As the days passed, I began to sense my certainty that something was profoundly wrong at Fátima slip away. It all began to seem silly and embarrassing. I had taken a series of minor calamities and pieced them together into some sort of ludicrous dark conspiracy, with Hermano Leopoldo at the center. Hermano Leopoldo, who was almost certainly harmless, and who only aroused suspicion because of my aversion to his disfigurement. Nothing but the delusions of a pathetic, homesick girl.
I nearly convinced myself of this, until the night I woke up in a pool of my own vomit.
This story is my completely made up origin tale for a well-known folkloric monster, so if you figure out where it's going before the end, good for you! It's about 8800 words--a bit longer than "Spacelift" was.
Without further ado, here's the story. As before, if you know me, including if I've posted on your blog or if you've posted on mine before, then you're welcome to read it. Just drop me a line asking for the encryption key and I'll shoot it off to you. Any constructive comments you feel like making will be very appreciated, but if you just want to read it, that's fine too.