In the spirit of Halloween - and in an effort to escape the monotony of my unchanging home life – I’m going to share with you dear readers a story: a horrible tale of murder, and mayhem.
Let us begin.
A mother’s greatest gift to the world is her children – of that fact, few are in dispute – but not every woman is fit to be a mother and not every mother is willing to part with her gift. Certain women are all too eager to part with their children. Some would think these mothers heartless but not everyone knows what it is to fear their children. To hear their daughter calling and be filled with a sense of dread. To see their son walking through the hallway and hide from him.
What would you do if you were afraid of your children?
A woman, Cynthia, unable to conceive, longed for a child but feared she would never have such joy. Her husband Anthony, sad to see his wife in such pain, suggested adoption and she agreed with a renewed sense of hope. After many months of struggle, a brother and sister became available to them. Unable to afford two new mouths to feed, the couple chose to adopt the girl, naming her Samantha, promising visitation to her brother John as often as possible, but no new home.
The girl was quiet, only 12 years old, but humble and introverted. As she began her new life, she proved to be helpful around the house but highly anti-social. Her teacher’s immediately noticed minor aggressive tendencies from Samantha whenever her classmates tried to get to know her. At home, she was the epitome of the perfect daughter – soft-spoken but kind and respectful. For a child on the verge of teenager-dom, she was a dream.
As promised, the parents allowed John to visit his sister on the weekends, but those visits quickly became more frequent. Every few days, Cynthia would catch John in his sister’s bedroom or in the kitchen stealing food. While her husband was furious with the boy, she quelled his fears with reason. A 10 year old boy without his sister was lost and found no reason to remain at the orphanage where he was kept. Instead of reporting the boy for his loneliness, the equally-lonely mother submitted the paperwork to adopt the boy as well. All there was to do was wait.
She soon found that to be a mistake.
Whenever the children were in the same room together, they seemed to a have an almost telepathic ability to communicate. Without any preplanning the two would be able to make decisions, move as one, even finish each other’s sentences. To say the least, it unsettled the couple. But siblings – especially children who have gone through trauma – are prone to being remarkably close to each other. What harm could come from that?
After many months together, Cynthia felt it was time to introduce the children to the rest of her family – particularly her sister, her closest friend. However, her sister’s visit was cut short by a tragic fall down the stairs which lead to hospitalization and 3 broken bones. The only other people at home at the time were the children who were catatonic when questioned. Cynthia’s sister was absolutely adamant that Samantha was there as she lost consciousness at the base of the stairs.
Concerned for the safety of her family, Cynthia contacted the adoption agency, asking for more information on the children’s troubled history. The clerk came back with the terribly suspicious news that any record of the children’s past was destroyed in a break-in, resulting in the deaths of 2 agents.
With little else to be done, life continued as normal for the family. Samantha and John developed into very intelligent and kind children as the months past but problems still persisted in the classroom. Their teachers called them territorial and dangerously over protective of one another. Samantha was briefly suspended from school for biting a student who approached her brother in a “menacing manner”. To say the children were inseparable would be an understatement.
Trying not to give in to other’s fears, Cynthia did her best to give her children some space until her daughter’s suspension. When she tried to talk about the incident, Samantha became physically aggressive and refused to speak on the matter or of her past. Cynthia grew worried but Anthony became furious and frustrated. With every day that the children became a menace to the world, he grew more unsettled and impatient with Cynthia’s inability to take action.
Things only got worse from there. Anthony awoke in the middle of the night to find John standing in the doorway of their bedroom. Just staring. Anthony immediately woke Cynthia who ushered the child back to bed without any protest. Her husband was enraged but she refused to deal with the child. Of course he would be having night terrors or sleep walking: he was a child still adjusting to a new life.
Except he came in every single night for two weeks.
Anthony had had enough so he called a child psychologist who agreed to meet with the kids. The doctor received nothing but silence for two months and nothing was getting better at home. The situation wasn’t getting worse either until Cynthia brought the children for their appointment one day only to discover that the doctor had apparently committed suicide.
Anthony and Cynthia fought for days. He insisted that the children be sent back to where they came from but Cynthia wouldn’t let them go. She was so sure that nothing that was happening was the fault of the children. She couldn’t imagine hurting them like that – or hurting herself.
As the months past, the children only became more of a menace. Samantha became overly aggressive with anyone but her family and John stopped speaking entirely. At his wit’s end, Anthony left Cynthia. He asked her to choose between him and the children and she refused. So she was left alone with two children who frightened her. She couldn’t sleep with John staring at her and Samantha was now under full-time supervision, suspended from school for beating a student. She didn’t leave the house anymore, afraid of leaving the children alone but also afraid of what would happen to her if she left. Even if the children weren’t at fault for the deaths, something was wrong with them. She could see that now. But she was alone.
They were so kind to her but the rest of the world feared her and her family.
That’s when the call came.
The orphanage digitally recovered the children’s files directly from Child Protective Services. Their mother had had a psychotic break after the death of her youngest child. She blamed Samantha and John for their brother’s death, and became so afraid of her children that she took drastic measures to keep them subdued. She starved the children, locked them in the basement, deprived them of everything a mother should freely give to her children. A concerned neighbour called the authorities and the children were saved but damaged.
Much of their information was redacted on the adoption record in order to keep the children safe – especially after their mother escaped custody. She was currently the main suspect in two suspicious deaths and a suicide that was now being considered a homicide.
It was feared that the children were in danger of their mother finding them.
The bodies of Cynthia, John, and Samantha were found in their home the next day. Anthony had come home to apologize. Cynthia was clutching John to her side, trying her best to shield him. Samantha was covered in bruises and scratches but her fingernails had blood, and skin, and hair: like she’d fought for every single moment.
They found the children’s mother hiding in the master bedroom, convulsing in shock.
She couldn’t stop smiling.
What I’ve discovered from this exercise is that I should probably stick to non-fiction.
As always, dear readers,