Tag Archives: coffee

Report 8: The Possession of Possum Reynolds

Sir,

It is approximately thirty minutes after my last report, and I’m back in the waiting room at Melmoth Memorial, enjoying a steaming hot cup of coffee I sweet-talked off one of the nurses. I don’t know what the patients drink, but the Nurses’ Lounge is stocked with a damn fine brew. Alexandra is still not back from her examination, but I’ve just spent some time with her erstwhile kidnapper, Possum Reynolds. Or rather, with something purporting to be Possum Reynolds. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

I was informed, if you’ll recall, that Possum had awakened and was asking to speak with the Sheriff. I decided that he should perhaps speak to me instead, and had the nurse lead me to him. Rooms in the intensive care unit are usually small, and cramped with machines. Possum’s room had those features, but it was also dark, and unnaturally humid. Like someone had just taken a shower in it. But instead of the clean smell of soap, it smelled… Well, it’s difficult to describe what it did smell like. Dirt, I suppose. Dirt and blood.

Possum seemed surprised to see me. “Ii. Ast. For. The. Sheriff,” he said, and immediately I knew that whatever was wrong with the room, it emanated from him. His lips were moving in a series of jerky stop-motion twitches around a mouthful of broken teeth. Each word was a spasm. Clipped. Brittle. And not entirely in synch with his lips. It was simultaneously disorienting, abhorrent, and fascinating.

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Report 3: Love and Blood

Sir,

An eventful day.

The continental breakfast at the Opa Lodge was just as magnificent as I’d suspected it might be. Fresh eggs from coops on the mountain, venison sausage, and a small bread loaf with a crisp outer crust and soft yeasty center that I’m sure I’ll be raving about for years to come. And the coffee! A lawman’s dream come true. So good that I fished the thermos out of the back of the car and got them to fill it up for me.

Sheriff Patton and Captain Cheveyo both seem highly competent and helpful law enforcement officers, dedicated and concerned with their community’s welfare. Patton is a no-nonsense type, the sort of skeptic I find quite handy in the field, where I have to remind myself that a murder is sometimes just a murder. Cheveyo, on the other hand, is a bit of a mystic. Comes with the territory, he says. The Alo reservation is spirit-haunted, he tells me, and sometimes his duties involve things he can’t readily explain.

I kept this in mind as we scaled the mountain to survey the murder site. Or, rather, the site where the Phillips boy’s body was found. I’m now convinced he was dead when brought there. The physical evidence already pointed in that direction: there just wasn’t enough blood on the ground for all those cuts to have been inflicted on that spot. But in addition, when I dowsed the area, I got nothing at all. Which tells me little that’s useful about the killing itself, but at least indicates a certain coolness on the part of the killers. No one involved was very anxious or upset when they put him there. Something to file away for later.

The body didn’t tell me much, either. Dead meat seldom does once the spirit’s left it. There are two deep stab wounds in the back that most likely caused death. The locals’ suspicions of a ritual murder are probably well-founded, however. The ten wounds in the chest were made with care, and form a definite pattern, though I don’t recognize it as belonging to any specific rituals I’m familiar with. I made a quick sketch of the shape, however, and have included it below:

Wound Pattern

Forgive the crudity of my pen work. I’d appreciate it if you could have the pattern checked against the database. Some insight on its purpose could be significant.

After examining the body, we moved on to Phillips’ car, which yielded far more information. There, I found the residue of a great deal of passion, and enormous pain. Per Agency protocols, I had Sheriff Patton record the dowsing session, and include the transcript below:

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