Case Four- The Damned
Ever since I started writing the Trudy Hicks Ghost Hunter series, I wanted to include a story of the hallowed grounds encompassing my family home.
Through the years, the surrounding area has been plagued with suicide, addiction, and even murder. Deep in the woods, many have witnessed the spirits of Native Americans, civil war soldiers, oh and my great-grandfather. Others shared stories of interactions with UFOs, bigfoot, talking deer, and my own experience with a Skin Walker and Anya, a woman dressed in white buckskin who has entered my dreams since early childhood. ( you’ll have to read the book to learn more.)
Trudy will have her hands full in this one—discovering why this area off Millingtown is tainted with misfortune.
The evidence leads her back to 1721 when a German healer accused of a horrendous crime flees to barbaric America. This brave pioneer faces the harsh unknown and puts down roots on the sacred hunting ground of the indigenous people. Accepted as a medicine woman, she finds herself embroiled in a conflict between rival tribes and a love of the forbidden kind.
It's her big heart that leads to her untimely demise. The gentle healer lures an unearthly trespasser that unleashes its wrath on the aboriginals and spitefully damns their souls for all eternity.
A weird screech from high up on the ridge interrupted the conversation. A cracking of tree limbs and a howl that seemed to be getting louder rattled the night. The boisterous squawks of rudely awakened birds jolted Trudy into action.
“It’s coming... Let's go!”
Patrick spun hastily, almost dropping the camera.
Trudy grabbed his arm to steady him.
“Go with Tyler!” She urged and nodded to Jason and Joe to follow.
The screeches were louder and became almost deafening.
Trudy ducked behind a tree so she could peer back through the thermal camera.
“What the Hell are you doing, Hicks?” Jason crouched behind her while waving at Joe to follow the others. “Let's go.”
Through the thermal camera, she could see brilliant colors of a mass settling over the area where the log remained in the netting.
“Something is checking the snare,” she whispered and hushed Rocky when he let out a low growl.
“I can't believe what I'm seeing,” Jason spoke gruffly, observing the screen over her shoulder. “It looks like a tall ape.”
They continued to watch the specimen, over eight feet tall, pace the area. Its stride gangly and familiar.
“ I don't like this.” Jason pressed closer against her back.
Trudy gasped when the thing abruptly turned in their direction. She switched off the camera, hearing the sound of heavy footsteps coming toward them on the trail.
They squeezed around the tree and huddled under a thick crop of alder branches. Trudy placed her hand over the dog's snout to keep him quiet.
The creature picked up its pace. Twigs and branches snapped and popped under its ominous weight. Trudy held her breath as the heavy night air seemed to thin with its approach. No other sound disturbed the eerily stillness. Jason's fingers tightened on her arm when it came within mere inches of where they squatted.
In the pitch of darkness, the thing appeared to be nothing more than a huge black blob.
Relief flooded over her trembling limbs, watching the creature continue on its way and move further down the trail.
Once it was out of sight, Trudy used the two-way radio to warn the others to get to safety.
“Everyone’s here and inside the trailer.” Ryan came over the speaker.
“Good, stay safe —we’re on our way.”
Jason helped her rise to her feet. “Let's get going before it decides to come back.
“This way.” he nodded toward a denser path where they wouldn't be so exposed.
The radio on her belt garbled again.
“Trudy, you copy.”
“Yeah, Ryan, go ahead.”
The airways crackled, and after a few moments, Ryans voice cut through the static,
“Trudy, something's outside.”