The Dark Tale Of Engel Blut Manor

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
In the Black Forest of Southern Germany there is
a place called Engel Blut Manor. The owner of this
manor , fearing for his life , has called upon his
long time friend for help though some secrets cannot
be shared ... some secrets cannot be believed.

Submitted: August 17, 2012

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Submitted: August 17, 2012

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~***~

Contrary to popular belief it is not that unusual to find oneself at the scene of a murder. In fact the occurrence is quite common given people's penchant for getting themselves killed. However , what

is somewhat odd is to find oneself called upon to accompany one who sincerely believes they are

on the precipice of being murdered. Not only that but being murdered by a shadowy perpetrator

whose presence the intended victim cannot , with credibility , explain. It is here our story begins.

Here... on the shadow - swept road to EngelBlut Manor.

Herr driver , how much farther until we reach the manor? The carriage continued to bump along viciously as the young German looked back with a pained expression.

Ist eine weitere Meile..umm ... mile? He waited for me to affirm his broken English as I removed my tophat and peered back and forth from the carriage window. A mile , I echoed. Ja , he responded with a wide grin empty of all but the meanest comprehension.

His joyful demeanor vanished as a chorus of wolves sounded again from somewhere deep in the vaulted Black Forest. I watched with amusement as he clutched the ancient long rifle that lay like a roman spear acrossed his lap. What dark fairytales might inhabit the minds of these villagers , I wondered as EngelBlut Manor soon rose from the chilled mist of late autumn.

I watched the young German hurry the carriage away as I rapped my cane loudly three times 'pon the ancient oak doors. Do hurry , I smiled and yelled back at him , the night is closing in.

My wicked smirk was contested as a face etched in worry revealed itself from behind the doorway.

Herr Doctor... is it you? Truly , is it you? Well of course , I started but was cut short as my

old friend rushed from the shadowed recess and gripped me in a frantic embrace. Yes , yes

all well and good I mumbled uncomfortably and pushed him gently back to shoulder distance.

What are you on about , I asked as the look in his eyes spoke of hysteria and despair.

What is this nonsense about someone wanting to murder you? At this he peered strangely out

at the forest and grabbed my arms. Please , I beg you Herr Doctor , ve must go inside and

rid ourselves of this dreadful cold. Certainly , I stated with narrowed eyes. Let us find a fire

and drink and then we can speak of matters at hand.

The manor was like a cavern yawning and stretching this way and that in any number of odd

and disconcerting directions. Hallways led to stairs which in turn led to more hallways in a

confusing labybrinth of large paintings and antique furniture.

In those days electricity was still very much a luxury to be had only in the larger cities and so was unknown there in the Black Forest of southern Deutschland. That being the case I had come prepared , having bought roughly a dozen candles from a camp of gypsies in

northern Hungary , but I was not prepared for the spectacle which lay before me that night.

Every crevice , every bare surface which proved suitable was littered with candles of all shape

and size. Hundreds , perhaps a thousand burning with a thick odor that smelt of all manner of

fragrance both pleasant and revolting.

As we entered the main room my friend reached for a decanter filled with some dark and

vicious liquid. Shall ve have that drink now Herr Doktor. I tore my gaze from the large

fireplace I was inspecting and nodded. Hmmm... oh yes , yes and please Warin I was Sascha

in our childhood long before I became Herr Doktor as you say.

Of course Warin said and his shoulders slumped as the weight of his nervousness seemed to lessen. These last few weeks have been very trying and their are none to vhom I can voice my

concerns. Of course the villagers believe me but what gut are they? They won't set foot here

to accompany me even at the prospect of vages and free room and board.

I rubbed my eyes and sat down heavily. Yes, yes I see but let us get to the heart of the matter.

Who is trying to murder you and why? Surely there is a constable in the local village who can

resolve this matter? No.. no Warin muttered. I can't go to the constable , not with this matter.

You , Sascha my dear friend , you are the only man I can trust with this.

I rose wearily from the dusty chair and looked , questioningly , into my old friends eyes. Very well Warin , I said. Who is trying to kill you. Warin looked away staring hard into nothing. I...

I do not know.

The night wore on as Warin spoke of sounds and whispers and other such things which , no doubt , would haunt the mind of any man so inclined as to , alone , inhabit a large manor in the deep woods. I smoked my pipe and listened to tales and ramblings that often verged on being

incoherent but always centered on a main theme. Said theme being that their was , at least in

poor Warins mind , some man or thing that was intent on bringing harm to his person.

Finally I stood and ran my hand over my eyes and mustache. My friend , I said loudly causing

Warin to snap off his words in mid-sentence, it is late and I must retire but I will leave you with

this thought. We've known one another since our youth and I have no doubt of your story

or at least that you believe yourself to be in danger. However , nothing you've said lends evidence to the presence of a threat to your life. I mean no disrespect of course but I feel that

the gloom and isolation of this manor are playing on your senses and I've no doubt that my presence will soon have you feeling much better. Warin smiled weakly and took my hand. Thank you Herr.... Sascha. Perhaps you are right. Please forgive me for forgetting about supper. I will show you to your room and bring bread and vine if you desire.

As I lay in the second story bedroom I dwelt upon the normal sounds of an empty house. The odd bumps and scrapes of tree limbs on windows , the sounds of wind moaning lullabies and the like. The most disturbing things , however , were not these simple phantoms but the corrosive silence ; The silence that waited and ate away at the edge of sound. Yes , I could see how the silence of this place could wear on one's sanity. I fell to slumber that night with the song of the cold autumn wind dancing along the silent walls of the manor.

The next morning's first sound was that of a joyful German song drifting up the stairwell along

with the pleasant smell of bacon cooking. As I made my way downward I was greeted by a smiling Warin. Ah... he sung. Sascha , come , come eat. I did'nt want to wake you to early.

One needs rest from such a journey as yours. Yes , I agreed , and I see you seem to be feeling

much better. Ja... indeed Herr Doktor. Your presence here has , as you said , brought much relief to my mind. As I knew it would Sir, I stated , now show me this unfortunate pig that he might bring relief to my empty stomach.

As we ate I looked around at the stunning house. Truly Warin , I said through large bites of

bisquit and bratwurst , it is like a cathedral here. Tell me , for my Deutsch is not so good anymore , what does this mean... this EngelBlut. Well , my friend started , quickly rubbing his face and

neck as though wiping away a bad thought. EngelBlut in your English translates to Angel Blood.

That is an odd name , I remarked , but perhaps fitting for such a disconcerting place as this...heh?

I must know , what is the story behind this strange title. Well it is not so good a story for breakfast , Warin pleaded. Bad for digestion Ja? Come now , I rebuked , I've a strong

stomach. My friend cringed but gave in with a nod. Some hundred years ago , roughly 1803,

the lord of this manor Herr Alderwulf returned from business to find his maid and mistress missing and.... and his children lying inside the edge of the voods... half-devoured.

That's terrible , I exclaimed. Did they ever find the culprit? Was it a bear or was it some kind of

sick maniac? No , they never found der killer , Warrin said as he stared at the distance , nor any

sign of the maid or mistress. Lord Alderwulf then became a drunken vreck. He... he killed himself at the site of the attack a few months later but was heard to have cursed this place with

the name Angel Blood Manor in honor of his slaughtered children. That's horrendous , I said ,

and not to make light of such a thing but what was the name before the incident.

Warrin looked panged and sat silent for a few seconds. It was just Wulf , he said finally, Wulf Manor.

For the next few days all was well. Warrin seemed back to his old joyous self and I wandered the vast empty halls listlessly enjoying my pipe and looking at the odd collection of knick knacks from a near 200 year history. At other times I stood , happily on the massive porch and looked out over the ocean of fresh forests and cold mountains. Often Warin and I spoke of happy memories and happy things to come. He even spoke of , perhaps , selling some of the timber from his vast in'herited lands and taking a trip abroad with me to Vienna or even Paris. Travel is good for your character , I often told him.

It was the 5th evening when , in my wanderings , I came to a part of the house I had not , hitherto, had the pleasure of inspecting. Most every item in the room was covered with white

sheets and I, normally , would have thought this nothing more than some redecorating or moving process of which I was unaware. Though for some reason , unbeknownst to me , I felt the distinct urge to peek beneath the sheets. Perhaps it was the air of mystery that had summoned me to these woods which drove me , then , to delight in a little snooping.

I pulled back one sheet and was taken aback by the stuffed head of a large snarling timber wolf. I , then , went along walls and dresser tops uncovering here a glass sculpture of a wolf , here a foul painting of something somewhere inbetween man and beast. I was disconcerted as an obvious pattern emerged. There was some strange obsession here with beasts and men and vile things which displayed the characteristics of both simultaneously. I went quicker and quicker along the wall throwing sheets this way and that untill finally I unsheathed a door. It was bolted shut and marred on one side by scratches and what I could only say looked to be faint remnants of dried blood. Doubtless someone had tried quite hard to wash the stain away and they had almost succeeded. My brow furled as I looked upon the deep scratches. Now here's a question stained in blood , I mumbled.

That night I eyed Warin from across the long table where we took our evening meal. Again the

countless candles burned like wraiths dancing in the shadows. What am I not being told ,

I wondered. My mind had , for hours , been possessed by the uncovered door and no

explanation I could render offered relief. Warin looked up , quite startled , as I sat my

wine glass down loudly upon the table.

I was enjoying a walk through the halls this evening and came upon a most unusual room.

Ja , Warin answered , there are many unusual things here. My friend looked quickly back

to his meal apparently prepared to offer no more on the subject. This room , I continued

unperturbed , was even more so being that it was filled with the most ghastly of paintings and mounted beast heads. Ja , Warin mumbled and stared off into the distance. I took a long drink of wine and began cutting into the dry pheasant as I spoke. I do apologize of course but ,

with it being such an odd and macabre collection , I felt compelled to inspect it. That is

when I came upon a bolted door which is , oddly , covered with dry blood and scratches.

Warin rose from his seat and began walking this way and that fussing with the candles ,

lighting one here , moving one more to the table there. It is nothing , he said finally.

The servants , before they left , had a slight altercation. One was injured when the other

pushed him down the stairs. These stairs are close to 200 years old and are quite veak being that they vere made from vood. The servant fell through and vas badly injured. So you see the cause of the scratches and blood. And the door , I inquired , why is it bolted shut. My friend looked away again into the distant gloom. I have been quite busy , he stated , with my fears as you could plainly see. I've had no heart to make the necessary repairs myself and I felt the need to dismiss mein servants for they vere ill-tempered , often violent , men. The door is bolted to prevent anyone from coming to harm. That is all and nothing more. Of course , I said , and smiled. It is obvious to me now. I do apologize again for my curious snooping. It is nothing , Warin said with a sigh. There are no secrets here between such gut friends.

The night was painted in ghost shadows as I stared down from my window. There was

a lovely gothic allure here with the dark forests and lonely mountains all sleeping beneath a cold mist-draped moon. The wolves were singing very close that night , no doubt searching the deep for some poor morsel to devour. Their howling left me restless but there was more to my insomnia. Why , I wondered , would one need to bolt a door to keep people from unknowingly harming themselves in a house where no one else resides. Surely my friend is not so forgetful as to stumble down his own broken stairs. No , he is hiding something and that something is behind

that...

From somewhere on the floor below came a sharp cracking sound. I stood completely still for

a moment listening intently until ......, Pop , Pop , two gun shots rang out and , startled into action ,

I threw open the door and jogged quickly down the winding stairs looking for anything along

the way to use as a weapon. The once benign shadows of the manor had all turned to any number of foul imagined beasts and my heart lept at every odd shape. There at the bottom of the stairs I saw the front doors hanging open staring out into blue misted shadow. I ran and looked out quickly turning my head first one way than the other. I tried to bolt the door but found it quite broken when , suddenly , a loud whimper sounded behind me. I turned quickly seeing nothing but slanted shadows of ancient clocks and furniture. The numerous candles were lifeless now but for a flickering handful and a slow wind set the long curtains moving like dreams dancing through a fallen world.

I made to move towards the fireplace hoping for some utensil that might aid in my protection

when the whimper , again, sounded. I focused on it and saw poor Warin hidden in a corner shadow. His eyes were wide ; one hand covering his mouth whilst the other clutched a small revolver. He twitched violently as I came near and pointed the shaking pistol at me. It's only

me my friend , I said soothingly. Upon confirming this he clutched the gun tightly to his

chest.

I need to know who tried to get in , I demanded. Did you hit them?

Warin looked pleadingly up through the slanted shadows. I don't know. I don't know vhat

happened , he whispered. I looked down with much pity though at least I knew then that my friend was not going insane. Stay here , I said and began walking towards the door when I felt a hand grab tight upon my ankle. Vat are you doing , he shouted. No you can't go out there! I must , I said. I need to make sure someone is'nt lying outside bleeding to death. No please , he whimpered. Die Wölfe töten sie! I cannot understand you , I said , fully annoyed. Give me the gun if you are worried and block the door behind me. I will be quick , I promised. My friend paused a moment but shakingly handed over the pistol and scrambled after me as I moved quickly for the exit..

The doors slammed shut behind me and I listened as Warin slumped down against them. I had brung a candle and upon bending down I noted a few odd drops of blood. I cursed as the wind snuffed out my light but continued down the steps unperturbed. Hello , I shouted trying to comfort myself with noise , are you okay? I don't wish to harm you though I should warn you I do have a pistol. The night sky yawned down at me and the forest rose like dark rows of pitiless , sharpened teeth. Closer and closer to the edge of the forest I walked until the house stood , a distant shadow , to my back.

My eyes darted to and fro as a few wilderness shadows trembled in the wind. Such a vast woodland , I thought. Going in would be like diving into the ocean , perhaps never to rise up again for air , never again to see the light of God. I jerked the gun up as something went rambling off through the brush to my left. Hello , I shouted again. If you're well enough to run than I shan't be overly concerned with your health. I started to leave but paused and turned back. Don't come back , I shouted finally , or you might find yourself in a poorer state.

I made my way quickly back to the manor stumbling and cursing the broken terrain and cold mist. At the bottom of the porch stairs I paused and opened the cylinder of the ancient pistol. One tap and the four bullets and two empty shells fell into my hand. A glint caught my eye and as the moon broke from the clouds I held one bullet up to the ghostly forest light. Silver..... silver bullets. I almost laughed with the absurdity of it all as I dropped the shells into my pocket and closed the cylinder.

I raised my hand to tap on the door but , instead , stood frozen with intrigue. On the outside of the broken doors were several large scratches. Nothing less than the claws of a bear could have made these , I thought. Perhaps... perhaps it was a bear but nevertheless the strange nature of my friend's rambling and all the odd events had steeled my mind. I was determined then that all mysteries be revealed. I was determined to have a look inside the bolted door. Warin , I said loudly and tapped on the door. It is I , there is nothing out here. I waited as the poor man scrambled out of the way and the doors swung , silently , inward.

After helping Warin pull a massive piece of ancient furniture around to bar the door I went to light more candles but felt a hand glasp over the pistol I was still holding. I resisted for a second until Warin spoke. May I please have my revolver. Forgive me Sascha but I do not feel safe without it. Don't worry I said as I released my grip on it ... take it... though I dare say we shan't be needing it again tonight. Ja...Warin said , his worry lines creasing dramatically. Though surely , under the circumstances , you'd not mind sitting up with me , he pleaded. I don't feel I could sleep tonight especially with the doors broken. I turned and prepared for the confrontation that I felt must be had.

I will certainly set up with you sir but first we must attend to a most pressing matter. Warin looked around anxiously , Vell Ja... of course. Vhat do ve need to do. It is not we my dear Warin but you. You need to retrieve , for me , the key to the bolted door. All these mysteries have weighed on me and I ask you now , as my oldest friend , to humor me that I might see for myself and lay all doubts to rest.

Warin stumbled backward and held his gun hand over his eyes and brow. No... no Sascha I cannot let you go down there.... it ... it is to dangerous. I mean... the stair...it ist broken. Nothing to worry about sir , I stated , I will be very careful and all shall be well. Nein , Warin shouted. You must not.....there...there are fumes down there. Very toxic from der repairs. You said before that you have made no repairs , I countered , now stand aside sir. If you will not willingly open the door then I shall be forced to pry it open.

I went to grab the poker from the fireplace and turned intently to find the ancient pistol staring at my eye. How dare you , I shouted as Warin started into a rant. I cannot let you go down there... for your own gut ... for both of our gut. You just don't understand , he shouted and waved the gun wildly. No , I replied calmly , I don't but I soon shall. I started off toward the door whilst shouting back , don't bother with that pistol sir. I've removed your bullets ... for both of our gut as you say.

I strode quickly toward the bolted door , my speculations growing with every turn , when suddenly a force hit me from behind. I slammed wildly against the wall and sent several still burning candles flying haphazardly. You insane bastard , I yelled as I turned to grapple with the mad fool. What has gotten into you. Warin's arms were locked around my waist as we wrestled and stumbled down the hallway walls. Panting for lack of breath I finally raised the poker and whacked him a good hard blow to the back of the head. He slumped in my arms and I lowered him gently to the floor and checked his pulse for good measure. There , there old boy... you'll soon be fine though with quite a headache to come.

I rose and moved intently past the moon haunted windows. The tree limb shadows swayed against the hallway wall as I strode toward the room of beasts. 'Pon arriving I wriggled the poker as best I could behind the latch and lock that sealed the door closed. A few nice jerks and the screws that secured the latch came tumbling out to echo hollow on the wooden floor.

Suddenly I was faced with many a doubt as the dark entrance loomed before me. It stood like a black throat stretching down into the stomach of hell. I ,then , heard a voice behind me and turned to see Warin stumbling weakly towards me. Nein , nein , he pleaded.

That was it. I pulled a candle from my pocket , struck a match to it and strode into the mouth of hell. The candle lit only the steps , stone steps , and beyond that the darkness stood devouring the little morsel of flickering light. Come it seemed to say... come into the deep forest. Swim into the ocean and never again see the light of God.

Suddenly I saw a movement somewhere down in the deepest darkness. I held the candle up and saw , first , a foot then two feet. A man... a man bound , gagged and chained to the wall. I hurried down and stared at the man who looked pleadingly up at me. What the devil is going on here , I said but he just looked up helplessly unable to speak through the dirty gag.

I went quickly around lighting a multitude of candles ,which sat everywhere, and each I lit brought a new horror to my eyes. Blood....blood on the floors and walls... dead animals dried up and half eaten. There were jars with fluids and limbs and the latest scientific devices sitting beside the most barbaric medieval medical tools. However, in the center of the room was the most vile of the horrors. There , upon a simple woooden table , lay a dead villager. His face was a blank shock of white and bared teeth , his chest cut wide open with ribs pulled back to reveal the inner workings of the most delicate and now putrid organs.

I began untying the survivor until I came to the chain that bound him to the wall. At that I began looking frantically around waving the candle here and there at every dark crevice. The man finally unwrapped the bindings and pulled the gag from his mouth. Schau dort , he shouted. Schau dort!!!! I ran over to where he was pointing to find the key hanging bleakly 'pon a rusted nail.

As I went to undo the shackle Warin's voice sounded weakly behind me. Please ... don't , he whispered. Your time for talking is over , I shouted , now be quiet and hope the constable here doesn't look to poorly on mad killers. Warin only rolled his head saying , Nein , nein ... you do not understand. Understand what , I shouted as I turned the key and the shackle came undone. My friends eyes grew wide and he scuttled backwards towards the stairs. He ist der werewulf , Warin whispered. I did'nt mean to do it , he said ,.... I tried to stop it. I turned almost ready to laugh despite everything. Warin ... my oldest friend. The man whom , in college , wrote a paper scoffing at the superstitions of the primitive villagers of Germany.

You've gone mad out here , I yelled. You've become obsessed with collecting wolf paintings and feeding your lonely brain on spooky shadows and local nonsense. You're so obesessed that you've started killing people in your misguided paranoia. As I spoke Warin's eyes grew wide with shock and he suddenly bolted up the stairs leaving damp shadows in his wake. Run then , I shouted. It will do you little good. I shall have you committed for this you! You poor bastard , I whispered finally as his shadow disappeared through the doorway.

Suddenly the silence behind me grew deafening. I turned to find the villager missing though I certainly was not alone it seemed. A low rumble began from the deep shadows at the basements far end. I was more curious than startled. How many more , I wondered , may be shackled in this deep and lonely dungeon. I moved to search out the swaying shadows as something stepped forward into the dim circle of light. It's pointed ears scraped the eight foot ceiling and from it's crooked and jagged teeth lines of red tainted drool hung in vicious fluid strings. I started backward and almost laughed but that mirth was choked out by my horrible shriek as the thing rushed forward and tossed me aside like a child in a tornado.

When I woke the candles were burning low. The dark open floor stretched out into blackness beyond my vision and the doorway above stood crooked and open like a mouth locked in permanent horror. I looked around quickly feeling panic rise like a tidal wave through my mind. Although listening intently I heard nothing but the wind whipping the jagged corners of EngelBlut Manor. EngelBlut which stood alone in a sea of wilderness as deep as the endless sky. I rose as slowly and quietly as I could and crept up the stairs as terror fed upon my frayed imagination.

Through the empty manor I wandered with my back to every wall , never straying from the hidden shadows , poker gripped in white knuckled tension. The manor was again like a cavern yawning this way and that in any number of odd and disconcerting directions. Hallways led to stairs which in turn led to more hallways. Through the maze I listened before I turned every dark , blind corner until finally I came to the front doors. Said doors were again thrown wide. The heavy barricade had been tossed toward the backwall , fifteen feet away , like nothing more than a petite piece of deadwood.

I stared out at the black yawning sky and the endless forest that looked , now more than ever , like a row of dark sharpened teeth. Were they watching? Were they still hungry?

On the porch at my feet I saw the pistol lying cold and abandoned. I grabbed it and fumbled desperately trying to put the four remaining shells in the cylinder. I wanted to scream for Warin , to find him so I wouldn't have to be alone there. I wanted to tell him I was sorry for doubting him , for making light of his fears. I jumped as I heard the distant wolves began howling and watched in horror as four legged shadows haunted the tree lines. I began to walk , praying to find my way back to the village but as I moved the howls went silent and the shadows stopped... to watch.

It was then that I ran. I ran on the verge of horror through the endless dark forest ; down a road empty of all but moonlight and distance and decayed shadows. I ran a path buried on both sides by towering walls of impenatrable blackness. Towering walls of endless pines.

Seven miles from the manor I saw the carriage I'd arrived in overturned in the coming distance. The young german was nowhere to be found and upon the carriage several huge shadowed things sat twisting their heads now and again as though sniffing at the night air. Though it was the most tortured decision I'd ever made I decided to go into the forest a ways that I might sneak around the things without gaining their attention. The visions I saw and heard in that forest , on that night , I will not speak of here nor will I ever speak of them.

I entered the village as the sun peaked through the eastern treeline. The bullets in my pistol had been fired though I cannot , honestly , recall having done so. A few weeks later the young German was found , half devoured , inside the forest line beside the carriage. Of him only the legs and lower torso remained. His huge and ancient rifle had been recovered and had apparently been fired. I only pray that perhaps the poor child took down one of those hell spawned bastards before he died. As for my friend .... he was never seen again. He was never heard from again.

He had swum into the deepest ocean and would never again see the light of God.

~***~

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