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Holding her tea cup high in one hand, inclining her head slightly to the left,she looked up at him out of the corners of her eyes and gave him another gentle smile. “No my dear,” she said. “Only you.”
The words stuck to his mind like fly paper. “Excuse me ma’am,” Mr. Weaver said. “I think I heard you wrong. Did you say that I am the only other resident that has stayed here?”
“You heard correctly young man, only you.”
“But why ever not? With the cost so low and this wonderful space, why wouldn’t anyone want to stay here?”
“Oh with my old age, I have grown to choose my specimen.” The lady said with a gruesome smile.
Billy tilted his head, not realizing that he had began to sweat or that the land lady had poured him a fresh cup of tea. “Specimen?” he asked.
“Yes I prefer them to be young and handsome.” She smiled and she reached for him.
He flinched back and dodged her touch. He had figured it out, why she was into taxidermy, why she picks her visitors, and why she said that Gregory Temple and Mr. Mulholland were still here. He made a dash to the door, but the landlady was too quick. She was a monster; killing people and keeping them for herself. Her beady little eyes watched his every move as he tried to back away from her. For every step he took though, the landlady took an even greater one. In no time, the landlady had a strong grip on Billy. Billy kicked and screamed, trying to break free.
“Why are you doing this to me?” he yelled. He broke from her grip and vomited onto the hand-woven rug.
“It’s too late now,” the landlady smiled.”The tea has already began to work.”
“Yes. When you drink the tea it preserves your insides.” The landlady placed her hands on her stomach as she talked.
Billy could now feel it. His stomach, lungs, and heart felt as though they were on fire. He gripped his chest and the veins in his arms and hands started to become more visible and turn a brownish color. His skin got rough, also turning a brownish color and he found it harder to move. The landlady stood smiling also examining her arms because she too had drank the tea. “Wonderful!” she exclaimed. “Now we can live together in an ageless life.”
The inn was never again used. Soon, the lights from the bulbs gave, and the candles ran down to the last speck of wax. Nothing moved, nothing spoke. The children of the town told stories and gossip about the bed & breakfast, but no one dared to step near it. It was never opened, even by the police. The view from the window, which was once of a peaceful living room, was nothing more than a scene of murder and horror.