake and do the daily work the household needed. I stopped working entirely, I could no longer bring myself to leave the home. Locking myself away for long hours in the study.

I remembered the little boy I saw not long before my son’s death. The uncanny resemblance. I know the folklore of the doppelgänger. An ill omen of death or tragedy. I could not help but wonder if my sighting of the creature truly an omen. “Was it a messenger of ill tidings or a cause?” Such thoughts filled my mind. I slowly began to withdraw further and further from the outside world. At first outsiders left me alone, giving me space to grieve. Soon however they left me alone for I was an eccentric. I cared not however, I did not care if what remained of my family name became mud. I spent a year studying the unknown. Gathering books of folklore, alchemy, and other knowledge deemed unchristian. I barely spoke to Olivia over the course of the year. Her housework grows as we had to let servants go. I could feel her growing resentment of me but I refused to change course.

As the anniversary of my son’s death neared I found something. A ritual to see my son again. It was part of a darkened unnamed tome sent to me by a cousin. She believed the tome had been apart of the family long since we moved to this country. I waited till the witching hour on the night of the anniversary of my son’s death. Walking out of sight of my home and neighbors, I spilled the blood of a cat that hunted mice around the home and called upon forces that should not be named. I felt my heart race as fires burned and I spoke words I barely know the meaning of. Then the world seemed silent as I finished. Before me stood a little boy sharing the image of my Walter when he was last healthy. I cried tears of joy and shame. I know that this was not my little boy, only his image, yet seeing it made me feel happy. I had summoned my son’s doppelgänger for the hope of seeing him once more.

The doppelgänger did not acknowledge me at first. It made no effort to speak. As I stood crying for what seemed like ages it finally turned to me in with my son’s face. It frowned at me before its shape started to change. Starting with it’s eyes it soon took the shape of my Olivia. It started to cry as it walked off into the wilderness. I stood motionless as it walked off. I found myself unable to chase after it as realization hit me. Olivia would soon die as well. I quickly ran home but as I approached I saw a glow in sky. My home was burning. Firegangs had already started to arrive to put out the flame but argued over which gang would put it out, only the winner would receive payment. My neighbors had to hold me back from rushing into the flame myself. It was some time before the flame had finally stopped that they found what remained of my wife. The fire had started in my study where I left a candle lit and quickly spread with the aid of dusty old books. My wife was trapped in the bedroom before the smoke suffocated her. In every sense I had caused her death.

The brick home managed to stay standing. Perpetual insurance spared me some cost but the damage was great. I now stay at a nearby Inn seemingly unsure what to do with myself. However I need not fear for my future. One night I saw myself having a drink at a lonely corner of the inn. I fear I have not long left to live myself. I have written a Will, I will leave what is left of Insurance money to the medical schools looking to cure consumption. The land will be divided up to what little remains of my family name with a warning. I feared that my family is indeed cursed, and I acting just like some long ancestor that started the curse had only renewed it. I can only wish any related by this cursed blood or married into it, better luck then I.

6 Plots

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My first book with my name on the cover is now live! Please support some up and coming horror writers.

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