Lilith reached into the refrigerator for the nice friendly ice cream, letting her mind go as blank and white as the refrigerator light.
Okay, so apparently she didn’t have chocolate. Vanilla with caramel would have to do. It’s not like she wasn’t used to settling for less.
She shut the refrigerator door with her elbow, mentally shaking herself. She wouldn’t think about that. Jason was gone and she’d worry about that later. Now it was time for ice cream.
The vanilla ice cream was fluffy and creamy and smooth and nice. And the caramel looked a bit like blood.
Yes, the caramel was gooey coagulated blood spilled across doughy lumps of flesh.
No, wait, no it wasn’t. It was little rivulets of peace and quiet flowing down tranquil pastoral hills. Much better.
Lilith carried her bucket of blood and horribly mutilated flesh to the trash can. She felt much better now.
She sighed and closed her eyes, trying her best to imagine pastoral hills and clear gurgling streams. She failed miserably and wiped a bit of caramel colored blood from her chin.
Time to get to work. Surely she’d be able to find something about Seth online. Maybe he had a Twitter? “Today I came back from the dead and made funny lights at my house and trolled all the townspeople, lulz.”
She’d be okay. She had a stomach full of nice ice cream and now she could stare at The Red Checker Duo of Awesomeness and Zombie Guts. Yeah, okay, so it was a bit fangirlish but whatever. They’d been her favorite band since junior high.
The first search result was a forum about urban legends and ghost stories. She clicked on the thread titled “The Strange and Weird Story of the Terrible Dr. Morrigan” and settled in for a nice long read.
Dr. Seth Morrigan was a famous scientist who moved to Sunset Valley to work at the local research facility.
At first he appeared to be a normal member of the community. He enjoyed fishing on the beach.
He had a real green thumb and plants thrived under his care.
He could often be seen reading in the park. He did keep to himself somewhat but most of the residents of the Valley thought he was an okay guy.
After a few years that began to change. He would wander around town in odd outfits, ranting loudly about life and death.
He would collar random strangers and lecture them endlessly about life fruit and death blossoms and angelfish and deathfish and how it was all a conspiracy and how he would show Death.
The townspeople were not amused.
His wife Sarah was generally liked. She was an excellent cook and would often bring her concoctions to the park for everyone to share. When Dr. Morrigan began his descent into madness everyone felt sorry for her and were worried when they saw her looking so scared.
Her anxiety increased as her waistline began to thicken.
She was seen less and less in public. Occasionally someone would spot her alone on the beach, staring into the surf.
Dr. Morrigan fell deeper and deeper into madness. He no longer bothered strangers with his rantings. He did not seem to realize that other people even existed.
As Sarah’s pregnancy progressed they both retreated into the isolated house at 53 Waterfall Way. People thought they’d at least see Sarah when it was time for the baby to be born, but she was never seen again.
Dr. Morrigan sometimes ventured out to fish and buy seeds. His erratic behavior increased and his ravings began to lose all semblance of being connected to reality. He seemed to think he was arguing with Death.
One night, more than a decade since Sarah had disappeared, a fire broke out at 53 Waterfall Way.
There was no fire alarm. No one called the fire department. It was said that there were no witnesses, that the house was too far away from town for anyone to see the smoke. Thus did the citizens of Sunset Valley assuage their guilt.
If there were witnesses, they never spoke of what they saw.
Today the house sits vacant, its yard choked with weeds. No one goes to fish at the waterfall anymore. An air of desolation and ruin hangs over the spot.
Teenagers dare each other to go up to the old Morrigan place. They say that that on some nights weird lights come from the house and the insane laughter of Dr. Morrigan can be heard over the booming of the falls.
Are they telling the truth? If you’re brave, perhaps you should go investigate for yourself.
Lilith shut down the computer and shivered. The bits about the fire and Sarah’s disappearance must have been removed from the archives of the Observer. Someone didn’t want people snooping around in the history of the house by the waterfall.
She pulled back the covers and got into bed. Tomorrow she’d talk to Sam Sekemoto at the library. Maybe he would know more about the fire and what happened to Sarah.
And she would not think about Jason or ice cream or waffles or blood or even nice pastoral hills. Not at all.
Lilith closed her eyes, falling into a fitful troubled sleep.
And she began to dream.