Monday, April 4, 2016

And Their Bigger Sins

 A haunted, bloodstained landscape, the South sleeps uneasy with nightmares of antebellum atrocities. Abandoned buildings and worn rope cling to hillside and tree refusing to be forgotten, providing perch and shelter to the haunts, phantasms, and revenants hungry for more.  In these parts secrets and generational guilt get up to walk around, moving with malevolence all their own and may just visit you in the middle of the night.

The Largest Town Hides the Biggest Wrongdoing 
Young Town - The Chickasaw village was built where the Veil is thin, enabling magic and medicine tied to Spring. Forced off by the government, the Anglos quickly moved in and found the area's propensity for miracles wondrous and frightening. Preacher Goodenough saw his control slipping as the congregation fell under the sway of a charismatic girl, Elizabeth Harman. She took to performing miracles under the full moon, a whole generation of townsfolk in attendance. Late night revivals she called them; casting out demons and such.

The church sat on a high mound, the windows shuttered against the chill October night. The Preacher stirred up a hooded mob, burning down the church and trapping all within. The helpless deaths of all within tore a hole in the Veil, fostering a fecund malignancy. Spurring trade in particular herbs and animal life only found on the Eastern side, demanded by rootworkers in Battiste Parrish. 


Unincorporated Townships
Odem Railroad Station -If you're hard up for cash Odem will buy whatever you can kill in the woods, no matter how dubious. Turns them into the most beatific links you ever laid eyes on, spiced tubes of intestinal heaven.

Burning Bush - The most infamous in a long line of deviants from Burning Bush, the Rambler had the gall the kidnap the governor's son.  Could barely recognize the boy once the search party found him.  The others all have titles rather than names, only someone from Burning Bush could name them all.  It's a sickness.

Mockingbird - People are going missing, and the bodies haven't been found.  The whole Lancaster homestead has been abandoned and no witness to what happened.  As if they were swallowed by the night sky.


Blackwell -  Siobahn Ferguson has started wooing town youths down by the river, initiating them into the Cult of the Skinless Man.  This doesn't sit well with any of the local clergy and they've all begun outreach programs, turning Blackwell into a battleground of faith and proselytizing.

Sunflower -  Birth pangs may become death spasms, the Sunflower Lumber Co. is refusing to honor paychecks written out to flight risks, even unemployed ones.  This has marooned a growing population up in the hills and the town suffers from burgeoning overpopulation and tensions.  Whitecaps have been harassing the tent city fringes with torch and saber but haven't killed anyone yet.

Jug's Corner -A strange lot, the Fergusons exhibit strange permutations.  Look at Snake Hands Jimmy, yes, his hands are eyeless vipers.  His Uncle Simeon is worse, and let's not talk about the women.  Eager to gain legitimacy, these Stygian moonshiners are marrying into the Conerlys.  Lorecia was just the first of several arrangements between the two families.

Ghost Towns
Bloodland - A prime example of the haunted South, this den of wickedness drowned in its cradle. God had nothing to do with it though.  The night that storm hit, everyone in the county was trapped in their beds, caught up in the same fever dream.  Prime time witchcraft I tell you, that much death served another purpose.  Probably still down in the ruins.

Nevermind - Surrounded by the moth eaten vestiges of failed ambition, the State Farm's warden is always a Parcell. And that family clings to grudges fiercer than anyone else. The Tagerts fear the Farm more than anybody else. They have their own section of the Prison Cemetery.

Questing - Never actually home to a courthouse, Questing benefitted greatly from Reconstruction.  Moved to violence with envy and greed Johnny Copeland organized a mob who rode through the town and burned it all to the ground.  Doubling down, Copeland took his father's sabre to every citizen of Questing he could lay steel on.  Things got so bad the moon averted her gaze, cloaked in smoke.  There in the Questing Methodist Church, the Devil claimed Johnny Copeland, leaving the sword plunged into the altarstone in that hell-kissed sanctuary.  The bloodthirsty blade Johnny's daddy wielded in the War is the only treasure in Questing.