I know, I know...I haven't posted squat since Halloween, and I still don't have any of the pics up from that night. As usual, things are crazy busy between work, the kid's activities and all the holidaze. I apologize, and I'll state right now that I'll try to get back on track, although I ain't promisin' a damned thing!
In the meantime, I thought I'd share a piece I wrote up for Rob Zombie's site a while back. At the time, he had just released his Educated Horses album, which featured the song "The Lords of Salem". Zombie's band would sometimes be referred to by this moniker, and he dropped little story pieces here and there for the premise behind the song itself. At one point, he asked folks to contribute art and what-not that was related to the "Lords" story. This particular bit was my contribution, although I won't go so far as to call it a story...more of a narative to build on the mythos. Nothing ever really came of this piece, but I thought it was okay enough to save. It isn't really fully fleshed out, and I've considered revisiting it, possibly as a longer story, but I'm not sure. Maybe someday. Anyhoo, here it is:
The Legend of The Lords of Salem
By D. Gill
In the year 1666, legend states that a group of four men met in the woods outside of Salem, Massachusetts to make a secret pact with the demon known as Baal Davar. This blasphemous confederation came to be known as “The Lords of Salem”. Until now, little has been known of these men, other than what was whispered in local folklore. Locals had often talked of four figures on horseback, each wearing a mask embossed with the image of a human skull, riding through the night. Wherever these sightings occurred, plagues and strife seemed to follow. Recently discovered documents, attributed to “Nomadrac the Conqueror”, have shed some light on this unholy alliance.
According to the writings of Nomadrac, The Lords made their pact with Baal in order to gain power and immortality. The demon made them into his agents on earth, sending them forth to sow evil amongst the people. The Lords integrated themselves into the population of Salem, secretly practicing their dark arts amongst the Puritans. At first, the spells and curses upon the townspeople were attributed to natural causes, but in 1688 this all changed when Martha Goodwin, a local girl, began to exhibit signs of possession. Soon, her siblings also began acting strangely, attracting the attention of the local pastor. According to Nomadrac’s writings, The Lords had sent demonic beings to plague the children, knowing that their standing in the community would place them above suspicion.
In January of 1692, two more children began to show signs of the same affliction, ultimately leading to the infamous “Salem Witch Trials”. While almost 200 people were accused of being “witches”, with 20 of them being executed, The Lords were not amongst them. They had managed to deflect suspicion onto innocent parties, and had turned neighbor against neighbor. Their master was pleased. The Hebrew name for Baal, after all, is “Satan” (“The Accuser”). Simealtaneously, war broke out in Eastern Maine with the Abernaki Indians. Crops started to die, mysterious illnesses came upon the townsfolk, and the food supply appeared to be in jeopardy. War, Famine, Pestilence and Death were all being visited upon the people of Salem, in the form of four agents of Lucifer. As the furor over the witch trials began to subside, The Lords plotted to expand their evil beyond the borders of Maine.
Fortunately, two men saw beyond the machinations of this secret cabal. Reverend Francis Dane and his ally, Increase Mather, had long suspected that there was an unseen, malevolent force behind all this. While both rigorously defended the accused in court, they secretly enlisted the aid of a Christian Mystic, known only as “Joshua”. They kept the involvement of Joshua from the Puritans, knowing that they would only view him as another “witch”. Joshua travelled from Egypt, where he had studied with a secret order for most of his life. He was an expert on the occult, and had trained for years to battle with the forces of Baal. Joshua tracked down The Lords, and met them in battle. According to the journals of Mather, Joshua fought them with his own magicks for over a week. Finally, bloodied and bruised, he managed to bind the four demonic agents with a Holy invocation, not used since the time of the Apostles. Unable to slay them, as they had been granted immortality by their master, he buried them deep within the earth on hallowed ground. The Lords reign of terror was over…or was it?
In early 2006, several sightings of four men on horseback, each wearing a mask depicting a skull, were reported throughout Maine. Soon, they were seen in the rest of the States, and even overseas. Like the incidences in the 1600’s, the appearance of these spectres always seems to coincide with sickness and death. One rancher, stunned one morning to find his entire herd dead from a mysterious illness, found a message burned into the side of his barn “The Lords Ride Again”. Some speculate that the once hallowed ground that The Lords had been bound in had somehow been desecrated, possibly by unknowing developers. Still others believe that Baal has new agents here on earth, taking up the mantle of those that brought such pain and despair to Salem centuries before. Whatever the case, it seems that something evil has, once again, been unleashed upon mankind. Be vigilant, for if these four horsemen are once again amongst us, then their master is plotting to bring about horrors the likes of which we’ve never seen.