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When I was a boy, there was an empty house, just up the hill from my family's. It was rumored a man committed suicide there after being possessed by the devil. One day, a young woman, Lydia, moved into the house with her infant child. That very night, Lydia was awakened by a loud, heinous, hissing sound. She walked to the nursery, and there, in the baby's crib, was a snake wrapped around the baby's neck, squeezing tighter and tighter. The crib was full of dirt, baby struggled to free itself from underneath, reaching and clawing, gasping for air. Embalmed bodies rose from their sarcophagi, lurching toward baby. Amongst them was a man, tall, slim. Almost instinctively, she turned to her husband. "Oh wait," she though, "I don't have a husband." For Lydia and her husband had had an argument, one they couldn't get past. Each night, they slept one inch farther apart, until one night, Lydia left. It was about this time, she lost herself in imaginary worlds. She had quit the book club, the choir, citing something about their high expectations. Her lips slowly grew together from disuse. Every time she wanted to act and didn't, another part of her face hardened, until it was stone. And that fevered night, she rushed to the nursery, threw open the door, "Baby, are you okay?"
Baby sat up slowly, turned to mother, and said--
"I'm fine, Bitch. I'm fine."