Chap. 37—Lucifer’s Island: A Gothic Horror Soap Opera (Season 1)

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THIRTY-SEVEN

Doubting Saint Thomas

Lucifer’s Island: A Gothic Horror Soap Opera (Season 1)“Forgive me my dear doubting Saint Thomas,” Father Murphy said as he unlocked one of the many chalice safes in the church sacristy. He removed the relic and looked at the finger bone, now replaced into its repaired receptacle. “I should have secured you right away, rather than have you in my office. Please forgive me.”

He sat it on the marble countertop and looked at Bishop Donahue, clothed in a black cassock. “I did my best with the repairs. I hope everything is to your satisfaction.”

The bishop adjusted his bifocals, placed one hand on the pectoral cross to prevent it from falling forward, and leaned in to get a closer look at the bone inside the glass case. “The relic looks to be intact and undamaged; however, you were negligent in treating the relic with such little reverence.”

“Yes, I am aware. Please accept my sincerest apologies, Your Excellency.”

Bishop Donahue looked over the top of his glasses at Father. “What exactly happened? Did a hooligan break into your office and cause the damage?”

Father Murphy shook his head. “That’s not very likely. I was always near it; even a couple police officers were inside the rectory for part of the time. But seriously, I highly doubt a malicious . . . person did it.”

“If a malicious person did not do it, then how was it freed from the box?”

“My best guess is that,” Father Murphy said, “it broke from the container on its own. It had to be trying to send a message.”

“It is true that miracles have been worked by God in association with relics. So are you saying a miracle, of sorts, has occurred?”

“I don’t know,” Father Murphy said, running a hand through his short locks of hair. “But there is no other way to explain it.”

With a skeptical tone, Bishop Donahue said, “So my young priest, what do you believe the saint was trying to communicate?”

Father Murphy blew out an exasperated breath as he looked toward the floor. Then he looked up at the bishop who was staring at him. “As you know, Bishop, the reason I requested the holy relic was to reassure the anxious congregation and to remind them of the holiness of saints and that God works in association with relics. I wanted to offer the parishioners a renewed faith in the grace of God because of all the strange occurrences that have been taking place on the island, especially here in Maryville.”

The bishop cleared his throat. “I suggest you keep the relic locked in the safe while you figure out what happened.”

Father Murphy snapped his fingers with excitement. “I got it! Saint Thomas’s finger was on top of some paperwork, wiggling. I believe it was trying to point something out, something that was written on the papers where I found it. That has to be it.”

“What did the papers say?”

“It was on a stack of papers and an unopened letter. The papers were receipts that I had been recording in the ledger. But as far as the letter,” he said, cocking an eyebrow. “I haven’t opened it, yet.”

“Who was the letter from?”

“I don’t think it had a return address; I sat it aside to be opened later.” Father Murphy began pacing the rectory, deep in thought. “Maybe there’s something in that letter that I should know about.”

“I presume the time has come for you to open it.”

Father Murphy stopped walking back-and-forth and settled in front of the relic. With great respect and gentle care, he put the relic back into the safe and locked it. “I’m going back to the rectory and opening that letter immediately.”

Chapter 36

Chapter 38

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