Location: Abandoned house in Marsing, Idaho.
I chose this rural fortification because I needed privacy and an environment rife with a particular energy. Messy graffiti tags. Quickly scrawled upside-down pentagrams. 666s. Sloppy spellings of “Satan.” Holes were kicked and punched in the walls. The shattered glass from broken windows and beer bottles crunched beneath my boots. My intuition was correct. This space bolstered the rich history of emotional angst, pangs of helplessness, and unfettered rage. The flavor of mana I required.
Still, I was not satisfied. My familiar spirits whispered that the prime location was yet to be discovered. The upper floor was tactically unsound. While this was a lonely place, I could not guarantee that the flickering candlelight visible from the windows would not pique the curiosity of uninvited guests. Who or what roamed Idaho farmlands in the pitch of the night was not the equation I was here to explore. However, cocking back the hammer on my 44. Magnum and un-securing the sheath for my Bowie knife, I would solve that riddle if necessary.
I reached out with my psychic senses. I sussed for the location of my operation’s “ground zero.” Feeling pulled by an etheric tether, I, like Theseus, followed it like the golden thread to the home’s derelict kitchen and then to a door. The knob was stuck, probably rusted. How many others had tried to open this door, I wondered. None with my level of superior grip strength. Years of one-hand levering 16lb to 20lb sledge-hammers, and swinging the heaviest clubs and maces on the planet forged my hands into rugged implements of industrialized strength and violence. Grasping the knob in my right hand, I applied my will against it’s. The knob screamed in surrender with a loud, sharp crack, like the snapping of bone. A single hard tug and the door opened. Dank and lifeless air rushed past me. The basement gasped for breath.
Aiming my flashlight down the set of steps, I descended into the bowels of the house. The steps were narrow and steep. As I made my way down, the iron guide rail came loose and clanged against the cement wall. A strange sensation stirred in response. Likely it’s been years since anyone else transversed these steps. I have just disturbed something’s resting place. The basement is grimy and damp. The cracks in the brick-and-mortar have let the outside world slowly seep in. Wrapped wooden shelves stocked with old cans of food and cobwebs lined the walls. All the treasures this basement held were a few rotting cardboard boxes containing miscellaneous homewares and a cluttered pile of moldering clothes.
Here was ground zero.
The metaphysics of the basement was exceptionally optimal. All that heavy energy spilled in from above and pooled into the house’s lowest point. Condensing into a miasma of distilled anger. I switched my flashlight to its lantern setting and proceeded with ceremony preparations. I draw out the parameters of my magical circle with holy chalk. I reinforced the circle’s border with sacred names and boldly defined the cardinal points.
My familiar spirit points to an apparition that has partially manifested. I was not alone. At least one muetro dwelled down here. An older Hispanic woman. She wore a tattered uniform of some sort, sitting with her knees pulled into her chest and her hands covering her face. Shaking and in a state of distress. I gently whistled at her. Whistling is an ancient method of communication with the dead. Spreading her fingers, I see her eye peer back at me. I enter into a light medium’s trance.
I get the impression that she is a migrant and a field worker. The images suggest she might have been alive during the 1920s. She was not buried in the basement, but her bones were nearby. I see a man, Hispanic or Native, who might be her Husband. He is calling for her, and she is calling for him. I can now make out his voice. I whisper to her, “Estella?” She nods. I see her wander down into the basement. She has been trapped and stewing here in this dark energy. She doesn’t know where she is and can not tell this man how to find her. She is confused and desperate to leave.
She sends me visions of this basement as it appears in the realm of the dead. A sizeable cavernous complex with many tunnels leading in and out. She transmits images of predatory creatures. They look like a cross between humans and cockroaches. They skitter around, patrolling for lost souls to eat. She is terrified and hiding from them. She mimics a fast-biting motion with her mouth. I stand up to get my backpack, and she fades from view. I retrieved a white candle and blessed Basil and Hyssop water from my supplies. I sprinkle the ground where I saw her sitting and affix the candle. Lighting the candle, I petition Saint Clair to help make Estella’s path to escape visible so she can reunite with whoever that man is.
My magic circle is complete, and with at least one possible distracting spirit hopefully released, I can begin my night’s Magnum Opus. The evocation and conjuration of the field marshal, ruler of sixty legions, and the fifteenth astral demon of the Lemegeton, Ars Goetia, Duke Abigor. I pull a bottle of premium whiskey and a cigar from my pack. I spray whiskey and blow cigar smoke to the four corners with my mouth. Next, I asperge with the blessed water of Basil and Hyssop using a scourge made of nine bound sprigs of rosemary. I mix a censer of Three Kings incense and work the charcoal into bright orange pieces before dropping them in. Soon a white cloud of scented smoke illuminated by 7 large strategically placed white candles fills the basement.
I have been entrenched in spiritual warfare with a sorcerer and necromancer in Indonesia for weeks. A man had contacted me and asked that I perform some potent spiritual protection work for him. He believed that he had been cursed by an ex-business partner who wanted to purchase a business franchise in Indonesia, but the deal went south, and bad blood ran between them. His personal life was in ruins, and his business was hemorrhaging money. He started to dream about a dead baby that would sit on his chest at night. The baby’s eyes were full of blood. It would open its mouth to show a full set of sharp teeth. Soon after, his employees began stealing from him and threatening him with violence. His health started to quickly deteriorate.
I conducted an initial set of divinations and energetic cleansings for him. Some of his business problems were the result of bad choices. However, the existence of a highly malevolent vampire entity devouring his astral body was confirmed. I marshaled the forces of my own spiritual troops and began a frontal assault on the entity. Through the direct assistance of Saint George and the exorcisms of Saint Cyprian, I removed it from my client and trapped it in a specially prepared spirit bottle.
In the following interrogation, I learned the spirit was that of an aborted baby. He was bound into slavery by a sorcerer during a midnight ritual at a cemetery. His body was roasted over a fire that used dog bones as kindling, and he was bound with a magical red string that constrained his free will. The work was exceptionally strong. I could not break those red binds but loosen them enough to allow the spirit room to attack its master for a short time, maybe long enough to kill him. The spirit agreed, and I set it loose to take its revenge.
This ignited a vicious back-and-forth battle between myself and the Indonesian sorcerer. Launching various grades of spirits at each other, with enchantments to boost their destructive power. I was relentlessly stalked in my dream time by a chimera creature. A shark-sized river fish merged with a tiger in a swampy marshland where it was difficult to run. Eventually, I was able to kill it. In doing so, I intuitively knew I had caused significant psychic harm to the Indonesian necromancer. The activity calmed for a short while until I was seized by an unsettling feeling. The sorcerer was no longer working solo against me.
Once again, I performed a battery of spiritual consultations and scryings. I learned he recruited at least two other sorcerers to assist in killing me. I had zero interest in trying to win a prolonged occult battle against three Indonesian sorcerers and necromancers. A summoned spirit informed me that the other two had no vested interest in me. Eliminate the main sorcerer, and they would cease their attacks. This spirit suggested I enlist Duke Abigor to champion my cause. Tonight I heed its sage advice. By conjuring Duke Abigor, I announce my declaration of war. Bargain with him to draw up the battle plans for absolute victory, and stage a magical warfare campaign to sever the snake’s head.
I took to the center of my magical circle, and as I began to intone the Kabalistic prayer, a sudden and overwhelming sense of malice nearly took me. A sickly putrid odor was attempting to permeate through my Three King’s fumigation, and the atmosphere grew heavier with a palpable sense of evil. The Indonesian sorcerer had been alerted to my work. With the help of his allies, he sought to disrupt my ceremony. My preliminary work, magical circle, and banishing rites kept the nefarious influence of his combined efforts out of my circle, but he was too strong for me to dismiss entirely.
My eyes took note of the eerie shadows now moving towards each other and formulating into undulating shapes. I heard at first a crescendo of whispers which got louder and louder. Those whispers became shouts. Promising me vulgar and inescapable death. Next came the skittering. I recalled the images Estella had shown me of human cockroaches that resided in the realm of shadow. The horrible pitter-patter of thousands of chitinous legs scurrying towards my circle commenced.
I braced myself for whatever came next. The shadows again swirled, and the particular forms configured themselves into a big singular mass unraveling into what seemed to be a giant centipede. The words of my spiritual Godfather steadied me. Should I succumb to fear, allow it to paralyze me, or cause me to take flight, I would seal my doom. If the energy of fear leaked out of my aura, I would only be nourishing the strength of this baneful creature now creeping its way along the radius of my magical circle. Poking and prodding for any weakness it could force through and sink its mandibles into me.
The Indonesian sorcerers and necromancers had summoned this place’s earthbound and hungry dead. I know them as larvae, or lemures, ravenous phantoms being driven mad by the necromantic agitations of this trio. All woven together, these bottom-feeding dead, now patchworked into the horrid insectoid I now faced.
I settled my gave upon the sigil of Duke Abigor. This two-dimensional pictograph acts as the structure for the psychic passage, which will allow communication with a particular spirit. With my eyes, I slowly traced the contours of the sigil’s lines, following them and going over them over and over. I fell into a light trance. I could see Duke Abigor on his horse. He was on the edge of the Astral realm in the proximity of my circle. The preparation for his conjuration and psychic outbursts near his sigil was enough to have already garnered his interest.
The sound of his nightmare steed frothing and rearing helped drown out the skittering and screaming. I immediately started back in with the Kaballaistic prayer. I was mid-way through the opening conjuration when I felt a sharp and searing pain in my shin, breaking my concentration. Suddenly another pain on the back of my leg and one more right above my ankle. The army of hungry ghosts assembled into a giant centipede had not yet bypassed my magic circle, but upon closer examination, a deployment of very physical Hobo spiders did, climbing up my boots and pants. A painful bite now on my tricep, just above my elbow. I ran my hands across and down the back, top, and front of my head and neck. I took off my jacket, shook it, and gave a few powerful stomps with my feet. Hobo spiders fell out from inside my pant legs. A few more fell off me when I grabbed the front of my shirt and gave it a shake. One or two had made their way into or onto my jacket.
Duke Abigor spoke to me from across the veil, pulled close enough to manipulate the material plane.
“Feed your fear, and your enemies will feed on you.” He stated frankly in a curt tone.
I resisted the reactionary urge to act frantically. Duke Abigor was right. A release of frantic energy would grant the Indonesian sorcerers greater leverage over me. I callously ground each Hobo spider in the circle into a paste with my boot heel. The Hobo spiders did not try to run away but propelled toward me. This was odd. I heard a faint whisper from a familiar spirit that confirmed my suspicions. The Indonesian and his ilk were exercising mental domination over the spiders, causing them to attack and disrupt my ceremony.
With steely resolve, I brought the image of Saint George into my mind’s eye as vividly as possible. I felt his presence, and my heart was set ablaze with courage. Finishing the conjuration, I commanded Duke Abigor to “move and appear before me.” As his presence settled in, that of the Indonesian sorcerers waned and dissipated. Before me was the field marshal and astral demon Duke Abigor, dressed for battle. His steed was seething and eager to enter the foray.
Abigor stared at me, saying, “You need an army to go to war. I just happen to have sixty legions of bloodthirsty soldiers who are right for the job.”
I nodded, “I know you do, Abigor. Shall we discuss your price?”
“Before I march, my war coffers must be filled!”, Abigor roared, “and let us not forget my mentoring you before my official summons. The price of that will be tallied into the full amount also.”
“That is fair, Abigor.” Agreeing to his first set of terms, “now let us discuss the battle plan.”