A Haunting Story

I am reading a collection of ghost stories by Henry James.

So far everyone has dropped dead after being confronted by ghosts.

Good thing that doesn’t happen in real life

or

I would have died

a long time ago.

Seriously though.

My favorite story in this collection is called ” The Last Of Valerii

This story  is about a woman named Martha  who marries a Count and moves to Italy where she takes up  excavating the grounds of her new home- a somewhat neglected Villa  for antiquities.

After a short spell, Martha excavators disinter   a statue of Juno that enchants her husband.

In one my favorite and the most horrifying part of the story, Martha’s husband takes the statues severed hand ( though I imagined the statue visited him and gave it to him herself- which is creepy visual because what did that involve?  ) from the excavation sight.

At the end of the story you are lead to believe that the spell is finally broken but the Count keeps the hand- and treasures it and proudly shows it to the curious.

There are no ghosts in this story exactly, but the Count is haunted so completely that you would think an entire cemetery full of ghost  are on his heels.

I’m sure everyone who reads this story will have their own takeaway of the ending- but that is what makes a story about ghosts truly haunting.

 

 

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