Monthly Archives: March 2016

Lydia in the House of Silence

Aunt Trudy’s voice was a showstopper, all sharps and flats. It bounced around the baseboard and the high ceilings of the Larouche house.

“—and my god, my god, can you imagine going through this every day? I poked my finger right through the wallpaper, mmm-hmm, softer than fancy cheese.” Trudy took a drag off her Lucky Strike.

Lydia chewed, lump of shredded wheat traveling around in circles in her cheek. She wrote ‘maybe you shouldn’t be poking holes in the wall’ on a pad of paper and held it up.

Trudy squinted as if she couldn’t see the paper and took too long to read it, her way of protest against the notes.

“Well, I for one would be happier in a newer house,” she said, ashing on her english muffin, “I can’t imagine staying here.”

Trudy was mom’s sister, not a Larouche. She didn’t understand about the house, not about its history or importance, but she was Lydia’s only living relative at the moment.

Lydia wrote ‘I’ll be 18 soon, you can move out then. It’s only 3 months’ on the pad. Trudy’s eyes traveled elsewhere, as if by omitting the image she could erase what it meant.

Lydia currently spent most of her time practicing how to move without sound. She had gotten so that her tread made no noise on tile, wood, or dirt. Leaves were another matter, but what were the odds that she’d tread on a leaf indoors? She put her cereal bowl and spoon in the sink separately so they didn’t clink and ran the water only slightly so that it didn’t hiss from the faucet.

“All your father’s people,” Trudy said meditatively, “they’re all loopy to a man.”

She was, in her own fumbling way, right. Lydia had researched the family tree for a sixth grade project. Luckily for her, the Larouche family were extensive journalers. All generations had been driven to eccentricities, but all were, with few exceptions, harmless enough. They were not the cause of the shadow over the house. But Lydia had known that long before she’d read anything.

The boards of the front hall groaned in protest. Lydia went out the dining room window as a peace offering. Trudy tromped down the boards in her wedge heels, snorting as she gathered her keys–“really!”

 

Lydia spent the drive completing a sestina in brush pen. She had already decided her adult career would be a calligrapher because there were words that could still be culled from the page and savored. “Bragadocious” was a good one, like a fine french wine aged in secret. She’d written it in calligraphic swirls on the wall of the girl’s bathroom, and it was the only piece of graffiti to escape the periodic repainting.

Trudy jerked the wheel and Lydia rotated like a gimbal.

According to Trudy, no job you could do without talking was worthwhile. She thought Lydia’s silence a fit of pique. Nothing Lydia could say(or write) could dissuade her from the notion.

“I’ll be looking at listings while you’re gone!” She threatened as Lydia shut the car door silently.

Trudy had been talking about moving out before she’d gotten two steps into the house. If Lydia could have found the words, she would have tried to tell Trudy that staying in the house was no great show of loyalty, she just didn’t trust it with any other family.

She was late, and walked in after the bell had summoned the art class to their easels.

“Oh Lydia, oh Lydia, oh have you met Lydia,” Mr. Simmons crooned in a melodic tenor.

Lydia, ears burning took her seat.

“Now, if anyone’s really serious about the fall show, they need to be finished to-day,” Mr. Simmons orated as he paced around the circle of easels. The others murmured something vague. Lydia flashed a drawing of a thumbs up.

She had finished ages ago. Her piece was called “revolution #9.” It was a maze of the number nine in different sizes and styles that, when viewed from a distance, formed a picture of John Lennon’s face. She spent the art period doodling with red, a color she rarely used anymore.

Her canvas was overtaken with a stylized ‘that’ swelled to sinister proportions, serifs pointing like devil horns. She was still scrubbing alizarin into the ‘a’ when the bell rang.

At lunch, everyone avoided her. She was fine with that. She knew who she was at school. She was the girl with a dead mom who didn’t talk, she understood that identity. What she could live without was Trudy’s constant attempts at restructuring her, stirring her like a paint bucket and hoping for the pigment to appear.

She’d had few friends even before her mother had died. Everyone just assumed the Larouches held themselves above the regular townsfolk, just because they’d been there before anyone else and had got lucky in the mines. The house hadn’t helped. A big old european-style monstrosity, it sat looking down on the village. Sneering at it.

The thing no one realized was that the Larouches, by and large, would have agreed with them. Even Ethan Larouche, the man who commissioned it, ran off to Brazil after he’d lost his wife to a rotten staircase. Lydia had never found any piece of text that would properly explain what was wrong with the house. As of Phillip Larouche, Ethan’s younger brother, the family had just gotten on with the business of dealing with it.

Hettie Manfred(née Larouche) had installed the thick drapes in the piano room. Her son Silas had cut the piano wires. Phillip jr. had replaced the traditional doors with swinging ones, no locks and knobs to rattle around. Lydia’s mother had made plans for carpeting just before her death. Lydia thought she might abandon that, having the old boards replaced would be far more effective.

Lydia walked herself home, watching the leaves fall, listening to the dry scrape of their bodies on the pavement. It was hard not to wince at sounds even on the outside. Sometimes she woke up in the night, afraid she’d been snoring. Sometimes she woke up from a dream where her mother turned to her and asked, “did you hear that?” and the a in ‘that’ lengthened like a sword.

Trudy had to leave. For her own good, as much as Lydia’s. Lydia had it all planned out. Discipline would be her life preserver, not desperation. Lydia’s great-uncle Aloysius had cut his tongue out at the root. She would train her mind and body instead. She could do it. She could try.

Leaves gathered on the mansard roof of the house. Phillip had thought it clever to put arches on the attic windows. From the sidewalk they looked like eyes. Lydia stood on the front walk in a staring contest. The house won. She snuck in around the back.

Trudy was on the phone. She didn’t hear Lydia enter, because she never did.

“…and my gawd,” she said, lengthening the vowels obscenely, “I can’t imagine having your own mother die right in front of you, mmm-hmm. Shrink says it’s called ‘selective muteness.’ Mmm-hmm. Only cure is to get her out of this house. Out of town, maybe. Mmm-hmm.”

Lydia stood behind her aunt as she washed dishes, chewed gum, and made noise, noise, noise. It bounced off the walls and the floors and the windows. Lydia eyed the jagged edge of shadows warily, making sure they kept their shape.

Trudy turned around and dropped the phone, clapping her hands to her heart. “Chrissakes, child, you nearly gave me a heart attack!”

Lydia took a well-worn piece of paper from her pocket and held it up. It read, “I’m sorry.”

 

Dinner that night was already-cooked pot roast and instant mashed potatoes and frozen peas. Trudy cut past the meat, knife shrieking against the serving plate. Lydia winced as she set down spoons, soft as a dove.

Trudy was talking, her jaw jabbering up and down as if her words were chaw. Stupid house should have come with a boat anchor to put around your ankle, that’s what kind of white elephant her sister had married into. Rusty taps and drafty rooms and a piano that couldn’t even be played! And what, pray tell, was she supposed to accomplish in a place where none of the doors could be locked? Might as well level the whole thing and put up a McDonalds for all the good it would do….

Lydia held up a note that read: ‘aunt Trudy, I’m done.’

Trudy chewed, mad eyes looking everywhere but the paper. She might scream, she might explode, living in a house of moldy styrofoam where even the curtains ate noise, not even the comforting sounds of a house settling—

“All this quiet, I just can’t stand it another minute!”

Trudy’s speech broke off and she dipped into the opening bars of “Nearer My God To Thee.” Lydia dropped her paper. She instinctively tried to cry warning but training left her larynx blocked.

Trudy sang elaborately, forcing her voice into tremolo as she arranged meat slices on the platter. She sharped out of her range on a few notes as she poured wine.

When she closed her mouth the song went on without her.

Lydia greyed and sank back in her chair. The pulse was thudding so hard in her veins she was sure it had to be audible.

Trudy looked around, bemused. She no longer had control of the noise. An ‘o’ fanned out threateningly, turned sharp. Trudy turned to Lydia, eyes asking for help. Lydia cringed back helplessly as the red noise of it fell on her aunt, every sound possible tore from her throat and bounced pinging off the old walls until it was something else entirely.

Trudy fell, screaming soundlessly as her own voice was used against her. She convulsed, ripping the tablecloth from beneath dinner, scattering plates and silverware and feeding the noise. It swelled into every perceivable octave in orgasmic triumph as Trudy hit the floor.

Lydia slumped, trembling, as the noise died down. The instrument of its being had ceased making noise, now it searched for what scraps it could. Lydia gulped and calmed her breath until it didn’t come in heaves. She identified every little sound her body made, one at a time, and made a conscious effort to stop it. When she had calmed herself enough, Lydia rose and crept to the other side of the table.

Trudy lay half-covered with the tablecloth. Her eyes stared up at nothing. Lydia dragged the cloth over the remaining half.

It would look like a heart attack to anyone else. It had looked that way with her mother, and countless other relatives. But Trudy had been there, to catch Lydia as they wheeled her mother away on a gurney.

Lydia fetched paper and pen.

She wrote, ‘I’m sorry, my aunt’s not feeling well.”

She shook too much and the pen made a scratching sound on the paper.

She forced herself to stop and take a few deep breaths.

I’m sorry, my aunt’s been ill.’ There. The strokes were straighter, the pen moved easier.

She looked down at Trudy. Three months until her eighteenth birthday. Discipline. She could do this.

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Salamander

Photo supplied by the excellent Bill Draheim

Photo supplied by the excellent Bill Draheim

 

The plant was built in the badlands of northern Montana. It was a water-cooled “breeder” reactor, not quite as old-fashioned as the graphite models of the Soviet Union but still decades behind the times. Its last safety inspection had been weeks before, and it passed with flying colors. The equipment was scrupulously maintained, the staff competent and well-trained.

 

And miles beneath it, deep in the strata of the earth, something hatched.

It had no name, because its kind left no fossils to classify. They had lived when the earth was still molten, a time of abundance for their kind. This one had lain dormant until it sensed the heat above it, the warm nourishment radiating like a miniature sun. It unfolded untold mass and journeyed upwards.

 

It had been five years since the plant’s last incident. Uranium salts had built up in a wastewater tank until it had gone critical. An oversight, and one the plant did not make again.

The plant had fallen into a post-inspection lull. The technician on duty was not looking at the pressure gauges or the thermometer. He was reading a collection of newspaper comics. He was alone in the control room. The supervisor was enjoying lunch off-site. The other technicians were in the break room.

 

The thing squirmed upward. It had no eyes, but saw. It saw violent waves that leaked through even the tightest defence measures, the short, angry crackle of fission. It moved torturously slow through the last few layers of earth, through the dull clay that formed the foundation of the plant. When it eased into the open air of the plant’s basement, any observer present would have pondered at what was generating heat-waves  shortly before expiring. But there were no men,  and so it continued upward. It left a greasy residue as it passed through concrete, a rorschach blot that would puzzle the workers in the weeks to come.

 

The technician scratched his ear. He was not an uncautious man, he simply had nothing to worry him. He laughed at the antics of a cartoon dog while the thermometer for the eastern array  began to climb. The early-warning alarms had been disabled years ago because their oversensitivity had led them to go off at the slightest provocation. The technician rocked slightly in his chair. Behind him, the pressure for the primary coolant loop began to rise. The technician glanced up at the clock, then, as an afterthought, at the sensors.

The book dropped off his lap as he stood up. Years of training kicked in and he began running through a set series of motions. He noted down the various readings from sensors, pressure gauges, and thermocouples. Then he calmly walked to the on-site telephone and dialed a number.

“Sir,” he said in a voice that shook only a little, “you’d better get back here.”

 

Radium had a half life of a mere 1200 years. Most of the radium present in the earth’s formation was long since decayed. Plutonium was entirely unknown to the thing in the reactor, having not existed before 1940. The taste was not disagreeable. It disgorged its body into the reactor, raising the temperature significantly. It nuzzled its head into the fuel rods like a bee among flowers, drinking deep.

 

The supervisor donned plastic booties over his shoes and joined the group already present in the control room. They all had respirators at the ready. The core lay beneath them, separated by layers of steel and concrete. For all their failsafes, for all the prophylactic measures they took, the men knew that this was ultimately what it would come down to.

“How’s the loop pressure?” The supervisor asked.

The technician who had first noticed the aberration shook his head.  “Bad. We tried operating a few valves by hand, but it makes no difference.”

“Well, that cinches it. Somehow, some way, the coolant loop boiled dry.”

This was a problem, because if the zirconium cladding the fuel heated up enough, it would cannibalize the oxygen from the steam, leaving explosive hydrogen.

If.

The supervisor looked over the readings. The temperature climb was in a swelling diameter around one point. That point, he believed, was the origin of the temperature hike.

“Turn on the secondary pump,” he said.

 

The thing in the core was swelling as it fed. The zirconium separating it from the fuel was no barrier. Like it had traveled through the layers of earth, it pressed past the useless metal into the nourishment.

A pressurized stream of water shot from a pump, aiming for the fuel rods it fed from. It was boiling almost before it left the nozzle. It evaporated as it hit the thing’s body. And the thing kept growing.

 

All was silent in the control room.

It had only been a few hours since the anomaly was discovered, but it may as well have been days.

The temperature was still climbing. The east array was above 520 degrees. The emergency pump had done nothing to slow the gain.

The supervisor was watching the gauges. His hand formed into a fist. The site’s telephone lay behind him. The safety officer’s number was on speed-dial.

The previous containment breach had happened on his predecessor’s watch. He had sworn, when he took the post, that there would not be another.

The technician who had discovered the anomaly stood off to one side. He had assumed an air of some authority since that morning, taking initiative. He took it now.

The technician strode forward to the console. He turned and made eye contact with the plant supervisor.

His hand hovered over the red scram button. Waiting. Both men knew the cost of a false alarm. Precious kilowatt hours lost as they swept for problems. Inspections. Fines.

The scram system would drop control rods into the reactor, take it to subcritical. It might take weeks to get the core back online, or it might never come back at all. But all that was preferable to a meltdown.

 

Something curious happened to the creature as it fed. The nourishment stopped being converted into thermal energy. It gained density, and its metabolism slowed.

As it solidified, the water from the pump stopped steaming and became water again.

 

The supervisor nodded.

“Wait!” called a technician who had been watching the gauges. Like a miracle, they were falling. Water filled the coolant loop, bringing pressure back to normal.

The men in the room visibly relaxed. A few laughed. The man with his hand over the button drew it back.

To their eyes, the pump had done its work, cooling the core enough that went into retreat. It didn’t matter that the area that had blazed in temperature was dropping to unproductive lows. The removal of a few faulty fuel rods was nothing to the complete shutdown of the plant. Something to worry about in the coming weeks. For now there was the cautiously optimistic celebration of working men.

 

Deep in the belly of the reactor, something pupated.

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The Playground

Kendra always walked Sam down Birdwell street, past the tumbledown victorian houses with elaborate gardens, the pond that had ducks sometimes in spring, and the little park.

Sam thought it was a real park and not just a vacant lot between houses. Kendra let him believe it because it was not a bad place, as far as vacant lots go. No abandoned cars or skeletal mattresses. They had never had reason to give it a second glance until today.

In the little patch of grass a castle of wonder had sprung up, garishly colorful spires poking towards the sky. Slides poked like tongues from the structure, flags flew from the highest points. The bars were so fine it looked like they had been spun from sugar.

Sam climbed a little ways up the fence, reaching. “Can I? Can I?”

The lawn was still unkempt, thistles and nettles sprouting from the patchy grass. Kendra eyed it, frowning.

“Best not.” She collected Sam and they walked on.

 

On Tuesdays Sam’s mother had the historical landmarks committee and then yoga, so Kendra took Sam down to the library. Sam stuck a hand out at the lot, which had gained a geodesic dome of monkey bars. “Pleeeease?”

There were children on it, and adults half-watching as they stood off to the side. Kendra felt a little tug in her chest. How would she have felt, as a girl, if she’d had to walk past such a wonderful place without stopping?

…But there was no sand beneath the structures, no softness to arrest their fall. If Sam came away with a scrape, how could she look her employer in the eye again?

She tugged his hand. “Come along, kiddo.”

With tears budding in his eyes, Sam followed her.

 

The playground was even bigger that weekend. Sam’s mother just needed a few hours of relief, so Kendra took him for a walk. She knew, as the bright colors drew closer, that she would not be able to keep away this time.

There was a rattling bridge that swung as children ran up and down. There was a climbing wall with brightly colored rungs. And there were children who screamed in joy as they swung, ran, and swarmed over every surface.

The usual bevy of parents standing back, cupping smartphones, drinking from sport mugs, keeping a distant eye on their children.

Maybe it would be okay.

Kendra let go of his hand.

Sam ran as if thrown from orbit. Kendra had to smile as he mounted the first bars. The other children looked like ants swarming over a birthday cake. She could almost smell cake, if she held her head the right way.

A mother with a baby on her hip and dressed in culottes sidled up. “He’s a cutie. You must have been young when you had him.”

Kendra gave an embarrassed laugh. “Actually he’s—I’m a nanny.”

“Oh.” The woman visibly cooled. The baby was sucking on a plastic set of keys, drooling prodigiously.

“Great that this is here, isn’t it?” Kendra said brightly.

“Mmm.” The woman was looking off into the children.

“i mean, this is right out of nowhere. Who built it?”

The woman lifted a shoulder. She was looking deep into the throng of children, poised to move at any second.

“Maybe someone in the neighborhood? I know because—”

The woman gasped. She ran, as did several other parents. Kendra was frozen to the spot as she traced the journey to their target.

A little boy in blue overalls held onto one of the support bars and screamed. No, she saw as the other adults reached him, his hands stuck to the bar and he was trying to pull away. The boy’s father took a knee behind him and wrenched. The boy’s hands came away after too much time, palms completely red. Kendra’s heart hammered as she stormed into the fray and grabbed Sam’s hand. Over his protests, she dragged him home.

 

The next few days were quiet at the playground. Whenever she walked by(not with Sam, never with Sam) there were only a few, if any, milling around the bright bars. Word of mouth spread fast. Maybe it had been wet paint. Or glue.

The next few weeks were a blur. Sam’s mother enrolled him in an afterschool program, which meant a lot of ferrying him back and forth in the car. No long walks, not in that neighborhood. When at last she did go by, she saw that the numbers had nearly recovered.

One bright Saturday, Sam’s mother went to lay down for a nap. Kendra buttoned him up in a coat and took him by the hand.

 

It was nice, going past all the old houses. Sam called to people’s dogs, waved to the old woman sweeping her steps. It was just a lovely community, Kendra decided as they came up the sidewalk, a safe place where someone would build a playground out of the kindness of their hearts.

The place was even bigger now. It looked like a little city, with towers and bridges and children ruling over every entrance. She let Sam’s hand slide from her own as he ran, screaming.

The air smelled sweet today, something sugary and warm that made you feel safe. Sam mounted the steps to the highest tower.

Among the parents hanging about the lot, there was one woman frowning over her back fence. Kendra wandered over, smiling amiably.

“I guess they didn’t get permission from the whole neighborhood, huh?”

The woman gave her a puzzled glare.

Kendra stammered. “I-I mean, it’s nice that this is here, but I can see how living next to it is kinda loud, huh? Was construction bad?”

The woman looked her up and down. Finally she said, “it wasn’t built. It was just here one day.”

Kendra could hear the children screaming behind her. It was a droning noise that carried no emotional inflection. “That…that can’t be right.”

“If it were me, I wouldn’t let my kids on that. Wrong.”

There was a sudden pause in noise. It was wrong. Kendra could feel it in her bones. She turned and saw the the bright castles thrumming with children.

Then, as Kendra watched, the spires untwined and fluidly sank back into the ground, taking the children with them.

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Anthony Gaitliff

Anthony Gaitliff was attending a concert for the ska band Mighty Whitey when a bannister that he and other concert-goers were leaning on collapsed. The bannister was added on after the concrete parapet had been built, and so was insufficiently attached. Gaitliff and nine others plummeted to their deaths. Thirteen more were injured. The senseless and sudden nature of this tragedy was quickly overshadowed by another discovery shortly afterwards. If this freak accident had never occurred, Gaitliff’s home would never have been searched and a crime spree of decades uncovered.

Gaitliff grew up in Stone Creek, MI. A middle child, Anthony had never tried particularly hard in school. His older sister testified that he preferred time alone to socializing. As a young adult he passed through a series of odd jobs and at the age of twenty got a job with a construction firm. Aside from a drunk and disorderly charge, his criminal record was completely clean. There was nothing in his past that would have prepared the coworker who entered his house and found the basement fashioned into a miniature prison that held a group of frightened people

There were seven people in the basement, although the number fluctuated over the years. Stephanie Moore had been taken at the age of five, twelve years prior to discovery of the basement. She was under the belief that not only was Anthony her real father, but also the second coming of Jesus Christ who would one day marry her. She was the only abductee that Gaitliff had external connection to as he had participated in a civilian search attempt days after abducting her. Ian Driscoll had an IQ of 83, he’d been  abducted from an adapted PE course while waiting for his older brother. The other prisoners had been abducted from various retirement homes across the state, all suffering from mental degradation with the exception of Victor Homme. Homme had been abducted from a veteran’s home and was missing both his right arm and leg.

Gaitliff had brought them to the basement under the pretext of saving them. He concocted an elaborate fantasy involving government death squads and the collapse of society. Gaitliff would stay away for days on end at times, returning with a fresh plot twist in the tale and food that the badly starved prisoners would need, all to increase the prisoner’s dependance on him. He would also deprive the prisoners of light, heating, and water when it amused him, concocting ever-elaborating stories about the outside world. When a prisoner died, Gaitliff would take the body to a construction site and entomb it in concrete or a sealed drum.

When the police breached Gaitliff’s homemade security system, the prisoners panicked and attempted suicide with a gallon of veterinary sedative kept for that express purpose. Gaitliff had ordered them to do so if ever discovered; however, in what was probably an intentional act of sabotage, the drug was diluted to non-fatal levels. After being detained into custody, the prisoners began self-harming and begging Gaitliff to save them. They showed all signs of sustained captivity: vitamin-D deficiency, photosensitivity, and claustrophobia.

Searches of Gaitliff’s house brought up a meticulously planned regimen for his prisoners. Gaitliff would engineer diversions months in advance and kept a running commentary on his prisoner’s mental states. He would regularly plan to pit them against each other for his own amusement. The police also found a journal beneath Gaitliff’s pillow, one that had been maintained daily for over twenty years.

The basement group had not been his first. The earliest entries in the diary detail his abduction of Helena Campana, a classmate of his whose disappearance had become a cold case. Gaitliff had prepared extensively in the year leading up to her kidnapping: digging a pit house out in an isolated area to keep her, studying her daily routine. His utter clinical detachment and fastidious planning led to Helena going overlooked even when search parties swept the area. This was also presumably where he learned the methods of search parties and utilized them for vicarious pleasure.

Gaitliff performed five more single abductions, always storing his victims in isolated holding cells completely under his control. His job at the construction firm meant he could easily get ahold of building materials in large quantities without suspicion. He began the habit of imprisoning multiple victims together, taking pleasure from their shared distress. The construction of his basement prison began with the declaration that he would create the ultimate experience—a “flock” to worship him. He would plot his abductions out weeks in advance, proud of himself for abducting riskier targets such as Stephanie Moore, whom he took from her own front yard.

The prisoners were held in custody as they underwent therapy. Because Gaitliff had programmed them with the belief that everyone and everything involved in the outside world was going to kill them, counseling for the prisoners met with mixed success. Stephanie Moore was reunited with her family and excitedly told them about her future matrimony to Jesus. Ian Driscoll refused to speak to his brother because Gaitliff had told him the elder Driscoll had been killed and replaced by an android double. The victims abducted from nursing homes decried their children and grandchildren as government-hired lookalikes, one man even going so far as to cut his granddaughter’s arm to prove she didn’t bleed human blood.

Anthony Gaitliff left many questions in his passing, the most troubling of which is what he would have done if he hadn’t died. The quality of his notes and the overall air of self-assurance indicates he never intended to be caught. He had maintained the basement prison for over a decade but notes showed an increase in scheduled interference, possibly indicating that he was growing bored of the experiment. There was a chance his behavior would escalate to the point of being caught by police, but his meticulous nature meant that such a discovery may have been years away. If Gaitliff had not fallen in the bannister incident, quite possibly all the basement prisoners might have died.

Or, not quite all.

As police combed the journal, they noticed one detail: there was no planned abduction of Victor Homme. Homme had gone missing from the veteran’s hospital, and he was indeed part of the group rescued from the basement, but there was no mention of him in the journal at all. What’s more, Homme escaped from custody before he could be questioned as police had underestimated his mobility due to his injuries. When asked about Homme, the other prisoners  said that he often enforced orders that Gaitliff passed down, and that sometimes he had been allowed to go upstairs.

Anthony Gaitliff’s home has since been bulldozed, and the basement filled with cement. The surviving prisoners are in intensive deprogramming therapy and likely will be for the foreseeable future. Victor Homme is wanted for questioning, but so far has not been sighted.

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