Hell Sings - Introduction
Almost everyone would tell you the unpleasant events that took place in London during the year 1888 all began with the abduction. While this would seem a tactful compromise between fact and speculation to come up with an action that sparked the ordeal that would later follow it, this assumption is also false. My findings have told me that much was amiss far before the initial kidnapping occurred.
The kidnapping was preceded by a series of events that seemed naught but insignificant at the time, events that, individually, were of no consequence to anyone who might have read the headlines and the articles that followed them. Several of these were so small in comparison to the issues of reform and discovery that they probably escaped widespread notice altogether. One was hidden away from the press altogether and therefore unable to be included in the calculations by investigators and detectives alike. However, as I have discovered, there was a connection; a connection which might have prevented the overall results altogether.
As of 1885, the crime rate spreading outward from London had been increasing in a rapid pattern. From petty theft to manslaughter, it seemed the industrial growth of the cities and the shift in economic stature was creating a depression and desperate people. Prostitution and money-lending began to soar, as did, it seemed, the morals of the common public. The Papal office began receiving missive after missive from the Church of England complaining of a lack of fearing damnation for sin in its people. Requests were made for aid and advice. The Vatican suggested riding out the economic quakes and pressing good virtues.
In the winter of 1886, there was a scattering of reported demonic possessions which the Order was called to investigate. I, myself, was involved in only two of the six total filed. The following reports from each exorcist recorded that none of the supposed victims showed visible or internal signs of possession of any kind, which led us to assume the widespread European interest in the occult was causing a surge in the playacting of children and perhaps a simple curiosity in the workings of an exorcism. We paid it no more heed since the incidents stopped after just a few months of activity.
The harvest season of 1887 was poorer than it had been in over half a century. The desperation of the people in England, Wales, France, Ireland and Scotland, and stretching almost to the edges of our Italy grew. When begged to share its wealth to feed its people, the Church of England denied that they possessed the funds with which to do so. There was a shortage of food; reserves were taken out from our stores and the stores of our neighbors in the hopes of saving as many lives as was possible. The loss was heavy, but not nearly as much as it could have been. Most of the population made it through the winter, excluding our Pope, who passed on Christmas Eve.
It was in the early spring of 1888 that there was another call describing a possession. I was deployed due to my lifted rank and special skill in dealing with possessions of an advanced magnitude. This one was as real as I'd ever seen, and as I stated in the report for the incident itself, caused near irreparable damage to the host body during the extraction. However, as I later began to repair from the psychological repercussions of ripping the body to shreds to expel its parasite, I noted the distinct differences between the possession I had just witnessed and the possessions I had previously dealt with. I began to have serious doubts that the child had been overtaken by something demonic in nature.
I have already listed my reasons for this conclusion in my report, which were refuted and denied by my peers and supervisors. Something I have not accepted easily. For reasons I have yet to decipher, I believe that each of these events is related to the next, and I write this report in an attempt to tie all my findings together.
The details of the abduction of Baron William Leigh's eldest daughter will remain uncertain until I have properly interviewed the victim. However, I can thus far conclude that the girl was not only spirited away from her home without a trace or a single witness to be a part of some occultist ritual, but that she was not taken against her will.
Hello! This will be a story of mystery surrounded by intrigue and inter-church tension, set in Victorian England and featuring possessions, abductions, occultist rituals, an unhappy daughter of a baron, murder, investigation, a rebelious priest with a shady heritage and a questionable faith, and perhaps a smattering of lovey stuff. :] It'll be awesome.
I'm still working on characters and plot details, so I don't know when I'll continue, but here's the beginning!
Review for me, please? It would make my day so much brighter and happier!