As Father McCormack was sitting in the vestry, he could hear the rain lashing down on the roof high above. The sound was almost soothing and he felt himself drifting off to sleep. He was awoken with an altogether different sound, a sound that he would feel compelled to investigate further, such was the calamitous cacophony in the churchyard outside.
He grabbed his hat as he closed the heavy old wooden door behind him and tried to shield himself from the elements as best he could manage. He walked around the churchyard and as he moved towards the north side of the old burial ground, a feint groan become ever louder.
His heart almost stopped as he squinted his eyes, making out what appeared to be the figure man crouching on the ground, a little beyond the lantern at the gate. He looked inside his pocket and touched the Bible he carried, gaining comfort and assurance he would be facing no danger.
Further groans eminated from the spot where the man was crouched over, clearly in some pain. He held his stomach and began wailing. Wasting no further time, Father McCormack started to make for the man, realising just now much rain had fallen around the churchyard and also coming to appreciate the storm had brought this unfortunate waif to his door.
As the moonlight flooded the old churchyard, Father McCormack was upon the man. The groans had stopped and he found himself looking down, his heart sinking in abject horror. As he put his hand in his pocket, he come to realise the Bible was longer present. He removed his hand and felt a sharp pain, as the blood poured from the cut in his finger.
…he realised he was no longer alone in the churchyard. He also realised the sounds of pain had ceased and he heard movement beyond the tombstone just in front of him…