Dear Sir John,
First, I must apologise for the unsteady formation of my words on this page. In truth, my hand is ever gripped with trembles and shakes and it is a struggle to write my letters well. This is not, though, the result of some terrible disease such as those that ravage the muscles. No sir, this is the result of events that have instead ravaged my nerves.
But I get ahead of myself. Let me first make introductions. My name is Viscount Arlington and I have my seat in the small village of Headbourne Smithy in Hampshire. It is, it was, a most handsome house with fertile farmlands and a vista across the finest of England’s landscape. In truth, even now it retains these traits and yet…
Again I run too fast, too quickly. I fear you will not understand and if you do not understand you may not come to my aid. You may regard these words as the ranting of a lunatic and dismiss them. And indeed, sir, you would not be entirely wrong. There is a grain of truth in this, for whilst I am not completely insane yet, my mind is unravelling more and more as the terrible events unfold. I beseech you not to turn away at this stage, but hold fast as I explain.
If indeed, I can explain. What is there to explain? What is there I can commit to paper that would not in turn have me committed to Bedlam? Oh Lord, how hard it is. I can only hope that you, with the experience of the paranormal, the bizarre, may know what I hint at without using words. That you may understand what can happen when a man’s house and home is invaded by the uncanny.
There, I have said it, and I will not take it back. This is the truth of it. Were I less possessed of pride or a sense of history, I would simply flee the house. Indeed, every hour the thought comes to my mind. But I know that for the sake of my family and my history, I must stay and see this thing through to the end.
I have tried, Lord knows I have tried, these past two months to defend my home on my own. But every night has been worse and now, now, the most terrible change. Now the day itself is no longer sacred. Now even the sunlight is not enough to banish them. Sir John, I am so much in need of assistance in these matters from one such as yourself. One with experience, one with knowledge and one with the moral strength to see these terrible… things… down.
I have money, much money, and so on that score you need not be concerned. I beg you, beseech you to at least do the honour of coming for a visitation, so that I may explain and, maybe even show, to you what I confront in my own home.
Yours in hope,
Viscount Edward Arlington