You were still sleeping when the voice at your door brusquely hollers this. You groggily sit up, kick your soft woolen blankets to the floor, and dress yourself. You take a peek at the window. The sky is still as black as panther fur. You assume it is still midnight.
You open your crude wooden door only to be shoved out by a burly man smoking from a cracked pipe. A crowd of raucous villagers wielding pitchforks and torches surround you and spit at you, jab you with their forks, and cuss at you.
"Filthy bitch, plaguing our village with smallpox, how dare you!"
"Let's burn this witch at a tree right now!"
"Going to beat her till she's blue, ya hear!"
You yell and plead that you are no witch, you are just a lowly Puritan widow under the name of Margaret Windlow and a loyal citizen just like them.
"You think you can lie, huh? Witches know each other. You might've gone lucky had'a your friend not tattled on ya!" One man grabs your arm and twists it. "Look, a mole! Filthy witches and filthy marks of the Devil, ain't it!"
Confused and livid, you shove the man. He crashes back into the crowd and an almost comical look of surprise flashes across his face, but it quickly switches to anger. He charges at you like a raging bull and slams into you, and the next thing you know you're on your back, with taunting housemaids stomping on you. You try to get up, but someone plants his foot onto your throat and starts choking you. You fight and holler and struggle, but at last the pain and the lack of oxygen takes its toll on you and you pass out.
You wake up on a dirty cot with blankets eaten away at its edges, presumably by vermin. The walls are cold steel covered in grime and the familiar iron bars of a cell trap you in the room with no chance of escape whatsoever.
Indignant that you have been arrested for no reason, you shout and grab onto the rusty bars, shaking them. They make a clanking sound of metal scraping metal, but they are nowhere near breaking. Exhausted, you give up and crash down onto your bed.
A well-dressed middle-aged man visits your cell soon after. He introduces himself as John Hathorne, a respected judge in convicting accused witches. He grabs a silver key from his coat pocket and opens the barred door. He beckons you to come out and follow him, followed by a tacit glare from his eyes signaling consequences if you attempt to escape.
Mr. Hathorne leads you to a polished, spacious courtroom, where the juries and witnesses sit on the long carved benches. To the left corner is a haggard lady named Jane S. Dinsol, an unpleasant neighbour of yours. She and you had quarreled multiple times over many petty things, and the two of you had developed a toxic grudge against each other. However, she had recently been arrested for being a witch. As she spots you, Jane smiles gleefully, showing her blackening gums and yellowing teeth.
After the opening customs, Mr. Hathorne says, "Ladies and Gentlemen, we meet here once again to decide the truthfulness of an accused witch's allegiance to God, or to Satan. Ms. Margaret Windlow, will you please come up to the podium." You slowly make your way up, where you are made to swear to tell the truth by God's name.
"Ms. Windlow, you have been accused of witchcraft by a fellow convicted witch named Jane S. Dinsol. She has sworn to oath to tell the truth-"
You scream "Perjury!", but the judge carries on.
"-and accuses you of practicing black magic and demon worship."
"How can you trust the oath of someone who has been convicted of witchcraft?" You challenge.
"That is a good point, but she as a fellow witch knows of her colleagues. We have more evidence to back up the prosecution." Mr. Hathorne produces a large scroll and unrolls it onto his stand.
"One: Ms. Windlow had been missing on the night of November 27, 1692, whilst everyone else was asleep. It is assumed that she was attending a sabbath at that time."
"I was visiting some of my friends," you reply.
But the judge says, "Ambiguity. Your "visiting" could've been a ceremony."
"Two: You have been reported to be openly against the witch convictions, publicly denouncing it without hesitation. Such acts can be interpreted as loyalty to witchcraft." You are too furious to even speak. Your face is steaming red.
"Three: A fellow witch has already accused her. It is reasonable to believe in the word of another witch in this case. Four: Ms. Windlow had skipped church two times on September 7, 1692, and October 27, 1692. Such disregard for the Holy Son is an outright crime against Christianity and direct devotion to Satan."
You are literally shaking right now out of anger. You yell that you were sick on those days, but the judge replies that even sick people go to church if they are truly Christian.
"And five: Ms. Windlow has freckles on her face and a mole on her right arm, and is left-handed."
The witnesses are in a frenzy, swearing at you and mocking you. You are bewildered.
After the juries had voted, the judge counts the votes.
"Guilty... guilty... guilty...." Each "guilty" is a separate stab to your heart.
When the judge finally stops counting the votes, he doesn't even poll them. The results are obvious. He simply walks up to the podium and proclaims the verdict: "Ms. Margaret Windlow is a fraud and a confirmed witch, and a disrespecting Satanist. She is convicted guilty of witchcraft and is sentenced to death. Her hanging will be scheduled for next morning." you hear Jane, upon hearing this, cackling madly.
You beg and scream and shout, insisting your innocence and spouting oaths to God, to no avail. The guards take you out of the courtroom and stuff you back into your cell. You will go to the unforgiving gallows the next day, on 8:30 am, and end your life there.
As you sit in despair, you finally realize everything. You realize why your elderly mother had disappeared months ago and later announced dead by the court officials. You realize why your friend had escaped the seemingly innocent town for no particular reason, only to turn up executed on the noose for "treason". You realize it all.
They were all victims of the Salem Witch Trials.
As you are now.
Written by MarioFan5050