The Beast of Montenegro, Chapter 1

What a moment, what a doubt! All my nose is inside out,–all my thrilling, tickling caustic, Pyramid rhinocerostic, wants to sneeze and cannot do it! How it years me, thrills me, stings me, how with rapturous torments wings me! Now says, “Sneeze, you fool,–get through it.”

Shee-shee-oh! ’tis most delishi–

Ishi-ishi-most de-lishi! (Hang it, I shall sneeze till spring!) Snuff is a delicious thing.

Leigh Hunt.

 

Chapter I

There is a story about a beast of many shapes that was seen on top of a mountain in Montenegro. You could only discern an outline of something standing; something human, something unnatural, that stood up like a biped, many say more as a beast than human. Many believed he was the Tempter himself. Nobody dare to go up the mountain to see what it was.

As time went by, people forget about what they had seen. It became another story that passed down in generations as a warning that something strange was out there, and as a new generation came and went, the story began to lose its influence. The beast of Montenegro was soon forgotten.

Life resumed in the quaint borough of Montenegro. Only a few families are descendants of Montenegro, long before the borough grew, mostly everyone are outsiders. One such family was the Crane’s, their lineage went back 1,000 years ago, but they were far from being prominent. They were regarded as strange and ignoble.

Not much has changed with the Crane family. In the present time, the Crane’s residence was grim and cruel. It was even harder for six-year-old Mina Crane. She believed that nobody wanted to her to be born. She was neglected by her father and forgotten by her mother. Nobody cared for Mina Crane.