The following contains potentially disturbing content.
It is with a heavy heart that I find my faith tested and found wanting. All that needs to be known at this stage is that I have always walked beside god, my father was a bishop and I, an orphan, was raised by the Catholic Church.
Two days ago I witnessed what should have been an exorcism of a family in Kent, England. A mother and daughter had been under the sway of a malicious spirit and their father; an atheistic carpenter had turned to the church for help.
I received a phone call early that morning from father Michael, a colleague at St Thomas’s church, the panic in his voice made my anxiety level rise instantly. It was minutes of blubbering before I managed to clam the poor man down enough for him to speak. He started to tell me about a family with an evil spirit attached to them. Before hearing the fabled word — “exorcism” — I cut him off. The Vatican had long ago banned any of their ministers from performing such practices unless under strict authority, and I admonished him against such action.
I felt the color drained from my face as he told me that he had already tried and that the situation had gotten much worse.
I left my cottage in Canterbury and drove to St Thomas’s church in search of the archbishop or the head of my order. Luckily I found Bishop Davids in conversation with a school group. As he looked up from a small boy in grey uniform, he raises an eyebrow at my eagerness to speak with him. He apologized to the school teacher, and she directed the attention of her young charges to a tapestry hanging on the wall.
Our whispered conversation soon drew their heads as Bishop Davids sucked in a breath through his teeth. He sanctions me to go and resolve the situation — off the record — before any news outlets could use the event to damage the good name of the Vatican. The consequences for the Catholic Church could prove to be devastating.
Before I left, he pulled my arm and raised his eyebrow. “If your faith fails you. Be the bullet of God.”
With a healthy fear resting on my heart — for my colleague and Church — I left for the address father Michael had given me.
The small two bedroom house was in a small Cou de sac of a typical Kentish housing system. As I pulled up, I noticed that a lot of people were milling about the property. I knew then that the word had gotten around and I thought it best that I take off my clerical collar to disguise myself as an ordinary person.
As I walked through the crowd, the neighbors spoke openly about hearing banging and strange noises coming from the house. But none had ventured near the home as they believed the sounds were demonic and didn’t want to be contaminated.
I knocked on the polished wooden door and father Michael’s flustered face appeared around the edge at once. He had a hand clapped to his nose, But I could still see the relief in his pale blue eyes when he saw me. It was akin to the faces I see when performing baptisms.
As I placed a foot in the threshold to enter, a sound that chilled my bones froze me in place. One foot outside and one foot on the carpet. I had to fight my instincts there and then as I would have turned and fled such was the noise.
The voices — yes there were many — were disembodied and seemed to come from the wall themselves. The most disturbing was a child’s high pitch voice but with the underlying sound of something ancient and evil, and then there was another, I couldn’t tell you who it belonged to, but I knew it shouldn’t be in a family home. The reason for father Michael’s nose gag became apparent as I stepped fully inside, the smell within was appalling, like rotten flesh and methane.
I placed my coat on the coat hook behind the door, and it bounced right off again. I bent to pick it up, but father Michael stopped me with a hand and a shake of the head.
“It would be back on the floor the second you turn your back father.”
My colleague guided me down the cutely decorated hall. The happy smiling faces of the family glowed from their glassy prisons. Their happiness was infectious, and I grinned as I entered the galley kitchen. The countertops were awash with various sets of glass vials; I assumed they held holy water, but I had all I needed in the case banging against my knee. It struck me that the kitchen looked more like an apothecary than the hub of a family home.
I nodded to father Michael. “Where is the husband?”
I reached into my pocket and returned my collar to its rightful place. A series of loud bangs echoed down the hall, and the voices came back with a vengeance, the kitchen cupboards opened of their own accord and dispensed their contents over our heads. I shielded my face with my case and waited for the last object to hit the floor.
“Cunt, filthy cunts. Get out cunt priests.”
I let my case fall as I looked about wide-eyed, this thing was proving to be very volatile, and I felt my bile rising as my colleague screwed up his face to hide his fear.
“He is upstairs with the child, he can’t bear to look at his wife, her transformation is….harsh.” He whimpered.
I felt troubled by his lack of description as father Michael hurried to equipped himself with holy water. I placed the case I was carrying on the worktop and clicked the locks.
Inside were the tools of the necromancer, tools that have aided the church in older times and still today, abet in secret. The Vatican had branded these tools — the tools of the devil — and as such in years gone by, burnt people at the stake for practicing witchcraft. The clergy knows the truth, and as such a case can be found in every church, worldwide.
I looked upon my arsenal — Sprigs of cedar and lavender to be burnt as incense, small virals of Thyme. Aconite — better known as Wolfsbane, a clump of twigs from a Yew tree to be placed around the home. Tobacco, Cypress oil, and three beeswax candles for fighting the spirits to name a few. I lifted the false floor and underneath pulled forth my Stoll, Rosary beads, my bible, and a wooden cross with an inlaid of glass that followed it’s curved. The water inside, drawn from a pool under the Vatican blessed by Saint Peter.
I opened the false floor again, looking at the final item that laid within its shadows. I quickly snapped it shut in case father Michael caught a glimpse, it was a last resort, and I hoped that it wouldn’t come to that.
“Lead the way.” Father Micheal swallowed and nodded his head; I could see the effort it was taking for him to go back upstairs.
The journey up the stairs was a vociferous adventure. The spirits displeasure of me coming closer to it had made it rather angry. Doors shook, and the lights flickered, but I made it to the landing as the bedroom door opened and a pale looking man came out.
The husband looked worn; It wasn’t the tracksuit bottoms and gym top but the tracks of tears from his crying. I grasped his shoulder and forced him to look at me.
“Be still my child. They are in good hands now, but I must ask that you stay. The more present to believe in God the more power we will wield.”
The young man seemed to come out of his trance and shook my hand venomously.
“Please father, you must save them. My daughter, My wife.”
He broke down to a blubbering mess, and I lent him the strength of father Micheal’s arm as I pushed open the bedroom door.
The door to the daughter’s bedroom was heavy although it was an eggshell door, and the smell hits me once again, excrement, heat and something unknown. The door creaked open to a bleak interior. I didn’t see the daughter immediately because the destruction was so vast.
The child size metal bed had been mangled and bent out of shape. The mattress shredded and scattered across the floor. What furniture she had before I could only guess at, and the daughter — she was sat quite peacefully playing with a doll — on the ceiling. I reeled and finally found my nerve to call her name in a faint hope that she could be coached down. The door behind me slammed shut, and I momentarily gasped from the shock.
“Laces, child. won’t you come down and speak to me?”
The sight of her blonde hair dangling down to the floor and the red scratches that I could see on her neck and arms will chill my nights for many years. A small cute childish singsong voice answered me back.
“No thank you, father.”
I almost believed that the girl had performed some magical feet to stay upside down until the voice changed as the demon spoke through her.
“And take your filthy fucking collar with you.”
The laugh came from everywhere, the child, the walls, outside the door. It was as if each room in the house had been set up with a speaker system.
Laces turned her face down and round to behold me, and I have, and never will be, as terrified as I was at that moment. The innocent of the child’s face had been ripped away, and a grotesques imitation rendered me to a six-inch spot on the burgundy carpet. The pictures on the wall of the hallway showed a bright seven-year-old girl in various acrobatic poses, and her roses cheeks and sun-colored hair brightened up the drab corridor. Now the evil within warped her face into a bleeding death mask and my soul died.
Laces stood up, or, down from the ceiling and turned toward me, then she crouched down and twisted her head to the side. She pulled down her pink Barbie pajama bottom and defecated into her hand. She threw her feces at me, and I raised my case to block it. It wasn’t a great shield.
She laughed like scratching glass and floated down from the ceiling. I have heard many things that couldn’t be explained but seeing one, well it was a pivotal moment for me. The Lord shows his glory in many ways, but even Jesus didn’t fly.
I called to laces once more hoping that her innocent would break through the hellacious spirit, but alas when she screeched and made a grab for me, — I shudder to think what I would have done with the fear running through me. The husband had broken through the door and intercepted her flailing arms and pushed mine back.
I stumbled from the room, and father Michael caught me bodily. I was thankfully for his frightened face, only for it not to be a dream and I, not going mad. I adjusted my Stool and wiped off the excrement from the face of the case before nodding to father Michael.
The walls shook again, and that unearthly moan rolled around us. I glanced in a mirror that rested at the top of the staircase, and it showed, me, father Michael and the entity. I don’t know when or where she was from, or whose appearance she showed me, but the malice in her eye was enough to freeze my bones. I quickly turn to try and catch the apparition, but like the fleeting shadows, it had gone.
Father Micheal looked at me with concern, but I waved it away.
“Where is the mother?”
He pointed to the next door, a traditional white painted door. Nothing about that door would have given me evidence of what it held inside.
The room was dark even though light poured in through the window. It seemed to hit a barrier and was allowed no further. It was a lovely bedroom given the circumstances. The mother skills — I guess — were clearly in interior design although I could not claim to any such thing. My room — alas — my house was bare in compassion and lacked the female touch.
The bed was empty, the sheets and pillows laid bunched beside a large wooden wardrobe. The bedside tables had been turned over, and their content strewed across the grey carpet. In the corner where an elegant vanity sat, I found the mother strapped to its high back chair. Glass from the mirror laid scattered around her and pieces protruded from her face. The face that looked at me was not the bright, happy one I had seen in the hall pictures; neither was it recognizable as her face at all. Twisted and cruel, evil and ancient, these are the word I would use to describe best what I saw.
The thing raised the mother’s head and swagged its tongue at me; It struggled against its bonds, and the furniture shook in hostility. I held out my cross to unnerve the thing, but more so to build my faith and courage. I heard father Micheal soft tread behind me, and it lent me the extra courage I needed. I was indeed not alone.
“What is your name demon.”
The Mothers face soften, and in an instant, I saw the real lady beneath. But just a quickly the spirit took her over and shouted back with the voices.
“Getttt outttt, Cunt, filthy cunt.”
I heard the screaming from the other room too, the daughter spoke with the same voices, and I knew now that it wasn’t one spirit here but multiple. My fortitude crumbled, I didn’t know if I alone, with father Micheal and the depleted husband could perform the necessary exorcism. I righted a nightstand and loaded my case on its glossy surface then told father Micheal to bring in the girl and the father. We were going to need everyone in the same room to better tackle these spirits.
A moment later they returned with a bundle struggling in their arms — words that shouldn’t ever be uttered by a child came spewing from her tiny mouth. I confess that I died a little more when seeing this innocent girl being used soo grievously by these demons.
The husband and my colleague strapped the girl to the bed and father Micheal came to stand beside me. The father lingered by his wife, his shoulders slumped, and he looked at the ground with sadness I never hope to know. The demon twisted the mother’s head, and again the visage dropped allowing the wife to resurface. Her fear grew as she glanced at her bonds and her husband, and the two priests within her private chambers.
“Malcolm, whats going on…please untie me. Malcolm….. Please, untie me….Malcolm.”
Malcolm…Please, untie me…Malcolm.”
Malcolm raised his downcast eyes and reached a hand toward her bound forearm, I lunged to intercept his hand and gently soothed him away. I tore a strip of bedding and wrapped it around his eyes telling him that it was better that he not see.
“It would be best that you remember your loved ones face as they were and not twisted by these demons.”
Next, I reached into the case and went about setting up the various incense and candles then returned to lift my bible and a virl of holy water. I crossed the heads of the husband, father Micheal and myself before doing the same to the mother and daughter who tried to avoid contact and whimpered when the water ran down their faces.
I knelt by the bedside between the two infected and started the Litany.
“Lord, have mercy. Christ, have mercy, Lord, have mercy, Christ, hear us, God, the Father in heaven.”
Father Michael intoned after me: “Have mercy on us.”
I continued, “God, the Son, Redeemer of the world. God, the Holy Spirit, Holy Trinity, one God.”
As father Micheal said the intonement the demon sat the child up and her shouldered popped as they dislodged. The whites of her eyes had turned red, and blood wept from them like the blessed Mary. She turned to father Michael to continued with him.
“Holy Mary, pray for us — stick it up your cunt Gods man. He’s not welcome here,” and together they cackled like nails dragging down a chalkboard.
What little resolve I had left slowly dissolved, and I swallowed the bile that rose in my throat. I adjusted my hands, and the heaviness of the bible gave me the fortitude to carry on.
“God, by your name save me,
and by your might defend my cause.
God, hear my prayer;
hearken to the words of my mouth.
For haughty men have risen up against me,
and fierce men seek my life;
they set not God before their eyes.
See, God is my helper;
the Lord sustains my life.
Turn back the evil upon my foes;
in your faithfulness destroy them.
Freely will I offer you sacrifice;
I will praise your name, Lord, for its goodness,
Because from all distress you have rescued me,
and my eyes look down upon my enemies.
Glory be to the Father.
As it was in the beginning.
I carried the ritual to completion with father Michael and the husband joining in when they knew the word, even when the doors and bed shook, and things flew and struck me from hidden locations. Eventually, with God at our side, we finished, and we looked at each other for any small signs that we had won the battle. I imagine that the calm before the storm or more romantically the eyes of a storm would have been like that moment when everything is gently swaying, and the noise is but an echo in your ears.
The spirits revolted, and the bed shook violently and broke, wood splinted and cracked, it reminded me of an earthquake that I had suffered on holiday in Japan. The candles blew out, and the windows exploded in a shower of glass The father laughed behind his blindfold, the same demonic voices escaping his throat. Amidst all the commotion the mother and daughter laughed and tested their bonds. I knew that the situation was lost, everything that the Vatican had said to do had failed and Bishop Davids last word rattled in my mind.
I saw again the innocent of that child being lost for all eternity. She would never run with her friends again, never know love. The demon had killed her in the possession, and I had a reason to seek justice. I lifted the false floor and gripped the last item.
The words to the Lords pray thundered from my mouth as the barrel echoed each shot. One for the mother, square in her temple. The second — took the girl in the chest. I prayed that her soul went to the glory of God. The final bullet brought the husband to his knees — blood wept from his grey shirt, and his green-tinged face slowly returned to normal before his heart stopped and he fell to the floor dead.
Father Michael whimpered in the corner as I lowered the gun. He stayed that way until the police came, but still, he didn’t utter a word. I don’t know if the ritual took its toll on him or if the ghost haunts him still but he could not aid me in my defense.
I have damned myself no doubt, and retrospectively would do so again, if not only for the innocent of little Laces. Maybe the Lord God will hear my prays and show me favor when it’s my time for judgment.
I have to go now as the correctional officer is taking my journal for inspection. It seems puzzling that I’m now in a place where the Lords word is needed the most, maybe he has ordained that I be here. The Lord God works in mysterious ways after all.
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