Daughters of Jericho Ch. 13 – Erotic Horror

Chapter 13– Easton

When Kazelle opens her eyes again, she finds herself lying in a tight, cold space surrounded by darkness. She tries to sit up, but feels the heavy barricade on top of her. She exerts a push, slowly lifting the cover of her containment as a sliver of bright ray sneaks in. She opens the cover fully and sits up, glancing about at her surroundings.

The first thing she noticed was the nature of her containment: a full-length cooler intended for frozen meat, sitting in the far wall of a small dark room. On the opposite side, there is a slit where the light has penetrated, arrowing its way to the cooler.

Kazelle slowly rises to her feet and cautiously takes a step out of the freezer. She can feel her bare foot touch the hardwood floor, which lets out a soft creak as she plants her heel. She runs her hands across her chest and waist, feeling the dark, silky nightgown draped over her body. She looks up, and carefully makes her way toward the sliver of brightness. As she pushes at the partition separating her from the light, the wooden door gives way and creaks open.

Stepping out into the light, Kazelle finds herself in a small, quaint, fully-furnished bedroom. A blaze of sunlight floods through two windows on the far side of the bedroom wall with their curtains raised, illuminating the faded blue wallpaper and bathing Kazelle in its gentle warmth. Kazelle squints hard, almost blinded by the sudden deluge of radiance.

As her eyes start to adjust, she notices a few landscape paintings and bouquets of colorful dried flowers hanging from the wall. These are not the decor she would personally choose, but for some reason they make her feel at peace, almost at… home.

Her eyes follow the sound of a faint, rhythmic squeak to the far corner of the room, just by the window, where a wooden rocking chair sways back and fort leisurely. A figure in a long black cassock slowly rises out of the rocker, turning around to reveal a white-bearded old man of the cloth, his grey old eyes radiate tenderness like the sunlight itself, without a hint of malice or deception.

“I see you’ve awakened. How do you feel?”

His voice is both benign and warm, despite a stoic rigidity to his sharp facial features: a complete opposite to Mother Rahab, whom Kazelle finds hard to trust.

“Umm… Where am I?”

Kazelle, still wary and hazy of her condition, glances about with caution at the unfamiliar setting.

“And who are you?”

“My name is Father Silas Zacharias. I am the overseer of Jericho Parish.”

“Jericho…? You mean…?”

“Yes… that Jericho.”

The elderly priest responds, Kazelle can sense a hint of reluctance in his voice.

“This is your new home. You’ve been here for about week now.”

“A week?!” Kazelle’s blue eyes widen. “And why was I in an icebox?”

“Well, as Mother Rahab probably already explained: you are technically a reanimated corpse, which means you have no means to metabolize or regrow any of your damaged tissues.”

Father Silas strokes his beard in a slow, deliberate motion, seemingly a bit unnerved by his own explanation.

“Cryogenic sleep will prevent the decay of your flesh, not unlike the need to freeze meat to preserve it from going bad.”

“So…I’m really am a zombie.”

Kazelle glances down at her outstretched arms as her cold, pale skin shimmers in the rays of light.

“And I need to…as that nun puts it, eat brains to survive?”

“Zombie… ghoul… Whatever the technical term is. But yes, the key to sustaining your physical form is to maintain a low body temperature and to… eat brains.”

“This is so…”

Kazelle wraps her head in her hands, trying desperately to process everything that has happened: being violated by the man with the pig mask, seeing Colette’s severed head, being gutted by the mysterious hooded man, being reanimated and turned into a flesh-eating zombie to fight against some sex predators cult, and… did she really kill that man and eat his brains? She gazes up at the priest, who must have noticed the agonizing confusion in her eyes.

“I understand your alarm at these sudden developments.”

Father Silas’s voice remains gentle and sympathetic as he takes a step toward her, supported by an antiquated mahogany cane that thumps purposefully against the hardwood floor.

“This is why I am here. It is my job to guide you down the path of life.”

He extends an open hand out to her. Kazelle hesitates for a moment, and then slowly places her palm upon his. His hand, though wrinkly and calloused, is warm to the touch: So this is what the living feels like to the dead.

Father Silas slowly closes his hand around her fingers, and gently guides it to her bosom, laying her hand on a hard metallic object. Kazelle glances down and sees the black cross dangling from a neck chain.

“This is the sign that you have chosen the path of life and peace.”

Kazelle reaches up and takes it in both hands, slowly bringing it up and pressing it below her lowered chin, squeezing it tightly against the silver bell dangling from her choker.

“I suppose you should wash. You might not have noticed it, but the odor of a two-weeks old corpse can be quite unpleasant to the living. You wouldn’t want to attract the wrong kind of attention from the townspeople.”

“Townspeople? Just where am I, exactly?”

Father Silas points to a wooden door behind her, which Kazelle opens to reveal a small washroom with a bathtub, a toilet, and a sink.

“I’ll explain it all to you in due time. First you must wash. And remember: ice-cold water only. Hot water will decay your flesh quicker.”

Kazelle lets the door close behind her and strips out of the sheer nightgown, rinsing herself with an ice-cold shower as per the priest’s instruction. After Kazelle dries herself with a towel, she opens the cabinet under the sink, finding it lined with black shirts and pants.

“Are these clothes for me?”

She calls out to Father Silas, who responds from beyond the door.

“Mother Rahab seems to have the impression that black is your color of choice. Oh, and, whenever you’re ready, you can come on downstairs.”


Kazelle had not realized that they were on the second floor. She slips on a pair of black denim shorts and a black T-shirt and steps out of the washroom.


She glances around the now emptied bedroom and spots a small floorboard in another corner of the room. She lifts it up to reveal a small, spiraling wooden staircase.

As she carefully descends to the large room below, she sees a wall lined with musical instruments- guitars, saxophones, keyboards, and racks filled with vinyls and music CDs. A few pictures hung on the wall show photos of numerous music groups and artists- some even autographed. All of this a stark contrast to the tranquility above, as if she’s descended from a calm, serene forest undisturbed by human hands back into the clamor of civilization.

“What…is this place?”

Kazelle glances around in confusion, her eyes and mind overstimulated by the sudden change in scenery.

“Like I said, this is your new home.”

The priest runs a palm contemplatively across the surface of a counter.

“Well, more specifically… this is the music store that had once belonged to an elderly couple. Dear friends of mine.”

“This is their home? So where are they?”

“They’ve passed away, a few years ago, in an automobile accident.”

He glances up at a black-and-white photo of the elderly couple framed on the wall, and then lifts his hand to touch another framed black-and-white photo of a middle-aged man, standing next to a priest with salt-and-pepper hair.

“They’ve no living relatives. So when they passed, the community here in Easton decided that I, as their priest and closest association to family, should become the caretaker of their property.”


“It’s the name of this place, a small rural town between London and Canterbury.”

Father Silas gestures at the wall above the counter, where a sign reads Hard Rock Haven. He continues with a slight nostalgic chuckle.

“I’ve been waiting for someone to come along and serve as caretaker for the Hard Rock Haven. Mister Delford was an unusually devoted heavy metal fan for such an old man. That there is a picture of him with members of Iron Maiden.”

Kazelle walks over to a black electric guitar hanging from the wall and runs a hand over its shimmery surface, the words Hades Harp glisten in their indigo etching.

“That is yours, no? The B.C. Rich Warlock is a beautifully crafted piece. Old chap Delford would have loved to lay his eyes on it, perhaps even have a… what did he call it… a jam session, with you.”

“Sounds like Mister Delford and I would have gotten along…”

Kazelle glances up at the photo of the jolly old man with a dark face and a glistening set of white grinning teeth, nestled between Iron Maiden bassist Steve Harris and the drummer Niko McBrain. She finds herself smiling for the first time, and it felt nice.

“Now then, come with me. I will show you the rest of Easton.”

Father Silas slips on his black wide brim hat and trudges to the door on his cane, beckoning Kazelle, who obliges and follows him out.

Kazelle emerges from Hard Rock Haven onto a narrow, cobbled road, just wide enough for two Minis to squeeze through. Kazelle looks right up the road and sees a straight path that extends all the way to the foot of a hill, with the silhouette of a small, chapel-like building sitting atop. She turns her head the other way and sees that it leads down to what appears to be the edge of town. A sea of pristine wildgrass just to the outskirts leading up to a small stone bridge, and beyond the bridge, more fields, extending to a row of trees in the horizon.

Father Silas turns and starts making his way up the road, with Kazelle following close behind and glancing about curiously. All the houses in this town appears to be quite old, built with stony exterior and wooden frames and no taller than two to three stories. The walls overran with sprawling vines and ivy leafs, the roof tiles covered with mossy patches, giving them an overall look of nature at harmony with men. In front of several houses are placards of a baker’s shop, vegetable grocers, hat shop, or some other storefront.

“This is the main street of the town. Many of the townspeople have their own small businesses along this road. The adjacent, narrower alleys lead to the residential areas.”

Father Silas explains as they pass by several townspeople, each of whom greets the old priest amicably. Father Silas returns their greetings in equally neighborly fashion. Soon, they come upon a plump fellow in a black police vest, probably no older than 25 years of age, his round head barely squeezing into his custodian helmet. The uniformed man eagerly scoots over to the priest on an old bicycle that seems too small for him, wearing a hint of boyish innocence on his rotund, sunburnt face. He cycles over with the wheels squeaking beneath him, heaving and flashing a wide jolly grin.

“Good afternoon, Father Silas!”

“This is Mister Ellard Roland. Our town constable.”

“And who do I have the pleasure of meeting here, Father?”

“Oh, yes… Constable Roland, this here is Miss K.E. Hawks. She is the one who will be taking over Hard Rock Haven in place of the late Mister Delford, as you’d recall from our conversation earlier this week.”

“Oh yes, yes! Welcome to Easton, Miss Hawks. It is our tremendous pleasure to have you in our town! That music shop was quite popular under Mister Delford’s management. I’m glad to see Father Silas has finally found someone capable to oversee it full-time. I look forward to visiting it again soon!”

The young constable all too excitedly wraps both hands around Kazelle’s and shakes it vigorously, letting out a jolly laughter. He then bids them farewell and rolls along the other way, mingling the sound of whistling with the squeaking of his tires.

“K.E. Hawks? Is that a real person?”

“Kazelle Evangelin Hawks. I think it would be best to use a pseudonym while you reside here. What do you think?”

“Well… sure, I don’t hate it.”

Kazelle smiles softly within herself, which surely can be seen on her face. Soon, they come upon a pub. Kazelle lifts her head to read the name:

Sinner’s Paradise…

She imagines herself walking into the pub and finding Colette standing behind the bar counter, greeting her with a cheery smile and offering her a soda pop on the house…

“This pub is named such because the owner is an ex-convict. Served a 30-year sentence for manslaughter.”

Father Silas pauses in front of the pub and explains.

“He moved into this town in order to start anew after his release from prison. So far he’s done well for himself, and the townspeople have really taken a liking to him.”

As the sun begins to set behind them, they reach the foot of the hill, where Kazelle sees a small red-bricked building with a steeple, like a schoolhouse of some sort. Some small children, mostly no older than ten, can be seen frolicking about.

“This is the town orphanage. We take in children from the surrounding towns and villages whose parents have gone to be with the Lord. My half-sister and I look after them.”

“Your half-sister?”

“The one you know as Mother Rahab. We are half-siblings.”


Before Kazelle can decide how to react to this sudden new revelation, a small girl with golden hair skips over.

“This is little Sapphire. She loves meeting new people.”

The priest gently pats the orchin’s head. The girl looks up at Kazell with her wide sapphire blue eyes.

“What a fitting name.”

Kazelle meets the girl’s gaze and tries her best to sound pleasant. She has little experience with small children. Perhaps her gothic appearance and general icy demeanor is off-putting to them. But little Sapphire does not seem bothered. She reaches up and takes Kazelle by the hand.

“What’s your name, Miss?”

“Me? I’m…”

Kazelle stoops down to meet the child at eye level, feeling a warm smile creeping upon her face. She lifts her hand up to the child’s face and hesitates for a moment. Little Sapphire shows no sign of recoil, so Kazelle gently puts her hand on the child’s head and runs her fingers through the girl’s golden locks.

“You can call me K.E… no, Kazelle. You can call me Kazelle. Pleased to make your acquaintance.”

Father Silas looks on at the exchange between them, quietly nodding his approval. As Kazelle rises to her feet she catches his expression and stammers awkwardly:

“I… I’ve lived in an orphanage myself… for a while… so…”

“So you are familiar with their trials.”

Father Silas responds with another faint nod, not pressing her for further explanation. He glances up at the hill and points to a small gray steeple peaked with a cross.

“That there would be Jericho Parish. You may visit anytime should the weight of the ‘Ripper Hunter’ become too hard to bear and you wish to make a confession. I shall bear this burden with you.”

“I appreciate that, Father…”

Kazelle has never made confession before a diety of any sort and has no plans to. Nevertheless, the sincerity of the old priest’s offer was heartfelt.

As Father Silas begins to ascend the dirt path up the hill alone, he turns to Kazelle one last time with a nod.

“I hope your stay here in Easton will be fruitful, my daughter. Good evening to you.”

“And to you, Father…”

Kazelle makes her way back down into the bustling town, passing several pedestrians who greet her as if she’s lived there her whole life, some even addressing her as “Miss Hawks”: Word seems to spread quickly in this quaint little town.

The sky has darkened by the time she enters the music shop and ascends to the second floor. She pauses at the top of the stairs, pricking her ears to the rhythmic creak coming from the dark corner of the room. The shadowy figure rises up from the rocking chair with a raspy grunt, turning to reveal the devious grin of the old nun.

“So what do you think of Easton, Gothic Ghoul?”

“It’s nice, this place… wait, what did you call me?”

“Your Ripper Hunter codename will hereby be known as ‘Gothic Ghoul’. Is that a problem?”

“It’s a bit… over the top. But… well, I don’t hate it.”

“Good, then now, let’s get to the main point of my visit…”

Mother Rahab holds up in her hand a black folder, embellished with a silver cross in the middle:

“We’ve found them.”


“The Mardsen Brothers- they were the ones who murdered your friend and did this to you.”

Mother Rahab tosses the folder on a small tea table at the center of the room. Kazelle hesitates for a moment, before picking it up and flipping it open.

“We will train for another week until you’ve learned to control the z-serum, and then it’ll be time for your first hunt.”

That evening, Kazelle stands in the cellar, wearing a long black leather coat and black pants, the cross dangling just beneath her choker and bell. In front of her, five semi-complete clones of the serial killer Nikolai Murgov, each holding a different weapon, slowly surround and approach her. 

“Now then, let the exercise begin.”

At Mother Rahab’s command, Kazelle pulls out the syringe, injecting its content into her own arm…

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