Not being terribly religious, I was less than enthusiastic when Mom asked me to help with cleaning up an old church.
She had always enjoyed interior decorating and was so excited for us to be working together.
I’m sure that she had ulterior motives, as she’d always bemoaned the fact that I’d “strayed” from the fold.
Updated 10/1/2019 – Nonetheless, I joined in with gusto and soon we were having a blast, clearing debris and cleaning the building.
When we went upstairs to continue our work on a dark, stormy day, I noticed that the atmosphere was different.
It was strange that it was colder up there and the tattered curtains didn’t budge, even though it was windy outside.
One particular room was gloomy and oppressive.
It reminded me of many dark ghost stories.
Mom laughed and shook her head.
“What’s wrong with you? You’re in the house of the Lord!” She admonished.
I couldn’t shake off the nefarious feeling, but I followed her in and picked up a broom.
I swept the floor haphazardly while she checked out an old leather swivel chair.
She sat in it and spun around.
When her laughter turned dark, my flesh crawled
I turned around and tripped over the broom – falling on the floor.
The “thing” in the chair was not my mother.
I was so horrified I didn’t even think to try and get up.
All I could do was stare at the terrifying sight before me.
Strapped to the chair with crude straps, it seemed to be a woman – possessed by something unholy.
She thrashed and wrenched herself around as she tried to get free, snapping and snarling through gnashing teeth.
I screamed, “MOM!” as the demonic woman screamed louder, with a black, forked tongue flicking out of the mouth.
Frantically scrambling to my feet, I picked up the broom to use as a weapon, although I had no idea how.
What if I was hallucinating and that creature was really my mother?
I cried as I searched my mind for an answer.
I shook as I edged towards it, nearly vomiting with the acrid stench coming from it.
My pulse raced as I got closer.
I saw a rosary pulled tight across the cracked skin and the horrific, yellow eyes staring wildly.
There was a deep wound where the crucifix had burned into the forehead, showing black, putrid flesh.
The difference between haunted stories and evil is truth
Before I got closer, the wind picked up so violently that the tattered curtains were ripped from the windows.
Now the creature was hissing in between terrifying howls and screams, grimacing and contorting in the chair.
What struck me next was the disembodied incantation of an exorcism, but I couldn’t see where it was coming from.
While the possessed woman writhed around and screeched louder, I saw welts and slashes form across her skin.
Somehow I knew that Holy water was being sprinkled on her body.
Then I knew what to do.
I dropped to my knees and started intoning the Lord’s Prayer.
The deafening chaos continued around me.
I can’t explain how or why, but I could feel the drops of Holy water flicking on my own skin.
I clamped my eyes shut.
In a flash, the noise stopped.
I felt a familiar hand on my shoulder.
I looked up and saw my mother, looking amazed.
Jumping up, I saw that the demonic woman was gone.
The horror was over.
I clung to my mother while she soothed away my tears, welcoming me back to the fold.
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