It had been a year of the mystic shop being open when Maybelyn thought she had no need of escaping any more; she found no dead animals around the house and had seen less and less of her son, and the business was brining in quite the sum of money.
"Wash this" he'd said as he shoved a bag into his mothers hands.
She cringed as she hesitantly took it and took the bag to the laundry room where the contents of the bag was covered in dark red, sticky, smelly blood.
Maybelyn gasped, but quickly threw her hand over her mouth so Mitchell wouldn't hear her fear.
She did as he said and washed the items, hoping and praying it wasn't a person.
Maybelyn wondered if Mitchell knew she considered leaving, and gave her a reality check by giving her those bloody clothes.
She consulted her husband every few weeks and he'd tell her what books to look in.
She knew quite a bit of incantations and a few potions, but she was terrified, and ultimately, didn't want to give up her son, because even if he had something dark in him, ultimately he was still her son.
Maybelyn had a scar that she didn't like to talk about when people asked, and it was the scar on her neck where her son slit her throat partly when he sliced the rosary off her neck, because he saw that as an act of defiance or self defence, and he couldn't even touch it. Often people asked of the scar, like dear Eva who came in weekly.
"Eva, welcome, welcome dear" Maybelyn says to her frequent customer Eva, who probably thinks this is a legitimate replacement for weekly therapy sessions instead of a doctor.
"You're feeling quite shy today, dear, what's the matter?" Maybelyn asks as soon as they sit, when she senses something stirring inside of Eva.
Maybelyn seems to be able to read everyone but her son, and somehow he knows she is desperately trying to know what's wrong with him.
"I wanted to know about your scar on your neck?" Eva asks.
"We're here about you, my dear, not me, we shall chat of that another time" Maybelyn says.
"Well I thought it was time for the fear evaluation session" Eva breathes.
"Okay my dear. Please put your right palm out" Maybelyn says calmly.
Maybelyn mutters an incantation as she traces the lines in Eva's hands, much like all her clients.
Maybelyn strides through Eva's mind, particularly down Fear Road, off of her mental Main Street.
What she finds is truly horrifying, and she doesn't understand how Eva lives with this.
It's a fear of rape, torture, painfully slow deaths, and darkness.
Maybelyn quickly exits that mental road, and instead of contemplating it over with Eva and trying to minimise or justify the insignificance of the fear, she blocks off the road instead, because Eva has every right to be afraid of those; unfortunately she's experienced quite a few, and couldn't bear them once more, because the scar on her neck are very different from Eva's many scars, and Eva is quite more petrified to tell the story.
When Maybelyn exits Eva's mind, she has to collect herself before waking Eva up and revealing to her partly the truth.
"Your fears seem to be quite understandable to me, and I'm no one to tell you your fears aren't valid, but, dear, Eva, you've got to get ahold of yourself. You're strong, compassionate and caring. You will survive" Maybelyn says, hoping Eva will eat up every word, and hoping that her lie is convincing.
"I know, it's just. It's hard. You know when I was young I lived in a house that was haunted, and to this day, I never ask myself questions when I'm alone, because I'm afraid someone will answer, because more than once, someone did" she says, and Maybelyn actually shivers.
Eva flinches when she hears creaks in the floorboards in the corner of the room, and upon seeing nothing she brushes it off.
But Maybelyn knows better.
She knows it's Mitchell.
What he's planning on doing with the information he gathers randomly at her sessions is beyond her, but she still tries not to assume the worst.
Especially when the parents send their children in, because they think it's some type of therapy, but really it's more like a mental hospital for little kids, and it's always more stressful when Mitchell scares them.
Maybelyn wants to believe her eyes are deceiving her when she thinks she sees her son with black eyes, but sometimes she even sees them in her dreams, and when you're a medium, that's almost a direct prophecy.
"Thank you May. I'll be back soon" Eva says curtly, and Maybelyn gets the hint, so she takes her palm again and quickly releases her of those fears, and puts them away.
Eva leaves, and Maybelyn is left alone in the room with her son.
The thought is still fresh in Maybelyn's mind of when Mitchell gave her that scar, and she hates to recall this memory, but seems to do it every time someone asks.
"Mitchell, I know you're in here. Please tell me why you feel the need to eavesdrop on every one of my sessions? Can you please let this be something I get to do? I let you do your dark magic and things, so please, let me do mine" Maybelyn says to the darkness, unsteadily but with a sense of confidence holding her along.
"Don't talk to me like that, woman. My darkness and my magic has no concern of you, but I know you've tampered with my hex bags and put enchantments on your spell cabinets, so are we really staying out of each other's magic? Think that through, and maybe next time, do your job and don't worry about me being in here" comes a deep, dark voice that is laced with hate.
Maybelyn can not believe what the monster her son has become.
He comes out of the darkness in the corner and reaches Maybelyn quickly, and she winces as he reaches out to touch her, but he can't.
He tries, but the bubble around Maybelyn blocks him.
"Take that necklace off!" He screams in anger as he sees Maybelyn's devil trap necklace.
She stares at him with wide eyes, and she pulls it over her head and he slashes her hand which causes her to wince and drop the necklace.
"Do you think you can keep yourself safe from me?" He asks evilly.
He again tries to touch her, but fails and gets widely angrier.
"What have you done!" He shouts.
"Remove it immediately!" He rages, and Maybelyn starts to cry because she does not know what to do.
If Mitchell finds out about her tattoo he will hurt her, and it's protecting her, but if she doesn't tell him he might hurt her worse, and she could've prevented it by keeping on the tattoo.
"Show me!" He screams and she jumps.
Maybelyn sobs as she pulls up her hair and shows her son the devils trap tattoo she has had had since she was young, and this being the first time he's tried to touch her in his evil state.
Maybelyn didn't think it would backfire as much as it is right now.
"Get it off so I can punish you" he declares.
"It's a tattoo, it's permanent" Maybelyn says shakily.
"No it's not!" He screams and grabs a small bottle of liquid from his belt.
Mitchell opens the bottle furiously and shakes violently as he dumps the liquid on the back of his mothers neck, and Maybelyn bursts into tears again as she smells the contents of the small bottle being poured on her neck... gasoline.
Maybelyn pulls her sash over her head and Mitchell roars in terror as he kicks the chair Maybelyn sits in, knocking it over and causing his mother to fall on the floor in a whimpering heap.
"Get up and get over here!" Mitchell shouts, and Maybelyn obeys, turning around in her sons direction.
Mitchell pours more gasoline on her neck directly over the tattoo, and uses a lighter to set the fluid on fire, and uses a knife to skin it off, while listening to his mother scream in terror and anguish.
"This will be the last time you try and do something stupid against me" Mitchell shouts, and throws a few punches before Maybelyn is lights out.