All Souls’

I’ve just had to spend the last hour calming myself down.

The corridor behind the bookcase was back, of course. I thought I could see the little girl in the shadows at first but when I shined my torch, she was gone. I went down the corridor and came out in the ruins of the castle on the snow-covered mountain again. Things had changed though.

Ten rows of ten suits of armour were standing to attention in the courtyard.  Just as I made to go around them, half stepped to the left and half stepped to the right, leaving me a path directly to the throne room. I knew something bad was waiting at the end of that path, but I had to walk it. I just had to.

The doors opened and there was just one slender beam of light falling from somewhere high above. In that shining column, the corpse of a little girl hung from a thick, knotted rope. There was a piece of paper affixed to her torso with a nail. I wanted to vomit but I knew I had to take the note. I knew it was important. So I took it.

I woke up an hour ago in the cellar but the image of what happened when I took the paper was burned into my retinas and I just lay there screaming until my lungs couldn’t take it any further and there was nothing I could do but curl up into a ball and cry in terror. Eventually, I managed to get myself together and dragged myself upstairs to post this. The fog was gone, which I took as a good sign but I couldn’t get what I saw out of my head, I kept expecting them to be around every corner.

When I took the page, the room lit with flame again, just like the first time. Only this time, the bodies weren’t lying around. They were walking towards me reaching out with their dusty, decaying fingers. Just a wall of rotting corpses, shambling towards me with hunger in their eyes, salivating at the thought of sinking their teeth into my flesh.

This page may yet be worth the trauma, though. I hope it will be anyway. There was just one word written on it.

“Naples”.

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