Father Damien leaned back in his chair as the young man was about to unburden his sins. He could not help thinking something about him was familiar. Maybe it was the sound of his voice or the chiselled jawline that he had. He could not place it but he knew there was a familiarity about him.
“I am terribly sorry but may I know your name?”, interrupted the priest. “Mason…Mason Richards” The priest lifted an eyebrow at the sound of the Richards name. “Are you any relation to the Richards of Richards Hall?”
“Yes Father. Toby and Melissa Richards were my parents” “My apologies. I am sorry for your loss”, the priest offered. “Your parents were good people”
The Richards were a well respected family in the community and well known for their charity work that they did for the less fortunate in the neighbourhood. Even though his parents were deeply religious, Mason had chosen not to be. He had nothing against it only just that it was not for him.
Mason believed in following his own path, something that his parents had always encouraged him to do. His own path, however, had lead him away from the church. “I’m sorry Mason. Please do continue. What happened in the woods?” Mason stared at the priest and lent his head gently forward.
“About one week ago I was out for a walk in the woods out west of the creek, Sandman Wood. It wasn’t too late but it was getting dark. I know my way around those woods so I wasn’t lost or anything. It was quiet except for the usual nature sounds. But there was one noise that was out of place. It was coming from near the abandoned cottage up by the bridge. You know it?”
The priest nodded his head. “I went further to see what the noise was. I got closer to the cottage and I could see it through the trees slightly and there was a flickering light coming off it. This was strange as no one lives in that cottage. Everyone knows its been empty for many years.
I came off the path and started to go through the bushes to get there quicker. The closer I got the louder the noise became until I got close enough to make it out as a voice. I could not tell what was being said, only that it was a male voice. The trees and bushes were not so thick so I could get closer still. The flickering light from cottage was getting brighter too”
Father Damien sat quietly in his chair taking all this in, not sure what he was going to hear next but he nevertheless kept on listening.
“Very quickly I made it through the trees and reached the cottage and that was when I realised the light was flickering off the side of the cottage, it made the cottage look yellowy on the side. The voice was loud enough for me to make out now but the words seemed weird, foreign maybe. I stayed in the trees and made it round the cottage quietly.
That’s where I saw it. That’s where the voice was coming from” “What did you see?”, asked the priest. “There was five people, three men and two women. They were dressed in some kind of robes. At first I thought it was KKK robes but then I realised they were not white robes.
They were all standing around a fire and one guy was doing all the talking but every now and then the others would all say something as if he was asking a question and the rest were answering him. I had no idea what any of them was saying. Next thing I know the man doing all the talking reached in to a bag and pulled out a rat.
I think it was dead but I don’t know. He held it over the fire as one of the other men handed him a knife and he slit the throat. Blood started dripping drown and as it was bleeding the leader shouted out ‘I call forth the dark ones to live through these mortals. Take their bodies and do as you will’.
Just as he said that the fire suddenly got worse and a big puff of black smoke came off the flames. I tried to stay as quiet as I could but this was strange. They started chanting some words in another language. The fire let out another puff of smoke, thicker this time”
Father Damien sat there with his eyes opened wide as he could not believe what he was hearing. Out of Mason’s view, the priest’s hands had started shivering slightly on the armrests of his chair. Still he said nothing, he did not want to interrupt. He had questions but now was not the time for them.
“Up until then I did not realise what was going on. As the smoke cleared the flames of the fire died down a little and I could see a circle drawn on the ground. They were all standing just inside this circle though. It was then that I saw that the fire was in the centre of the circle and there were lines coming out from the centre.
The lines formed the sharp of a star and each one of them was standing at each point of the star. It was a pentagram and this was a satanic ritual. At that moment the man doing all the talking raised his arms out to either side of him, much like Jesus did on the cross”
The hands of the priest were now shaking but Mason could not see this. All he could see was Father Damien sitting there listening intently to his confession. “Father ….
The hands of the priest were now shaking but Mason could not see this. All he could see was Father Damien sitting there listening intently to his confession. “Father ….he turned his head!
The hands of the priest were now shaking but Mason could not see this. All he could see was Father Damien sitting there listening intently to his confession. “Father ….he turned his head! …He looked right at me!”