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MAG 20: Desecrated Host

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This continues the statement of Father Edwin Burroughs. See MAG 19 for details.

After the strange sensations at Hilltop Road, Edwin fled and threw up, believing whatever controlled his speech had come from Bethany O'Connor. When he tried to pray, he struggled to breathe.

He looked to his bible for comfort, but when he tried to read from Luke instead he found the words of Genesis: "Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the Earth. And from thy face shall I be hid. And I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond on the earth. It shall come to pass that everyone that findeth me shall slay me."

He staggered home and slept for a long time. When he awoke he resolved to talk to Father Singh. As he walked through the church the paintings around him seemed to jeer at him. He found Singh in a small chapel. When Edwin started to talk about the exorcism Father Singh asked if he wanted to do so in confession for the sin of spiritual pride. Edwin agreed and gave a full account. Singh paused and said his sins were deeper than that, and listed all the sins Edwin had committed since he was 6. Edwin noted that although Singh ordinarily had a strong Indian accent, this time he spoke with an RP accent.

Edwin fled to the front door, noting he ran past Singh, suggesting that the person he had been speaking to was someone else. As he ran down the streets of Oxford, he noted that everything seemed to have a different layout. He found himself in front of the Oratory in Woodstock Road, where he felt like the window was a giant eye looking at him.

A man stepped out of the Oratory saying it was time for mass. As Edwin entered the church, he noted that candles covered every surface and all the crosses and statues had been removed and the pews were empty. In the vestry he put on a pale sickly yellow stole.

The pews were full of people when he returned. They had fevered yellow skin and blank stares with wide open smiles. The Liturgy of the Word began but as the altar server stepped forward to speak, when he opened his mouth all Edwin heard was the sound of the bell. The same with the second reading. He stepped forward to read Mark Chapter 9 verses 14-19, but as he opened his mouth the same bell noise rang and Edwin fell to the floor.

For the Liturgy of the Eucharist he was brought communion wafers and wine. As he spoke to the practitioners they slowly disappeared one by one until all the pews were empty again. He went to get the rest of the host from an ornate metal box; he ate the wafer and noted that it did not have the right texture, and realised it was actual human flesh.

When Edwin discovered what he had done he considered ending his life, but couldn't. Instead he waited for the police to arrive and pledged guilty to all charges. He has been visited by his colleagues in the church, but whenever they talk, all he can hear is the sound of the bell.

Post-Statement Follow-Up Edit

Martin is still off sick.

Jonathan Sims cannot work out why this file was split up like this. He postulated that it may have been read by someone, but Tim and Sasha hadn't read it and he wondered if Gertrude may have read something about it.

Sasha looked into Bethany's case. She was a student studying archaeology, although her death and faith are documented, it appears as though she lived in halls in her second year, and not off campus. As such, when she claimed she attacked a housemate, she had actually attacked a porter. No one had lived at 89 Bullingdon Road during that year.

Edwin was found in one of the back rooms wearing a butcher's apron at 89 Bullingdon Road. With him were the bodies of Christopher Billham and James Man, both died from blood loss from multiple lacerations on their legs and torso. Both of their faces had been removed with a scalpel and James' face had been partially eaten by Edwin. 

Edwin is currently serving two life sentences in Wakefield Prison, who refused requests for a follow up interview.

Sims notes that it is odd that Edwin does not describe taking any actions during his hallucination that would correspond to binding or killing the students. The tools to kill and mutilate the students were not recovered from the scene, which leads Sims to think that there may have been a second person involved, possibly the altar server.

The Oratory was not the scene of the murder, but they were delivered the pale yellow stole that Edwin describes which vanished a few days after it was delivered to them. The stole was delivered by Breekon & Hope Deliveries.

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