There was an obituary that appeared in the newspaper a few days ago. The person who died was an adult male, almost forty-five years old. The entry had his name, birth date, and the date of his death. However, all other information had been withheld.The only other piece of text that was included was a single line; “Their pain has ended.” The lack of information is especially strange considering obituaries are often written by or with the permission of the family involved. I have asked around, but few people have been willing to comment on it.
Upon speaking with the family and talking with local police I was able to get some information. The following is from the testimony of the families eldest daughter of sixteen. It is important to note that despite the strange nature of her admission, she has been deemed sane, and has not be accused of having any fault in the death of her step father.
“I was waiting at the park when the man came up to me . He sat down on the bench and asked me how I had been. He used my name, though I had never seen the man in all of my life. He was very old, and smelled heavily of cologne. His suite was olive green and his eyes were slightly pink. He had dark gums and thin, pink lips. His skin was pale, and was very wrinkly. I didn't like his voice. It was like listening to glass speak.
I asked him how he knew my name. He wouldn't answer that, and simply asked me again how I had been. I didn't know what to make of him. He was talking to me like I knew him, but I knew I had never seen his face before. I was going to leave, but David had told me not to go home for at least a hour. It had only been a half hour, and I was beginning to worry about my sister again.
I told him I was fine, but something in the way he frowned at me made it clear he knew I was lying.
“You know who I am.” he said.
As if compelled, somehow that made me remember, and it made me want to run in fear. I had seen him in my dreams. It had been weeks of it, waking up night after night in cold sweats, the room feeling much cooler than it actually was. Nightmares of all the things I suspected my step father of doing to my sister played over and over again in my head until I would wake up screaming. I had wanted to tell someone, but we all knew the legend of the Old Man. How he feeds off of your pain, and punishes those who won't give him what he wants. One woman had refused. She never spoke again. If I told anyone, they would think I was crazy, or even worse ask what was the pain that he wanted.
“I'm not going to hurt you” he said. “I'm going to make your pain go away.”
I didn't know what to say. I tried to think of a lie, but I had to tell him. I knew what he did to people who lied. No matter how scared I was of David, I had to say something, or he would make me hurt. So I told him why...why I was waiting in the park, and why my sister was still at home. I told him I was scared for her, and scared what would happen to me if I told anyone. The more I spoke, the more I felt like talking to him. It was like a dam broke, and I couldn't stop myself from sobbing. There wasn't anyone else around. It was just him and me. When I finished he placed his hands on my own. They were cold, so cold it hurt, like gripping a steel pole in winter.
He began to chuckle and I looked away. He told me that I didn't have to worry anymore, that he would take care of it. I have heard of the Old Man, and had been warned against lying. I was crying...I was crying and he was laughing...”
The girl said the figure left her soon after that, and after a couple of minutes she headed home. She went straight up to bed, and soon went to sleep. At around eleven at night a homeless man came upon the body of the step father in a drainage ditch. His body had been badly beaten, his genitalia had been removed, and his heart had been taken from his chest. The organs have yet to be retrieved. There was no sign of robbery or other motive outside of simply killing him, though the brutality of the attack suggested that it took some time to finish.
The man's remains have been claimed by his next of kin and have been sent off to be buried in an unknown location. The two sisters and their mother are scheduled to begin psychiatric evaluation after it was revealed that the man had been assaulting the youngest daughter. Although no formal charges can really be pressed against a dead man, all of the man's family have claimed an intent to leave the area.
Perhaps the strangest discovery in this case had to do with the wounds on the man. Despite the fact the temperature has been relatively moderate, the tissue seemed to have suffered severe cold damage, much akin to frostbite. The girl claims the dreams have stopped, though when pressed could not comment on the contents of the nightmares. Things are unstable for the family, but they claim that things are getting better, and that the blisters on the girls hands, in the shape of fingers, are healing rather well.