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In every major town and city, there is a house of which no official record exists, and whose windows have been boarded up for longer than anyone around can remember. The previous occupants, if there ever were any, are untraceable, and no organisation or individual will ever lay claim to the plot on which it stands.
Nevertheless, when you break in–always through a back, ground-floor window; you must never touch the outer doors–you will see amongst the dust the signs of inhabitants long gone. A flattened cardboard box, an overturned child’s cot, balding patches on the carpet where the pile has been worn away. Invariably there will be an orphaned double mattress in the master bedroom. What you will not see, however, are rats and cockroaches, or animal waste. Vermin know better than to come here.
These are Her sacred spaces.
The first time you visit, bring only what you need to help you enter the house. Then locate the master bedroom, stand in the centre, and draw an unbroken circle in the dust around your feet. Make it about a metre in diameter to be safe.
Face the doorway and say aloud; “I wish to make a sacrifice. Will you welcome the offering?”
Then leave as quickly as possible. You must not return until night has next fallen.
This time, bring nails, a hammer, an empty litre bottle, a sharp, sturdy knife, and a torch. Enter the same way you did last time. Remember the mattress in the master bedroom? Someone will be sleeping there. Don’t worry about waking them up; She has taken care of that for you. Turn the sleeper over onto their back and cut their jugular vein, making sure to collect as much blood as you can.
You will need to pour a little of the blood onto the floor of every room, including this one, but make sure you have some left at the end. When you’ve finished, leave by the same way you entered, and close up the boards again. (This is what the hammer and nails are for.) Walk home. Speak to nobody on your way. When you get there, tip some of the remaining blood into your right hand and smear it over your door handle before you enter. Then go to bed.
If there is any blood left, you must pour the rest of it onto any pavement in the city, but do not allow it to be poured down a drain. The knife you must never use again, and should bury. Do not trouble yourself with covering your tracks. When you next leave your house, the blood on your door will be gone, and the murder you have committed will have no repurcussions. From the moment you leave Her temple, DNA evidence will never again implicate you; law enforcement will creep around your footsteps without touching them. On cameras, your face will show up a blur.
You are under Her protection now.
Just make sure you get the right house.