"The House on Portagee Hill"

© 1999
J. Mitch Hopper

Sometimes a grassy circle is just that - a grassy circle. As we see in this work of H.P. Lovecraft inspired fiction, sometimes it is NOT. Here is just a taste!
He stood next to the grass and noted how perfectly circular it was - not much more than three feet across. The edges were fairly well defined. The dogs went so close and no closer. He began to pull the rake through the grass expecting to find the remains of a fifty-five gallon burning barrel and all the beer cans and wine jugs it probably consumed. What he found was nothing.

He got down on his hands and knees and started to move into the grass, parting it with his fingers and looking closely at the ground below. As he moved into the circle, a wave of raw feelings poured over him like a bucket of cold water - feelings so intense they took his breath away. He gasped and pulled back landing hard on his butt in the dirt. It was as if someone had hit him on the head from behind or crushed his lungs flat with a bear-hug. He was so disoriented and dizzy, he felt like he was about to pass out. John sat there in the dirt momentarily stunned and the feelings passed as quickly as they had overtaken him. It was peculiar, all the Beagles were huddled together on the far side of the dog house - as silent and as still as could be.

John got up and stared at the grassy circle. A cool breeze was blowing and the blades were moving slowly in the wind. He stood there scratching his head and mulling over the sudden onset of such intense feelings. Perhaps a blood pressure drop or an inner ear infection had hit him as he bent down to the ground. John reached over to the fence to take the rake and stepped onto the circle of green grass.

Brandy yelped, and John felt the wave of panic and nausea return like a locomotive. He fell to his knees in the center of the circle and looked up into the sky with unseeing eyes. Privately, he was falling into blackness - a place where everything miserable and depressing were forced through his mind. Cold beyond cold, dark beyond dark, John felt such despair as he could not have imagined. The dirt hit him hard as he collapsed into the dog pen crying like a baby.

He had hit the dirt nearly face first and the taste of it was in his mouth. The feelings that had gripped him so completely were gone again - a memory like a dream. It had only just happened and already he was having difficulty remembering exactly what it was - what it felt like - but the tears streaming down his cheeks were very real.

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