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Dismal Manor by JFM

Short Story and ACEO Painting by JFM
I enlarged this miniature painting to show the detail.
Note: (c) Copyright belongs to JFM

Tonight I listen to the howl of the wind as it swirls around the manor trying to find a way in through the cracks and crevices of its ancient stone walls.  Looking out of the tower window I  watch the winter storm blow in off the ocean waves below.  The surf is pounding against the shore and the jagged rocks on the beach, trying to climb the bluff and leaving an icy world on everything in its path...I also see something else!

Then the sounds begin. The mournful sound of wailing that starts outside of the windows and then reaches inside these ancient manor walls. As has happened many times before, I hear the slow, steady shuffle of someone climbing up the stars from the floor below. Whatever is out there on the stairway gets closer to the old tower room where I went when the storm began. A soft moan reaches my ears and my hands tremble as I keep trying to lock the door before that "thing" gets inside the room with me!

Finally, I am able to lock the heavy oak door as I hear him whisper on the other side, "Please, let me come in for I am cold, and need the warmth of your hearth." But, I know that he will never be warm again, and that I will not...cannot let him enter into my room, or I will become as doomed as he...I will then share in his fate.

Finally, as the storm abates, I hear his slow steady shuffle as he turns away from my door, and goes back down the stairs, goes back outside to the sea from whence he came, and will come again, and again whenever the next storm blows over "Dismal Manor". I slowly open the heavy door, and look out into the hall. As he has done before, and as he will do over, and over again, he has left seaweed and seawater where he walked, and where he stood outside my door. Neither of us will ever have peace as long as with each tempest that blows in from the sea, no matter the season, he will keep rising from the cold, dark waters of the abyss to enter Dismal Manor searching for warmth, and shelter inside these...the ancient walls of his old home~~~



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3 comments:

  1. You have been very kind, John...thank you~~~

    Jan

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