Barnum Institute of Science and Horror

I'm imagining the head right here

I squeeze hard and pop the head off

Scott continued searching the roll-top desk, and found a small silver key – frail, as if to a small box. Annie investigated the stack of “blank” stationary, and made an etching of the last letter that had been written: from Barnum to Sumpter, dated Apr 12, 1890. It was a request for 5 columns and busts; oddly, the tallest column and bust of Barnum were to include a hidden and seal-able compartment.

Letter to Sumpter

The group dispersed searching for the bust of Barnum, while Elmer searched for the Navajo Witch. He found Nukpana Shima (tr., Evil Mother) lying in a glass display case in the South corner of the room. Two more Navajo dolls ‘appeared’ behind him; he scooped them up before turning to investigate the body. Her skin was leathery, and the eyes still appeared to be in the sockets, although covered by a white film. She wore an ancient animal skin top and leather skirt, a belt of silver circlets with a wave design surrounding a Thunderbird: obviously not Navajo, as they would never inscribe the sacred image of the Thunderbird on jewelry. She also wore a belt of rope with 4 diminutive and shriveled mummified humanoid figures. Also in the case was a large long box with cloth and room for several dolls, although it only contained one:

mummydoll012fullfront.jpg

The others came over (except Scott, who was continuing the search), and Douglas started discussing that, based on the jewelry, the Navajo witch was obviously Hopi, (mortal enemies of the Navajo for a time). All 5 dolls, however, were obviously Navajo. The dolls Elmer held started squirming, so he dropped them. Upon hitting the ground they screamed, which woke the witch.

She appeared behind them in a cloud of black smoke that solidified. She shrieked and hissed: “leave them alone, they are mine forever!” The 4 mummified figures fell from her belt and grew to become zombified Navajo girls. Each remained attached to the witch’s waist by bloody sinews that tore themselves painfully out of the girls backs and shoulders. The girls screamed and writhed in pain as they lashed out with one clawed hand and horrible fangs – the other hand clutching a ragged doll tightly to their chests.

navajo_witch2.jpg

Scott arrived just in time to witness the appearance of the witch and the suffering of the zombie girls. Then, he saw the Navajo dolls running off. The entirety of the scene was too much for him – he had seen strange, ghostly things before: but nothing like this! Suddenly, he felt surrounded by ghastly terrors as the whole room seemed to come alive to threaten his life. He fought to maintain his sanity, struggling against the many hallucinations that attacked him as he tried to help subdue the witch.

Douglas grabbed the skull headed doll, which shot out veins and tendons that attempted to bore themselves into his hand. Successfully ripping the doll free, he handed it to Angus. Angus attempted to cut it apart as it dug veins and tendons deep into his palm. It was only with Douglas’ help that he was able to rip the doll loose and toss it to the ground. “Obviously, this doll is what trapped the poor Navajo girls,” they both realized.

Annie ran to scoop up all the Navajo girl dolls, while Elmer began a calm debate with the witch regarding “her claim to these girls” and the fact that “all Navajo are dead, so she should move on to the afterlife”. This distracted her enough for the zombie girls to slow their attacks, and for Annie to run off to the other room with 3 of the Navajo girl dolls – Scott had grabbed the other, placed it in the long box, and shut the lid, trapping the poor doll that scratched at the lid and cried to be set free.

After several failed attempts to cut the belt from the mummified remains, cut the zombie girls loose from the witch, and shooting her (all of which were ineffective, and some having horrific visible consequences to the poor zombie girls), Elmer ran to long box on the table, grabbed the doll from within, and ripped the small doll out her hands. This caught the witch’s attention, as the Navajo doll and associated zombie girl decayed into nothingness.

The witch charged Elmer, and Angus ran to defend him, hoping to grab the witch and throw her to the ground. But as he touched her, his mind was overwhelmed by horrific images of children being brutally tormented and tortured as the witch stood among them laughing. He was frozen with shock and fright!

Having heard the witch’s scream from the other room and with a hint from the dolls she was questioning (“I wasn’t going to keep it. I just picked it up. And then she got me.”) Annie put the pieces together and tore the remaining dolls from the other Navajo girl dolls’ hands.

The witch dissipated with more horrific screams as Angus fell to the ground shivering and paranoid. As he looked around, he swore he could see figures moving in the shadows: small figures, lurking and watching him with evil intent.

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