Today’s Dark Divination is an eerie story about a séance. “Ghost of St. John Lane” by Daphne Strasert tells of a widow who has reluctantly agreed to host a séance. She is intrigued by the thought of meeting the medium, Mr. Moses, so she allows people into her house for the first time since her husband died.
At first, the gathering seems like a waste of time, but who is the face outside the window?
I am not going to give away any of the details, because it is too nice a story to spoil.
Mediumship, and its practitioners, were a big part of Victorian Spiritualism. Communicating with the dead became a lucrative practice in the 19th century. And it provided new economic freedom to many women.
I even have my own story to share. When my university was putting on Bell, Book, and Candle for summer repertory, the cast decided we would have a séance. This was the first “real” séance I had ever attended–the slumber parties of pre-adolescent girls don’t count.
The four of us proceeded to sit around the table with the lights out and candles lit…and I don’t know if it was the power of suggestion or what, but I saw some things that night I will never forget. My friend Randy’s face started to literally melt like wax. I saw a flaming Mobil Pegasus. Everyone had the impression of fire when we compared notes later. Somewhere, I have a record of what everyone saw. It might make a good story someday. That night, it was terrifying!