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Grave Undertakings

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Beneath the sparkling surface of Asylum Lake, the unremembered have grown restless…and vengeful.

 Brady Tanner’s return to the small town where he had spent the summers of his youth has opened long-forgotten wounds within his heart and soul. The unsettling discovery of his family’s dark legacy, and with it the chilling secret which has haunted the small town of Bedlam Falls for more than half a century, has led the former reporter into the darkened hallways of the abandoned Lake View Asylum and the horrifying world of the supernatural. Some memories, he has learned, are best forgotten.

 Now Tanner must lead his ill-fated companions in search of the elusive Dr. Wesley Clovis – an ageless and faceless specter whose menacing shadow once filled the hospital’s hallways and now promises a return to complete the unfinished task of parting the veil between life and death itself. As the mysteries surrounding the doctor’s sinister plans begin to bubble to the surface, Tanner is left to ponder just what could lead a man to such Grave Undertakings.

 Souls will be lost and answers found as the final mysteries of Asylum Lake are revealed.

 Read the prologue below.

 

March 4, 1957

Lake View Asylum

The soiled rag did little to silence the screams echoing throughout the hospital’s dank subterranean basement, but it did keep the young woman strapped to the examination table from biting through her own tongue. Small consolation, however; her sky-blue eyes had already been removed and tossed carelessly onto the morgue’s green-tiled floor.

Through her muffled cries, blood-filled tears streamed down her face and onto the cold metal table where they collected in a growing pinkish-colored puddle. Tall and slender, with silver hair falling to his shoulders, Dr. Wesley Clovis stood at the table and surveyed his handiwork. The woman had been stripped naked, her head, wrists, and ankles secured to the table by soiled leather straps. With each spasm of pain her full breasts heaved and the restraints dug further into her  flesh, causing the white-clad orderly standing at the foot of the table to squeal in obvious delight.

“Douglas, if you would be so kind,” motioning toward a cluttered tray of instruments, Clovis directed his assistant, “I’ve need of my scalpel.”

“Indeed,” the diminutive orderly responded, moving to the side of the table and the instrument tray. Douglas’ unsettling grin widened beneath a pencil-thin mustache, revealing a jagged row of yellow teeth. “You gonna cut her?”

Clovis paused, recasting his gaze from the prone woman on the metal table to the impish man in white. “Yes, Douglas, her blood shall flow,” he whispered tersely, and then continued, his voice filling with conviction. “For the life of the flesh is in the blood … for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.”

Twenty minutes later Dr. Wesley Clovis walked from the morgue, his starched-white shirt soaked with the life of the flesh. Although no closer to unlocking the secrets which separated the living from the dead, he took solace in the knowledge that an unlimited supply of subjects remained at his disposal.

As the sound of Clovis’ thunderous footfalls echoed in retreat through the cavernous basement, Douglas Wyatt was left to care for what remained of young Jennifer Sype.  Shrugging free from his pristine hospital uniform, the pony-tailed orderly climbed atop the table, eager to explore the woman’s still-warm flesh before it grew cold.

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