Read The Bourbon Street Ripper (Sins of the Father, Book 1) Online
Authors: Leo King
Tags: #Mystery & Crime
The Bourbon Street Ripper
Sins of The Father: Book One
By Leo King
Boudreaux is innocent.
|Date:||Wednesday, October 18, 1967|
|Location: ||A Basement in New Orleans|
It was the night of a full moon and a total lunar eclipse when a young girl with a weak heart was laid down on the floor amidst a circle of candles in a room of stone.
Barely five years old, she was a small girl with strawberry-blond hair and dark blue eyes, which were barely open due to the drug she had been given hours beforehand. Dressed in a simple white chemise, the girl was laid down by a gentleman with graying hair who wore a black long robe with a pulled-back hood.
All around the room, groups of people dressed in black-hooded robes, holding torches in their gloved hands, looked on. The girl, however, could not have seen the faces of those people even if she were not so heavily drugged, for each face was covered in a porcelain mask, the torchlight and candlelight reflecting eerily off of them.
As the older gentleman, the leader of the gathering, placed the girl down on the floor and started to stand, the girl made a feeble attempt to sit up and reach for him as a child would reach for its parent. The man, whose face looked emotionless in the flickering light, brought a finger to his lips and made a sound: “Shhh.”
Reaching beneath his robe, he took out a small porcelain doll dressed in a Southern Belle’s ball gown and placed it into the child’s arms. She hugged the doll as if it were a life-line. The leader smoothed back her strawberry-blond locks before standing up and walking just a few paces to an altar draped in red velvet. The girl lay still, her limbs slack from the drugs she’d been given.
As the man reached the altar, he clapped his hands. Two hooded figures emerged from the shadows carrying a brazier that bellowed forth sweet-smelling pink smoke. The brazier was placed in front of the girl, who started to cough as the sweet vapors wafted about her. Upon the altar lay two wooden bowls, one filled with water and one with blood. Next to them was an ornate dagger with a golden hilt topped with a large red stone, and a book no bigger than a hymnal.
Picking up the book, the man leafed through it until he came to a certain page. Turning to face the child in the center of the candles, he began to lead the others in a chant in Creole.
Papa Gede, nou mande w tanpri voye zye w sou timoun sa a nan tan fè nwa sa a. Tande vwa nou ak chante nou yo, pou gras ou kapab geri li.
On cue, the hooded figures around the room began to chant, “
Papa Gede, nou konjire ou
!” Each figure’s foot rose and fell in time to the chant, keeping a measured beat to the words.
Putting the book aside and taking the dagger, the leader knelt down before the girl and cut off a lock of her hair. She rolled her head back to look at the man, a confused and anxious look on her small face, her mouth slightly open. She tried to sit up, but her movements were feeble and ineffective.
Standing, the leader returned to the altar, sprinkling the girl’s hair into the bowl of water and the bowl of blood. As he did this, he continued to chant, his own voice ringing out over the chanting of the crowd. “
nou mande w tanpri pwoteje saktite timoun sa a nan tan fè nwa sa a. Tande priyè nou k ap monte wo nan chason, pou kè li ka vin fòtifye.
The chanting of the figures grew in volume, as did the strength of their stomping feet keeping time, the words changing to, “
Larèn Brijit, nou konjire ou
!” Some of the figures began gyrating their hips and torsos around lewdly, a few of them ceasing the chant to make guttural noises that bordered on obscene.
Taking the book in one hand and the bowl of water in another, the leader walked over to the girl, who was now looking around the room, clutching the doll, and starting to sob fearfully.
Pouring the water on top of the small child’s head, causing her to cry out in a pitifully weak voice, he continued to chant. “
Bawon Samdi, Wa Lanmò, n ap mande pou pa fouye kavo timoun sa a aswè a. Tande vre entansyon nou, pou li kapab viv san laperèz.
The figures continued to chant, some of them slithering around from where they stood, or crawling upon the ground like beasts, their voices saying, “
Bawon Samdi, nou konjire ou
!” The circle around the girl began to tighten, the figures drawing nearer to the trembling child.
Exchanging the bowl of water with the bowl of blood, the leader returned to stand above the girl, who was now crying in a terrified and choking voice. As he poured the blood around the child’s head, making her huddle into a ball and cry out, “
,” he continued to chant. “
Sen Madonna, nou konjire Twa Gwo Lwa w yo. Nou mande ou pou yo bay pouvwa yo pou timoun sa a, pou maladi li an pa fini avèk li.
The child continued to cry in terror, even as the hooded figures’ voices rose to a fevered pitch, chanting, “
Sen Madonna, nou konjire ou
!” The figures crawling or slithering on the ground moved around the circle of candles that separated themselves from the trembling girl, some of them only pausing to make those guttural noises at her, making her flinch.
The leader raised his hands, looked toward the ceiling, and cried out, “
Kite yo tande vwa nou yo
Kite yo tande chanson nou an
From the darkest corners of the room came the sounds of drums and tambourines. The figures who hadn’t been crawling or slithering on the ground began a dance, moving lewdly and crying out, voices ranging from the high-pitched to the deep and grating. The torchlight, shining off the porcelain masks, gave them a haunting, if not outright demonic appearance.
Throughout all this, as the girl cried in absolute terror, crying out “Papa” over and over, the leader stood above her, arms raised to the heavens, his face contorted with euphoria. Over and over he screamed out, “
Tande chanson nou an
As the dancing and music reached a crescendo, the small girl suddenly let out a horrific scream that tore through the room like a shot. Her tiny hands and feet began to punch and kick as if she were having a fit.
One small fist connected with the face of a figure slithering by her head, and with a resounding crack, the mask broke into the face of the dark-skinned man behind it, causing him to scream as he rolled back.
A small foot connected with the chin of a figure crawling by her legs, and with a snap, the person’s head flew back with the impact, the mask flying off to reveal a Caucasian woman’s face pale with shock. She slumped to the ground. The girl’s strength suddenly seemed inhuman.
With another shriek, the girl knocked over the brazier, scattering sweet-smelling incense and red-hot embers all over the floor. The nearby figures jumped back to avoid catching their robes aflame.
The music stopped and a few surprised cries tore through the quickly sobering crowd of hooded figures, but no screams were as loud as those coming from the girl on the floor in the center of the circle of candles. Twisting around, she began to froth at the mouth, her eyes rolling into the back of her head.
As the tenor of the room changed from euphoric to concerned, the girl threw the doll with preternatural fury. It flipped through the air and hit a hooded figure in the chest harder than a five-year-old should have been able to throw anything. With a muffled cry, the figure sank to the ground.
“Princess!” The leader rushed to the girl’s side and knelt beside her, trying to get his hands on her. Covered in blood, water, and sweat, greatly foaming at the mouth, she thrashed about violently.
“She’s having a fit,” the man called out. He motioned toward one of the hooded figures off to the side—it was a tall, slender person. “Get my bag, quickly!” He then pointed to three other strong-looking figures. “I need you to restrain her while I give her an injection!”
The three figures moved forward, albeit with obvious hesitation, and soon they were upon the small child. Two men grabbed her arms. The leader motioned to the third man, saying, “Hold down her legs!”
The figure seemed even more hesitant than the others, but he finally reached for her legs. The girl gave a sudden shriek and a jerk and drove both feet into the hooded figure’s face. The mask shattered into hundreds of pieces, slicing the man’s face open, and the force of the kick threw him back. As two figures tended to the fallen man, two more quickly came and held down the girl’s legs.
Still managing to thrash about, the girl arched her back and thrust her pelvis into the air, crying out in gibberish as she began to choke. “Sir,” said one of the men holding the girl down, “what’s happening to her?”
“She’s seizing,” replied the leader, who had by now been given a black bag by the tall and slender figure. Taking out a vial and syringe, he quickly measured out a dose. “I believe it’s from the stress of the ritual. I’m giving her a dose of Valium before she hurts herself.”
Without another word, the leader plunged the needle into the child’s arm. Slowly, the screaming and convulsing started to lessen. All the while, the men held the girl down, even though that appeared to be challenging.
Once her convulsions lessened to where she could be safely touched, the leader wiped the foam off her mouth and again smoothed back her hair. The girl looked up at him with an unreadable expression. This made the leader’s brow furrow with both confusion and concern.
“What is it?” asked the same hooded man as before.
“I’m not sure,” replied the leader. “I think she’s fully aware. But she can’t be. She should be asleep.”
Reaching his hand out, the leader called for a candle. As soon as someone handed him one of the candles from the circle, he held it over the girl’s face, close to her eyes.
The girl didn’t flinch; she didn’t even blink. She just stared at him. With concern in his voice, the man said, “Princess?”
The girl smiled and said, “
Li la a
.” With a small puff, the girl blew out the candle, leaving the leader with a puzzled look on his face. He leaned back and looked at the girl as her eyes slowly closed and she fell asleep.
“This was a mistake, Brother,” said the slender figure next to him. She removed her mask, revealing an aged face with a pinched, tight-lipped, sour look. “Now you’ve gone and caused your precious heir permanent damage. She’ll grow up broken now. Mark my words, Brother.”
“Silence, Sister,” muttered the leader, reaching down to take the child into his arms.
One of the men who had helped hold the girl’s arms down said, “She’s right. There’s no way a person can recover from that. She’s lucky if doesn’t end up in a sanita—”
The man stopped as the leader turned and gave him a look that could only mean one thing—death. The figure retreated.