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Oppression

November 5, 2017 Beings & Entities
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I had been alone in the police interrogation room for over an hour. I checked my cigarettes to find I only have one left “damn.” I said as I pulled one out and lit it. I jumped a little as the door to the interrogation room is opened and another police officer walks in, this will be the fourth one I’ve had to tell my story to tonight. The man walks around the table and sits down. He has two cups of coffee in his hands and holds one out offering it to me “Thanks.” I say as I take it from him. It’s bitter and tastes old. He is older for a cop possibly in his late forties early fifties. He is also heavy set probably from to many beers and donuts.

The man exhales and says “Father Reynolds?”

I cut him off saying “I’m not a priest.”

“Oh sorry” he says with a dismissive wave of his hand.

“Mr. Reynolds, my name is Detective Karrus. I hear you have quite the story from the sergeant who took your statement.”

Being irritated at the long wait to see anyone I snap back “Then you already know what has happened and if I’m not being charged I would like to go!”

Calmly he looked at me for a while, I could feel that he was probing me when he said. “As for right now no one is being charged for anything not at least until we rule the cause of death. For right now though I would like to hear your story in your own words. How you would describe the events that led up to what happened tonight. Which is, what’s the date?” he asked himself and answering his own question saying. “The thirty first. Oh it’s Halloween I can’t believe I forgot!” He said.

I asked “Why do you need to hear the story too? So you can laugh and tell me I’m way too superstitious too? I gave my statements and your sergeant, he called me nuts!”

“I am not my sergeant, Mr. Reynolds I think you’ll find me more receptive to what you have to say. The things I’ve seen in my time have made me more hesitant to dismiss things just because I don’t understand them. I’ve come to partially believe in the things that go bump in the night. Now from what my officers are telling me they say you claimed to have been part of an exorcism, is that correct?” he paused as he took a drink from his coffee and made a grunting sound “This coffee sucks!” seeming to change the subject from his last statement as if the thought made him uncomfortable.

I laughed a little at that but I knew he was doing the good cop routine.

“So, if you don’t think I’m gonna believe you Mr. Reynolds do your best to make me believe you.”

I leaned back into my chair feeling just a little more comfortable with this man thinking maybe he will believe or maybe he won’t but at least he seems like he is willing to listen. He broke my train of thought saying “look Mr. Reynolds, why don’t we start from the top? What were you doing at the Smith family’s residence and how long have been acquainted with them?”

“If I’m going to tell you and you really want to understand what has happened I think it would be best if you kept an open mind.” I told him.

He leaned back in his chair sighing “We have plenty of time Mr. Reynolds, so please, go ahead.”

With that I began my story.

The first time I had heard of the Smith’s case was back in June. I was in Father Flanagan’s office in the Bloomsburg rectory he had just got done with one of his counseling sessions with a young couple. As he came back into his office he saw me and smiled stepping around his desk and easing into his large high backed leather chair.

He said “Matthew I’m glad you’re here. There is something I need to talk to you about. I had a most interesting call last week. It seems one of the families in my parish is convinced they are being haunted.”

“Really, do you think it’s serious?” I asked.

Before he continued he opened the drawer in his desk and pulled out a box of pills. He was taking Captopril, losartan and some other medicine I didn’t recognize. He had suffered from heart failure a year ago and now was on a steady dose of pills. He swallowed them with a glass of water that his secretary had waiting for him on his desk. He grimaced and continued

“Well they seem to think so, and so does one of my younger priests that went to bless the house. You see this family called a week ago saying they were being oppressed by something in their house and were really frightened. So, I sent a priest out to their home at 211 River Avenue, to go through the home and bless the house to calm them down. Really most of the time it’s just someone spooking themselves or noisy pipes but we try our best to give comfort when it’s needed. So I sent Father Kraemer to go bless the home and what he reported back to me was most disturbing.”

Now father Flanagan had me interested so I asked him to go on.

“Well, Matthew first he said the family were all sleeping in the living room, with makeshift beds on the floor. None of them looked like they had much sleep for a long time. When Father Kraemer started his blessing and uncontrollable wave of nausea hit him so violently that he vomited right there on the floor of their home. Can you imagine a priest comes in to bless your house then vomits on your living room rug?”

He chuckled a little at the thought and went on.

“When he finished apologizing and cleaned it up he tried to start again with his blessing of the home. This time a large silver plate flew off their dining room table straight at him barely missing his head!”

At this point I was shocked that something would go after a priest in such away. Father Flanagan continued.

“Well after that my young priest was quite shaken and hastily finished blessing the house without much further incidents but for a while after the blessing the priest suffered from nausea and diarrhea, the poor man.”

I already knew why he was telling me this. Because he wanted me to go find out more. See, before the Catholic Church can get involved officially on cases such as this it has to be documented to be legitimate. I investigate supposedly haunted homes or people. Most of the times it is something completely normal or has a rational explanation but on few occasions it is a legitimate supernatural event. That is where I come in as a medium. I can sense spirits and occasionally can communicate with them. I am basically used as a ghost detector in these cases. I have been working with an audio visual specialist named Zachary Gallagher who documents our findings and we present them to the church to try to justify the church’s involvement.

“Wait a minute.” Detective Karrus said. “You’re telling me you’re also some kind of what, a psychic?”

“No, I’m not a psychic I am a medium. There is a difference, albeit a small one. Basically physics perceive mediums receive. I can sense and receive information from spirits. Occasionally I can communicate with them.”

“Oh Ok, not really sure if I understand that but please go on.” Said Detective Karrus.

I agreed with Father Flanagan that this did require some looking into and that I would contact the Smith family to set up an appointment to meet with them and walk through their home. I admit I was quite excited because in the years I had known Father Flanagan I had only ever been on a couple legitimate cases most of the cases were just nothing more than noisy pipes and such. None of them had something that basically assaulted an ordained priest. While I had studied the occult and paranormal and had some experience I will admit now that I was naïve, if I only had known what was waiting for me at 211 River Avenue.

When I called to speak with the Smith family a very tired woman’s voice answered the phone.

“Hello?”

“Yes my name is Matthew Reynolds and I am calling on behalf of Father Flanagan from the Saint Peters rectory in regards to the events that took place at your home on July eighteenth.”

“Oh yes! Thank god! Yes, this is Beverly Smith thank God you called; when would you be able to come? Father Flanagan already told us to expect a call from you.”

I replied “Mrs. Smith I can come out as soon as Tuesday, two days from now and I will be bring my associate Mr. Gallagher to document my investigation. There is a couple of questions I have for you if you have the time?”

“Go ahead.” She replied.

“Well, who will be present; will the entire family be there for my interview and if so how many in your family”

“Well you have me, my husband Nolan and our two daughters Riley and Meagan.”

“And your daughters ages?’’

“Riley is nine and Meagan is fourteen.”

“Ok I see, and will anyone else be present like any witnesses or family or friends?”

“No it will just be us, is, is Tuesday the soonest you can come out?”

“Yes Ma’am, I am sorry I can’t begin to understand what you’re going through but with my schedule and other appointments I have Tuesday is the soonest I can come.”

After a couple more of preliminary questions the phone called ended with Mrs. Smith reluctantly hanging up. If I had known then what I know now I would have headed straight over there that day. Tuesday eventually came and I arrived at 211 River Avenue at the appointed time of 3pm. The house was a modern two story house with grey vinyl siding and blue shutters in the suburbs of Bloomsburg. It looked like any other upper middle class house you would see driving through a neighborhood. It was hard to believe that this nice house on this quiet street would hold such a diabolical presence.

Me and Zach step out of my car and approach the front door when I start to feel nauseas. I stop for a moment and Zach asks if I’m OK. I give him a nod and continue. It could be a sign or it could be nothing. The last thing you want to do is overly acknowledge any presence because that could make things worse.

We are greeted at the door by Mr. Smith a large middle aged man who was built like a heavyweight boxer. Someone who looks as if they wouldn’t be intimidated very easily but the look on this man’s face was that of complete defeat and weariness. Despite how tired he obviously was he was very polite and guided us into his home. As we stepped through the entry way into the living room I was shocked at the state of living these poor people were in.

There were four makeshift beds on the floor in the living room, piles of clothes everywhere, their furniture was sprawled all over the place randomly some chairs were upright but their couch and other items were knocked over. There was a set of double sliding doors that had the door knobs tied together so as they wouldn’t be able to be opened. Upon seeing us look at the condition of their home Mr. Smith quietly said.

“For a while we would keep cleaning up but every night there would be loud bangs and when we would investigate in the morning it would look like this so we eventually stopped picking everything up. The door knobs on that door to the dining room are tied because half the night they would slide open and closed all night. We all sleep in here for safety, we are scared to go anywhere alone anymore.”

As he finished the rest of the family came to greet us and we made our introductions. Mrs. Smith seemed extremely worn out but hopeful now that we were there. Their youngest Riley looked tired and afraid but smiled at us and asked Zach about all the equipment he had, referring to the camera and tripod he was holding. Meagan their eldest seemed withdrawn and wouldn’t say much which concerned me but living like this could do that to even the strongest willed person. I made a mental note of it and moved on, stating how I like to start the interviews as soon as possible before I walk through the house. While Zach set up his camera in the corner of the living room I righted one of their couches and pulled a coffee table up to it. Mr. Smith set up some chairs across from it for me and Zach. Zach set up his voice recorder on the coffee table while the family sat on the couch

I said “Before we start I have something for each of you.”

I pulled out four saint benedict medals and handed one to each of the family members and I asked them to put them on for protection.

“Now, before we begin, understand that myself and Mr. Gallagher are here to interview you and document what has been going on in your home. Would you please be kind enough to give us your verbal permission to do so now that we are recording?”

They all agreed, so I proceeded while Zach monitored the equipment.

“Mr. Smith can you please tell me about the first occurrence you can recall?”

“It would be best if my wife did that since I think she was the first to notice anything.”

“Ok, Mrs. Smith” I said.

“Well I guess it around the beginning of July sometime after the fourth, yes, it was after the fourth maybe the sixth. I was getting the girls ready for bed. While I was tucking Riley in I heard some scratching sound coming from her closet. She noticed it too and was a little scared and asked me to look.”

Riley interjected “that’s where it lived!” in a scared but justified cry.

I asked Mrs. Smith to continue.

“I opened her closet and there was nothing there but when I closed it and went back to her bed it started again. Just faint scratching sounds the disturbing part is it wasn’t just random. It was like scratch, scratch, scratch then a pause then scratch, scratch, scratch. I thought it might be a mouse so I let her sleep in our room that night.”

When doing interviews I try to remain as emotionally closed off as I can. I conduct them the same way a police officer would. Just gathering facts and collecting evidence and looking for anything that ties things together or sounds like it was embellished or falsified. But what struck me about that was the pattern of three. That could be clues to the demonic because they will sometimes use the pattern of three as a mocking to the holy trinity the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.

I mentally noted that information and asked what happened next and who was involved, again it was Riley that was affected. This time Riley spoke with some encouragement from her mother.

“I was playing in my room with my toys and I heard the scratching sound from my closet again. Momma told me it was probably a little mouse. But it still scared me then it got louder and I got up to get Momma but when I tried to leave my room my door shut and I couldn’t open it. I called for Momma and she came and got me.”

I asked Mrs. Smith where she was when this happened.

“I was in the kitchen cleaning up while Nolan and Meagan were out to go see a movie when I heard Riley screaming hysterically. I ran to her room thinking she was hurt with the way she was screaming for me. When I got to her door I opened it and she was there on the floor screaming about the scratching sounds and saying her door closed by itself and wouldn’t open.”

With what sounded like a lot of guilt and held back crying she said.

“I didn’t believe her about the door, I thought it was just her imagination. I knew about the scratching sounds but I didn’t think anything of what else she told me. I told her it was just her imagination.” Finishing the last words with a choked stifled cry.

I said. “No one could have known what was happening, anybody else would have had the same reaction. You don’t need to beat yourself up. The important thing is we are here now.”

Now I said I don’t like to get emotionally involved in my investigations but one thing I hate is bullies. For this little innocent girl to be harassed the way she was; was starting to make me very upset. I asked the family to continue.

“It just got worse from there” said Nolan.

“We all started hearing things but it was the worst in Riley’s room. One night towards then end of July we hear a loud bang that seemed to have shaken the house it woke me and Beverly up. Hell, I thought it was an earth quake. Then the screaming started in Riley’s room. I got outta bed so fast and was sprinting down the hall to her door, just as I got there the door slammed in my face and I crashed into it. I was running so fast I couldn’t stop in time. Now Mr. Reynolds you might be thinking maybe Riley was the one that slammed that door but I’m telling you before it shut I saw her sitting up on her bed. Let me tell you there ain’t no worse feeling than having your kid scared and there ain’t a damn thing you can do about it. So I start trying to open the door and it won’t budge but I swear for a couple a seconds I heard what sounded like a man’s voice coming from inside my daughter’s room. Couldn’t make out was it was saying under the screaming from Riley and my wife behind me but I swear I heard a MAN in my daughters rooms. Let me tell you that’s what pushed me over the edge and I slammed into the door so hard it broke off the damned hinges. The thought that there was some creep in there with my daughter. I was ready to kill someone. When the door broke in I fell to the floor on top of it and got up as quickly as I could and there was no one in there. My daughter Riley was on the bed screaming. Beverly went to her while I checked the room. There was nothing, not a damn thing out of place. With that bang you’d think something would have moved or fallen. Throughout the house nothing was out of place, I just can’t explain it.”

Mrs. Smith said “Riley was saying that she heard the scratching again then her closet door had opened and she heard growling like an angry dog coming from her closet. Then that’s when that bang that shook the house happened and we came running to the door.”

I could see the fear in their eyes as they recalled these horrible events for me and Zach and my heart went out to this poor family. But even Zach was starting to pick on the clues that this story was weaving, I noticed as he glanced over at me and gave me this do you think this means what I think this means look.

I asked “Now, so far these events seem to include everybody but Meagan. Were you affected in any way Meagan?”

Meagan then slumped into the couch and gave her mother a pleading look, obviously she was very uncomfortable.

When her mother said. “Meagan, its OK honey. Please tell Mr. Reynolds what happened.”

“Do I have to?!” Meagan replied in a pleading voice.

I said “Meagan, you don’t have to but I would really help Mr. Gallagher and myself if we knew everything that happened. It will help us get to the root of what this is and help us to make it stop. So, you don’t have to tell us but please understand that it will help and nobody is going to judge you or anything like that.”

Meagan looking down at her feet and turning red said “OK” and started her part of the story.

“I knew about what was going on with Riley but I thought she was just being a baby. At least until that night with the loud bang. Because the night after that I started having the dreams.”

“And what dreams would those be?” I asked as gently as possible.

Again Meagan struggled to start as if really embarrassed and ashamed of what she was going to tell us.

“I started having these dreams. Very bad dreams. And, and, uh, in these dreams this man would come. He was a man but he had no face or his face was always in darkness. He would tell me things. At first they were nice things like how pretty I was or better than the other girls in my school I was but he scared me. I didn’t tell anyone because they were dreams. At first it was one every couple days then they came every night. The man would come and tell me things but it got worse. Then he started telling me nasty things.”

Meagan looked like she was about to cry when her mother put her arms around her and encouraged her to go on.

“He would tell me he wanted me, he wanted my body and he would go into detail of what he would do with me and if he couldn’t have me he would kill me and my family. I couldn’t sleep anymore. I started getting in trouble at school because I would stay up all night so I wouldn’t have those dreams but then I would fall asleep in class and get in trouble.”

Once more Meagan paused her story and I couldn’t help but get very angry at the disgusting way this family was being terrorized and then Meagan continued.

“The worst dream happened a couple weeks ago. In the dream he was in my room at the foot of my bed quietly whispering my name over and over again. I was so scared I couldn’t move, I couldn’t call for my dad or mom; it felt like I was paralyzed. Then he grabbed my ankles and pushed my legs apart. He was so strong, I couldn’t stop him and he climbed on top of me and started biting me all over.”

Meagan broke off crying, shoulders heaving as she pressed her face into her mother’s chest.

With tears in her eyes Mrs. Smith said. “The next day Meagan finally told me about the dreams because her neck, arms, and her breasts were covered in bite marks some of them had actually drawn blood.”

Mr. Smith with his face drawn in anger said loudly “YOU SEE WHAT WE’VE BEEN DEALING WITH AND THAT’S NOT EVEN CLOSE TO SCRATCHING THE SURFACE!!!” he broke off and continued in a softer voice “I’m sorry but we have been dealing with this for weeks now. I have personally been scratched, pushed and heard voices throughout the house. My daughters have been tormented constantly and my wife has seen something in my daughter’s room! We don’t know what to do anymore and we need your help!”

“Your wife has SEEN something?” I asked.

Mrs. Smith said “It was a couple of days ago. I was walking through the house praying to God for help. Everyone else was asleep. As I approached my daughter’s room I heard the scratching.”

“Was this Riley’s room again” I asked

“Yes, sorry it was Riley’s room. I heard the scratching again. I started praying that this would leave and we would be delivered. Then the lights in the hall flickered and went out. I was petrified as I heard Riley’s bedroom door open. I turned to look it had open about six inches.”

Mrs. Smith held her hands up and apart to demonstrate the space.

“Then I noticed movement. A little below the height of the door knob there was something there. I couldn’t tell what it was because of the lights being out I just saw something dark blocking what moonlight was shining into Riley’s room from her window. With how small it was I thought it was Riley looking out of her room to see what had happened with the lights. Then suddenly the lights in the hall came back on for a second and I saw its face.”

Mrs. Smith was trembling with the recollection.

“It was low to the ground below the doorknob its face was that of an ancient old man with a huge smiling mouth. It was just peeking out of the door and smiling at me. It had no eyes! Oh my God it didn’t have any eyes just black holes where they should have been! Then it disappeared, I was terrified and I screamed for my husband waking up the whole family. I didn’t tell the girls because I didn’t want to scare them.”

“That was when all the furniture started being thrown around and the doors would open and close by themselves, after that night.” Said Mr. Smith.

“And our beds started shaking” said Riley.

“Yeah that was when we all moved into the living room.” Mrs. Smith said.

I cleared my throat and began “Well according to what you have told me and I think Mr. Gallagher would agree that what is going on in your home is very serious. Now, before I go on I need to ask a few question and for your sakes I ask for your complete honesty.”

They all nodded their heads with an anxious look on their faces waiting for my questions.

So I continued “Does anyone in the family currently or has ever practiced witch craft or black magic?
All I need for now is a yes or no answer.”

All of them fervently shook their heads and said no.

“Do you know of anyone who practices witchcraft, Satanism, or black magic that you may have angered?”

Again all of them said “No.”

Mrs. Smith chimed in with “Mr. Reynolds we are all devout Catholics and would never do such a thing or associate with people who do that.”

I replied “I know Mrs. Smith but these are routine questions to help try and establish a cause to what started this because usually a thing like this needs a doorway or an invitation to come into your home and do this to you. Now, has anyone ever played with an Ouija board or spirit writing device?”

They all replied “No.”

“Has anyone ever participated in a séance or anything of the sort?”

They all said “No.”

Meagan immediately looked down at her feet and turned red.

“Meagan?” I asked.

“Is there anything you would like to tell me?” I said.

Mrs. Smith said “Meagan wouldn’t do anything like that she knows better!”

“Well, let’s see what Meagan has to say first. Meagan?” I said.

Meagan said “I didn’t do anything. It wasn’t me it was Becky!” she said defensively.

“Who is Becky?” I asked.

“She’s a friend. A while ago I was at a sleep over and they were playing with an Ouija board and trying to have a séance.” Said Meagan in a distressed voice.

Then she continued after I nodded to her to go on.

“Becky and the other girls were sitting in a circle on the floor with the Ouija board in the middle. They had a shirt draped over the lamp in the corner to darken the room and it made it hard to see so I was sitting on the bed because I did not want to be a part of it. They were asking it if there were any spirits present when it said “yes.” Jennifer told Becky to stop playing around and Becky said she wasn’t doing it. Susan said she wasn’t moving the planchette either. They asked me to play and I told them I didn’t want to but they kept bugging me and calling me names so I finally got down and joined them. They told me to put my fingers on the planchette as Jennifer scooted over to make room for me. As soon as I put my fingers on it the planchette seemed to jerk a little I pulled my fingers away while Susan said “See it wants you to play too!” and everyone laughed. I didn’t want to but I didn’t want to look like I was scared so I put my fingers back on the planchette then Becky asked who was there, it said “a friend.” I didn’t like it and told them to stop. They said it was just a game and that they play it all the time and called me a chicken. They asked if it was a boy or girl it said “a boy.” They asked how old and he said that he was sixteen. They asked if he was still alive and he said “no”, then they asked how he died and he said he was murdered. They asked how and it didn’t reply. They asked its name and it didn’t reply. Then it spelled out “pretty girl” and they asked who and it said my name. I yelled at them to stop and to put that away. That was when I decided I had enough but I couldn’t pull my fingers off of the planchette it was like they were stuck with a magnet. I was so scared I couldn’t say anything. They kept playing asking it questions, like describe what is pretty about me and it just kept saying “pretty girl.”

At this point Meagan was almost in tears and I didn’t want to push her too hard.

I asked her “Was that all that happened?”

Giving her a chance to decide if she wanted to tell me more or not. She hesitantly responded while looking away from her mother who looked very upset.

“Well, no, they kept playing and they asked it to give them a sign that he was real and really there with us. At first nothing happened, then Jennifer said “see I told you it wasn’t real!” After about a minute it started to get cold in her room. It got colder and colder until we could see our breath. That’s when Becky, Jennifer, and Susan decided they had had enough. I could finally take my hand off the planchette once they let it go. I just wanted to get out of there, we were all scared at this point but then the lights started flickering. Susan started to cry then the lights went out completely and I felt something pull my hair really hard. Everybody screamed and ran out of the room, we spent the rest of the night in the living room.”

Meagan at this point seemed relieved to finally be able to tell this story but Mrs. Smith was very upset.

“I can’t believe you would play with something like that you know those things are evil!” said Mrs. Smith.

I interrupted her before it could get any worse.

“Now isn’t the time to get angry what’s done is done and we are here to fix the problem and just because Meagan played with an Ouija board doesn’t necessarily mean she was the cause of this.”

“Then what could have been the cause of this!” Mrs. Smith asked.

“Mrs. Smith while the cause is important what really matters is getting rid of it. Now Meagan I’m sure you understand now the importance of not toying with the supernatural. What I believe is happening here is something diabolical, I am not trying to scare you but you must be warned. After listening to your stories there is a pattern if you haven’t noticed. You see the Devil and his minions are real. Demoniacal forces are out there and they do need an opening to enter your life but sometimes it’s not as obvious as it seems. While I would like to get to the bottom of what brought this thing into your home right now my main concern is your family’s safety. The goal of the demonic is ultimately possession but they can’t just come right in and take over there is a pattern they usually operate by. They have a certain M.O. that if you know what you’re looking for it is easy to identify. See, a Demon or Devil cannot just take over your body like you see on television or in Hollywood they have to break you down first. It usually happens in three stages infestation, oppression and possession. The infestation stage usually isolates one or more of the family into a state of fear; fear of what is happening and fear that no one will believe them. Like the scratching in your daughter Riley’s room. How you said they came in a pattern of three then a pause that too is also a clue to the diabolical. You, see the demonic like to use the pattern of three as a mocking gesture towards the divine trinity of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. The isolation isn’t always just one person like how it was you Mrs. Smith and your daughter with Riley’s closet and the noises from it and the dreams that Meagan has been having. Then comes oppression, the loud banging’s the furniture being destroyed and your house becoming a terrorizing place that should be your comforting home. This is by design to break you down emotionally by seeing everything you worked hard for destroyed and your family under so much stress and possibly your family turning against each other. This is to break down your spirits and your mental fortitude to weaken you towards the next goal, Possession.”

At this point the whole family seemed to suck in air at the last word I said.

“But why us, what did we do to deserve this!” exclaimed Mr. Smith.

“We are good Catholics!” Said Mrs. Smith.

“Your right, nobody deserves this but these are ancient forces and even the most knowledgeable theologian barely understands the workings of the demonic. Right now what we need to focus on is your safety. I would suggest spending more time in church and increasing whatever praying you do. I will do what I can tonight to help you but I feel I should warn you. Right now from what you have told me it seems the obvious target for possession is Meagan.”

Upon me telling them this Mrs. Smith let out a groan.

“Oh God no, why God. She didn’t mean it. She was just playing a stupid game.”

She seemed not to be able to take much more. With that I felt that I had enough of the history of the events so far so I decided it was time to start my walk through of the house. At this point I stood up and grabbed the voice recorder off the coffee table and handed it to Zackary who took it and went outside to the car and retrieved a large leather bag which had the rest of our equipment in it. It contained six crucifixes which were blessed by father Flanagan, five vials of holy water, two more voice recorders for catching electronic voice phenomena and an EMF reader for picking up any fluctuations in the electromagnetic field.

As Zackary returned I took the bag opened it and gave each of the family a crucifix and took one for myself and the last I gave to Zachary. I instructed the family to remain in the living room and asked if they would join hands and pray with me and Zachary before I walked through the house. We all stood in a circle and grasped each other’s hands as I lead the family in a prayer.

“Heavenly father, we come before you today to ask for your protection and your grace. Please protect the Smith family from whatever evil that is in their home and grant me the courage to face it. Protect myself and Zachary as we walk through this house and cover us in your divine light that no harm may come to anyone present, Amen.”

With that everyone joined with a simultaneous “Amen.”

I asked Zachary if he was ready and he said “yes.”

With his camera on his shoulder now we headed out of the living room and into the kitchen. Where I said another prayer.

“In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost you are not welcome here. I rebuke you evil one in the name of GOD! Leave this family in peace and depart from here. Show a sign of your departure.”

Then I sprinkled holy water in each corner of the kitchen. There was a pattern I liked to follow when blessing homes in situations like these. Through the interview with the person or family I would determine where most of the activity was the strongest and start on the opposite side of the house. Cleansing each room one by one giving the entity no place to hide then finally going to the site of the strongest activity to finally cast it out. In this case I figured those locations most frequented by this spirit were the girls rooms especially Riley’s closet.

As I walked through the house I opened my mind feeling with my thoughts to pick any thing up. So far I felt there was definitely something here but that it was concealing itself from me. I use this ability cautiously so as not to come under a mental or spiritual attack. That is why when I first enter the home I guard myself and close my mind off to the spiritual until I feel I’m ready to confront it.

Making our way from the kitchen to the living room then down the hall and upstairs blessing every corner of every room and saying the prayer over and over. Zachary and I made it to the master bedroom. I entered it first with Zackary and his camera behind me. It was dark, none of the lights were on but I could see that the mattresses were knocked off the bed and their dresser was slid about two feet away from the wall. Again I began my prayer when an overwhelming feeling of nausea took hold of me and Zachary made a disgusted grunt sound.

“Ugh, you smell that Matt, it smells like someone took a shit in here.”

Zachary had just finished saying this when the door closed behind him. Now without the light coming in from the living room we were plunged into complete darkness. Zachary swung around to look at the door and said “Well, I think we found our guy Matt.”

I continued my prayer forcing myself to hold back the urge to vomit.

“In the name of the Father the Son and the Holy Ghost you are not welcome here. I rebuke you evil one in the name of GOD!”

“SHUT THE FUCK UP!”

An ancient voice blared inside my head. Zachary saw me flinch and sprinkled me with some holy water asking if I was OK. It helped, the nausea seemed to have disappeared after that.

“Thanks Zach, I needed that. There is definitely something here and it doesn’t like my praying.”

I continued and finished my prayer and blessed the room. At this point the only rooms left were the girls. We started with Meagan’s room. I entered with crucifix in hand I immediately got an impression of overwhelming hatred and animosity. It was so strong it was hard to breath. I could tell Zackary was feeling it to by the look in his face. As I began my prayer to bless the room we both audibly heard the mewling of a cat. Quiet at first and slowly grew in volume. Then the sound changed to that of an infant screaming in pain then a dog barking. I had had enough.

“YOU ARE NOT WELCOME HERE! IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT I COMMAND YOU TO DEPART!!” I bellowed.

Then there was silence but I knew it had not left, I could still feel that gut wrenching sense of dread. I finished blessing Meagan’s room and we headed back out into the hall to go to Riley’s bedroom. I could still hear the family downstairs in the living room praying together for our safety and their deliverance. I looked to Zachary who was still behind me filming and asked “Are you ready?”

Because now that this thing had nowhere else to go it was cornered and could be very dangerous for us.

“As ready as I’ll ever be.” Zachary replied with a tense smile on his face.

We entered Riley’s room and were immediately hit with an intense cold. We could see our breath and in moments we were shivering. Then the smell of excrement was assailing our nostrils so badly I had to cover my nose with my shirt sleeve and Zachary was gagging. The room was dark but everything seemed to be in its place. I didn’t have to be a medium to sense the anger and hatred this thing had for us, it wanted us dead. I lifted the crucifix to begin my prayer when we heard a deep guttural growling then the crucifix was violently slapped out of my hand across the room.

Zachary let out “Jesus, Mary and Joseph!!”

This was a bad sign. For a demonic presence to manipulate holy items it had to be very powerful. Then we heard laughing like that of a very old sick man as the closet door slowly opened. Zachary and I turned to watch as it opened about a foot and stopped while the laughing continued. I started praying again.

“You have no power here demon, in the name of God leave this house!”

I threw holy water on the door and it slammed shut. I ran to the door jerking it open and doused the interior of the closet with the holy water while invoking Gods name and commanding it to leave. After a moment I didn’t feel anything malevolent any more. I started to calm down and Zach came to my side.

“That was bad Matt but I don’t think this is over yet.”

“Me neither.” I told him.

“We have to get Father Flanagan in here as soon as possible.” He said.

We went back down stairs to go check on the family and they seemed frightened out of their wits.

I told them “I feel as if it’s gone for now.”

Mrs. Smith interrupted saying “You mean it could come back?!”

“Well, yes. I am not an exorcist and that is what I believe you need.”

Mr. Smith asked “I thought exorcisms were for people not places?”

I replied “An exorcism is a casting out. It can be done on places as well as people. I think you need one because what you had was something very dark and very powerful. I believe I may have temporarily drove it away but it is not completely banished. You need to really come together as a family at this point. Fill your house with love and prayers to make your home as inhospitable to the demonic as you can. I will be submitting everything we have documented plus your testimonies to father Flanagan so he can submit to the church a request for an exorcism. Now, I must warn you this may take some time.”

“What?! Time, we need this done now!” shouted Mrs. Smith.

“I understand your frustration Ma’am, but there is a whole process to this, the Catholic Church has to submit this to their leadership for approval. The good news is getting approval for an exorcism on a home is much easier and quicker than your traditional exorcism that you were thinking of.”

“How long?” Mrs. Smith asked looking at me with pleading eyes.

It was so hard to have to leave this family in this state. I could not imagine what this was like to go through but I had to submit my findings.

“Two to three weeks.” I said.

“TWO TO THREE WEEKS!” She exclaimed her husband Nolan grabbing her shoulders to calm her down.

“I am sorry but this is what it takes. Look, you have my number. If anything and I mean anything happens in that time call me and I will come back and in the mean time you will all be in my prayers.”

With that me and Zachary gathered our equipment and started loading it into the back of my car when I felt a tugging on the back of my shirt. I whirled around startled and I saw it was Riley.

“I just want to say thank you for getting rid of the monster in my closet. I feel safer now.”

I kneeled down so I could be eye to eye with her gave her a hug and said “your welcome sweetie I am so glad I could help you.”

The rest of the family was standing together on their front porch as Riley ran back to them.

“Like I said before do not hesitate to call me if anything happens.” I said.

“We will and thank you for what you did.” Said Nolan and they all waved and said goodbye.

Then we left, in the car Zachary was saying he had never documented anything like that before and how it really spooked him.

“This is why we have to get this to father Flanagan as quickly as possible.”

Early the next morning I was waiting in Father Flanagan’s rectory to meet with him. I had the voice recordings, the video evidence and my testimony waiting for his review.

“Good morning Matthew!” Father Flanagan said as he approached me. “So, what is it that you have for me today?”

“Let’s step into your office and I will show you. Father I believe this is a very serious case that warrants our utmost and immediate attention. Let me show you what Zachary and I documented.” I said.

“Oh, is it? Then let’s review” father Flanagan said as he guided me into his office. I played the tapes of the interview with the family and showed him the video footage of our walkthrough. When it was finished father Flanagan had a very serious tone.

“You’re right to be concerned Matthew; this is something truly diabolical.”

“Yes father but what really concerned me is the fact that Meagan did play with an Ouija board but the entity manifested multiple times in Riley’s room. On top of that it seems that both girls were being oppressed but only the mother physically saw it.” I said.

“This is concerning Matthew and while we know the demonic do typically follow some sort of a pattern sometimes there is no pattern at all. We truly cannot hope to fathom what goes on in the spiritual realm, this is not something that man was meant to understand. That is why we must rely on God and our faith but like you I do feel that there is something just below the surface to this.” Flanagan replied.

“Will you send this up for evaluation then, to get an exorcism approved?” I asked.

“Absolutely I will take it to them myself.”

“Thank you father”

“No Matthew, thank you. Thank you for what you are willing to go through to help people.”

With that I left his office knowing that this was in God’s hands now and silently prayed to myself for the Smith family as I walked back to my car. I called the Smith’s that afternoon to let them know what had happened. Nolan answered the phone.

“Hello?”

“Yes Mr. Smith this is Matthew Reynolds.”

“Oh, Matthew hey how are you?” He said sounding very happy to talk to me.

“I’m fine Mr. Smith I’m calling to let you know I talked to Father Flanagan and he agreed you need an exorcism and he said he would see to it himself that it gets approved as soon as possible.”

“That’s wonderful news Mathew, again thank you for everything you have done for my family. I will tell them.”

I replied “I will call again when I get word on the exorcism in the meantime remember what I said about family bonds and church.”

“Oh we will, we will Mr. Reynolds and thanks again.”

And then I said goodbye and hung up the phone and went home to get some much needed rest. It was two weeks later that father Flanagan phoned me to tell me the exorcism was approved. Excited, I immediately called the Smith’s. This time Mrs. Smith answered the phone.

“Hello Matthew I’m glad you called” she said after I told her who it was. She proceeded “That’s good news that the exorcism has been approved but I don’t think we will be needing it anymore, after what you had done for everything has been very peaceful here. The girls are back to sleeping in their own rooms.”

I cut her off at this point saying “Look Mrs. Smith I am very happy that things have been better but this really should be done. It is a way to guarantee that this won’t happen again. Right now this thing could be biding its time waiting to come back into your lives. I would highly recommend that we proceed as we have planned.”

She interject with “No, no that won’t be necessary anymore I believe we have been delivered from what was here and an exorcism just would be too much for the girls. All of us have been under a lot of stress because of this.”

I was getting a little impatient with this. The fact that they went through hell and were terrified and now refusing anymore help.

I said firmly “Mrs. Smith I’m telling you an exorcism is highly needed for your home, know that your family is still vulnerable. I can’t force you to let us do this but please for your family’s sake this should be done.”

In a calm and pleasant voice she replied “Mr. Reynolds I assure you that everything is fine and we will not be needing an exorcism anymore. Thank you for what you did and goodbye.”

She then hung up on me. I was astounded, Mrs. Smith seemed to be the most upset as to what was happening in her home and now this!? I was also getting angry at the fact that me and Zachary put our necks out there for them and then she hangs up on me. But I couldn’t force my way into their home to do this and without their permission we couldn’t do anything. Realizing my anger was getting the better of me I said a prayer and tried to calm down before I called father Flanagan to let him know there would be no exorcism.

Father Flanagan was as surprised as I was “This is upsetting Matthew but if the family does not want help all we can do for them is pray that God will continue to look after them.”

“I know father but I’m worried something just didn’t seem right about this. Not two weeks ago when I spoke to Nolan he was excited to have this done now nothing.”

Flanagan replied “It is frustrating to see someone turn away help that they need but I’m sure if anything happens they will reach out.”

“Father, I don’t know if this is anything but one thing that struck me throughout the conversation with Mrs. Smith was this uncomfortable feeling I had while talking to her. I don’t know what it was but the whole time I was having a hard time controlling my anger. It could have been the fact that we were denied but I don’t know maybe it was nothing.”

Father Flanagan replied. “So far Matthew, your insights have never lead you wrong but for now I would suggest praying about this and hopefully they will call back when they realize they need this.”

We said goodbye and I hung up the phone. That call did eventually come a little more than a month later. Nothing could have prepared me for what came next. It was around two in the morning when I was woken up to my phone ringing. Groggily I fumbled with it bringing the receiver to my ear

“H-hello” I said then had to pull the receiver away from my ear because the voice on the other end was so loud.

“Matthew Reynolds? It’s Nolan, Nolan smith. I’ve been trying to get ahold of you for the past three weeks. Oh thank God I finally got ahold of you.” He said in a trembling voice.

“What’s going on?” I asked while sitting up in bed while rubbing the sleep from my eyes.”

“You need to get back here, that thing is back and it’s gotten much, much worse!” Nolan was saying.

“Tell me what’s happened.” I asked.

“Not over the phone, I’m surprised I am able to talk to you as much as I am we need to meet up. Can you meet me at the Silver Star diner on 32nd?”

“Right now!? Its two a.m. Mr. Smith.” I said.

“Please Matthew we need your help!” As tired as I was I could tell by the urgency in Mr. Smith’s voice that he was scared and very serious. “I’ll meet you in about forty five minutes, OK?”

“Oh, thank you, thank you. Forty five minutes then, I will see you there.”

Hanging up the phone I slid off the bed. Went to my closet and started to dress. Fifteen minutes later I was on the road when my car suddenly lost traction and I almost went off the road. After I was able to gain control of the vehicle I pulled over and got out looking for any obvious signs of why that would have happened. My tires were fine, the weather was nice, so it wasn’t slick roads and I didn’t notice any potholes back there. With a wary feeling I climbed back in and started to drive. I was about five miles from the turn off to access 32nd street when it happened again. It felt like something large collided with the rear driver’s side of my car. I started fishtailing, thank God there was no one else on the road or I surely would have been in a wreck. Trying to regain control of the car I was swerving between both lanes when the wheels finally regained traction and was facing the guard rail and starting to head straight for it. I jerked the wheel to the left just in time and I side swiped the rail rather than a head on collision.

The crushing sound of metal on metal filled my ears as I jerked to a halt. Once I was able to catch my breath I came to realization this wasn’t just a freak accident that something did not want me going to meet with Nolan Smith and that what happened was a warning to stay away. This did discourage me and I was scared but this was also a sure sign that the Smith family really did need my help. So, cautiously I eased the car back into gear and very slowly made my way to the Silver Star diner to meet with Mr. Smith.

When I arrived I could see Mr. Smith inside through the window sitting alone at a booth. When I joined him at the table he started a little not seeing me approach and spilled some coffee on himself. I apologized as he cleaned it up.

I asked. “So, Mr. Smith can you tell me what’s going on?”

He looked at me for a while before he said “Well I’m not sure where to start.”

“How about you start from the beginning, you said it started up again and its worse now tell me how it started.” I told him.

He took a breath and began “Well, after you left everything was fine for about a week. I think it was seven or eight days after you left we were sitting down at the table eating dinner. It was a nice evening, my wife made meatloaf and mashed potatoes, everyone’s favorite. I was telling them about a joke I heard at work when my wife gasped. I looked at her and she was staring at Meagan. I followed her gaze and saw that my daughter’s hair was lifting up as if some invisible person was holding some of her hair in their hand. Meagan saw the way we were looking at her and asked what’s wrong. At that moment she was yanked backwards out of her chair by her hair and slammed into the wall. I couldn’t move at first I was in shock. My wife and Riley were screaming. Then Meagan was thrown to the floor and started jerking as if she was being kicked. That was when I got up and ran to her. When I was almost to her I felt something push my chest hard! I went stumbling back into the table almost knocking it over and spilling the food and drinks on the floor. I got up and lunged for Meagan. My wife grabbed Riley and was holding her and was crouching in the corner crying. I fell on top of Meagan to protect her while she was screaming. Then I felt as if someone very strong was kicking me. It was hitting me in the ribs, my legs, and arms. I was yelling for it to stop when I was struck in the head and everything went black.

When I came to I was on the couch. My wife had drug me there because according to her after I was knocked out it stopped. We had had enough at that point. I told them to pack and that we are going to a hotel. When I got up I almost fell over from the pain. My whole body was bruised. We made it to the Grand Stay inn about 20 miles from our house we checked in and went to our room. We were all tired and scared. We all slept together on the same bed when at around three in the morning I was woken up by screaming. It was my wife, Riley was floating about three feet off the bed. My wife and I tried to grab her but we couldn’t move her she was like a floating statue. She wouldn’t wake up either. Meagan was watching this crying standing in the corner of the room when she was slammed against the wall. Her feet were about a foot off the floor and she was pinned against the wall. I ran over to her, she was gasping like she was being choked and I could see indentations in her neck as if there were a hand there.

Mr. Reynolds I have never been so scared in my life. That was when the furniture flew away from the walls and toppled over then Riley fell back on to the bed and Meagan was released dropping to the floor. We all got the hell out of there. We drove around for hours not knowing where to go. All of our family is at least a ten hour drive away and we realized if this would follow us to the hotel it would follow us anywhere. At around six in the morning we were so tired we had to go home. When we went inside our house it was trashed. Furniture knocked over, our family pictures broken and ripped, there were several places where it looked and smelled as if someone had defecated on the floor. The worst part though was the writing on the walls.”

He looked away from me for a moment and I asked him about the writing.

He continued “It was everywhere in the living room, the hall, the bedrooms but it was the worst in both the girls rooms.”

I asked. ”What did it say?”

“It said horrible things like we were gonna die, how it owned her, blasphemies against God and the worst was the sexual things it had written in Meagan’s room. Like describing things it wanted to do to her how it was going to “sodomize the little whore” and much worse things I can’t bring myself to say. The worst part is some of the writing looked like it was written in blood and some of it looked and smelled of excrement. We cleaned it up as best we could, most of the words cleaned off easily except for those in Meagan’s room. No matter what we did they wouldn’t even fade. Nothing else happened for a couple days. But we wouldn’t go anywhere alone in the house not even to use the bathroom. We were so scared. That’s when I started trying to call you and Father Flanagan.”

I said “I never received a call and I don’t think the father did either.”

He came back with “I know because every time I tried It would just be static or I would hear growling or the phone just wouldn’t work at all. When I called anyone else like work or something it worked just fine it was only when my intention was to reach out for help that the phone didn’t work.” He paused as he drank deeply from his cup of coffee.

I asked “Mr. Smith, where is your family now.”

“They are at home.”

“You left them alone!”

I was shocked how he could leave them there.

He immediately came back with “I need to tell you the rest and besides I can’t do anything to stop this whether I’m there or not. My family’s only hope was to get you. I was so shocked that I finally got ahold of you on the phone I was worried we would be cut off any minute that I had to meet with you in person to convince you to come help.”

I said “Well I’m sure you need help and I will do my best, should we go now”

“Yes but there is a little more I need to tell you. Every night since the writing something would happen banging’s, scratches, we would hear all sorts of animal sounds. Meagan started having those nightmares again. We were all sleeping in the master bedroom together at this point. I would push furniture up against the door every night to barricade it. I learned this didn’t really affect it that it could have gotten us if it wanted to but it made us feel a little bit safer. Then one night Meagan started screaming.

“He’s on me, He’s on me!”

I got up and my fourteen year old daughter was on the floor fighting something I could not see. Her legs were then forced apart and her shirt was ripped open exposing her chest. I rushed to her and something hit me in the groin so hard I almost fainted and I laid on the floor in pain I tried to get up despite it but something stronger than I was, was holding me down. I could see finger indentations on my daughter’s breasts as if someone were squeezing them while she screamed. My wife ran up to fight whatever this was off our daughter screaming. Beverly was thrown across the room. She sprang back up so quickly and ran back to our daughter’s side screaming!

“Take me you bastard! You want to rape someone take me! Leave my daughter alone you shit!”

Suddenly my wife jerked back, head staring straight up at the ceiling and she started this guttural moaning as if she was struggling for air. I had to lay there and watch this happen to the women I love the most in this world and I realized, where is Riley I couldn’t see her from where I was. I knew she was in the room when this began but I couldn’t see her. Then Meagan started having a seizure or something like that then froze. My wife collapsed and I could suddenly move again. I heard whimpering from behind me and rolled over still in a great deal of pain and it was Riley. She had crawled under the bed, she was shaking with fear. I reached out to her and she crawled to me then I went to Meagan she was sobbing and curled up in a fetal position on the floor. I looked to my wife who was getting up, her face soaked in tears came to my side as well. We all stayed there huddled together like that for the rest of the night crying together and trying to pray and ask God why was this happening to us.” He finished with tears streaking down his face.

I told him “We need to get to your house right now, get up lets go, we will take my car!”

He looked up at me startled by my reaction and urgency in my voice and asked what it was.

“I told him I will explain on the way and that I think I may have figured this thing out.”

We left the money for the bill on the table and rushed out to my car. In my car I was going as fast as I could cautious about another attack on my car. We were about a twenty minute drive to the smiths house as I started to explain what I believed was happening.

“Nolan, I think you have a demon in your home.”

“No shit” he replied.

“Let me explain, first the scratching on the door in Riley’s room and the dreams with Meagan all signs of infestation and the pattern of the scratching are another sign of the demonic. Also throughout all your stories all these events only seem to happen at night.”

“Yeah? Your right.” Agreed Nolan.

“That is another sign of the demonic. Then Beverly seeing an old man in Riley’s room, the banging, the physical violence all signs of oppression. This is leading up to possession but the one thing that sets this demon apart is the overtly sexual nature of it. With Meagan’s dreams, with her attempted rape and the writing in her room and the writing in your house that said “I own her.” These attacks aren’t going to stop and they will get worse and worse until this thing gets what it wants.”

“Which you believed is my daughter?” Nolan asked.

“Yes but I’m starting to wonder now.” I said.

“Why is that?” Nolan asked.

“Nolan did you know a couple of weeks ago your wife called and told me to cancel the exorcism?”

“What! No she didn’t, why would she do that!?” Nolan asked.

“I’m not sure. You said your phone wasn’t working only when you tried to get help?”

“Yeah.” Nolan replied.

“Well, this is just a hunch; I would like to talk to your wife first but if this thing could manipulate your phone who’s to say it couldn’t manipulate it in other ways.”

“So are you saying this thing called you?”

“I don’t know yet that’s why I would like to talk to your wife because it’s either that or something much worse.”

“Like what” Nolan asked.

I didn’t want to frighten him anymore but he should know what I was thinking so I continued.

“Either it talked to me through the phone or it talked to me through your wife.”

Nolan looked as if he were about to say something and then I could tell he understood what I was implying and he turned to look out the window the rest of the ride to his house was silent.

Detective Karrus slid his chair back and stood up grunting.

“So you’re telling me this Demon called you on the phone? Much less all the other outstanding parts of your story!”

I looked at him for a while and said “you asked me to tell you what happened and I am. I am telling you everything that led up to the events of a couple hours ago and please go corroborate my story with Nolan smith if you don’t believe me.”

Karrus started pacing the room and said “look Mr. Reynolds I’m sure you understand how strange your story is and believe me I will be corroborating it with all the witnesses. While it is very interesting some of this is hard for me to swallow. Now, what disturbs me the most is I think you may be telling the truth or that you’re telling me what you believe is the truth. Throughout my years as a detective I’ve developed what I call my bullshit detector, I’m very good at reading people and you seem to believe what you’re telling me.”

He finished as he sat back down and took another drink of his coffee grimacing at the bad taste.

“look Detective, I am telling you what happened whether you believe me or not doesn’t matter; what matters is this happened and stuff like this happens more than most people would like to think. Now if you’re still interested may I continue? Because I would like to leave sometime soon.”

“OK I’m sorry for interrupting Mr. Reynolds” he said in a slightly sarcastic but friendly tone then continued.

“But Mr. Reynolds you will be permitted to leave when I say so and not any sooner. Please though continue your story.”

Irritated I crossed my arms and continued. We arrived at the Smith’s house at around three thirty in the morning. We entered the house to my surprise everyone was awake in the living room sitting on the couch. The house was still a mess and they all looked even worse for wear. They explained that it’s gotten so hard to sleep at night they took to sleeping during the day and even then sleep was scarce. I sat down with them and asked what had been going on. I got a recap of everything that Nolan had told me in the diner. Then I asked Mrs. Smith about the phone call.

“I never called you Mr. Reynolds there is no way I would have done that. I was scared why you weren’t coming back and how come we couldn’t get ahold of you.” She said

I asked her. “Mrs. Smith since the attack in your bedroom have you experienced any lost time or moments of confusion?”

“No nothing like that.”

I thought for a little while before going on.

“Mrs. Smith is there anything you haven’t told me? Because I’m getting the feeling that there is something missing.”

She looked at me for a while seeming to want to say something but not being able to so I asked her if we could speak in private, she nodded and we moved into the kitchen. She sat at the table and I saw there was a pot of fresh coffee she had brewed while waiting for me and Nolan to return. So I poured us each a cup and sat down to join her handing her a cup.

“Thank you.” She said.

Sipping the coffee while holding the mug tightly with both hands.

“Beverly, I have been troubled thinking about the events of your story. I feel like there was something more you wanted to tell me but couldn’t. You may have forgotten I am a medium so it’s kind of hard to keep things from me.”

I finished with a small smile that she returned. She looked at me then sighed.

“This is something I don’t like to talk about.”

I reached out and put my hand on hers I could feel it was shaking.

“This will stay between you and me if you want it to.”

“Please keep it between us.”

“I will.”

“Ok, well I believe I know what this is in our house.”

“Really?” I replied.

“With everything that has happened and what I have seen it’s become clear to me. I think this spirit may be my grandfather.”

Puzzled I asked her to elaborate for me.

She said “When I was a little girl my parents were split up and my mom worked full time at a factory, so I spent a lot of time with my grandfather, he would watch me for my mother. I didn’t like him at all.”

“Why was that?” I asked

“When he would hold me, he didn’t hold me like a grandfather should hold his granddaughter.”

“Oh, I see.”

“It started when I was six years and lasted until was twelve. My mom would drop me off while she was working and he would do things to me. At first it was small things like touching me he said it was a game then it got worse and worse. He told me if I told my mom I would be taken away and never see her again. I was little so I believed him. As I got older and started growing his advances were more and more grotesque. I’ve never told anyone this not even my husband, Mr. Reynolds please don’t judge me.”

“I would never judge you, you were an innocent little girl with an evil disgusting man who took advantage of your innocence. This was not your fault!” I said truly feeling sympathy for this woman.

She said “I haven’t finished yet. When I was twelve he brought to his room and raped me. It hurt so bad not just the physical pain but the fact that someone I should love and trust did this to me. After he was done he walked out of the room and was standing at the top of the stairs leading down to the living room. Something in me just snapped I got up and ran to him. He didn’t see me coming and wasn’t expecting it when I pushed him. He fell down tumbling over and over when he hit the bottom I heard a snap crunch sound and he just laid there. I couldn’t believe what I had done I was in shock. When my mom got home and found him there she called the police and it was ruled a household accident and no one even suspected me. They were more concerned with the fact that a little girl was in shock because she spent the better part of the afternoon alone in a house with a corpse. I never told anyone about the molestation I just tried to forget it until now. Can you see why I think this is him, he’s come back to torture my daughters because of what I did. The perverted things he’s written on the walls how I saw an old man with no eyes in Riley’s room. What he’s been doing to Meagan this is him and it’s my fault!”

She was sobbing now I got up and went to her trying to comfort her.

I said “Beverly listen, this is not your fault! What happened then wasn’t your fault and what happened now isn’t your fault! As for what you did in my opinion it was justified but if you’re concerned about this getting out don’t worry my lips are sealed.”

She had a convincing theory about what was happening in the house. I was almost convinced by it, I really wanted to believe her but something in my gut told me there was more to this. She looked at me and saw the look of doubt on my face, with that she jerked up angrily.

“Every sign points to him, that old bastard he ruined my life as a child and now he’s back to ruin it again! You have to believe me.”

I replied “Beverly I believe you! I believe your story about what’s happened to you but I think there is something more to this that something just below the surface. Are you sure there is nothing more you need to tell me?”

Before she could reply we heard Nolan scream from the living room. Me and Beverly looked at each other and raced out to see what was happening. What I saw next I will never forget. Nolan was on the ground struggling to get up like he was being pinned down. Riley was having what looked like a seizure. Meagan was on the floor on her back her legs held I the air up and apart and I could see a large black amorphous cloud in between her legs. I don’t think anyone else could see this black cloud thing that was on top of Meagan.

I was in complete shock I had never seen anything like this. My first thought was grab the holy water and to my horror I realized it was still in my bag by the front door on the other side of their large living room. Mrs. Smith screamed and ran for her daughter, I tried to grab her arm to stop her but her fear made her like a wild animal. It was pure maternal instinct driving her to protect her child no matter the risk to herself. She approached Meagan and something struck Beverly across the face and she stumbled back at this point I was darting across the living room to reach my bag when the black cloud turned to me and I felt something push me backwards, it was like running into a wall. Whatever struck me knocked the wind out of me. I could see Beverly crawling towards Meagan reaching for her, she was crying and pleading with whatever was there.

“Please don’t hurt my girl! What do you want? Don’t do this.”

I yelled to Beverly “Don’t talk to it, stay away from it Beverly!” she seemed to not hear me.

I struggled to my feet and again something struck me across the chest and I flew back about five feet this time colliding with Nolan who was still held down on the floor. Now the lights in the living room were flashing on and off and the sound of gale force winds were deafening in my ears even though the air was still. Beverly still crawling on her hands and knees towards Meagan and was still pleading with this entity.

“Don’t do this; what do you want from us?!”

That was when I heard it. I’m still not sure if it was an audible voice or just in my head but it was the most horrible voice I have ever heard. It was definitely masculine but ancient and harsh. After Beverly asking what it wanted in a deafening booming voice, it said “YOU!”

What happened next I could not believe. In a desperate and selfless act Beverly quietly said “Then take me, just leave my daughter alone.”

“NO!” I screamed because Beverly had no idea what she just did. Suddenly everything seemed to go silent. The howling wind sound was gone, the lights stopped flickering, I was able to get up, Riley stopped seizing and everyone seemed no longer affected by whatever invisible force was holding them. Meagan looked up at Beverley and said in a weak voice “Mom?” and Beverly collapsed. I rushed over to Beverly, Nolan was close behind me. I stood over her while Nolan picked her up. She seemed to be unconscious. Nolan was shaking her and she slowly started to wake. Seeing she was fine I went to check on the girls, both of whom seemed fine other than being scared. So far Meagan had not actually been raped but the intent was clear and each occurrence brought that possibility closer to reality.

Everyone was extremely scared including myself but upon checking on the physical wellbeing of everyone I rushed to get my bag which contained the holy water and immediately started blessing the house. I started with the family sprinkling them with holy water and saying a quick prayer for them and finished blessing the living room and kitchen when an overwhelming realization came to me. When this entity spoke it said “You” in regards to Beverly. So why was it focusing its sexual oppression on Meagan? Unless this oppression on the daughter was to destroy the mother in the process? That had to be it! But again this brought me back to why Beverly? The signs were there with her guilt about her childhood trauma but that didn’t seem like enough and Beverly was going to tell me something else before this event happened. I needed to find out what that was that she wanted to tell because I was starting to think that the answer was there, just out of reach.

I continued my blessing of the house very carefully. Doing this alone was foolish but I didn’t want another attack to happen to the family before I could ask more questions. When I was done blessing the house I returned to them in the living room and quietly thanked God that I didn’t get attack while performing the blessing. The Smiths were huddled together clearly scared out of their minds. Poor Meagan was rocking back and forth in shock. I sat across from them.

I said “OK we need to get an exorcist in here as soon as possible. This has gone beyond me, I am going to call Father Flanagan and see what he can do. Before I do I just need to take a moment and ask you something Beverly.”

She looked at me with a blank look on her face so I continued.

“Beverly you were going to finish telling me something in the kitchen. Do you remember what you wanted to tell me?”

She nodded still with a blank look on her face. She didn’t say anything so I pressed on.

“Please Beverly, what were you going to tell me?”

She seemed to be in a comatose like state, I was really worried about the consequences of her inviting this entity to take her and I needed this information before she was not in control anymore. I am not sure if she really understood what she had invited. I think she was just focused on saving her daughter but now I feared for Beverly’s soul. Because if this thing wanted her that was what it had to be after.

I realized I didn’t have time to interrogate her and it might not get me anywhere. I excused myself from the living room leaving the smith family crowded together on the floor. I made my way into the kitchen and called Father Flanagan. The sun was just coming up so I figured with most of the activity taking place after dark we were safe for at least the next eight to ten hours. That was when Father Flanagan answer the phone. I proceeded to tell him what Nolan had told me and about my near accidents. When I told him what Beverly had said and the events in the living room he was silent for a moment then said in a very serious tone.

“What is in that house is most certainly demonic and you should not have gone through the house by yourself. I fear like you do that Beverly’s soul is in danger. We must perform an exorcism immediately. The church already approved it once so we shouldn’t have too many problems getting authorization for this. I will call right now to speak to the bishop in my rectory about this. In the meantime Matthew I think it would be best if you maybe stayed with the family. You should come by the rectory to get any supplies you need and head back to the house to help keep the family safe but mostly I want you there to monitor Beverly.”

“What are you going to do?”

“I am going to prepare myself with a black mass”

“What!” I exclaimed.

“Father you can’t, your heart condition! I don’t think it’s a good idea.”

He sternly replied “Matthew this is not for you to decide besides I am the only priest in this rectory that has performed an exorcism before.”

“Every priest is ordained to perform exorcisms or why not get someone from another rectory to do this!?”

He sighed and said “Matthew, no one here has the experience and we don’t have time to summon someone else to do this. This rite needs to be done as soon as possible for the sake of Beverly and the smith family.”

Detective Karrus interrupted again saying “Hold on Mr. Reynolds, explain something to me I’m a little lost.”

“What don’t you understand?”

“Could you explain just what a black mass is?”

I answered “A black mass is something a catholic priest will do to prepare himself before an exorcism. It is three days of fasting and prayer to get your spirit right with God. To cleanse you of all sins and purify you before you confront evil. It would be very dangerous to confront a demonic entity without some sort of preparation. I myself go to confession before even examining a home or interviewing witnesses like I did with the Smith’s.”

Karrus replied “Oh, uh huh and father Flanagan insisted that he be the one to perform this and that he be there?”

“Yes” I answered.

“As much as I didn’t want him to I knew he was right no one else could have been the one.”

“And why is that?” the Detective asked.

“Because to be an exorcist you must be an extremely pious man of God. While every priest in the Catholic Church is ordained to do the ritual the church usually only has a select few that they assign the task to. Usually they are older, very saint like men.” I explained. Seeming to understand a little now the detective asked me to go on with my story, so I continued.

After getting the items from the rectory I would need. I returned to the Smith’s home. I brought with me several blessed crucifixes, plenty of holy water, and blessed salts. I also stopped and grabbed some groceries for lunch and dinner. I figured with all the stress that the family had been through it would be nice if I treated them to a nice meal. Besides, I have been told I’m a pretty good cook.

They were relieved to see me when I returned. When they saw to food they seemed very grateful but told me that I shouldn’t have. We went inside and cleaned up the living room and kitchen and dining room and I started to prepare dinner.

Riley asked if she could help and I said “Of course I would love your help. You can be my little sous chef.”

She asked “What’s a soup chef?”

I laughed and said “A sous chef is a helper to the chef.”

“Oh Ok, then yes I will be your Sous chef” she said.

I looked and saw the family was watching this. I couldn’t describe the looks on their faces. After what they had been through now they were all sitting in the dining room and almost seemed to be relaxed. I thought this is what they needed, some peaceful time together. I thought thank God for Riley, this little girl’s simple misunderstanding of a word seemed to lighten the entire mood of the house. That was when Nolan got up making sure Beverly was still OK. She was still quiet but seemed better than she did this morning.

Nolan asked “You need any more help there Matthew?”

I smiled at him and said “You know how to separate a chicken, wings, legs, thighs and breasts?”

“Sure” he said taking the chickens I handed him.

“So, what are you making?” asked Meagan.

I was surprised as she came slowly up to the counter. All the horrible events that took place and this girl wasn’t a complete wreck. I could still see that she was completely worn out and scared but my idea to help lighten the mood may have worked better than I thought. To give the family something to think about other than the horrors they have been dealing with may have been the port in the storm they were looking for.

I replied to Meagan’s question “It’s called coq au vin, it’s a French dish with chicken that’s braised in wine with mushrooms and other vegetables. It’s very good. My mother used to make it.”

Riley chimed in with “Yuck! I hate Mushrooms.”

I smiled at her and ruffled her hair and said “Well, you don’t have to eat them if you don’t want to.”

“Ok good.”

“Well its sounds amazing!” Nolan said bringing me the chickens he had cut up.

We all finished prepping the dinner together and while it was cooking we sat down at the dining room table, Nolan and I finishing what wine was left in the bottle.

Beverly had seemed to recover and with tears in her eyes said “This is nice, just to see everyone almost happy again. Thank you so much Matthew!”

I replied “I’m glad to see you’re feeling better Beverly can I get you anything.”

I was starting to get up when Nolan said “No, No Matthew I got it you’ve been busy enough helping us. Beverly what do you need honey?”

“Just some water would be nice.” She said.

As Nolan went to get the water I wanted to ask her what she wanted to tell me earlier but I really did not want to ruin the good mood that the family seemed to in.

Beverly seemed to have read my mind saying “Matthew, I think I’m ready to finish telling you my story.”

I leaned forward to speak to her quietly so the girls wouldn’t hear her and said “Are you sure? I don’t want you stress yourself out any more than you have to.”

With that Nolan came back and sat down asking what we were talking about. Beverly asked the girls to go check the food.

Meagan got up and took Riley’s hand saying “Come on Ms. sous chef lets finish the food.”

The girls got up and went to the stove when Beverly turned to Nolan and said “Nolan there is something I have never told you that I think it’s time you know. Because I believe it has something to do with what’s going on here.”

Nolan took her hand in his, sliding his chair up to hers. He looked very concerned. I too believed that what had happened to her as a child had something to do with this just not in the same way she believed. Beverly relayed the same story she told me to her husband. She covered the molestation and rape by her grandfather and eventually got to the part of the story where she had pushed him down the stairs. When she had finished Nolan had tears in his eyes and took Beverley’s face in his hands pressing his forehead against hers.

“Baby I’m so sorry, I had no idea. What happened is not your fault.”

She pulled away from him a little and said “But you see, it is my fault I think he has come back to punish me for what I did. He is doing to Meagan what he did to me. I saw the face of an old man in Riley’s room and you even heard a man’s voice in Riley’s room that night.”

Nolan was shocked “You’re right, it just adds up. That bastard is somehow back and he’s in our house. Matthew how do you think this is happening?”

I looked at them thinking how to tell them that I thought they were wrong and said “Look I know this seems to add up but from all the other evidence it seems that there is more to the story. Such as the way this thing operates is in a demonic fashion. Like with what I explained to you in the car Nolan. Also in the living room last night when Meagan was pinned down I saw a black shadow figure on top of her.”

Nolan interrupted me saying “We didn’t see anything like that!”

I replied “I know but you forget I have gifts and sometimes I can see these things. Now I don’t know if this was just my gift or if this thing chose to reveal itself to me. I think it might have been the latter, that this thing wanted me to see it like that just to create more confusion. Because this strategy also points to the demonic. Everything that has happened with what you all you have seen and Beverly’s history all could tie together in a way that we haven’t quite figured out yet. I do believe there is a connection but just not in the way you are thinking because again this is a distraction of the demonic. Think about it with the way Riley and Meagan seemed to be the targets then just last night when you spoke to this thing it said it wanted you. That’s another thing Beverly, I don’t think you know how serious it was to give it permission for it to take you. Especially since we now know you were the target and you gave it permission to have you.”

After I finished Beverly asked “But why would it torture the girls if it just wanted me?”

I answered “Like I said before about the three stages of demonic attack the infestation and then oppression which leads to the ultimate goal of possession. This thing was oppressing Meagan and Riley but it would only happen when you were there to witness it. What better way to wear down the will of a parent than to torture their children in from of them. This is the evil game that they play. What brought this into your house may very well have been Meagan’s Ouija board experience but it could have been a multitude of other things. The thing that’s really important is we now know what it was here for and I’m sorry to say it but that thing is you, Beverly. That is why Father Flanagan is preparing as we speak to perform an exorcism not just on your house anymore but also on you.”

They were quiet for a moment seeming to absorb what I had told them when Beverly said “I don’t feel possessed. I mean if I were possessed would I not be in control of myself right now?”

I answered “It’s never the same in any situation but you gave it permission to take you so it could be biding its time or you may already be possessed and it just hasn’t manifested yet. Then there is transient possession where the entity can only control you for short lengths each time gaining more and more control until it has complete control but I don’t think that is the case.”

Nolan asked “Why don’t you think that?”

I answered “Because she gave it permission. It can now come as it pleases, while transient possession usually starts during the oppression stage.”

Nolan asked “Is there a way to know when she is possessed?”

I answered “That depends on if it wants to show itself I mean there is a test but I don’t want to draw it out without father Flanagan here.”

Beverly looked as if she wanted to cry Nolan was getting frustrated “We need to know. I mean why can’t we just find out now?”

I replied “Because one, It could be very dangerous for everybody. Two, I am not an exorcist and I don’t know if I could control the situation. Things could go bad very quickly. Three, this would be most dangerous for Beverly because the test would be provoking this thing to show itself making it very angry. So all in all we need Father Flanagan.”

They didn’t seem satisfied but that is all they were going to get from me. There was no way I was going to provoke the demonic by myself risking the safety of the family when I didn’t have to. Yes the situation was very serious and I secretly believed that Beverly was already possessed but I didn’t want to make things worse. I had an idea in mind but I didn’t know how they were going to take it. Right now though, this family was in the calm before the real storm and they deserved the peace even if it was going to be short lived.

Then the girls came back to the table saying “Dinner should be just about ready, so let’s eat!”

Watching them as they began to set the table a thought came to my mind that at least now that this thing seemed to have what it wanted maybe the girls would be left alone. Every one enjoyed the food as we ate together. There wasn’t much conversation at the meal it seemed that they were just enjoying the silence with only the noise of silverware on glass plates in the air. After the meal I pulled Beverly and Nolan aside while the girls were cleaning up and proposed my idea. I knew they weren’t going to like it but I felt it was necessary for everyone’s safety and I wasn’t going to take no for an answer.

“Absolutely not!” Nolan said predictably and continued “I will not tie my wife up like a prisoner after what we had been through how could you even suggest that!”

I said trying not to get angry “It’s because of what you have been through that it needs to be done! Beverly literally gave this thing permission to possess her which is obviously what it wanted the whole time! You think that now that it got what it wants it is just gonna leave! This thing could manifest at any time when we aren’t expecting it. It could come while we are sleeping and make her do anything. It’s not gonna just sit quietly the rest of her life, these things are evil and just want to hurt us.”

Nolan retorted “No, No and NO! This isn’t gonna happen”

I said in a yelling whisper so I could make my point but the girls wouldn’t hear me “This thing can and probably will try to hurt your wife and your daughters using your wife’s body! Do you want that to happen!?”

He began to say something but it just came out as a kind of grunt obviously finally understanding my point but not wanting to admit it.

Then Beverly with tears in her eyes said “OK Mr. Reynolds I’ll do it. For my daughter’s sake.”

Nolan said “No Bev we don’t.”

She interrupted him saying “Yes we do. I understand Matthew is looking out for yours and my safety.”

With that Nolan didn’t say anything else. An hour later we had Beverly tied to her bed in her bedroom. Her hands and ankles were secured to her bedposts with bed sheets used as makeshift ropes. The girls were upset by this but Nolan did his best to explain that this was for “Mommies” good. She had to stay like that for two days and nights waiting on Father Flanagan to arrive. We would untie her only when she needed the bathroom and so she could eat. During those moments I was on edge and ready for anything but to my surprise nothing much happened and I was starting to doubt my belief and think that my decision to do this to this innocent women was misguided and wrong.

I hadn’t been able to reach Father Flanagan because of his Black Mass he had isolated himself in preparation for the exorcism. So by the second night with Nolan and the girls complaining about keeping Beverly tied up like an animal and no one to talk to, to reassure me I was heavily doubting my resolve. I went into the Smiths Master bedroom to speak to Beverly. I sat on the chair next to her bed and she just looked at me. I could tell she was tired of this too but she had never complain. I took a breath and said “Beverly, look I’m sorry this had to be done to you. I’m not even sure if it was the right thing to do. I wish I could let you go but I.”

she interrupted me in a very pleasant and calm voice saying “Matthew it is OK you are doing what you deemed as best for my safety and my family’s I truly appreciate everything you have done but if you could do me one favor?”

I asked “What is it?”

“Could you please untie me so I could use the restroom?” she said with an embarrassed look on her face.

“Oh uh yeah of course let me get Nolan.”

She replied “No that won’t be necessary and it’s pretty urgent.”

I said “OK but I can’t leave you alone, you know just in case.”

She said “Don’t worry about it but please hurry it’s pretty urgent.”

So I reached over and untied her and walked with her to the bathroom I stood outside as she entered and closed the door most of the way. That was a rule we had; no locked door between us and her so she couldn’t hurt herself if something happened. I waited outside the bathroom feeling a bit awkward because usually Nolan would be doing this.

When in a calm voice she called my name saying “Matthew could you come in here for a moment?” with the tone in her voice I figure maybe she just needed some help reaching for something, it sounded totally innocent.

I stepped inside the bathroom and gasped. Beverly was naked sitting on the toilet facing me with her legs spread and violently clawing at her inner thighs. I tried to step out, I stumbled backward and tripped over her robe that was on the floor it got tangle between my feet. I fell landing hard on my tail bone. She stood up from the toilet and started walking towards me. The way she was moving terrified me. She wasn’t moving like a normal person but more like a marionette doll being picked up and moved across the bathroom by an unseen puppeteer.

As she moved toward me she was saying “What’s the matter Matthew don’t you like me? Don’t you like girls?”

She fell across me grabbing at my clothes and I screamed as loud as I could “Get off me! In the name of God get back!”

She reached out and began to strangle me. I tried to push her off but she was incredibly strong. She started to laugh in a deep man’s voice.

She said “You think your god can save you! He is not here it is only me and you Matthew. Now why don’t you be a man and fuck me! You know you want to. Give this bitch what she deserves!”

Just then Nolan apparently hearing my scream burst into the bathroom yelling “What the fuck is this!?”

Beverly let me go and lunged at Nolan knocking him to the ground while she screamed like an animal. I was gasping for breath I had almost passed out from being strangled. I rolled to my side so I could get to my knees I could see Beverly and Nolan wrestling on the floor of the bedroom. It was obvious she was overpowering him. I got up and grabbed Beverly’s robe ran up behind her while she was straddling Nolan and wrapped it around her chest and arms. I pulled as hard as I could pinning hers arms to her chest while Nolan got up and tackled her. Beverly was screaming so loud I thought my ears would bleed.

I had her arms pinned and Nolan was grabbing for her legs while Beverly was thrashing about cursing and kicking. She landed multiple solid blows on Nolan’s body. In a rush of adrenaline he was ignoring them just focusing on restraining her. He finally got a hold of her and we hoisted her onto the bed. I was losing my strength just trying to keep her still took every ounce of effort I could manage. After about ten minutes we had one hand and one foot tied to the bed. Both Nolan and I were exhausted I jumped on to Beverly’s left leg to in it so Nolan could tie it and she bucked me off like I weighed nothing.

I fell off the bed slamming my head into the hard wood bed post. I felt blood flowing down my forehead from where it had been hit. Beverly was laughing and suddenly stopped struggling. Nolan without hesitation finished tying her up. Beverly was still laughing while looking at me and said in that same deep masculine voice.

“What’s the matter Matthew did you hurt yourself” then laughed hysterically.

Barely able to get up from being so exhausted I had Nolan help me tie another sheet around her midsection and the entire bed just for added security because she was so strong I knew if she really wanted to she could have ripped off the arm and leg restraints. Nolan and I backed away from her towards the door to the bedroom while Beverly smiled and stared at us; her head gliding back and forth like that of a cobra. We left the room and shut the door both our chest heaving from exhaustion.

Nolan said panting “What the hell just happened?”

I replied in a breathless voice “It finally revealed itself to us.”

Nolan asked “So what were you doing in the bathroom when I came in?”

I didn’t have to be a medium to tell he was upset seeing his naked wife on top of me.

I told him “Look I was doubting my decision on tying her up so I came to talk to her about that. To apologize really, I think this thing knew that if it bided its time it would cause even more problems than if it had revealed itself from the start. It wanted us to think that restraining her was a mistake it was waiting for our guard to be down and it worked. She asked to be untied so she could use the bathroom. Like an idiot I let her go and she tricked me.”

Nolan asked “But why was she naked?”

I sighed “She was exposing herself to me when she asked me to come into the bathroom. That is when she attacked me. Nolan I’m sorry I should have gotten you.”

He said “Damn right you should have gotten me!” he paused and sighed then continued “Look, I’m sorry it’s just I don’t know. Yeah I don’t like the fact that you were in there with my naked wife but what I mean is you should have gotten me because of how you were preaching to us about safety and then you let your guard down and you were attacked. What if she had gone after my kids?”

I said “I know Nolan you’re right. I did let my guard down and made a foolish mistake. I fell right into what this thing wanted. This is what it wanted to trick us into thinking everything was fine but now that its showed itself we need to be very careful about what we do from now on.”

Nolan looked away for a second then looked into my eyes and said “If you could be fooled. You’re the only one here who has had experience with these things and you’re a medium. If you could be fooled what hope do we have and how can I believe anything you say?”

He looked at me waiting for my response I honestly was at a loss. I was the one they looked to in their time of need. The one person who had he answers for them and now I was the one who was tricked. This thing is powerful enough to blind me to it. I couldn’t sense the danger when I should have been able too. I understood Nolan’s frustration I was upset too. But, I knew this is what that thing in that room wanted. For us to fall apart, to create discord among us. I was this family’s hope and now they couldn’t rely on me. On that thought I had a realization. That this family was putting all their hope on me when I was not the answer. The answer that they need was to rely on God. I had sinned with pride thinking I was their hope in this when I was not. The realization created a sinking feeling in my chest I felt guilt and shame but I knew what needed to be done.

I looked at Nolan and said “I have failed you, I have failed myself. I made the mistake of letting you think that I am what you need that my words and guidance will get you through this. We need God’s help. We have to have faith because faith in God is the only thing that will help your wife at this point. Faith that Father Flanagan will be able to help.”

Nolan said “I hope your right Matthew, for my wife’s sake, I hope your right.”

With that he turned to the door and entered the room grabbing another blanket off the dresser and covered his wife’s nakedness. She was still just staring and smiling doing the head movement. As Nolan came out of the room he said “Don’t let the girls know about this. I will keep them away from here but don’t tell them.”

Then he turned without waiting for a response and went downstairs to the living room. I stood there and started to pray. I prayed for forgiveness and for Beverly and for the family when I heard Beverly in the room say “Matthew, you know that won’t do any good. She is mine and I don’t plan on letting her go. Tell that Damned priest to go fuck himself.”

With that I walked downstairs knowing not to converse with the demonic. It was an awkward silence in the living room when I entered it. We only had to make through one more night before Father Flanagan would be here. I was nervous, now that this thing had revealed itself and it knew what was coming what it would try to do. The girls were sitting by the coffee table playing go fish and Nolan was on the couch drinking some coffee.

He said “Just made some, it’s in the kitchen if you want any.”

“Thanks.”

I went to the kitchen to get myself a cup and something told me it was going to be a long night. I checked my watch it was already nine forty. I sighed and poured myself a cup and headed back into the living room sitting down adjacent to what was left of the Smith family. I must have dosed off because when I woke up I was after three in the morning. I woke up to the girls screaming. When I came to Meagan and Riley were screaming holding each other huddled up against the couch. I could see that Nolan had been sleeping on the couch from the blankets and pillows on it but he was nowhere to be seen.

I asked “Where’s your dad?”

Meagan pointed up stairs and that’s when I heard it. A loud banging like something heavy slamming against the floor over and over. Then I could hear yelling in a man’s voice that wasn’t Nolan’s. It was saying in a guttural tone.

“She is mine! I won’t let her go I am taking what is promised, she is mine!”

It was repeating that over and over. I got up to go find Nolan I told the girls to stay where they were and went upstairs. The door to the master bedroom was open and I could see Nolan in the door way. He was crying. I walked up to him and put a hand on his shoulder and he jumped. I looked in the room and could see where the banging was coming from. The bed was lifting about two feet off the ground and slamming to the floor again and again. Beverly was flopping up and down on the bed as it bounced and she was screaming with that voice still repeating those words. I ran downstairs and grabbed my bag with the holy water and raced back up to the bedroom and started sprinkling Beverly with the holy water invoking God’s name. The bed stopped bouncing and Beverly screamed then she sat straight up with her arms being bent backwards at an unnatural angle due to the restraints. Her face wasn’t hers anymore. A look of pure evil and hate had replace it.

She spit at me and said “Fuck you and your priest! The bitch is mine, she was promised. I will kill her before I let her go.”

Again I threw holy water on it and said “In God’s name be quiet and leave this family in peace!”

Beverly retorted in that horrible voice “You can’t help her, you can’t help anyone you…”

Another dousing of holy water cut off what she was about to say.

I turned to Nolan and said “Get downstairs with your girls and start praying, if you want to help then do as I say. Nolan reluctantly turned and then paused and said “Help her Matthew.” Then he left.

I turned back to Beverly and started praying while still occasionally sprinkling her with holy water. She would start to scream and I would spray the holy water and pray. It went on like this for hours then finally she sat still just looking at me I did not want to talk to it because honestly it scared me and it knew that. But besides that you should not ever engage in conversations with the demonic. They are master liars and can bring up events and memories that are hurtful and shameful to you.

Finally in a raspy crooning voice it said “Someone is going to die soon. Would you like to know who?”

I ignored it and continued praying while it sat there smiling.

“I can tell you but only if you keep it a secret just between us.”

I still tried to ignore it.

It continued “You can’t win and neither can your priest that you have so much faith in! She was promised, she is mine!”

She threw herself back on the bed and started sobbing and in Beverly’s voice said “Matthew, help me. It hurts, where’s Nolan and Meagan and Riley. Aaagh it hurts help me!”

Then with its voice changing back into the demons it started to laugh again. I continued to pray but feeling exhausted I didn’t know how much longer I could go on. After what seemed like an eternity in this room I noticed the sun was coming up and that Beverly had seemed to go to sleep. I finished my prayer and went downstairs. The girls were asleep but Nolan was awake on the couch. I told him that Beverly was sleeping.

“Thank God.” he said.

He was just staring into space. He seemed to be in shock and who could blame him. All I wanted to do was sleep but I knew there was more to do. I grabbed another cup of coffee and called Father Flanagan’s rectory.

“Hello.” Said his secretary.

“Hi, it’s Matthew Reynolds, is Father Flanagan there I really need to speak with him.”

She replied “Oh, Matthew hello he just left. I believe he was heading to the Smith’s house to see you.”

I thought finally things seem to be going in our favor. I said “Thank you I guess I’ll just wait for him then.” With that we hung up the phone and I went to wait for the Father in the living room. About twenty five minutes later he showed up. Nolan and I greeted him at the door and Nolan offered him coffee as we went to the living room.

“No, thank you Mr. Smith that won’t be necessary.” As father Flanagan saw the girls he greeted them. “Hello girls I hope you are doing fine, well, as fine as can be expected.”

They both did their best to smile but it looked more like a grimace.

He continued “I know you don’t know me but I am Father Flanagan and I’m here to help you and your mother.” He turned to me and asked “So, Matthew what has happened since you’ve been here?”

I ushered him into the kitchen so the girls wouldn’t hear and Nolan came in behind us. We all sat at the table and I relayed everything that has happened. The details about her grandfather he found most intriguing I then told him about what took place the night prior and about how multiple times it had said “she was promised, she is mine.” The look on the old priests face changed to that of dark concern. He sighed and leaned forward on the table and began.

“I have been praying and fasting the last three days and preparing myself for what is to come. I hope you all have done the same as best as you could. I would highly recommend, no I require each individual who is going to be present to go through confession before we go any further. You see the demonic have access to things past and future they know your deepest darkest secrets and will use them against you. But through experience we have found that sins that have been confessed have been wiped clean form your soul and demonic have no more access to that knowledge and therefore cannot use them as a weapon. So every here will need to make confession before we proceed. But before that let me tell you gentlemen what I believe we have abiding in your home. The evil entity hear is an incubus. A sexual oppressor of women. This unholy thing came into your house and started its attack on your eldest daughter. This was a ruse to make you think she was the target. These attacks were to break down the will of your wife, Beverly. What better way to do that than to attack her children in front of her. It continued this until she had given it permission to take her. Then with what happened to you in the bathroom last night Matthew, another sign of this things sexual perversion. Yes this beast was coming on to you but it was making Beverly do something she still would never have done. To cheat on her husband. Again this leads back to sexual oppression.”

Nolan interrupted saying “So, this thing just wants my wife for what? To use her for sex?”

Flanagan replied “No, it wants to corrupt and take her soul. The sexual nature of its attacks is just how this thing operates. The ultimate goal of the demonic is the destruction of man. Now that this thing has Beverly it isn’t going to let her go easily especially since this thing says she was promised. That is another mystery entirely, Nolan I would suggest you get your girls out of the house immediately. Do you have anyone you can call to take them?”

Nolan thought a moment and said “Yes, Beverly’s friend Elizabeth I can call her and ask her to take the kids. What should I tell her? I can’t really tell her what is happening. And will the girls be safe there, this thing has followed us to other places.”

Flanagan said “This thing has what it wants now. I believe your daughters and your friend will be fine. Just tell her you have an emergency and need her to take the girls for a while a couple days at most.”

“A couple days!?” Nolan asked.

“Yes, these things can take quite some time or no time at all. That all depends on the strength of the demon and how much fight it puts up, but please Nolan make the call.”

Nolan reluctantly walked over to the phone and made the call.

Flanagan said “Well I can start with your confession now Matthew.”

I made my confession to him then Nolan came back saying “Well she was confused and worried, started asking a lot of questions. I just told her Beverly was really ill and she agreed. I will have to drop them off though as she doesn’t have a car to come get them.”

“That’s fine, but first I’ll take your confession Nolan.” Said Flanagan.

I left the kitchen to give them privacy. After some time the priest and Nolan came out and the priest took the girls confessions while Nolan packed their things. The girls were not at all happy about leaving there mother but I could sense relief in that them that they were getting to leave the house. Nolan and the girls left with Nolan saying he be back in about twenty minutes. With that Father Flanagan started to prepare for the battle ahead. He donned his purple shawl and gathered the holy water vials, some crucifixes, the bible, and his book for the exorcism. This book contained the prayer of exorcism which called on all the angels and saints for help during the procedure. He walked through the house blessing every room except the one containing Beverly with holy water and prayers just as he had finish Nolan had returned.

He asked “So what do you need me to do?”

Father Flanagan replied talking to the both of us. “You must pray, do not talk with it, do not pay attention to anything it says. This thing is a liar and will tell you anything to unnerve or make you doubt your resolve. I am the only one that will speak directly to it. I may need you to help restrain her, to prevent her from hurting herself but do not touch it until I say so.”

Nolan said “That “It” you’re talking about is my wife”

“I’m sorry Nolan but while that is your wife’s body what we are about to confront is anything but your wife. You would do well to remember that.”

We all started to head up stairs. I was thinking how quiet it was it wasn’t just quiet it was more like a vacuum of sound. I couldn’t hear the stairs creaking under our feet or the rustle of clothes as we walked. There was just a complete and utter silence. We approached the door to the room, I honestly did not know what to expect. This was the first time I had ever been part of an exorcism and I knew that you would never know what to except no matter how many you have done. It was that variable of unknowing that frightened me the most. I prayed for courage as father Flanagan open the door. The smell that wafted out of the room was nauseating. An overpower stench of human excrement and rotten eggs.

On the bed Beverly was sitting up wide awake. How long had she been awake I thought or had she ever really gone to sleep. She smiled at us as we entered. I could see where the smell was coming from or at least some of the smell. She had defecated on herself while lying in bed. She slowly looked us over one by one making eye contact with father Flanagan last.

On meeting his gaze it said in that horrible voice “look who finally showed up. The false priest, the foolish psychic, and the impotent husband. What a band of useless men you are.”

Father Flanagan roared in a deep voice that shocked even myself “QUIET DEMON! IN THE NAME OF GOD THE SON AND THE HOLY GHOST STILL YOURSELF!”

Beverly shrank back a bit and then laughed. Nolan and I were on either side of the bed holding our crucifixes and praying while father Flanagan took his place at the foot of the bed with an aspergillum in one hand and book of exorcism in the other. Then it began; the battle between the forces of good and evil for the immortal soul of Beverly Smith.

Father Flanagan began “Prayer to saint Michael the archangel in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost, Amen”

Beverly began to groan with Flanagan continuing “Most glorious Prince of the Heavenly Armies, Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in our battle against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, against the spirits of wickedness in the high places”

The lights in the room began to flicker and I noticed even though it was still morning it was dark in this room. It might as well have been midnight. Beverly thrashed out at Nolan and Father Flanagan splashed her with holy water as he steadfastly continued his prayer.

“Come to the assistance of men whom God has created to His likeness and whom He has redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil.”

Beverly started to convulse thrashing her body and shaking her head violently from side to side. This went on for the next hour Father Flanagan praying and dousing her in holy water and Beverly thrashing. After Father Flanagan finished the prayer for the third time he said “What is your purpose here Devil?”

Beverly just stared and growled at him.

Again he asked with force “Speak demon, what is your purpose here?”

She groaned “She is mine, she was promised, I will not let her go!”

The priest not losing any resolve said “Who promised this child of God to the likes of you?”

Beverly screamed in a guttural tone so loud that it seemed to shake the walls “SHE DID! SHE DID! She is MINE!”

All of us in the room had a look of surprise on our faces. Father Flanagan Continued to question it. I was thinking when she could have promised herself to it. Did it mean in the living that night or was it some other time and Beverly never mentioned anything like that. Could this thing be lying? But when commanded in the name of God I thought they had to speak the truth. I just didn’t know.

Father Flanagan’s questions continued “When did she promise herself to you?”

It responded “She sought my help.”

“For what did she seek your help?” there was no answer.

Again he demanded “For what did she seek your help?”

Beverly groaned it almost sounded like the croak of a frog. Then she said in that croaking voice “To stop him, she wanted a friend. She sought me out. She reached out and I came to her. We spoke together. I told her I could make it stop.”

Father Flanagan asked “Stop who?”

Beverly Bellowed “Her pedophile grandfather. I killed him but Beverly promised!”

It was coming together. I was finally beginning to understand.

Father Flanagan said “Beverly promised what?”

Again she screamed so loud I thought my eardrums would burst “Her Soul! You fool, she is mine! I CLAIM MY DEBT!”

Nolan said “Dear God!”

I could tell that he had maybe pieced it together as well. Father Flanagan continued with his prayers dousing her with holy water as she screamed and wailed like an injured animal.

“The Holy Church venerates you as her guardian and protector; to you, the Lord has entrusted the souls of the redeemed to be led into heaven. Pray therefore the God of Peace to crush Satan beneath our feet, that he may no longer retain men captive and do injury to the Church.”

This lasted until after midnight all of us exhausted and the demon showing no sign of relenting. Father Flanagan called for us to leave the room and rest. We went down stairs Nolan collapsed on the couch and started weeping. I couldn’t imagine what he was going through. I went to try to comfort him but I noticed Father Flanagan rubbing his chest and then taking some pills trying to be subtle. After I consoled Nolan as best I could, I approached Flanagan and said “Is it your heart? Are sure you should be doing this? I asked you about this before to try to find someone else!”

He turned and smiled at me saying “Matthew you know I am the only one who could do this that was available in the time we needed this done. Besides this is in God’s hands.”

I sighed I was irritated; he knew his heart couldn’t take much and the stress of this especially after his three day fast, this could very well kill him I thought. Realizing arguing with him was useless and would only make things worse I told him “Father I believe I have figured out why this thing took Beverly.”

Both Nolan and Flanagan looked at me. Nolan seemed desperate for an answer while Flanagan looked at me in a more questioning way.

I said “See so we know this thing is an incubus and feeds off the sexual oppression of women. We know Beverly was sexually assaulted when she was a child. This thing said that Beverly invited it to help her. Now, she told us that she had pushed her grandfather down the stairs and killed him after he raped her. This thing says that it did this as part of some sort of pact she made as a child. Think about it, a little girl with no one to turn too. She’s been abused and no one will help then this thing comes to her as a friend probably slowly inserting itself into her life. Making her think it’s the good guy. It was probably drawn to her by the sexual oppression in her life or maybe she had played with an Ouija board or something like that but either way this thing shows up and befriends this little girl. Offers her a way to make this stop but for a price, with her being a child she doesn’t know the danger or understand the consequences of this and agrees. The demons end of the pact is carried out with the death of her grandfather and now it’s back for payment. Even how she was convinced that this was her grandfather coming back for revenge; this was all part of its ruse and I don’t know if she just forgot about these events or if this thing made her forget or if she just didn’t tell us but to me this just makes sense.”

Nolan agreed that it seemed logical and father Flanagan reminded us saying “Remember Gentlemen, these things are liars! You don’t need to get carried away with why or how. I only ask those questions to see if this thing was brought here by a curse or by some other form of invitation and when the demon starts to give information it is a sign that it is giving ground in the fight. Even if the information is lies. That is why I told you to not heed anything it says. While Matthew you may very well be correct and yes it does seem logical we must focus on her salvation not on her damnation.”

I sighed and said “Your right I just think this information might be useful in some way or another.”

He said “You’re not wrong to want to get to the root of this Matthew. It’s OK but right now we need to focus on the fight that we are in for this family’s sake. For right now though we should get some rest.”

We all agreed to eat and take a short nap. I woke to the sound of screaming from upstairs. It was Beverly in her own voice screaming in pain begging for it to stop. We all rushed up the stairs and when we entered the room we could not believe our eyes. Beverly was on the bed writhing in pain, her skin on her abdomen was red and her stomach was protruding out as if she were nine months pregnant. Then the swelling would go down until her stomach looked normal and then again swell up.

Nolan ran to her side and she looked at him with tears in her eyes begging him to help her. Before Flanagan or I could do anything he started to untie her hands yelling at us to help. The moment her hand was free the look on her face contorted from that of a terrified woman to a monstrous animal. With her free hand she reach out and grabbed the back of Nolan’s head and brought it to her face and started biting his cheek. Blood gushed out as she tore flesh from his face. She turned to us and spit out a good size chunk of Nolan’s left cheek and laughed. She released him and he fell to the floor clutching his face. I threw myself at her to try to restrain her left hand and tie it to the bed again but her strength was incredible. Father Flanagan doused her with holy water and held a crucifix to her face and she recoiled back into the bed. It was only because of that that I managed to tie her hand again. I took Nolan into the bathroom to clean his wound. It was gruesome, luckily the bite didn’t go all the way through nor did it get to the muscle never the less it was painful.

When I poured the peroxide on it Nolan cursed and punched the wall putting a fist size hole in it. They had a small first aid kit in there bathroom cupboard and I packed the wound with gauze and taped it up. Nolan then swallowed a handful of Motrin and we returned to the bedside were father Flanagan was performing the rites of exorcism. This went on for two weeks. We would perform the exorcism praying and dousing her with holy water and pressing crucifixes on her head and body and it just wouldn’t let up we would get to the point of exhaustion and need to take small breaks but the each time we rested the demon would continue to attack Beverly. By either making her hurt herself or producing stigmata like that of her stomach distortions to bring us back. All of us were completely worn out but I feared not only for Beverly who had not eaten or drank anything but for father Flanagan whose heart condition was wearing on him with every passing moment. I prayed this would be over soon. It was the fourteenth night of this horrific event we were eight hours into this round of exorcism. Father Flanagan continued his prayer.

“In the Name of Jesus Christ, our God and Lord, strengthened by the intercession of the Immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Blessed Michael the Archangel, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul and all the Saints. And powerful in the holy authority of our ministry, we confidently undertake to repulse the attacks and deceits of the devil. God arises; His enemies are scattered and those who hate Him flee before Him. As smoke is driven away, so are they driven; as wax melts before the fire, so the wicked perish at the presence of God.”

Beverly was now throwing herself up and down on the bed rising up to the point that the restraints would bend her arms backwards at unnatural angles and slamming back down on the bed. The speed at which this was happening was so fast it seemed as if I was watching this in some sort of fast forward imagery. Nolan and Myself continued praying and would touch her with the crucifixes as we were instructed by father Flanagan. Father Flanagan was commanding this devil to leave in the name of God when Beverly starting arching her back upwards. She kept rising and rising to the limits of the restraints she was almost bent in half with her pelvis straight up in the air and her head bent so far back that it almost touched the backs of her thighs.

In that guttural voice she started chanting something in another language. It may have been Latin or Sumerian or some language that was never spoken on earth by man. I couldn’t tell but it had the cadence of a language. Father Flanagan kept praying and dousing her in holy water while she stood bent backwards on the bed. She then said in English as she turned her head in an eerie way to look the priest in the face.

“She is mine priest, it is too late. There is no point in going on. Your prayers are unanswered, can you not see. You should quit this before your pathetic heart gives out. I can see you don’t have much time left.”

He retorted “Silence! Demon you have no place here, she does not belong to you she is a child of God!”

The Beverly thing responded in a mocking tone “OH Flanagan but she is mine and always has been. I will kill her before I leave her to you!”

With that Beverly slammed back down on the bed and started to convulse violently. Father Flanagan seemed only slightly unnerved by this and continued.

“We drive you from us, whoever you may be, unclean spirits, all satanic powers, all infernal invaders, all wicked legions, assemblies and sects.”

Nolan and I tried our best to hold her still but this thing was just too strong for even the both of us. When suddenly she stopped all together we both instinctively stepped back expecting something to happen. She just laid there, not moving I wasn’t even sure if she was breathing.

Nolan started to cry saying “Oh God No, NO, NO!” then Beverly opened her eyes and looked at him. “Beverly?” Nolan asked.

In the background Father Flanagan had not stopped his prayers knowing that this could be another trick I tried to grab Nolan’s arm and pull him back. He shrugged me off and picked up Beverly around the back of her neck and cradled her head in his lap.

“I’m here Bev I’m here. I love you so much.”

Beverly looked up at him and said weakly.

“Nolan, I’m sorry, I’m so sorry. I love you.”

The she flinched a little and continued.

“It hurts so bad please make it stop. Tell the girls I love them.”

She started violently convulsing again her head slamming against Nolan as he tried to hold her. He was screaming “No, NO!” over and over. Her convulsions threw him from the bed and he got up beside her again Nolan and Myself tried to hold her still while father Flanagan continued the exorcism.

Father Flanagan finished the prayer saying “Deign, O Lord, to grant us Thy powerful protection
and to keep us safe and sound. We beseech Thee through Jesus Christ Our Lord. Amen.”

As he ended the prayer Beverly screamed and what came out of her mouth was a cacophony of sound. It sounded like a person, a dog, a pig, a cow, and a human child all screaming in agony at once. Suddenly Father Flanagan, Nolan, and I were thrown across the room all slamming into the wall and falling onto the floor. My vision went blurred for a few moments and I felt nauseas. I was pretty sure I had a concussion. I rolled onto my side and saw father Flanagan laying limp on the ground. I started to crawl towards him at the same time Nolan was going to check on Beverly.

When I reached Flanagan he was unresponsive I found a pulse in his wrist but it was faint. I could feel him breathing when I held my hand in front of his mouth. I thought thank God he isn’t dead. I thought for sure that he was. It was then I heard Nolan. I turned and saw him clutching Beverly to his chest her body limp against him. I didn’t need to approach to tell she wasn’t breathing. I got up and moved quickly across the room. I grabbed her arm and checked for a pulse, nothing.

I looked at Nolan and said “Do you know CPR?”

He just stared blankly at me. I grabbed his shoulders and shook him gently.

“I’m going to perform CPR, you call an ambulance. Right now Nolan!”

He seemed to have snapped out of it but hesitated I took Beverly from him.

I yelled “If you want to help her get an ambulance here now!”

He moved out of the room heading to the phone. I laid Beverly down on the bed and began chest compressions then breathing into her mouth. I could taste vomit when I put my mouth on hers. Again I started with the chest compressions thinking.

“Oh God don’t take her. Let her live come on let her live!”

I continued giving her CPR until the paramedics arrived. I could tell they were startled seeing the condition of the home and this women who was still partially bound to the bed. One of them asked “What the hell was going on here?”

I said “Just do something to help don’t just stand there dammit!”

With that they moved to Beverly and tried CPR as well. After ten minutes of them trying they pronounced her dead. Nolan had walked in just in time to catch those words. The sound that came out of his mouth was utter pain and sadness.

Then one of the paramedics said “Hey this old guys is in pretty bad shape!”

“OH my God!” I said.

In the rush to try to save Beverly I had forgotten about Father Flanagan. The EMT’s were examining him and I told them about his heart condition I helped them load him onto a stretcher and walked downstairs with him and the EMT’s. That’s when I saw that the police had arrived. The officer was young and he was questioning Nolan. Nolan was in shock and not much help when the officer saw me.

He came over saying “You! What’s your name?”

“Matthew Reynolds”

“Are you a family member, do you live here.”

“No, I’m a friend of the family.”

“What the hell was going on here?” the cop asked gesturing at the state of the house.

“They had a problem and I was trying to help them.”

“Was that a priest that just got wheeled out of here?”

“Yes, his name is Father Raymond Flanagan.”

The cop paused as he thought for a moment then said “I’m told there is a Mrs. Beverly Smith upstairs who is now deceased?”

“Yes.”

“Mr. Reynolds you’re going to need to come with me.”

“And that is how I ended up here.” I told detective Karrus.

He was leaning back in his chair rubbing his large hand across his chin. He said “That is quite the story Mr. Reynolds. You have to admit it?”

“You wanted my story and there you have it! I don’t give a damn if you think I’m making it up or not and besides what would it gain me to create such a story.”

He sighed and said “I don’t think you made it up. At this point I’m honestly not sure what I believe. From your story to the statements of the family and the condition of the house, I just don’t know.”

I said “Look Detective it doesn’t really matter because in the end and innocent woman is dead and her children will have to grow up with a mother.”

“Mr. Reynolds I know this won’t help but in my line of work one thing you learn pretty quick is, sometimes no matter the effort of good people sometimes the bad ones win and there was nothing you could have done. What I’m trying to say is maybe just take it easy on yourself. I believe you and that priest were trying to help even if you should have taken her to a hospital. You were doing what you thought was right. Do I agree or even believe in your methods? Not necessarily but after I’d seen what I saw tonight I think I might be a little more open to those possibilities. I would like to hear from the priest but as far as father Flanagan goes it will be awhile before we can speak to him.”

“What are you talking about!?” I asked.

“The priest still hasn’t woken up. They have him down in the ER at mercy hospital I have an officer there to question him as well but my officer says they priest is still unconscious and may be in a coma. They say he’s lucky he’s not dead with that heart condition he had.”

I could feel the color drain out of my face and I could tell the detective could see it too. He said “I’m sorry I guess you really were close to him. He should be fine in a couple days he was just old.”

I said under my breath “I don’t need your false sympathy.”

“What’s that?” he said.

“Nothing, but am I being charged with anything?”

He leaned forward saying “At the Moment, no, I was told the initial ruling of the cause of death was natural causes. A cardiac arrest or something of that sort. But, with all the weird shit we saw in that house I’m not ruling anything out yet. I don’t have enough to hold you any longer so I guess your free to go but, Mr. Reynolds.” He paused as if for dramatic affect then said “Don’t be leaving town.”

He stood and so did I and we went out the door of the interrogation room together. I got my personal effects back from the sergeant near the front and turned to leave the police station. Detective Karrus called after me and I turned to see what he wanted.

He said “I don’t know if it’s any consolation but I did over hear a couple of my officers talking about needing to get the asses back in church after what they had seen last night.”

“Good for them, I hope they do.”

I turned and walked out to my car I thought about the events that had taken place. That whole struggle for what. Beverly’s death, now two girls growing up motherless and my friend and mentor possibly in a coma. What was this all for and why? The sun was starting to come up and I could hear the church bells from the rectory ringing in the distance. I didn’t know where else to go so I went to Father Flanagan’s rectory I didn’t know why I had gone there. It was more on impulse. When I was walking down the corridor to Flanagan’s office his secretary called my name. I turned around and she was following me with something in her hand. I asked her what it was and she said it was for me. It was a note from Father Flanagan.

It read “Matthew, what is coming may prove to be the most challenging moment in your life. Please my son, don’t lose faith. We cannot hope to fathom the way God works but know that he is looking out for you. The Lord works in mysterious ways Matthew. I know that can be a trivial thing to say sometimes but never the less it’s true. Sometimes if God allows evil it can lead to good if you know where to look. I guess what I’m saying is that no matter what is to come of this just know that I have the utmost faith in you and so does our Father in heaven. You have a wonderful gift and I believe you were put here to help people so don’t let anything that happens take your eyes off that goal. Stay strong in your faith and don’t let a loss lead you down the path of despair.”

It was signed in Flanagan’s handwriting I asked “When did he write this?”

She said “I don’t know I think before he started his fast.”

“I see, thank you.”
With that I left knowing where I needed to go. I would check on Father Flanagan and if they wanted me to I would do everything I could to help Nolan, Meagan and Riley.

CREDIT : Aaron Way

Rating: 7.4. From 275 votes.
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