THE HAUNTING OF HILLCREST MANOR book 1

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Chapter 12

It was well after dark when Nicholas and Elizabeth finished their evening meal at the Inn and retired to their rooms for the night. Immediately, he tapped on the adjacent door between the two rooms and walked in. They sat down together at the table and chairs that was on one side of the room to discuss what Elizabeth had found out from his grandmother. She told him everything, from waiting in Sarah’s room for the evil spirit to go downstairs, to going up to his grandmother’s bedroom. How she conjured up her spirit which was able to tell her what happened on Christmas Day until April. How Wesley felt helpless against her husband until he became so angry that he was able to make your grandfather stay away.

“But they never thought he would leave her tied to the bed … and let her just starve to death. Wesley tried and tried to untie her but he didn’t have the power to set her free. After that he remained here on this earthbound plane, watching his true love die a slow and agonizing death.”

Nicholas had turned a bit pale as he listened to the cruelty that had transpired in the Manor House. He never dreamed that his grandfather was capable of doing such a horrible act to his grandmother or to anyone for that matter. “I remember my grandfather,” he replied. “But I was very young when he died. But I do get flashes of him from time to time. I’ve never heard in all the years that I lived at Hillcrest Manor that he was anything but a responsible Lord and performed his duty to the fullest of his ability,” he said.“What are we going to do now? How are we supposed to ride my house of this … beast? I want to give my grandmother a decent burial. One that she deserves. But how can we do that if that … thing won’t let us near her long enough to bury her?” Nicholas said, as he put his hands up across his forehead. Leaning his elbows on the table.

Elizabeth came over to him and put her arms around him. Trying to give him some much needed comfort.“I need a little time to think of a solution to our problem. There has to be a way, somehow.” She said, thinking now to herself as to how she was going to accomplish this monumental task. She is the only one that can. “Nicholas, I am very, very tired right now and I think both of us need to get some sleep. Maybe in the morning … With my head clear, I’ll be able to formulate another plan.”

“You’re right. I am also exhausted by today’s events,” he said, as he stood up from the table. They walked over to the adjacent door between their rooms where he placed a kiss upon her lips.

“Until tomorrow,” he murmured, walking through the door and closed it behind him.

The following morning they both woke up refreshed after a much needed sleep and met downstairs in the dining room of the Inn. They ordered breakfast and ate it as soon as it came. Once their stomachs were full they both sat back in their chairs, sipping on a hot cup of tea.

“Well, have you come up with a new plan yet on how we are to proceed today? For the life of me, I don’t have a clue on what to do next?” He asked, before he took another sip of tea.

“I’m still thinking about it,” she replied.

“Oh … here’s your amulet back,” he said, as he started to remove it from around his neck.

“No, Nicholas. You must wear it at all times. You must stay safe. We’ve already discussed that. Also … if I take it back then how am I ever going to help this evil spirit crossover? I need time to do that. Therefore, do you now understand why I must confront the spirit without the amulet?”

“As always, you make perfect sense. It just goes against my principals to let a woman put herself in so much danger for me, without any protection for herself what-so-ever.”

“I am not just any woman, Nicholas. Don’t forget that I’m a clairvoyant. And I do possess special powers that will help and guide me through whatever is necessary to rectify this situation.”

He again found himself staring at her, thinking how strange all of this was. He like everyone else he knew, never believed in such things. But now, since he met Elizabeth and experienced this phenomenon, himself. He was totally amazed with her abilities.

“I think I know now what we should do next. You’re probably not going to like it, and it will be very dangerous for both of us … but it’s the only way. “After a few minutes had passed, he finally asked for the details of this latest plan. Dreading hearing it.

“We both need to return to the third floor. I need to make contact with the evil spirit, and convince it that it is time for it to leave this earthbound plane, and crossover. If we can bury your grandmother, there wouldn’t be any more reason for it to remain here at Hillcrest Manor.

“Well, all I can say is … that’s one hell of a plan, Elizabeth. That’s not a plan at all, that’s a death sentence for both of us. There’s just no way it will work. You really think we’re going to go back up to the third floor, waltz in and tell this thing that we want to talk with it? And that it will actually not attack us violently, but come over to us for a casual chat?”

“I do see your point, but … like I said before, this is the only way.”

Nicholas just shook his head in silence. They both got up from the table and returned one more time to Hillcrest Manor to implement this newest plan.

***

“Are you ready to do this now?” Elizabeth asked, as they stood next to the door to the third floor.

“I’m as ready as I’ll ever be.”

With that being said, Elizabeth opened the door and they both walked in and climbed the staircase to the upper level.

“Now that we’re up here, what are we supposed to do?” He asked, nervously.

“We wait. It will come soon enough I’m sure of that.”

“Shouldn’t we go to my grandmother’s … bedside? That’s where we were when it attacked us before?”

“No … we don’t want to anger it. It knows we’re here,” she answered back to him. Those words made the hairs on the back of his neck stand straight up. She closed her eyes and used her mind to try and contact the evil spirit. She wanted it to know that they were not any kind of threat to it or to the grandmother. She felt a presence in the room as the evil spirit appeared and made contact with her.

“He must die!” The spirit bellowed. “Take the amulet away from him, now! Or I’ll kill you as well.”

“No, I won’t. You must listen to me. I’m here to help you. We mean you no harm.”

The spirit let out a furious roar, its eyes were now glowing red as his anger grew.

The power of his roar send Elizabeth flying backwards where she hit the wall before falling to the floor. The impact stunned her for a few minutes.

Nicholas came toward the beast now with the amulet in his hand. “Leave her alone!” He yelled at the top of his voice.

“No Nicholas. No! Put the amulet down, put it away! But before he could do what she said, the evil spirit sent him flying across the room as well. The amulet flew out of his hands, landing on the other side of the room. Elizabeth jumped up and approached the spirit again. “You must trust me, I truly am here to help you! I know what happened up here on Christmas Day and after.” She stopped for a moment to see if the spirit was getting the message she was trying to send.

Another roar escaped from the spirit. The room was now bitter cold. She wrapped her arms around her shaking body, trying to stay warm. “You must listen to me,” she yelled again through the noise in the room. What furniture was there was now flying around and around the room before crashing to the floor. “We also want to help, Mary.”

The beast stopped for a moment, considering what she said. Its eyes lessened their intensity and then looked at Elizabeth, wanting her to continue.

“I know you truly love her, and want to protect her. I also know you were helpless against her husband until your anger grew to such intensity that you were able to finally do something. But … your actions inadvertently caused her husband to leave her tied to the bed posts and left to die. I understand fully how difficult it was for you to watch this happen to the woman you loved and not be able to help her.”

Again his anger knew no bounds with the mere mention of Mary’s name. He glared at Elizabeth with his eyes glowing a bright red again. The stench in the room had become almost intolerable now that its anger was fully emerging. “Get out of this house, woman. You don’t belong here.” He reached his arm out at Elizabeth, pushing her roughly behind him, knowing she was no threat to him without the amulet. He now turned his full attention back to Nicholas. The amulet was no longer in his possession either, making him also defenseless. “I’ve waited so many years for the last Blackwood male to parish for all eternity.”

Elizabeth heard his intentions and was now starting to panic. Wild thoughts going through her mind. Would her plan be the ultimate cause of Nicholas’s death?

The evil spirit slowly approached Nicholas. “The time has come … for you to die!”

Nicholas felt a hand go around his neck but he didn’t see anyone there. But he did know it was the evil spirit. It lifted him up against the wall before starting to tighten his grip, slowly choking Nicholas to death.

There was nothing Elizabeth could do but watch in horror as the evil spirit finally got what it wanted. Suddenly Elizabeth ran into the bedroom and tried desperately to contact Mary. She was there only hope to save Nicholas. Placing her hands on what was left of her body, she closed her eyes and called to her.

Her spirit rose from her body as it did before.

“Thank god you heard me! I need your help, Mary. Only you can convince Wesley not to kill your grandson, Nicholas. He is after all your own flesh and blood! Wesley has to be stopped now, before it’s too late.”

Mary felt Elizabeth’s anguish. “I will do what I can to help.” She followed Elizabeth back into the sitting room. Nicholas now was almost unconscious at the hands of the evil spirit. “Wesley … please don’t kill him. He’s my only grandson. He hasn’t ever done you any harm.” She pleaded.

Upon hearing her voice, Wesley immediately released Nicholas who fell instantly to the floor coughing, trying to catch his breath.

Mary advanced further into the room until she was standing face to face with the beast. He was shocked to see her, the intensity of his eyes lessened again and took on a more loving appearance as he gazed at her. “Mary, my love. I’ve waited so long to see you again. You’ve come back to me!” He could feel the evilness that had engulfed him so many years ago, slowly seep away as their eyes met. He was now returning back to the image of the young man who died, falling from her window. He drew her into his arms in a loving embrace. Neither one of them spoke but just stayed wrapped in each other’s arms.

In the meantime, Elizabeth walked over to Nicholas to make sure he was alright.

“What’s happening?” He asked, now that the evil spirit had released him from the death grip. “A few more minutes and I would have been … a goner!”

“I know, Nicholas. I was able to contact your grandmother. She’s with us now.

“How do you know that …? Never mind. You can see her … right?”

“Yes, as well as the evil spirit. “All the furniture that had been flying around the room now had fallen in pieces on the floor, not moving anymore. The room was still cold as ice but the horrible stench was fading away. “Nicholas, I need to help both of them crossover now.” She said, as she walked up to the two entities that were still in a loving embrace.

“It’s time.”

They both looked at her as she approached. She could see how much they loved each other. The evil spirit had now returned back to his natural form of, Wesley Hall. The young man who loved Mary with all his heart. His anger was so strong that it caused him to transform into that horrible beast as he witnessed the cruelty done to his beloved and not being able to save her. Now he was with her again, after so many years.

“Thank you, Elizabeth for all your help.” Mary said, with her mind. “I thought that this was to be my fate. Left alone here, for all eternity. I know my body had died but my spirit remained trapped here on this earthbound plane. I had lost all hope many years ago of anyone like you would find me, and then help me escape out of this horrible existence.” Elizabeth listened quietly as Mary related her sad tale. Now she turned her attention to Wesley.

“Madam,” he said. “I don’t know how to ever thank you for what you have done for us. It was hard enough when Mary’s father refused my marriage proposal, but then he told me I was never to speak to her again. I was devastated to say the least. When Mary suggested that we elope, I had hope again. I so loved her and would do anything to be with her. But … her brothers were waiting for me that night. They even waited for me to climb up the ladder to Mary’s room. That’s when they came out of hiding and shook the ladder so violently I didn’t have a chance. They didn’t just want me to leave … they wanted me dead. “Then when Mary’s husband became so cruel, my anger rose until one day … I was so powerful that I was able to stop him.”

“I can most definitely understand your anguish.” Elizabeth said, in a quiet voice.

“Anguish? It was far beyond anguish, I can assure you,” he replied. “I swore to myself that I would destroy the entire Blackwood family for what they had done to … my beloved, Mary.” He could feel his anger rising again just in the mere thought of what they had done.

“Wesley, that’s all in the past now. Those people who did you and Mary harm, died many, many years ago.” She pointed over at Nicholas. “This is Mary’s only grandson. Do you really think she would want to see him dead? He’s never done either one of you any harm.”

“He’s still a Blackwood!” He spat, before he looked into Mary’s eyes. He saw such a sadness there now and knew he was the cause of it. “I’m sorry Mary, it’s just this family … destroyed our happiness together.”

Elizabeth decided it was time now before his anger grew again to the point of becoming that horrible beast again. “Mary, Wesley please take each other’s hand.” Elizabeth closed her eyes for a moment, murmuring something to herself. When she opened them again, she saw a bright light coming over them from above. Encompassing them both completely. Finally the light disappeared the same way it came, taking both Mary and Wesley with it. She turned to Nicholas who was watching her during this whole ordeal. Not knowing what was really happening.“They are gone now … up in heaven … where they can spend all eternity together.”

Nicholas was speechless. He couldn’t believe the haunting was finally over. The evilness that had been occupying this house his entire life, was gone. “I am so grateful to you, Elizabeth,” he said, before pulling her into his arms, and kissed her deeply. They made their way back downstairs and tapped on Sarah’s door before entering. “Sarah, we have great news.” Her father said.

“Really? What kind of great news?” She asked excitedly, propping herself up on a pillow.

“It’s gone. That evil spirit that has been haunting us for years has finally gone.” He said, not sure if she really understood what he was trying to tell her.

“Sarah, I helped them crossover and ….”

“Who crossed over? I thought there was only one spirit in this house, so … how many more were there?”

“Your great-grandmother was trapped here. It was Wesley Hall, the love of her life that has been haunting this Manor House for years. But … now I’ve helped both of them move on into heaven.”

“So I don’t have to be afraid anymore?” She asked, doubting that the evil spirit was finally gone.

“No, as far as I can tell, this house is clean. Free from all evil, so there’s nothing for you to be afraid of anymore.”

“Oh, Elizabeth! I’ve waiting for so long … to hear those words!”

“Is she responding to you, Elizabeth?” Nicholas asked, not being able to hear anything his daughter was saying. He knew only Elizabeth could understand her.

“Yes, she’s very happy with this news. Very happy, indeed! But I think she’s over doing her strength. Let us leave so she can get some rest.”

“Very well. We’ll check in on you in a few hours, Sarah. So try to get some rest now.” He said, as he escorted Elizabeth out of the bedroom. “I think it would be very prudent for us to get cleaned up a bit after being in the third floor, don’t you,” she said, now paying attention to their disheveled appearance.

“I sure do agree with you, madam. I’ll meet you out on the terrace when you’re done.”

“That sounds wonderful to me,” she responded back in a very timid voice. She wasn’t use to anyone paying her this much attention. Especially a man.


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