Witch of Salem's Village

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic

Short tale about a witch.

Salem's Village
October 31, 1692
The final thing that separated the edge of Salem's Village and miles of thick uninhabited forest was a small hut belonging to Betty Paris. This day marked one year since her husband unexpectedly passed away. 
Betty sat on an old wicker chair bent over a boiling pot of venison stew, stirring it and adding the occasional pinch of salt, taking a small taste now and again trying her best to make it perfect. It was her late husbands favorite dish, he used to joke and tell her in the event of his death to pour some over his grave, for not even in death would he be deprived of something so delectable. Betty knew he was only jesting but doing it gave her a small feeling of content, as if he actually could taste every drop and enjoy it. She tasted a small spoonful and satisfied with its quality grabbed her woolen mitts and lifted the pot off the embers cooking it before she toted it outside.
The air had the crisp chill of a windy mid-autumn New England day, brightly colored leaves blew over the brick paved path leading to the rusted iron gate at the edge of her property. To the left of her hut sat a small flower garden now only filled with the wilted remains of some, in the middle stood a small cross marking her husbands grave. She lugged the pot of stew to the grave and upturned it sloshing the stew onto the soil. She smiled and told her husband aloud she loves and misses him more than she could ever adequetly describe. The steam that rose off the ground warmed her slightly and feeling slightly at ease she turned around to go back inside.
Standing at the gate watching her quietly were the towns constable and reverend, the reverend clutched his bible tightly to his chest, both of them quickly averted their gaze when she looked at them. "Morning Mrs. Paris." The constable greeted her, his eyes avoiding hers.
"Fair morning to you too constable and likewise for you reverend may God bless us all. How may I be of service to you both?" Betty tried to hide the nervousness in herself, she knew precisely why both men were there and knew with the current madness sweeping the area this moment was inevitable. This town was small and gossip had a way of passing between people in an instant. She had been alone since her husband passed and rarely made trips into town. Nearly giving up entirely after four of the six Goodwin children she watched grew very ill.
"Well Mrs Paris... Betty, we have a small problem regarding the Goodwin children. Now I know it's been nearly a year since you last cared for them and it was just awful how ill the four of them got no one blames you one bit for leaving. Especially after Johns death may God bless him. Well the four Goodwin kids that fell ill, they all up and disappeared sometime late last night and several townsfolk came to the reverend here and told him they saw you wandering around the Goodwins property late last night. Now I'm sure there's been some sort of misunderstanding or something but I am going to have to ask you to come with us to answer some quest-" The constable's cutoff by the reverend.
"Mrs. Paris we are all aware about your disparaging comments in regards to the church you made to the Goodwins, you can't hide the truth from God. He struck those children with maladies as a result of your blaspheming. We know you cast some kind of spell on them and that's why they never got better. Now standing here I watch as you desecrate a grave, the grave of your God loving husband no less! Your wicked ways have caught up with you-" The reverend is abruptly stopped by the constable.
"Reverend she can answer to all of that once we're back on the blessed grounds of the church. For now Betty could you be so kind as to change your dress it's just people are not too keen about wearing black outside of funerals." The constable said politely still averting his gaze.
"I'm sorry I had to trade my others for supplies it's all I have, please let me just set my pot back inside so no kids come snooping around here and take it." She told the constable who allowed her to do so, she ran in and came back out quickly and together they started walking to the church.
As they walked Betty noticed people looking at her and whispering about her after she had passed. She ignored them and continued her walk in silence.
Upon reaching the gate that led to the churchyard the constable pulled a cloth from his shirt pocket. "I'm really sorry about this Betty but the townsfolk don't feel too comfortable looking into your eyes after what happened with the Goodwin children and too be honest it makes me a little nervous myself. Before we can proceed any further I'm going to ask you to wrap this around your head to cover your eyes. I'll guide you to where the proceedings will occur." The constable looked intently at the ground visibly shaken by whatever was going to occur. Battly surprised both men with a small laugh and allowed the constable to wrap the cloth over her eyes before she allowed him to grasp her arm and lead her towards their destination.
"Alright constable take her to the stake be sure to bound her tightly as we would not like to see whatever devilish tricks this witch has up her sleeves." The reverend told the constable.
"I don't know what's going on her but this does not feel like any trial I've witnessed, constable please tell me what's happening." Betty got no response from the constable.
"Enough with you vile words witch! The constable and myself have already met with the more affluent families in the area and we all agree the evidence is too outstanding to ignore. You have commited acts of blaspheming about the church, kidnapping and murdering four innocent God-fearing children and delved in the satanic rituals of witchcraft. You sentence is death by fire. You are to be burned immediately. We feel you are a danger to not only the good God blessed people in this town but everywhere. As a result we all thought it best if no witnesses were present to your punishment as your evil is too great and we would not want you trying to corrupt any of their minds." The reverend said to Betty as they walked and reached the stake. 
Twigs and thin pieces of wood snapped underfoot as the reverend and constable placed Betty against the stake and the reverend held Betty as the constable bound her arms and legs to it. The reverend then spoke, "This is it, constable please go grab the torch by the church, light it after I allow Betty to speak her final words to God." The constable walked towards the church leaving Betty alone with the reverend, she looked at him through the blindfold with a smile upon her face.
"Do you expect me to apologize now? I'm sorry reverend but I feel no remorse for what you've accused me of doing...Oh, what does it matter. You scared stupid men have corrupted the world since the beginning. Yes! You are right reverend! Hahahaha!" Betty laughs maniacally, "I am guilty of all the crimes I'm accused of and sooo much more, would you like to know about the Goodwin children? Would you like to know what it felt like when I cut their throats one by one as they willingly walked to me and placed my hand with the knife upon their throats? Would you like to know what it felt like to bathe in their blood? Would you like to know the taste of their hearts as I consumed them one by one? Hahahaha, FUCK YOUR GOD REVEREND!!! BURN ME!!!" Betty began laughing loudly while the reverend hollerd to the constable to hurry back. He returned quickly.
The reverend looked at the constable and simply said, "Burn her." The constable asked no questions but was scared at the inhuman way Betty continued laughing at the stake. He ignited the pyre.
Flames grew and grew, first licking at Bettys feet before igniting her dress that quickly spread the fire to engulf Betty who only continued to laugh as her skin began blistering and peeling of her body. After several seconds she ceased her laughter and was silent. The reverend and constable take several steps back as the flames began to intensify. The fire burned through the rope binding Betty to the stake and her body fell out of sight into the flames. Rain began falling despite the skies being clear and the ground started shaking. 
All around town people exited their houses or stopped working and ran into the roads questioning the current earthquake. At the churchyard the pyre raged on as the rain fell. The constable looked to the reverend," What is happening reverend?"
"I've not the slightest idea." He responded.
"AHAHAHAHA..." Impossibly loud inhuman laughter began emanating from within the flames. Aghast at the sound the two men looked wide eyed at each other terrified of what was happening. All around town residents panicked as the ground started collapsing in areas, taking entire buildings with it. In the sky the water turned to blood that began pouring from the sky, the town was complete chaos. In the churchyard the blood pouring from the sky extingushed the flame revealing Battys charred body that stood on the embers of the pyre, she still laughed as she looked directly at the reverend.
"Betty? Betty is th-that you? I'm s-sorry Betty I didn't want t-" The constable was abruptly halted when Betty flicked a finger and caused his head to cave into itself, he fell to the wet ground with a soft thud. She continued staring into the reverend eyes with her hollowed sockets.
"Foolish cowardly sheep shouldn't play with fire reverend, you really should have hung me from a rope just like you did to Abigail Williams. Do you remember her reverend? Poor Abigail begged and pleaded her innocence even after the fall didn't snap her neck, right up until her final breath. Although I doubt you could've known that Reverend as it came out as mostly gurgles at the very end, hahaha. You want to know something, huh? She WAS innocent, hahaha. I snuck into her house late at night and planted that desecrated bible in her home and I spread the rumors about her to some of the more loose-lipped townsfolk, which quickly led to her trial and execution. Tell me Reverend as a God-fearing man, hahaha, what does it feel like to know you committed the ultimate sin of murdering an innocent child of your lord almighty, hahaha.."
The reverend backed away from Betty who stood atop the remaining embers of the fire and started quoting passages from the Bible. Betty stepped down and walked to him, she flicked her wrist and the reverend fell limp to the ground paralyzed and mute. "I tire of you and everyone here Reverend, please do tell Satan I send my regards and soon many others as vile as you will be joining your soul in Hell." Betty lightly tappeed the ground beneathe the reverend with her foot and the reverend was swallowed by the fire filled abyss that opened beneath him. 
Betty watched as the entire town collapsed and shared the same fate as the reverend while she walked back to her hut. Soon she told herself, soon the world will be consumed in the same manner as this town.

Submitted: September 30, 2017

© Copyright 2021 Cory Scott. All rights reserved.

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Add Your Comments:



A good story well told, Cory!

Tue, October 3rd, 2017 4:38pm

Jeff Bezaire

I like the mood you set at the beginning of the story, also Mrs. Paris' turn from a sweet old woman to a wicked witch. The characters are solid all around - the reverend is so typical of a God-fearing man from those days, his type are so aggravating; you did a good job with him. The constable's sweeter nature is a nice touch. Mrs. Paris' deviousness is great - setting up the reverend to kill an innocent girl, killing the kids, and starting the story with her pouring the stew on her husband's grave is a crafty way to disarm the reader from suspecting her of being guilty.
A lot of great elements at work in the story. My only suggestion would be to go through and proof read it - there are a lot of possessives that are missing apostrophes and there are a couple times where you shift tenses from past to present. On the whole, though, it's a solid story. Well done!

Tue, October 10th, 2017 5:14pm

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