Knowing trees, I understand the meaning of patience. Knowing grass, I can appreciate persistence.
- Hal Borland
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Deep down the Tyrose valley among thickets and shrubs lies an old and battered house that no one speaks of. The air surrounding it is terribly cold and damp. Miles across the house not a scintilla of life can be found; not even rodents or reptiles. The metallic gate heavy with rust and opens to a vast untrodden land surrounding the house. It gives off an eerie feeling that makes even the stoutest of hearts shiver. Here and there lay bones of a myriad of species – wolf; pigeon; but the most starting of sights is that of a human skeleton (its features contorted with fury) . All these spooky insinuations condemn a man in his right senses not to venture further. A low mist hanging in the air makes it difficult (even impossible) to see conspicuously the features of this very peculiar house.
According to old folklore, about a century ago when the sun still shone on this part of the countryside and animals came around scrounging for food, a woman by the name of Bella was the resident of this grotesque mansion. Believed to possess magical powers she slowly became infamous and people started touting her as a bad witch. Censure and ignominy were always around the corner for the poor soul. The troubles had just started for Bella. Around that time in an attempt to test for a nuclear missile the government chose that valley because of it's scattered population. Everyone was evacuated to a safer place but Bella. The people apparently didn't tell her about the evacuation. Her body was found a day later in the arm chair of her bedroom. She sat calm and still, abeit the life had long from her eyes. The RADIATIONS from the nuclear test destroyed her insides and completely changed the fate of Tryose Valley forever....
Although the veracity of this tale cannot be verified, there have been numerous sightings and paranormal incidents either from inside or around the house. Many regard this as a mere myth but one incident makes this tale somewhat credible. 20 odd years after this unfortunate suicide took place, a traveller that goes by the name of Arnold happened to stumble upon this mansion while looking for shelter in the dreary hours of a cold December night. Although Arnold was never seen again , a diary found on the porch of the mansion the next morning (by a vagabond) established his identity and the horrors which lay inside the house.
An extract from his journal read-
Been traveling for 2 weeks now. Arrived at the inn.Got Henry's letter at last! He's been at Plymouth. Says mom and Dad are doing good. Dad got the 'Solace Construction' contract he'd been waiting for! Mom's jam making business is better than ever. Our troubles are coming to an end!.Plan to spend the night at the inn. Hoping to hear from Henry again!
The inn people are really nice and hospitable.Food here is delicious! Plan to rest here till the 22nd. Until next time!
Ps- The innkeeper warned not to travel around the Tyrose Valley at night. Says it's haunted! What a load of hogwash! Heard of the eponymous nuclear test as a child. Anxious to be there!
Departed from the inn as planned. Warm hugs and hushed good-byes. Walked towards the south. Bit by a snake(thankfully not poisonous). As mother taught me , rubbed the leaves of the zalkova plant nearby. Writing this beneath the bark of a tree. Greyish rain clouds are coming from North. Better find a shelter before starts to rain!
(Lost track of time)
No rest for 24 hours.. Food and provisions are soon going to be over. Travelled south after consuming a shabby porrige at a shabbier Motel(The Miller's). No word from Henry.Last heard he was in Plymouth. Picked up a few berries to munch on the way. Heavy downpour. Thought it'd be dangerous to walk further so sought shelter in the eponymous Tyrose Valley's allegedly haunted Mansion (the porch of which I write this on).
Tried to break in. After a million attempts finally got in! Weird smell and an errie feeling all around. Went around the rooms. All murky and dingy. Heard a step coming from above. Hid in one of the rooms. Wrote this from there. God help me if it were at all possible!
The journal ended here.Although this journal made its way to the porch,his body was found after a week of his death by a passerby who reported a smell of rotten meat coming from inside the house. His position was exactly like that of Bella. Sitting in the arm chair . All relaxed and sangfroid. The light long gone from his eyes.
The RADITIONS of that nuclear attack that started this chain of horrendous events claimed not just Arnold's life but of many more to come...