At the turn of the century, generations of families become intertwined in the Louisiana bayous and the curse of the women from Delphine manor. Illicit affairs and secretive friendships, alliances that lead to mysterious disappearances, the Delphine curse follows its victims spanning oceans and time.
But is it truly the curse responsible for the murders, or are darker secrets hidden in the swamps? More
“A cursed be ye, but through thy daughters trine, scary and wary be of this sign—for one man shall not satisfy they, kill will thy kin, forever slay, slay, slay!”
As her words stopped traffic, with a nearby horse falling dead, and out of fear of just what Eunice had said, Darius and Leda, hoping to fend off the curse, left town on the most convenient train, scared by Eunice’s verse.
Eunice retreated to the Delphine House, never to be seen on the village streets again. Some would say it was her that was seen by hunters’ in the night, sacrificing animals to the moon and running naked through the woods. But for the most part, this was a myth to scare little children away from the Delphine homestead, or so the adults agreed as a comfort to themselves.
Eunice’s solitary outburst condemned her to a most lonely life and she remained hidden in the house, terrified by her own eruption of that day; that single day that seemed to have changed her life, forever. But none of this had been her intended outcome. In kindness and remorse, she sent money to the dead horse’s owner with an apology. Only after the money was returned wrapped in a prayer of serenity for her, did she understand the gravity of her situation.
In her latter days, Eunice was reported to have leapt to her death from the upper most room of the Delphine House in her finest black taffeta dress and pearls; spiraling downwards with a sharp rock and hard earth breaking her fall and cracking her skull. The ground upon which her blood spilled was rumored to have never recovered and to this day, the cursed soil bears the silhouette of her fallen figure.
In fear, and hoping to leave the curse behind them, knowing that the town’s folk would forever remind them of the incident, Leda and Darius fled to a nearby parish and started their family, doing their best to forget the past by making a new life for themselves. But, with the birth of Leda’s third daughter, Andra, and still with no son in sight, both began to fear the worse and Eunice’s verse and so they began trying to find honorable suitors for their daughters when they became of age, suitors who had not heard of Eunice’s dire prediction. However, because of Helen’s remarkable beauty, when she came of age, she did not lack for a suitor. Rumor had it that every available bachelor, regardless of age, within five parishes, had attempted to court her—and that at one point, she had even been kidnapped by two brothers. But it was not until the dreamy-eyed, fair-haired Deutsche gentleman from New Orleans, Laus Menes, arrived, that her hand was given and she was carried away to his house in order to turn it into a home.
And the joy of the moment was not lost on Darius and Leda, for within nine months, Leda gave birth to a son, Castor Faye Archer. Thus, they began to feel more secure and somewhat spared from Eunice Delphine’s iron-willed and feral curse, and that their son would be spared the indignity that they had known.
And so, that is precisely (the search for a decent suitor) how Nestra came to be on that dusty road to Miceny, and to be the obsession of Schylus Masters on that fateful day. Darius and Leda were on their way to Miceny to chaperone Nestra and Tanner, when their shiny black lacquered buggy—a Surrey with red spokes, red cushions, and white tassels—wheel broke, sending the three into a ditch with the buggy itself came to rest on its side. Schylus who had been approaching them, after flipping up the brim of his hat, viewed the entire spectacle incredulously, and immediately rushed to their aid.
It is said that upon touching Nestra’s hand, a small spark erupted in Schylus’ finger that echoed in his heart which truly electrified the moment for him, as he helped to extricate Nestra from the ditch.
Available ebook formats: