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Dreams in the Lake House
Dreams in the Lake House
This page is dedicated to the gradual production of a new-age Lovecraftian horror story entitled "Dreams in the Lake House". Follow this page to keep up-to-date with updates regarding the book, comic, and eventual film adaptation.
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Dreams in the Lake House
The book cover of the upcoming novelization of "Dreams in the Lake House".

Artwork by Carl Hassler (check out his website... https://www.carlhassler.com )
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Dreams in the Lake House

Initial sketch work for the book cover of the upcoming novelization of "Dreams in the Lake House"...

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Dreams in the Lake House

Dreams in the Lake HouseWritten by Kristopher MiddlebrooksAdapted and Edited by Salim AlmuminChap...

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Dreams in the Lake House
Public post
Dreams in the Lake House
Written by Kristopher Middlebrooks
Adapted & Edited by Salim Almumin

Chapter 1

The night fades and gives way to the following day. As the sun begins to rise over the horizon the old buildings of the city of Arkham seem to tower over the distant dawn. Arkham, Massachusetts has historically been known for being the pinnacle of the American Dream; the American ethos being at the forefront of its conception. Such industry was dreamt out of Arkham...such a shame to see how time has taken its toil on this once proud and majestic metropolis. The old streets sit now in a dirty and gritty state of decay. No one in the city ever seems to dream anymore, for too many people with other dreams are now moving in.

As the morning presses on, the people of the city take to its interwoven streets. The only remnant of nature is the wind itself. A soothing breeze blows upon the citizens as they go about the hustle and bustle of their busy day-to-day lives. The cramped streets are littered with filth as the citizens step over the abundance of homeless cluttering the sidewalks and street corners. Some offer money while others walk by averting their gaze as they make their way to local shops or jobs. Standing outside an electronics store, a homeless couple peers in through the display window watching the morning's news broadcast. The news anchor is delivering a report on the influx of immigration within the city. Recorded footage plays showing a local inbred being punched to the ground by some the city's disgruntled denizens. As the video continues to play the homeless couple stare on blankly at the screen. Despite the grisly spectacle unfolding before their eyes no emotion appears to escape from their faces.

The sleepy city has come alive now with cars and people moving quickly here and there all throughout the busy boulevard. The sheriff department sits nestled deep in the heart of downtown. Inside the building, a middle-aged woman sits at her desk typing on her computer. The sound of people working echoes throughout the halls of the small building as the smell of coffee, donuts, and breakfast burritos permeates the air. The woman listens to the radio as she works. Eventually the music she is listening to gradually gives way to a calming transition from the song to a local talk show.

“Things never really are as bad as they seem. Comforting thought really. This is Terrence Macklin here and welcome back to the show. That was the Pied Pipers who played this song live, interestingly enough, on this day in 1945 at the Majestic on April 27th.. A real jazz classic for sure. Well, today, I have someone on that disagrees with the Pied Pipers. He thinks things are really as bad as they seem. That’s right! Introducing the local legend, the man himself, the one whose responsible for the purist water in town. John McKay of McKay Water.”

“Thanks for having me on Terrence.”

“You’ve been causing quite the stir lately. Fighting for small business all while standing up to the Marsh's overreach and being one of the hardest critics of the Mayor. Your criticism seems to be met with disdain from most media outlets as well as the Marsh's conglomerate. I am curious to know. What you think the root of our city's problem really is?”

“Well, Terrence, I think the root of the problem we are facing is that the mayor seems to not care about this city anymore: its history or the Arkham legacy. The people of Arkham used to dream big. I mean we were once the beacon of American industry. Now Arkham industry is dying. Do you know how impossible it is to compete with conglomerates absorbing everything around you? If you don’t accept a buy out from these mongrels. Then you just won’t survive. I mean even the middle class is struggling to make income. They’re about to be nonexistent at this point. They're becoming homeless. Ever since the mayor's new tax plan homelessness has sky rocketed. I think-”

“I don’t mean to interrupt, but some argue that the Mayor's tax plan has given the lower class a fighting chance. Giving the homeless not only medical but housing. If times are tough for a businessman like you. Imagine what the Mayor's tax plan is like for them.”

“I am not trying to say we shouldn’t have programs to help the less fortunate. What I am trying to say, Terrence, is that the mayor's tax plan has really only created more disadvantages for everyone. It’s only helped the bigger businesses out. Look, it's simple! Mayor Howard has sold Arkham out to the Marshes. The last thing we need is for their new factory to be built. There is too many people in Arkham already. It’s unsustainable. We are on the break of collapse. This new facility is only going to cause more people to move to this city. Too many from our port cities are deciding to come here as it is. I think we need to-”

“But wouldn’t the Marshes new factory actually boost our economy for the better? You accuse the mayor of not caring, yet he has allowed a major company to settle here. It will only add jobs not decrease them. Of course more people will want to come in. They want to work. I don’t see the problem of allowing more migration from our port cities to the main city at all. What are you suggesting exactly? Are you sure you’re not just jealous, because McKay Water didn’t get a tax break?”

“Look, I am just suggesting that we stop letting the Marshes buy us out! I mean just look what happened to the Wyatt’s. Their paper company is gone now. They didn’t get tax cuts either by the way. I just don’t want my business to follow suit! The Marshes are already looking to absorb any businesses they can. Their monopoly is unacceptable! They’ve already bought up most of the city’s water companies as it is. It’s apparent that their trying to privatize the rest of this city’s water companies. I won’t have it! I will not sell my business! My family worked hard to create this company...to offer the purest water around. The McKay legacy will not be trashed or made into a villain! The mayor is-”

Suddenly the woman looks up from her desk to see an officer walking over to the breakfast table. She switches off her radio watching as the officer takes the last burrito. A light sigh escapes from her lips. The officer removes the foil from the breakfast snack and baptizes the burrito in sauce. Taking a huge bite, he then looks to the woman at the desk and says,

“Thanks Samantha! You’re the best!”

“Enjoy.” Samantha says putting on a half-hearted smile.

In his office, Sheriff Ryker sits at his desk hard at work. The top of his desk is covered with missing people reports and unsolved cases. Ryker picks up one of the case files from his desk. This one contains a picture of a 24-year-old woman named Deborah Wood. Sheriff Ryker turns the page to review the data on the report. He turns to the next page and shutters in horror upon seeing the pictures of the woman's dead body---she has been mutilated beyond recognition. His concentration is then broken by a knock at the door.

“Come in.” he says in reply.

Samantha proceeds to enter the room holding coffee and donuts and says,

“Hello Sheriff. I thought you might want some coffee and donuts before it's all gone.”

“Always, thank you Samantha.” Sheriff Ryker responds giving her a warm grin.

“Those boys out there are locust I swear it!”
Samantha says walking to his desk.

Sheriff Ryker smiles as he attempts to cover up the images of the mutilated woman, but his hands aren't fast enough. Samantha sees them anyway as she reaches over to hand him his coffee. She stops, takes a deep breath, and forces a smile before asking,

“Is that the file that officer from Pineburyport brought you?”

“Yes.” Ryker says in reply.

“From those bear attacks?” Samantha asks.

“Yes, I am sorry you had to see that. I should have covered all this up before you came in.” Ryker answers.

“No, it’s alright. It’s just so sad that such beautiful young women had to have their life ended so cruelly. I can’t imagine how horrific it must have been to be ravaged by a bear. I’ve been trying not to think about it, but I saw last night on the news how another woman has gone missing in Pinebury. It’s so awful.” Samantha says shaking her head.

“Yes, it’s strange how women keep going missing though, don’t you think?” Ryker says with a squint in his eye.

“Yes, but you know some of them Pinebury folk are strange, inbred the lot of ‘em! Soon enough the whole city will have them mongrels walking aimlessly about! I’ve been hearing on the news on how their kind are moving away from the port cities! Especially now with that new Marsh facility! Them from the port cities just ain't right...so deformed and- ” Samantha carries on; practically on the verge of ranting.

Sheriff Ryker gives Samantha a look that seems to say that he wants to get back to work. This makes Samantha feel a bit embarrassed so she composes herself, and then says,

“But I guess that doesn’t make them suspectable enough to fall prey to wild animals though.”

After a slight pause, Samantha walks closer to Sheriff Ryker's desk and places the donuts down. She looks over the gore and mutilation of the female victims as the Sheriff takes a doughnut. She looks at each picture in horror. Sheriff Ryker smiles at her in an attempt to calm her nerves, but after a minute Samantha looks to him and says,

“Sheriff, is some there killer about?”

“I don’t know yet, it’s highly possible. Officer Anthony seems concerned and I think I need to go down there and have a look. Maybe it will ease his mind.”

“Well, I will leave you to your work then.” Samantha says turning to leave.

Sheriff Ryker nods at Samantha who smiles in return. She approaches the door, but as she places her hand on the handle she stops and looks back him. The sheriff takes a bite out of a doughnut and looks back down at the file on his desk.

“Ryker please be careful down there. Pineburyport is not what it used to be. Nothing is like what it used to be really. My grandmother told me such terrible tales about the port cities. There is always a hint of truth in those old tales. So please be careful. Just...be careful and enjoy your breakfast.”

“Thank you, Samantha. I appreciate your concern and all that you do for this office. I’ll let you know if I decide to pay a visit to Pineburyport.”

Samantha smiles as she leaves Ryker to his work. He is so much like her husband---always working. A wary smile hides her growing concern as she closes the door behind her.

Ryker takes another bite from his doughnut as he looks back to the file. Upon closer inspection, he notices that Ms. Wood's wounds are very deep. The width of each gory laceration seems much larger than that of a bear's claw. His concentration is again broken, this time by the phone ringing. Ryker looks at the phone, and then over to the miniature statue of Michelangelo’s Pieta, "The Pity", positioned beside it. The Blessed Mother is holding the dead body of Jesus, her son, in her arms. This statue and image have always helped Ryker remain focused during times of hardship. As he sits gazing at the statue he feels a bizarre sensation, as if something ethereal is calling to him, but he soon shakes the feeling away coming back to reality. He quickly picks up the phone and says,

“Sheriff Ryker here. How may I help you?”

“Sheriff, it’s Officer Anthony.” the voice on the phone says.

“I am glad you called. I wanted to ask you some questions on the missing persons file. The report you sent me. Some of it seems well...I think in some parts you may be on to-” Sheriff Ryker begins explaining, but Officer Anthony soon cuts him off.

“Sir, there is another one...or two I should say.”

“What?” Ryker exclaims.

“We found a vehicle at Lake Hadad. There is blood everywhere. I think you should come look. Something is not right here. Please come down. Sir, I am begging you.” Anthony pleads.

“I’ll be there soon.”

The Sheriff hangs up the phone and looks back at all the files on his desk. Nearly all of the of the missing persons are female. Ryker gets up, puts on his coat, and leaves his office. Not long after, Sheriff Ryker is making his way down the road heading to Lake Hadad. It’s about an hour's drive from the city to Pineburyport. This leaves Ryker with plenty of time to think on all he read in Officer Anthony's report. It is true that bears attack people, but never this frequently. Sheriff Ryker sees a trio of road signs coming up on the road: Dunwich 15 miles, Pineburyport 22 miles, Innsmouth 42 miles. Ryker is getting close to his destination.

Once Sheriff Ryker has arrived at Pineburyport he looks up to see that a mass of dark dreary clouds shroud the port city in an oppressive darkness. The Sheriff turns right leaving the main street. He soon exits the port city area heading to the lake, but before he leaves the city limits he passes by an apartment complex. As Sheriff Ryker drives next to the apartment building he starts to feel deeply disturbed. Coming to a stop sign, he looks over at the sickly structure. Ryker stares at the building with a pensive gaze, inspecting it closely. There is some form of black oil which stains the east wall. There is also a strange manner of shadow that drapes over the place; very peculiar seeing as it is the middle of the day. Some movement near a broken window catches the Sheriff's eye putting him on edge. From a partially broken boarded-up window an obese deformed naked body peers out with a cold and menacing glare. Ryker sees the outline of someone standing there in that window. Whoever it is appears to be watching him. The sheriff drives ahead worried about what awaits him in Pineburyport.

Before long Sheriff Ryker drives past a sign that reads "WELCOME TO LAKE HADAD". A few moments later, the sheriff arrives at the lake and parks near the shore. Sheriff Ryker steps out of his patrol car and walks over to meet with Officer Anthony. Anthony is accompanied by two other police officers who are all there surveying the gory scene lain out before them. It looks like a typical crime scene. Anthony steps forward to greet the sheriff and the two men shake hands.

“Officer Goss called it in 40 minutes ago. He said he saw a truck out at the lake, and that there was blood and guts everywhere. We ran the license plates and it's old Donald's boy, Jeremy, the local drug dealer in town.” Anthony says gesturing towards the truck.

“Who else?” Sheriff Ryker asks without pause.

“Richard Hemmings. His mother called in this morning, said he wasn’t at home. I am sure you can guess who he was last seen with.”

Officer Anthony leads Ryker over to inspect the gory scene. The Sheriff surveys the area and finds lumps of human flesh, a finger, guts, and blood stains strewn about all coming to an end at the water’s edge. He looks in the bed of the truck and there spies a bag of weed, chips, and an unopened 24 pack of Arkham-craft beer called Gibbous Moon. He crouches and looks beneath the truck to find one of the boys cellphones landed underneath it. Sheriff Ryker gives a frustrated sigh before standing back up to his feet.

“Do you really think it’s a bear attack, Sheriff?” Anthony asks the Sheriff after a long silence.

Sheriff Ryker rubs the back of his neck and replies,

“I don’t know...it doesn’t seem right.”

“You think it's murder?” Anthony quickly asks.

“Could be, or it’s something else.” Ryker answers as his attention begins to stray.

“Like what?”
Officer Anthony inquires desperate for an answer.

At that moment, Sheriff Ryker looks out upon the lake. Out in the distance, he catches sight a volcanic stub vulgarly jutting up from the watery depths. Its uncanny visage fills Ryker with a deeply unsettling feeling. The very image alone seems to cast an ominous spell over the sheriff's heart and mind. The sickening sensation is so oppressive until it gives Ryker cause to pray. His fingers clasp the tiny cross that he wears around his neck as he continues to stare at the blasphemous formation. Finally after an uncomfortably long pause Sheriff Ryker responds,

“I am not sure, but I am going to stay in town for a while...to look into things.”

“You are? Good. Bears my ass!”
Anthony replies.

Officer Anthony joins Sheriff Ryker in staring out at the stub in the middle of the lake. As he stares at it, he too feels compelled to prayer in an attempt to ward away the overwhelming feelings that wash over him. Both men sense what the other is feeling.

“You feel it too? The Evil?” Anthony finally says.

Sheriff Ryker nods and says,

“Yes, for the time being let’s get all this cleaned up and taken care of. We'll talk later.”

“Yes sir.”
Officer Anthony replies nodding back.

Anthony turns to carry out the Sheriff's orders, but stops when he hears Sheriff Ryker call out to him,

“Officer Anthony!”

Anthony responds turning back around.

“Let’s keep this quiet.” Sheriff Ryker says putting his finger to the side of his nose.

Officer Anthony nods and walks off as Sheriff Ryker turns to look back over the lake. Once more he takes note of the trail of blood leading to the water. He looks out to the stub of the ancient volcano trying to imagine what could have possibly happened here.

Meanwhile, in the lake house on the opposite side of the lake, Liam lies passed out on the living room couch of his newly inherited domicile. There are bottles of wine, wrappers, and leftover scraps of food scattered everywhere around. The cuckoo clock by the front door begins to sound off the hour causing Liam to awaken with a start. He looks disoriented and disheveled as the clock finishes chiming two more times revealing the hour to be three in the afternoon. Liam shakes his head and gets up to go to the bathroom. After relieving his bladder of all the toxic booze he drank the night before he steps over to the sink to wash his hands. He momentarily stops and begins to examine himself in the mirror. A moment passes before he releases a deep displeased sigh. Lifting up his shirt to see his belly he can barely stand the sight of himself. He feels so fat and ugly. He must have gained at least 2 pounds. Ever since his parents' death he has really let himself go. Liam looks up at himself again. He is hungover and the feeling of dizziness is beginning to get the better of him. He sighs at himself once more before looking over to the bathtub. The sight of the tub evokes another memory from Liam's childhood.

Liam sees himself there as a small boy playing with his old rubber ducky in the tub. His mother is knelt down beside him  rubbing shampoo into his hair. The cloud patterned sky-blue walls of the bathroom give a stark contrast to the all-black clothing his mother is wearing. His mother smiles and says,

“My beautiful boy, you’re so precious.”

Liam looks up and laughs.

“I love you, Mommy.” he says with a cheerful smile.

Liam's Dad then walks in to the bathroom. A look of concern weighs heavy upon his face.

“Heather, my dear, I need to speak with you.”

As the memory fades, Liam stands there still peering over at the same old tub from his youth. Even the rubber ducky remains to serve as a painful reminder of that which time has stolen. Liam walks over and picks up the old toy. Staring down at it nestled in the palm of his hand, Liam sighs deeply.

“I miss you, Mom.”

A few moments later, Liam enters his parents’ old room. Within the Wyatt’s antiquarian room there sits a cozy-looking bed, and there next to that bed sits a table upon which rests several books and a set of candles. The desk contains some of his mother's makeup and his father's old record player. Liam smiles as his memories go to his father who loved to dance to old-fart music. He picks up a bottle of his mother's perfume and releases mournful sigh as the smell makes its way up his nose. It is as if their spirits still linger within of walls of this room; the place where they spent their most intimate moments. Liam feels as though he can almost see them---but alas, there is nothing there. For in Liam's mind, he knows there is no life after death nor is there some heavenly father who resides above, so in order to quell his burdensome thoughts he walks over to the record player and turns it on. The song that plays is called "Dream of Witches’ Sabbath". Liam picks up the case of the record. The cover reads Berlioz Symphone Fantastique Monteux/Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. The cover art strikes Liam as strange for it features "The Temptation of St. Anthony" by Callot. Liam winces out a smile and says,

“Still works, but Dad I am afraid our music tastes were very different.”

Liam exits the lake house into the backyard and heads down to the dock. He walks to a quaint little boat hitched at the dock holding a cooler in hand. The boat is an old sturdy row boat with long oars on both sides. Liam sets the cooler down inside the boat and gets in. Taking the oars in hand, Liam rows out into the lake---but not too far. After several minutes of rowing, Liam stops and takes out his dairy. He then proceeds to write down his thoughts amid the somber tranquility of his surroundings.

“The memories of this place are placid as its waters. I am taken back to what it meant to be a child. The embrace of the mother; the comforter, the protector, and provider. All these things she was to me growing up. The most important thing of all was she was my friend. I remember how she would talk business with father. Having to leave me to my own devices usually in the library. My father; the hard worker, strong and wise, instilling within me honor and chivalry. He was always working hard to ensure that our family and town had economic prosperity---ambitious to continue the family legacy by extending the business beyond Arkham. The family business, the Wyatt foundation, or so they called it was responsible for distributing the paper out of Pineburyport to the city, from Arkham city to Dunwhich, from Dunwhich to Kingsport.( Or, so, that is how the business started) it later branched out to Innsmouth and then to the rest of America and the world. The Wyatt foundation made itself into a global company built up from riches that the trees of Pineburyport provided for the Wyatt dynasty. I had to sign away the company even though I could not stand the idea. It is what mother and father wanted in their will. I knew this was decided because I failed at keeping the family legacy alive. I am a derelict, you see. So, I sold it to the Marsh Energy Co. to form a global conglomerate. I feel as if all that was of my family is now being taken away, little by little, with the only remains being the old house by the lake of Hadad.”

As he finishes writing the last sentence in his journal, a lump begins to form in Liam's throat which he promptly washes back down with a heavy shot of whiskey. He then directs his attention to working on his novel, taking out his laptop and flipping it open. Presently he is in the midst of completing chapter 13 of his second book; which he hopes will be published in October of next year. Once Liam has finished his work on the chapter, he turns off his laptop and decides to return inside and to take a shower.

Night has fallen by the time Liam returns to the lake house. Once inside, he decides to take a shower in his old bathroom where within Liam takes a moment to painfully examine himself in front of the mirror. Although he looks to be overweight, he doesn't quite classify as obese. The steam from the shower soon fills the air. Liam finishes washing himself and then begins putting conditioner in his hair when a sudden queer sound catches his attention. The peculiar noise is accompanied by the flickering of the bathroom lights. Liam looks around trying to figure out what's going on when suddenly a black murky water begins to shoot from the shower head raining icky dank filth down upon him. The inky substance smells rancid like rotting eggs forcing Liam to gag and cough in disgust. With something obviously being wrong with the water, Liam shuts off the shower as quick as he can. Daunted and bewildered, Liam attempts to get out only to slip and fall inside the tub.

“Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck!! It smells like shit!”

It takes a bit of a struggle, but Liam eventually manages to get up and exits the shower. Whatever this slimy black liquid is it is extremely slippery causing Liam to fall again. He lets out another frustrated scream before standing back up and grabbing a towel. Liam uses the towel to try to remove the grimy muck from out of his hair and from off his face, but he also got some of it in his mouth as well. Liam starts trying to spit it out gagging violently. He feels as though he might just throw up. He makes his way over to the bathroom sink and turns on the faucet in the hopes of retrieving clean water, but it is to no avail. The water that fills the sink is the same as from the shower.

Liam screams in disbelief.

Liam runs from the bathroom screaming. In desperation, he bolts from the house bounding down to the shore of the lake. Without even a moment's thought or hesitation, he leaps into the water as if he were a man ablaze seeking to quench the flames of Hell itself. Frantically, Liam begins scrubbing his naked body with his bare hands trying to purge himself of the disgusting filth that clings to his flesh. It takes several minutes, but Liam is finally clean; freed from the dark black gunk that escaped from his shower. Liam is drying off from his lake bath when he takes a moment to sigh in relief. He then turns to look out onto the lake. The lake at night harbors a truly haunting beauty. Lake Hadad from the lake house looks serene yet built with a purpose---a purpose that modern man has forgotten. The back of lake house seems to be positioned perfectly to align with the moon and the stub of the dormant volcano stemming from the ancient lake. Its blasphemous past is all but a distant memory lost to the Sands of Time. Looking up into the sky, Liam notices that the stars seem to be unusually close together; almost as if they're waiting to be in perfect alignment. It is a strange, but spellbinding sight to behold. However the beauty of the night is abruptly ended when Liam looks back down at the lake to see the sudden visage of a corpse washing onto the shore.
The horrid sight sends Liam's mind for a loop, but his senses soon return to him and he quickly comes to realizes that what he sees before him is reality. Liam rushes over to the beached body and looks in terror at the maimed lifeless remains of a 20-year-old man. The body of Richard Hemmings has been cast forth from its watery grave. Hemming's body is a ghastly mess: his left arm is gone, his right eye has been ripped from its socket, and his throat has been punctured like a slaughtered pig! Horrified by the carnage he sees lying before him, Liam runs back inside the house to call the police.
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Dreams in the Lake House
Public post
Dreams in the Lake House
Written by Kristopher Middlebrooks
Adapted & Edited by Salim Almumin


“North of Arkham is a seaport town much smaller than Innsmouth or Kingsport. It was in Pineburyport where the woods go on for miles, as if wanting to keep its famous lake from being discovered, that my great grandfather made our family's future. Pineburyport was unlike the other seaport towns in Arkham. The port was able to profit off its vast natural storehouse pine trees. This helped the wayfaring town not to collapse during the fish shortage of 1927. It was in the spring of 1927 that my great grandfather built the lake house. This lake house has served my family well since its construction; through the horror that befell my mother and father this year and with all the unpleasantries that came with it. I guess inheriting the old lake house wasn’t a bad thing. Hopefully, this house will help me through my grief and my endeavors to continue to pursue a career as a writer.”

The pine woods of Pineburyport reach high into the sky to claw at the sun as the wind blows their twisty branches to and fro. The woods stretch on for miles surrounding the small seaport town. The port city looks damp and dreary in the befogged daylight. Admist the misty air an oppressive shadow seems to fall over the port. It is as if some encroaching darkness is waiting to disrupt the surreal fairy tale the scene conveys. The somber city is dotted by a plethora of signs promoting the reelection campaigns of local politicians, and every street corner and storefront window is littered by a haunting array of posters inquiring the whereabouts of the town's many missing residents. The people who walk the city streets hang their heads low as their spirits hang even lower dragging across the ground behind them. The port city seems neglected in many ways, as if there was a sickness about its infrastructure. Only the lighthouse appears untouched; standing boldly upon the shore as the calming waves strike the land at its feet.

Not far removed from the port city, there stretches a misty road leading to the crown jewel of Pineburyport, it's most ancient and mystifying attraction known as Hadad Lake. This area is surrounded by an immaculate mountain range shrouded in a thick blanket of fog. The beauty of the landscape is so mesmerizing until accidents tend to occur due to drivers losing themselves to the scenery. The open maw of the famous lake sits as a sore thumb in contrast to the vast expanse of the woodlands. The lake waters appear so calm and eerily still, like a giant mirror buried within the land.

Nestled upon a small hill overlooking the lake there sit the Wyatt Family lake house. The lake house was made of the finest materials that money could buy, and its design draws one's mind to the works of Edward Mitchell Bannister. The deathly silence of the somber day is suddenly broken as a lone car makes its way up the road coming to a stop in front of the old house. The new owner of the lake house, Liam Wyatt, exits the vehicle to look over his new property. Pausing to take in the sight of the exterior, Liam walks to the front door and goes inside. Looking around Liam begins to remember intimate moments from his childhood. The memories wash over him like warm rays of sunlight.
Liam sees himself as a young boy running through the front door. He then feels his mother grab him and lift him off the floor as she begins to playfully tickle him.

“Mom, Stop!” Liam begs amidst squeals of childish laughter.

Heather stops and puts her son down.

“Then maybe stop running around so fast. You could hurt yourself.” she says warmly.

Then Liam's father walks in through front door dressed in dapper fashion with a briefcase in hand.

“Hello Liam.” he says joyfully greeting his son.

"Dad!" Liam cries excitedly.

Liam's father lifts him up in a warm and gentle embrace. He then looks to his loving wife who smiles back at her husband. The cuckoo clock hanging from the nearby wall begins to sound. It is three o’clock and the house is alive with the smiles and the laughter of its loving occupants. Suddenly the familiar sound of the cuckoo clock's chime brings Liam back to the present day. The clock is loudly sounding off the third hour. All of Liam's happy memories seep into a painful smile as he makes his way further into the house. The time has come to set things up and move in.

Night falls and Liam resigns himself to his room. As he sits, typing away at his laptop, it appears that he is all moved in. His eyes barely lift from the screen as his attention is transfixed writing his personal journal entry for the day. There is sticker on the back of the laptop which reads, Miskatonic University; a token from his cherished Alma Mater. He soon finishes his typing and opens the internet to check the news. There are reports ranging from that of a missing woman, local crimes against the city's inbred community, and the weather. Liam clicks the video featured at the top of the page. He opens a bottle of wine and pours himself a drink. While watching Liam spies a peculiar silver ring adorning the hand of the anchorman. The news anchor himself is a very obese man, but Liam gives his appearance little extra thought before taking a sip of his wine.

“Natasha Sallow was reported missing today. Is evil-mindedness at work or is this another of Pineburyport's black bear victims? We just want to all take a moment here at Arkham Port News to say that one should really limit their time spent in the woods. Bears are known for being very territorial and you know they eat fish. So, do stay clear from Lake Hadad at night.”

“That’s right Thomas. A fun fact that we here at APN would like to share is that the black bear population has spiked since the 1970s. There are over 5,000 bears in Massachusetts and in light of these recent bear killings the local authorities are meeting to discuss the measures that need to be taken to ensure all of Arkham county's safety.”

Liam clicks onto another video talking about the weather. He takes another sip from his glass as the weather-woman in the video gives her report,

“This week will start with a bright sunny day; but prepare for heavy rainstorms with high percentage of thunderstorms by Wednesday. Then on Thursda----”

Without warning, a violent earthquake shakes the lake house from the floorboards to the rafters. The tumultuous vibrations coursing through the earth shuts off all power to the house. Liam begins to shout in panicked shrieks. He stumbles about trying to figure out what to do as the ground continues to quake beneath him. Despite the ferocity of the vibrations the lake house holds firm maintaining its sturdy form as the earthquake begins to die down.

Still within his room, Liam clasps both his laptop and his bottle of wine bracing them against his chest for protection. He falls to his knees as the earthquake finally stops. Breathing heavily, Liam exhales all his fear and confusion into a single frantic cry,

“Oh, What The Hell, Man!”

As Liam rises back up to his feet the power to the lake house turns back on. The return of light to the old house fills Liam with ease and he gives a sigh of relief saying loudly,

“Oh, Thank God!”

With the stillness of the evening restored Liam has adjourned to the living room where he continues to drink his worries away. The many empty wine and beer bottles scattered about are the only things keeping him company. He sits listening to the television as the anchorman reports on the night's recent disturbance,

“Authorities are positive that tonight's experience was nothing major and just a minor plate shift due to the Marsh Energy Co. oil fracking team. Tonight has been day one in Marsh Energy Co.'s goal to enhance the economy of the state of Massachusetts. Shareholders have just signed an agreement with Olmstead Oil and the Wyatt Foundation to merge into the Marsh conglomerate. Their new facility within the city is bringing a much needed fresh start to all of Arkham. Alan Marsh, the director of this new project and facility, assures sustainability will be at the forefront of this new project, and here is Alan Marsh to tell us more about that project.”

Liam gets upset at the mere mention of the Marsh Energy Co. The green-eyed beast within him takes hold of his thoughts and he switches off the TV in frustration; followed fast by profane vulgarities to further express his displeasure. Liam smirks and then takes a big drink from his bottle. With that last gulp Liam realizes that he has just finished his fourth bottle of wine. He laughs and takes another bottle from the counter in front of him, but in doing so he moves one of the adjacent bottles to the side. Liam frowns upon seeing that the logos on the bottles are no longer aligned. The drunken writer glares in anger at the bottle he moved, and realigns it to be more in line with the other bottles. Satisfied by his handiwork Liam smiles before breaking into a fit of childish giggling. He opens the bottle he picked up and continues to numb his senses with the intoxicating beverage.

Outside the gibbous moon caresses the ancient lake with its pale rays of light. The lake is immense and deep and many locals find the stub of the dormant volcano a comfort rather than an omen of times passed. The silence of this eldritch scene is suddenly disturbed by the sounds of music. A truck pulls up near the gaping mouth of Lake Hadad. The truck stops and two young men quickly emerge from the vehicle to behold the view of the great lake.

“Bro are you sure we are good to light up here?”

“Dude, no one comes out here this late, man. They're all afraid of the damn bears in these woods. Wooooooooo scary bears!”

“Alright! Alright! I get you! It’s just you know that earthquake?”

“Man, fuck that earthquake, bro! It’s been a week Bromethues! You're off-probation, man. You will be okay. Besides no cops come out here this late. Especially after that slight tremor, bro. You realize aliens have a better chance of showing up than any pig right now.”

“I’d rather see Bigfoot.”

“Nah man, Bigfoot isn’t real but the bud in this blunt is as real as reality, man.”

One of the men, named Jeremy, lights up a blunt and takes a big hit from it. He then passes it to his friend, Richard, who takes a couple of big hits in quick succession, but the strength of the weed gets the better of him making him cough. Jeremy laughs at his friend; which causes Richard to laugh too in-between coughs,


“Don’t worry man, it’s been awhile. Like I was telling you. All that nonsense that’s been going on for the past few months is over. Things are only going to get better for you and for me.” Jeremy says comforting his friend.

Richard coughs as he nods and responds,

“I can feel that man, so, what we going to do now?” 

The two stoners sit on the bed of the truck facing the lake. There are empty beer cans and snacks scattered around them. The young men are on their phones watching anime as they sit there at the mouth of the lake stoned out of their minds. The music from the show is all that can be heard. Unbeknownst to them however, the water out in front of them begins to ripple where after a blasphemous amphibian form begins to rise from the deep. Under the cloak of darkness it slowly approaches them. As the horrific creature draws closer, the young men continue to watch and laugh at the videos on their phones. Before long though, Jeremy stops. He smells something. A foul odor has caught his attention as he sniffs the air trying to determine its origin---that is when he looks up and what he sees causes him to scream out in horror. 

The gibbous moon shines down upon the placid waters of Lake Hadad; barely illuminating the horror below. The night air is filled with the screams of the mutilated youth. The sound of their desolation is matched only by the croaks and cries of some unknown creature of aeons long passed.
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