THE FIGURE WAS tall and well-built, with a sharp, piercing gaze and despicable countenance.
And he was naked, every contour and edge of his smooth, jet-black body revealed in the flickering candlelight, glistening unnaturally with serpentine allure.
Detective Lee Davies stared with his jaws hanging slightly open, perplexed at the mysterious appearance of this strange man who had presently held everyone spellbound in the enchantment of his aura. Now everyone was frozen on the spot, staring at this terrible-looking person.
Who was he? Or, what was he?
For an intense, long moment, they kept staring at the strange visitor in their midst in dismay, until he stepped out of the dark corner where he’d appeared, picking his way forward deliberately with a subtle look in his bright eyes. He seemed aloof and magnificent, almost lordly in his gait as though he owned the people he was looking at.
Samantha looked at him and she caught her breath.
Davies’ jaw was still hanging open. The character paused and tilted his head from side to side in curiosity as though to get a better look at everyone around him. Then he too caught his breath, and his smile broadened in a daunting way.
Davies couldn’t believe what he was seeing.
It was impossible!
The hall was utterly still in that single moment.
The person standing before them was an identical resemblance to the body chained in the middle of the floor. It was like a bizarre replica, but with a few modifications in the details. Even the women appeared mystified, and they turned to glance at the boy on the floor to make certain that it wasn’t a dream.
Samantha’s eyes were wide in disbelief.
“No! No!” she was muttering, her voice torn between a terrified whisper and outright fright. “No!”
“It cannot be,” sighed Davies, drawing his breath.
“It’s not possible…How?” said one of the women, horror-stricken.
Then smiling evilly, the figure cast a deathly gaze at Samantha.
“Hello, Mother,” he said, in a deep, sepulchral voice.