In Darkness And Light: Part 4 of 4 – by Val

It was the day before Christmas, and although it was only about 12 in the afternoon, it had already been a long day for us. For me that day had begun with a frantic phone call and the discovery of a suicide note on my phone, and the traumatic search for my missing friend T – which led me into isolated wild places in the raw bush I fervently wished I would never see again – and to her miraculous discovery in the middle of nowhere, beside her car – where she had lain down alone to die.

This is my version of the events I describe as the worst week of my life thus far, continuing into part 4, the conclusion:

December 24 :Into The Light

Worried about attracting attention, I checked my car all round before backing out of the huge garage at the house. I wasn’t checking the lights for functionality, or some other damage, although there were innumerable scratches in the paint from the branches on the hiking trails we had scraped through on our frantic search for T.  No. I was looking for signs of blood. There was nothing, save for a smear of red across one headlight lens! How did that get there? And we had stopped at the pharmacy like that!

I wiped it off with a wad of toilet paper, trying to puzzle it out. We had walked around the car as we half-carried her to it – and I was certain none of us touched it. In the garage, she had walked in almost without any assistance, also without touching it. Weird.

I checked the back seat and the interior as well, just to be sure. T had lain on the back seat on the journey home, but that was clear.

I left the house and went out to get “ingredients” for the exorcism. Granted, it’s not as if you can just walk into a store and buy a kit or something. Imagine that though, “A packet of crisps, some milk – and oh yes, one of those Exorcism packs please, yes the Deluxe one containing the Christian bible and the little bell. Do you take Master Card?”  Pity.

Considering what I now know, it would make these things a lot easier. And so would so-called Christian ministers not denying that possession does happen, and hostile entities do exist – or making hypocrites out of themselves, their faith and their followers by cowering in their manses or turning tail and running outright.

It being the day before Christmas, most of the smaller shops were closed, and even some of the bigger ones. The malls were jam-packed with the lemmings rushing to buy last minute booty for the holiday season, and I didn’t even want to contemplate going in there. I tried a hardware store for a bell, and then as a last resort, I found an antique store that had some old fashioned bells available. There I bought a small brass bell with a clear high-pitched ring, decorated to look like a Swiss girl, who seemed to be yodeling. Perfect! I chose this above the larger cow bell, because that one’s sound was so irritating, it might rid them of me as well as the entity!

When I returned about an hour later, we decided it best to recover T’s car. She was also worried about it being out in the wilderness and getting stolen, or even stolen in installments.  I was worried it would be found, the interior being in the state it was in, splattered and covered in her blood, and with razor blades all over the place. If the cops found it like that, it was going to be even worse.

T had been resting and because we did not wish to leave her in the house with only one companion, we decided to all go together. Considering how the entity appeared to be speaking through her so frequently now that I joked we should install a swing-door at the back of her head, I thought it best we get her out for a break as well.

Surprisingly, once she left the house, T’s mind was clear and the influence of the entity appeared to vanish completely. Thinking we would find the place easily this time, having found it before and being shocked at how close it was to the world as we know it, we thought we would find it without trouble. We were quite wrong.

It took us three misses before we found the turn-off and the clearing again, which reinforced to all just how isolated and hard to find the place was. T became emotional again, realizing how close she came to the end. When we reached the car, I took a picture. I wanted to capture the isolation of the place. It was green, empty, silent, desolate, and the only human artifacts in the area her car and the telephone lines in the fire break. In the far distance, the ocean was visible over the hills. The steep downhill yawned at me as I approached the car.

When we opened it up, it stank like an abattoir. The sun had turned the still liquid pools of blood inside into a distressing stench laden with distinct overtones of death and cruelty. The bright daylight made it very clear that this was not going to be one bit pleasant. R and I cleaned up the worst of it – a necessary task if we wanted to try and get the car started. It was really tacky, sticky, smelly and surreal. All of us felt more like we were covering up a murder than recovering a friend’s car. The center console was too bad to clean here, so we left it for later. Finally, after R gagged for the third time, it was more or less ready. Towels covered the seats, and the dash, wheel and windshield were clear. Now to try and start the car.

At that point T informed us that we should be really careful as while she had lain on the ground, trying to press the hooter to attract our attention, the car had moved backwards and forwards on its own, reportedly in an attempt to injure her further. We were tempted to take this one under advisement, but considering circumstances, we decided to be careful. After a fruitless attempt to start it using jumper leads, I decided in desperation that the best way to start the car would be to drop the hand brake, and run it down the hill in gear with the ignition on. All the while, at the back of my mind I was aware that if something happened to us – or my car – out here, we were unlikely to find help, and it was a long walk back to civilization.

The amazing thing was, the very moment I dropped the park brake and pressed in the clutch, the car rolled forward of its own accord. If the car didn’t start on this one-time chance, there would be almost no way I was going to drag it up the hill with mine!

It did start! The motor burst into life on the first try, and I brought it to a sharp halt at the bottom of the hill in a cloud of dust, pebbles and loose vegetation. If the car hadn’t started – well, there was a huge pile of tree trunks at the end of the fire break an unsettling short distance away. I made a three-point turn and headed back up the hill to my own car, pretty much patting myself on the back – satisfied with my technical ability and driving skills. The others applauded as I pulled up beside them. We moved both cars back to the tar road before R and S drove the “haunted car” back to the house, and T rode back with me.

I instructed R to be wary of the car, telling her what to do if it gave any sign of being taken over or losing control. We drove back in convoy, all the way hoping that we wouldn’t be stopped by a road block. That would really be the cherry on top as far as I was concerned. Explaining the blood all over the Toyota without getting arrested on suspicion of suspicion would be extremely challenging. R joked that she could just point to my car and tell the coppers that the blood belongs to the owner – in THAT car, officer. I could picture T waving back cheerfully and wondering what all the fuss was about.

All told, about an hour – and no roadblocks later, we arrived back at the house. Relieved, we parked both cars in the enormous quadruple garage. We got T back to bed and she seemed fine for almost an hour, before that swing-door started operating again.

While we waited, with the garage door open, a friend of T’s popped round on a scooter and asked if she was available for a visit. I felt really uncomfortable. What would happen if he saw her in that state? I played the over-protective “girlfriend” and told him she was upstairs, sleeping and not feeling too well. It seemed to satisfy him, and he left, much to our relief.

While we were waiting for S’s cousin to arrive, we stood outside with the door open. When she entered, the electric garage door malfunctioned. It stopped halfway down and wouldn’t close. I had to open it again to get it to close. This happened twice, and had never happened in my experience at the house before or since. It clearly did not want her to be here. While R guarded T, S and I gave A a tour around the house, explaining recent events and details to her.

While S and A prepared to perform the exorcism, R and I stayed with T, who was in bed, changing voices and personalities from her own, to the entity, unknown, and back again. R, the Christian among us, had been asked by S to read specific passages from the bible. I had been asked to restrain and keep T down if necessary, and yes – once she began reading, it was. Almost immediately upon hearing the reading, it hissed and spat at us both, angry and terrified. For a body so low on blood, T was surprisingly strong – but I held her down anyway. It insulted and threatened. We called it out on its threats, saying if it had the power to free itself or to harm us, it would do so – and had not – and thus could not.

During one of the lighter moments, T and I would talk, and I would work to keep her morale high. Her parents, worried that they hadn’t heard from her for a  few days, called a few times that day, and she spoke to her dad on the phone twice since we got her back to the house. She worked very hard to not cry or give it away that there was something wrong during the short chats with him. I really felt for her then.

While the readings were made, S and myself chanted the Catholic exorcism rite “In the name of the father, and the son, and the holy spirit, I rebuke you” over and over again. It writhed in her but she was too weak to stand up or leave. It puzzled me, as a former Christian, a Pagan – that Christian issue would have such an effect on it. I was told by the others that the Christian belief system was one of the largest on the planet, and so it held sway in strength of belief – and belief (no matter what in) was what it feared. Granted, it didn’t specifically react to the mention of any names such as “God” or “Jesus”, but it was a puzzle I spent hours later turning over and over in my mind. Was it really just belief in “anything” that it feared?

At one point, when I was holding onto T, holding her down, while also trying to provide comfort to her, it saw my pentacle necklace and reached out and took it in her hand.

“Inside their circle, you give me strength!” It said, pulling her mouth in an ugly fashion.

“It’s just a symbol.” I reasoned.

“I created this! It’s mine!” It insisted.

I wrestled the pendant from her grasp with difficulty I found surprising considering she had used her more injured arm to take it with – and ripped the chain from my neck in the process. “And now I take it away.” I said.

I looked it in her eyes and smiled as I freed the little disk and bits of broken chain – and tossed the now tainted objects across the room, out of reach. I didn’t want it back after that. Orfeo claimed it later for himself, and I let him. I would replace it later if I really wanted to.

Things were said after that, hurtful things. I just retorted with jokes or turned the insult around onto it. It speculated how T could love a thing such as me and called me “bloodsucker” and “leech”. The entity couldn’t hurt me emotionally as I knew it wasn’t T doing the talking. It got very annoyed when I made fun of it or treated its comments with humor and just casually brushed off its attacks. What it really didn’t like was when in the midst of its threats I told it that it must really be kicking itself now for bleeding T out and losing all that blood – because with that blood went all the power it had within her. I baited it by challenging it to levitate her or something else. It could not. It told me that perhaps I would bleed out soon as well, and by my own hand. I laughed at it, and said “Then it still will not be by yours. The power in that decision is mine.”

We continued the chanting. It accused us in turn, laughing, saying “Unbeliever!” I leaned over her and whispered to it, saying: “If that’s the case then why do you squirm?” It also didn’t like it when I speculated on what kind of reception was awaiting it before its superiors after its failure in this plain? It fell silent for a time, before saying to me: “Do you know how old I am? Without reckoning.”

I replied: “Humans live short lives compared to your kind, but even in their short spans they become wise and they learn and grow and improve themselves – you’re as old as time and you’re still just as stupid and clumsy as you were at the beginning. I almost pity you.” It didn’t like that at all.

By the end of the evening, all of us were tired, emotionally strained and wishing to end this thing which had consumed our lives for the past week. It was Christmas eve, and I knew my mom was at home alone, and I was full of regret for what was clearly a horrible Christmas on her part as well. At about 8pm, we began the final ritual. We sowed a salt circle in her bedroom, placed candles and incense, and at that point, to my complete surprise, T rose to the occasion and started to fight back.

She took charge of the process for a moment, placing herself at the center of the circle, and even giving us pointers. She decided to face it head-on. She began speaking to the spirits in the room, including the entity, and also to what appeared to be the relative who had molested and raped her through her childhood. She appeared to be trading dismissals with threats. It was threatening her sister (whom we learned the next day had been bitten by a poisonous spider and risked losing her foot). While this transpired, we continued preparations. Then, when ready, T took her place at the center, and we began. She wanted to get this over with and get on with her life, but I knew she was really so afraid – and so very brave for standing up to it. The entity spat at us, writhed and threatened and cursed us as we fought it. It laughed at us as it writhed in her body while we demanded its name – and after almost an hour of this, it finally gave in.

We rebuked the spirit of anger and demanded it leave the house. It appeared to consent – but said that the salt seal was preventing it from leaving. A neat trick we almost fell for. Instead of consenting to open the seal, we continued to order it to leave, while it continued to call on its comrades for help. Against the far bedroom window, the banana tree leaves banged and scraped eerily against the glass.

When it left her body, it reappeared to her, and she was still able to see it and interact with it, strengthening my belief that she is a gifted psychic and medium. It was outside the circle, angry and wanting to get back in. T described it to us, telling us where it was moving. She was overcome by panic and sorrow – it was holding her unborn baby who had been cut from her and killed during a hijacking a decade earlier. I had to calm her, saying to her that it was a lie – a child is a pure spirit and that such as they could not have power over it. A instructed T to command it to never return to her life or her home. She did this, and it was banished outside the salt seal placed around the house, the doors, the windows.

She was afraid, and covered her ears and her eyes, as the banana tree leaves pounded on the bedroom window in the light wind, saying that they were trying to get back inside. I resolved to look again in the garden, as the banana tree happened to be exactly where my friend D had said there was a portal under the boundary wall into the street and elsewhere.

T calmed down and went to lie on the bed again. A sat in the circle contemplating. Orfeo and S cleaned up some of the candles. It was midnight, Christmas 2011, and we celebrated – not just the day, but the success, the victory, and the fact that we had made it through this.

Looking at the salt, candles and general chaos around the house afterwards, I felt a twinge of pity for the staff on Tuesday morning who would have to clean this lot up.

December 25: Looking For Answers

I went home a few minutes after midnight, calling my mom to tell her to expect us both. T was going to spend the night at my place. The others were going to sleep there. Mom was sitting up in front of the TV watching music programs alone still, and I felt incredibly guilty for that.

Christmas day was awkward for me, after dropping T at home in the morning, I had to spend the day away from her due to family commitments, and while I really wanted to spend time with mom, my thoughts were clinging to T. After watching her like a hawk and fighting to save her continually for so many days, it was a hard habit to break. Had the entity really been defeated? Had it really left? Was she safe? Dare we relax now?

Orfeo and S related to me how some small things had continued to happen around the house after we left and during the night and early morning. The Marilyn Monroe canvass in her bedroom for example, made a short flight off the wall across the room – complete with the hook it hung on.

Orfeo took a random video in the morning, showing how he placed the bible we used, closed on T’s bedside table, before going out to the balcony to join the others. In the background you can hear a loud bang in the house, and when he and the others go back inside and pass the bed, there is a book lying on it, open – the very same bible. Of course, at the time, Orfeo never joined the dots until he watched the video later.

T settled in to sleep through the entire day. S and A and Orfeo headed home. I went up to my aunt’s place with my mom for the day. T’s phone finally seemed to run out of airtime. Interestingly enough, T had run out of airtime on the 23rd already, and had somehow continued to make calls while we were searching for her. It had also never run out of battery power, which in itself was just plain weird. Anyone who knows her, knows she’s always looking for a charger or is unreachable on account of a dead battery.

At one point I got seriously concerned about her, and she wasn’t responding. I couldn’t just leave, so I contacted Orfeo and asked him to check up on her, which he did. She was sound asleep. When I finally dropped mom at home, I headed back up that way, realizing that I might seem paranoid or overprotective – but given recent events, I didn’t think anyone could blame me. She was still asleep, and Orfeo was cooling his heels inside what was still a very spooky place for us. I pressed T to spend another night at my place, just for my peace of mind.  She slept over at my house the following night as well – but eventually insisted on sleeping at home.

December 26: Repairing The Fences

Over the coming days, I realized that the old T was back, that she was strong and independent again, and free of this influence.

That did not mean I was going to take any chances. On the afternoon of 26 December, I arrived at the house and cut some of the branches of the banana tree under her bedroom window. Almost immediately, T messaged me to ask what was going on – her tree was screeching. Yes, it seems she could hear it. I shook my head in irritation and near disbelief and immediately felt bad about what I had been doing to the tree, and resolved to make it up to it somehow. Then I ran a line of coarse salt all the way round the property, and sowed the garden patch described to me as the location of the portal as well. This took some doing, as the garden was rather dense in places! It may sound like wishful thinking, but the change in the house was immediate. The last lingering ghostly entities left so that now, the house is still and there is only the living within those walls. The creepy feeling has gone, and so has the puzzling wind within.

The bath was cleared out, finally, and after another three blood-soaked rinses and even an attempt at the washing machine, the clothing and wrap were given up for lost and discarded in the garbage – leaving quite a few people wondering how it is that T is still alive and moving around almost as if nothing had happened.

December 27: New Beginnings

On the 27th, I arrived with a bag of soil treatment pellets and a supply of iron pills. The pellets were for the banana tree, by way of apology. Hey, I even gave it a hug. I might be a Vampyre, but I like to think of myself as a “nice monster”.

The iron pills were for T – she was weak and short of breath, and pale – these were sure signs that she was anemic. She had a lot of upper body pain which she attributed to her heart, but a doctor diagnosed torn chest and back muscles and cracked ribs – which she blamed on the entity slamming her into the ceiling and dragging her across it. She told the doctor she had been in a car accident, and he gave me a funny sort of look that made me think he suspected a little domestic trouble between a lesbian couple. Well, we certainly couldn’t correct him.

We took the car to be valet cleaned, after realizing that T and I had reached the limit of what we could do without stripping out seats and steam cleaning. Taking it down to a car wash at last seemed the better option, and so we cautiously backed out of the garage. I sat behind the wheel keeping in mind all the warnings T gave me about how the car just seemed to drive itself. I prepared contingency plans, such as putting the car in neutral, turning off the ignition etc, and slowly and carefully we moved off. Around the corner, as I was reaching third gear, the accelerator pedal took a distinct dip from under my foot. I bumped the gear lever into neutral and as the revs climbed briefly, chuckled “Now rev, you bastard!” The revs dropped to normal and we continued without incident.

At the car wash T spun a tale about how her puppy she didn’t have got bitten by a stray dog that didn’t exist on some vague street corner and nearly died, explaining the mess inside the car. The cleaners grimaced, nodded, and went to work while we enjoyed a rare steak lunch with Dom Pedros at the neighboring pub – where we joked about how easy it must be to get away with murder in this town.

The car looked a lot better afterward, but still stank horribly, only horrible with a hint of lemon fresh. We sprinkled baby powder and sprayed air freshener, tried the old onions-in-water trick, and even chemical cat-pee cleaner. It resulted in a particularly revolting and unique odor, and eventually just the blood filtered through. I still miss it sometimes.

T still drove around with towels on the seats and the windows open for the next few weeks. The car was cleaned and valeted out four more times – and now finally the smell of blood and death is barely perceptible. Blood stains still mark the seats, and the center console is still a little grim, but against advice, she is determined to keep the car. She is by far a stronger person than before, and though a little nervous of the future, and wary of shopping malls and grave yards, she is facing it one day at a time.

Post Mortem

Since the issue was resolved, the photographic studio and massage spa have resumed work, and it’s been business as usual. I have come to the end of my so-called holiday, and returned to work for a bit of a rest.

C returned to the house, to her flatlet, and to her job. Nothing has recently moved around by itself or caused her to freak out or wax hysterical.

S has experienced serious family problems at home, including interpersonal drama and serious health issues. A, as part of the same household, has also.

Orfeo has experienced uncanny relationship trauma in the aftermath of these events, and a friend of his recently attempted suicide. In the midst of it all, he believes an entity followed him home. His mother, who is a former witch with a gift for tarot, detected its presence at home. She and her husband resorted to going away for the week while the matter was being resolved – and since the exorcism, Orfeo can detect no trace of it there. Meanwhile, his phone suffered a crash, and all his photographic and video evidence in this matter were lost. We still debate the coincidence and irony in this.

By contrast, I have had little misfortune, other than IT equipment failures, including one laptop that refuses to connect to the internet, and another that mysteriously refuses to power on. I now sit in my humid office, isolated from my colleagues by about 80 square meters of building dating back to about 1930. I attribute the creaking noises in the roof to the baking hot afternoon sun, but cannot explain the sound of footsteps on the plates above. I know nobody is up there. I also cannot explain the whispery sound of paper and plastic settling on the shelf in my office. Weird. Still, I suppose not everything can be supernatural in origin, can it? Nevertheless, it can be – and will be assumed to be, ironic.

D and her mentor in the USA taught us both how to shield and cloak properly using Skype – and we subsequently learned via a roundabout turn of events too complicated to go into right now, that the two guardians she had left with T had been with her at the car on the 24th. They stayed with her all the time. It was they who covered her with the fluffy wrap to keep her warm. It was they who kept the same song playing while she lay there, when there was no repeat function on the car’s cd player… just to keep her focused and fighting for her life. We later attributed T’s mysterious phone life and continued connection to them as well.

Since this matter drew to its conclusion, we have all looked back on it, and I have weighed the lessons learned carefully. My most important lesson is to shield myself, and my home against hostile entities, to cleanse and dump negativity regularly, and to always keep a small bottle of salt in my hand bag, just in case.

T has accepted her ability to communicate with entities and the spirits of the dead, learned to shield against unwanted interactions and to choose her encounters carefully. She cannot rid herself of this ability as she wishes, but she has accepted that she has to learn how to live with it in the best way possible. Knowing what is out there is something I have had to come to grips with as well, and it is at best, difficult.

T still worries that the entity will try to come back, or something even worse. I do too. But I also know that if it can be beaten once, it can be kept at bay – or if need be, defeated again. That is why, when I hear T tell me about the doorbell ringing mysteriously at night time after time, with nobody visible on the monitor – that while something may ring or knock to come in, it remains up to us to allow such things to come in to our lives or not – and this means that the real power lies with us. Otherwise, why would such supposedly incredibly powerful and omnipotent entities bother with tormenting such puny inconsequential creatures? The real power lies with us – and that means we can keep them out, for as long as it takes, whatever it takes. All we need to do is realize it, with intent. And never give up.

All I can say about my experiences is that if one person has a delusion, seven other people are not likely to experience that same delusion at the same time and in the same way. If one person imagines something, perhaps due to a mental illness, then someone else who is purportedly “normal” or healthy is unlikely to share that imaginary event. I know what I felt, heard, saw and experienced. I know that I was not imagining it – and I don’t really care whether you believe all this or not.

The sobering reality of that is rather frightening – and comforting at the same time. It means that there is a whole different reality which only some of us can perceive from this side of life, that there is a hereafter – however different from our traditional belief systems it turns out to be. It means that while death may surround us, and that physical death may one day be inevitable and unavoidable, there is life of a kind thereafter – and continued love – and always, hope. 

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About Octarine Valur

Octarine Valur - Founder: House Valur, South African Vampyre Community, South African Vampi(y)re Alliance (SAVA), SA Vampyre news (SAVN). View all posts by Octarine Valur

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