The Ghosts of Temple Bruer part 16

Sarah came upon a log cabin when she went walking around the lands around the estate. She had knocked a few times, but it was quiet inside, nothing stirred, nothing moved. She wondered if it was vacant, and was ready to walk away, but something moved from the corner of her eye.

“Hallo,” she said as she walked around the cabin. “I don’t mean to bother, but…”

She walked around the cabin a few times when a fetor wafted through the air. She covered her nose and mouth. It was a smell she had never before smelt, but it was strong and putrid. She walked backed to the front of the cabin, and saw the door slightly squeaking ajar.

Wasn’t the door closed? she thought to herself. She cautiously approached it.

“Hallo,” she tried to say without breathing the stench. She knocked again, but no one answered. She slowly stepped inside. It took awhile for her eyes to adjust to the darkness, and when they did she was aghast at the sights she saw inside. There were dark stains that covered the floors and walls. Large flies buzzed around. The smell stunk the worst inside than outside. Sarah had to cover her mouth from gagging.

Her eyes wandered around at the unkempt cabin. There was uneaten food,  rotting on the table, spiderwebs dangled from windows and corners, dust covered every inch of the cabin as mice droppings were visible everywhere. Sarah’s eyes settled on two forms laying on the bed. She took a few steps towards it, wondering what it was, as she grew nearer, her eyes grew wider.

The two forms lying on the bed, where the bodies of a fifteen year old and six year old. Their faces suffered long deep gashes, their clothes covered in dry blood. Whoever had done it left them to rot.

To Sarah’s horror she wondered if that person was still nearby. Who’s children were these? Was this the family Sheriff Crosby spoke of? Who could have done this to them?

Her heart started beating faster. She had to leave, quickly stepping out of the cabin, avoiding to look behind her. She hadn’t gotten as far as she had wished to be, but fear made her legs tremble, and she moved slowly and awkwardly.

“You weren’t supposed to see that?”

Sarah, knew that voice and slowly turn to face the man.

“John,” she whispered.

John suddenly vanished.

Sarah turned away, and headed back to the castle. Her body was paralyzed with fear, making it impossible for her to move any faster. She couldn’t hold back the tears that burned down her cheeks.

That night, she stayed in the den, staying close to the fireplace to keep warm. She was shaken from what she had seen, and couldn’t stop crying as the images of the dead girls crept inside her mind. She didn’t hear the footsteps came towards the den, nor did she notice Philip enter. When she looked up she couldn’t be angry at him anymore, and ran to him, telling him everything she had seen at the cabin. Philip then left without a word.

 

The Ghosts of Temple Bruer part 15

Life at Temple Bruer became stodgy, and dour as Sarah grew miserable. It seemed the castle fed off of the melancholy of those that inhabited within its caliginous walls. Philip was once more leaving on his mysterious trips that kept him far from home. Sarah couldn’t help, but become crabbed at his absence. She hated what her life had become, and the future that didn’t seem to exist. She meandered the castle during the day, and at night, when she couldn’t sleep, she could hear Aki’s weep echo through the night. Sarah knew why she cried, but instead of being lenitive towards the woman she grew to disdain her.

One night, Sarah had enough of Aki’s weeping. She got out of bed, opened her door, and as loud as she could told her to quiet down. When she realized what she had done, and the bitterness that consumed her, she felt compunction to her actions. Aki had lost her son, and Sarah had no compassion.

“What have I done?” Sarah couldn’t comprehend her callousness. “This place is changing me.”

Sarah didn’t sleep well that night. She had visions of Philip and John, sometimes through the nightmares she could hear Haruki’s voice.

“They want you,” Haruki said. “They won’t let you leave. They won’t let you leave. They will never let you go…”

Sarah woke with a start, and saw that the day had already commenced without her. Feeling overwhelmed she hurried out of bed and got dressed. She had searched for Aki, to apologize her for her abruptness, but she couldn’t find her. Distraught for her behavior, Sarah wandered outside into the garden. She didn’t expect to find John there since she hadn’t seen him in days. She stumbled near the stables, and hurried silently away, watching apprehensively that they seemed more dilapidated then before.

Something was amiss, and Sarah, couldn’t say what it was. She walked to the gondola, taking a seat inside, quietly admiring the sights, and sounds around her. The day was bright, and sunny, though the sun felt warm, Sarah felt cold, putting on a sweater before going outside. She couldn’t seem to warm her blood no matter how long she stayed outside.

“He’s coming,” someone whispered loudly in her ear.

Sarah turned to the voice and saw John approaching.

“Enjoying the weather?” John smiled at her. “It’s a nice day, isn’t it? Have you looked at the flowers? They are blooming today.”

He kept on walking never stopping to hear her response.

Sarah thought it odd, and when he vanished around the corner she looked down on her leg as she felt something crawl on it. To her horror, her feet were muddied and soiled by the muddy waters and overgrown grass that filled the gondola, a black worm had crawled up her leg. Sarah yelped as she brushed the worm away, and ran out of the gondola. The gondola had altered from a beautiful structure into a decaying frame.

“That wasn’t there,” Sarah only muttered to herself. Feeling uneasy she decided to walk away. She hesitated about going to the garden, deciding to avoid it. She didn’t want to go back inside the castle as it was too cold and her bones still shivered from it.

She wondered about the family Sheriff Crosby talked about, wondering if they still lived around here. She wondered if John knew about the family, and if he lived nearby them. Lately, John had a volatile disposition, one minute he was kind and generous other times he was ill tempered.

She wondered if that’s what Haruki meant when he called John a bad man. She couldn’t say, but she evaded him when she could, never knowing what mood he was going to be in. She sighed in frustration.