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No one goes to the Falls much anymore. When we were kids, however, the Falls was the place to go on hot afternoons. There were six of us then. Robert Carter, his cousins Glenn and Dave, William Dunlary, Kathy Robbins and myself. We were all eighteen; a young age, I now realize, for what was about to happen that summer.
School got out that year the seventh of June. Within a week the temperature had climbed to 94 degrees and the Carter Falls Slip and Slide Club was formed. We swam every day with the younger kids and then late at night we’d strip and skinny dip.
The summer flew by, at least to us. In August we planned on celebrating the full moon with a sacrifice. Kathy was the closest thing we had to a virgin so she was elected. Billy had found some old yarn and a rusty tent peg to use. These two things, and some charcoal from an old barbecue, was what he was going to sue to call up the ‘evil ones’ as he called them.
The night of the ‘sacrifice’ we met at the beach just before ten. Kathy fought with mock fright as she was bound hand and foot with the yarn and then lifted onto the picnic table at the waters edge. We stood around, with the full moon to Billy’s back, waiting to begin. Billy marked a pentagram on Kathy’s stomach and placed some odd signs around the outside of it. Holding the tent peg he invoked the names of Hastur and Yog’Sothoth.
Perhaps we should have felt the vibrations. The rushing of the Falls, I believe, is why we were not aware of what was happening. Billy and Dave picked Kathy u and threw her off our diving rock into the deepest part of the pool. It had been the plan for her to emerge from the water cleansed and looking like Venus emerging from the Sea.
It was Glenn that called our attention to the glow, even before Kathy hit the water. Under the Falls the light was bright orange; spreading into a deep red out into the pool. The vibrations began to shake the rocks beneath us as we waited for Kathy to surface. Billy began to get scared after a couple of minutes and dove into the red water, still holding the tent peg.
No one swims much at the Falls, anymore, since they found Billy the next morning. The state police brought him up in their nets. The tent peg he had used for his sacrificial knife was buried deep into his chest. Two of the officers fainted when they saw him. All the others went to the bushes to vomit.
All of them had at one time or another seen a corpse but this one was different. Billy’s skin had been removed, more accurately Billy had been turned inside out, with his skeleton and organs wrapped around it.
Kathy’s body was never found. Whatever it had been that had skinned Billy must have liked its other offering better. That was fourteen years ago and no one goes to the Falls much anymore.
Read more about Carter Falls at http://claire_daniels.tripod.com.