“It huddled by the light of the lantern, that small and hideous thing. It barely moved at all, and excluding breathing gave scarcely an indication of life, its shriveled form on the thinner edge of life and death. It curled into a tighter form as I leaned down to investigate it, as if it was almost able to detect me through its wrinkled, closed eyes. Its lip-less mouth grimaced, its teeth gritting as I took out a small probe and tested the elasticity of its skin. And I marveled at the odds of finding such a thing in these hidden tunnels, under the floorboards of the orphanage.
My investigation started off after I heard reports of knocking coming from below one of the local buildings. The owner was talking at a local store and was willing to let me investigate. I asked to spend the night, as most of the disturbances occurred during that time. I was given a room on the bottom floor, close to where the knocking was often heard. For much of the early hours, there was little to report, just the sound of the children of the home playing upstairs.
At last the children went to bed, granting me a chance to truly hear the sounds of the home. For hours I sat in silence, but outside of the expected creaking of the wood, there was little of note. Then at around the witching hour, I heard a noise coming from under the floorboards. At first it was faint, but then it became increasingly clear, identifiable as a steady tapping, like a pick against stone.
This continued for an hour or so, then slowly began to die down. I took the time to check the floorboards under which the noise originated, only to discover that there was a hollow noise from underneath. I grabbed a lantern and went to work removing the floorboards of the home. They came up with little resistance. After removing a few boards, I could see that there was a hollow space below them and grabbed a lantern from the side table.
I noted that the distance was high enough to allow me to drop down with little trouble. After landing, I saw that the tunnel ran from east to west. It had been carved by man made tools, though it was clear it was quite old and had been untouched for some time and was about five feet wide. A thick layer of dust was settled on the ground, a heavy, thick feel to the air, air. Likely it hadn't moved much in years. Not sure which direction to take, I decided it was best to try and stick to an area under the house and went to the east. After only a short while I came to an open space.