July 11, 2009

The Inverness roads seemed almost nonexistent in the darkness of the night. It was only by moonlight and with a sure step that one could negotiate the pathway home. On one such evening Mary, along with her sisters found themselves visiting a close relative.
As evening fell, fear began to cloud Mary’s happy spirit.
She was aware of all the strange sightings in the town. Thoughts of all the things, not of this world, that traversed the dark roads closed in on her.
Mary’s sister Annabel was in no hurry to leave. She didn’t mind the inky darkness and all that it held. In fact she rather enjoyed it. Mary trying to sway her sister to leave for home only encouraged Annabel to prolong the tale she was telling.
The exchange of bits of gossip and funny stories didn’t bother Mary or her sister Jessie but the talk of unexplained things seen and heard around the area frightened Mary.
“Belle, it’s getting dark, we should be leaving,” Mary coaxed.
“Just one more minute” Belle answered.
Finally in desperation, Mary decided it would hurry her sisters along if she Mary were to leave alone. Going out the way she knew her sisters would, she planned to hide. That would surely frighten them.
Mary hid under a workbench near the door and waited. It was only a moment or two later when Mary was startled by the sound of wood being sawed on the workbench above her head. The hammer began banging. Its vibration trembled down the frame of the heavy bench above her head. Mary froze as fear closed around her in the darkness, robbing her of the ability to move. After what seemed to her like an eternity, the workbench and all it held suddenly ceased their activities.
Mary could hear the happy voices of her sisters and their cousin as they approached the darkened doorway. Terrified she tried to call out. Still unable to move she felt captive in her own body. Again she tried calling for help. This time her throat reacted allowing a terrified voice to escape.
They found her there, ridged with fear. Full of remorse they embraced her, and with arms tightly encircling, her they rushed their frightened sister home.
Several days later, her cousin’s child died. The child’s father laboured at his workbench late into the night building a tiny coffin for his son. It was the very same workbench that had held Mary captive those few short days earlier.


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