Student Winner of Fire Witch Story - Alissa Knight

  The Glendale Fire Witch

     I’m guessing I’m in trouble now that I have spilled her secret. But you must understand that I couldn’t let her continue to get away with any more of these crimes. So the next fire photo you see with a silhouette standing in the window will not be another innocent child. I’m sure that wicked creature will come looking for me and I will be her next victim. At least this proof of her crimes will survive her wrath…. I hope. 

     It all started when I ran across a picture of a burning building with a silhouette standing in the window. When I looked at this picture and its caption, I thought to myself that is most definitely fantasy. Losing interest I clicked off and found a more appealing topic. But by the time the new web page loaded, a spark of recognition hit me. I’d seen pictures similar to it before. Not the exact same, but each picture had a building on fire and someone standing engulfed in the flames.

     At once I pulled up the pictures to confirm my assumption.  They did. I started to type in key words that might lead me to find out more information. In all my searching, the one site that stood out the most was one that appeared to be an underground site. I scrolled down to find an address then grabbed a pen and quickly wrote it down.

     Curious about the Salem website, I took my first day off to check out this place in person. When I finally arrived in the town, I got completely lost. Pulling into the major part of the town, I asked several people for directions. They all seemed really nice--until I gave them my desired location; then they would just turn and walk away, almost run. Finally, I ran across a young woman who told me an easier way to reach the address. She lowered her voice and told me to be careful-- the place I was about to visit was a secret society. She wouldn’t explain any more than that. But she did tell me that the danger had to do with the society punishing the people in the town. Something about their ancestors committed a crime against the society during the witch trials. I didn’t catch all the detail because some elderly woman came and dragged her away as she was starting to explain.

     When I finally found the location, I checked the address again. It was not at all what I’d expected. Unfortunately, I didn’t have that much time to change my mind about my little visit.  As soon as I was spotted, strange hooded figures immediately seized and dragged me to some sort of “council” room. It was a small dark room that seemed to be old as time. There were dirt walls lined with what smelled like rotting flesh and a very muddy floor. It was truly revolting. I should know, because I got to examine it up close and personal when those odd members threw me onto the grotesque floor. I struggled to pry my face from the floor to stare at something more horrifying than the disgusting room.

     Standing above me, glaring down into my eyes, was the wickedest creature I have ever seen. When she spoke, it sounded like a mix of a croaking toad and a dying cat. She spoke words I couldn’t understand. That’s when a young man walked up and stood beside her and translated that she threatened my life. She said if I spilled her secret to anyone, the next fire would devour me along with any memories of me ever existing. I swore I knew nothing of a secret. The next thing I knew, she touched my forehead and immediately a picture replaced my eyesight.

     The scene was one I had never witnessed in reality before. It was like one of those old-fashioned picture shows. There were several children in each slide. All of the children were from different time periods, as evidenced by their choice of wardrobe. Each individual picture of the children flashed across my sight over and over again until each face began to blend into one. Then, fear flashed across the collage of faces as the old woman hobbled towards them. The next scene made tears rise to my eyes.

     Each of the children’s faces became engulfed in flames. When my senses came back, I could still hear the screaming. I stared up at the old woman. She wore an angelic smile on her wicked face. I knew then and there that each of the pictures I’d researched was of one of the children I’d seen being burned alive in my mind.

      Not wanting to hear her croaking voice again, I quickly agreed not to tell a soul what I knew. Satisfied with my answer, she ordered my release. I believe I could’ve run the whole way, but I jumped in my car only to come home and write every aspect of what had occurred. I can’t let the murder of all those children go unnoticed any longer, so I hope this proof survives the vengeful witch of Salem.

Alissa Knight is 15 years old and is a student at Broome High school. Her story was submitted by her English Teacher, Dalene Parker.

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