Roger and Carolyn Perron purchased the home of their dreams and eventual nightmares in December of 1970. The Arnold Estate, located just beyond the village of Harrisville, Rhode Island seemed the idyllic setting in which to raise a family. The couple unwittingly moved their five young daughters into the ancient and mysterious farmhouse. Secrets were kept and then revealed within a space shared by mortal and immortal alike. Time suddenly became irrelevant; fractured by spirits making their presence known then dispersing into the ether. The house is a portal to the past and a passage to the future. This is a sacred story of spiritual enlightenment, told some thirty years hence. The family is now somewhat less reticent to divulge a closely-guarded experience. Their odyssey is chronicled by the eldest sibling and is an unabridged account of a supernatural excursion. Ed and Lorraine Warren investigated this haunting in a futile attempt to intervene on their behalf. They consider the Perron family saga to be one of the most compelling and significant of a famously ghost-storied career as paranormal researchers. During a seance gone horribly wrong, they unleashed an unholy hostess; the spirit called Bathsheba; a God-forsaken soul. Perceiving herself to be the mistress of the house, she did not appreciate the competition. Carolyn had long been under siege; overt threats issued in the form of fire…a mother's greatest fear. It transformed the woman in unimaginable ways. After nearly a decade the family left a once beloved home behind though it will never leave them, as each remains haunted by a memory. This tale is an inspiring testament to the resilience of the human spirit on a pathway of discovery: an eternal journey for the living and the dead.
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House of Darkness House of Light
The True Story Volume Three
By Andrea Perron
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2014 Andrea Perron
All rights reserved.
ROCK ON WITH YOUR BAD SELF
"Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good."
Romans xii. 21
Stone walls rock and roll across the New England countryside as a fixture within pastoral views. When born and raised in bucolic New England, these remarkable structures are nothing unusual, rather, a normal part of life as the ancient markers that separate farmland, establish boundaries and decorate the landscape. If good fences make for good neighbors, then stone walls make the very best fences, impervious to the elements. They create a patch-worked landscape with slabs of stone the land yielded, remnants of the last Ice Age. Of course, they've served a purpose as a means of keeping cows in pastures while providing the necessary barrier for other creatures as well. Still, when one examines any well-planned well-built stone wall it's a wonder to behold, something to admire. Students of this Colonial Era know the backbreaking history. They know slaves and indentured servants built the majority of these labor-intensive lines in the sand, one stone at a time, every edifice erected with far more than a few drops of blood, sweat and tears. Within the broad strokes of human creativity, stone walls are those fine lines of history etched upon the Earth. They have a story to tell. They've left a mark on the planet. To be sure, they are a normal part of everyday life in rural New England but the walls enclosing the backyard at the farm were supernatural in nature. If only these rocks could talk ... but they did. Talking rocks did more than that. They sang and played like the children, as an instrument accompanying wind song within a magical valley. Stone walls were an integral part of the whole big picture, a gift, as an elemental reflection, grand relics with a telltale past.
"The primary beauty of silence becomes audible in the elemental music of the earth."
Inclined to venture forth out onto the massive property, this family soon learned the intricacies of a framework of art, following the walls to sacred spots, walking with them into the woods. There is a place behind the house which yields a magic all its own, a spot that reveals the true power of nature, intermingling as it does with its walls of stone whenever they perform an interlude, in concert with the wind. The children heard it first and wondered about the origin, unable to identify a source of the sound. No one recognized it. As foreign as it was enticing, it produced a trance-inducing tune when the land was laden with fresh fallen snow. During their first winter at the farm, one storm after another blew through, gale force winds ushering snow along at light speed. Once the birds were stunned into silence, their tranquil valley lined with granite issued its blanket invitation to the wind. "Let's play." With that, stones would begin creating their own haunting melodies, a miraculous kind of rock music in its purest form. Slabs of granite sang elemental songs. This cacophony of vibrating air was heard lashing against encrusted crystals, causing eerie echoes throughout the valley, cries and whispers of unforgiving wind. Every gust revealing secrets kept for centuries, its depth and resonance fluctuating wildly with the brisk breeze, it was sublime, symphonic in nature. Hypnotic by divine design ... a spell cast by the Mother.
Sleds and flying saucers in tow, the children began their long journey at the top of the hill, just beyond the kitchen door. It was during one of these sledding sessions they'd first noticed music playing in their own back yard. Surrounded by trees, interplay with exposed limbs and thick, lush evergreens was the likeliest cause and the wind itself was noisy, after all. Still, the sound seemed to come from a lower position, closer to the ground. By the time they arrived at the bottom of the treacherous hill they realized it was stone walls serenading them. Depending on velocity and direction of prevailing wind, it whined or whistled, cooing as it crept. Or, if thrashing through gaps of space between compressed rocks, in its mad dash to the muse, the wind became wedged among slabs, caught up in then spun around, crashing into itself in collision and collusion. Turning to come 'round right back from whence it came, pushing into then out of crevices, it impacted an impenetrable force of nature: granite. Pivoting in place, freeing itself from the confines of the black holes tucked between stacked stone, it rushed back through narrow passages, out the doorway it entered, passing itself in the process, in frantic friction. To this extent the laws of physics apply. It seemed a natural phenomenon with a few supernatural undertones. Its rapid, repetitive motion is its creative force; releasing energy, creating synergy as it intersects with the stones, producing a synthesis of sound unlike anything the girls had encountered before: wind and rock playing together in perfect harmony. They went to get their mother. It was something she had to hear! Tuning into this circuitous frequency was joyful, a message delivered directly from Mother Nature, received by all who possessed fortitude to brave the elements. Curiosity casts its own astounding light. She bundled up to join them at the foot of the hill, leaning in, listening closely to what was being revealed ... the cosmic secrecy of stone.
"The Earth has music for those who listen."
Once they realized the source of the sounds, dark and stormy nights were not so scary anymore. The girls welcomed this natural lullaby as they drifted off to sleep. It was beautiful. On particularly windy nights it drowned out the other sounds they heard in the house, pretending not to notice. Nature was an escape, their destination. It was a grand part of what many would objectively describe as an idyllic childhood. Truth be told, it was a place to go, their way to get away. However, land surrounding the farmhouse was equally dark and mysterious. It was home to the spirits inhabiting the dwelling. This had been their land and they knew it better than anyone else because they had worked the land in life. They'd built stone walls and cleared pastures and knew every square inch of the property. Supernatural episodes routinely occurred there. A veritable variety show of scenarios played out on its expansive stage, on a patch of sacred ground, the parcel of Earth known as the old Arnold Estate. There were life lessons to be learned at every turn in those woods, primarily that the woods certainly did not qualify as escape from supernatural activity occurring inside the house. "Outside" was merely a change of venue.
There is something to be said for broadening one's horizons, peering into the cosmos with the mind's eye, though none of them was remotely prepared for what they'd see. No one could have anticipated to what extent this would occur over time. An entirely new 'cast of characters' was destined to emerge, introduced in the woods, by the woods, like the native children who'd come home to play in the pine grove that did not exist when they were alive. They did not belong to the farmhouse. These children belonged to that land. It was their home long before the house was ever built, eons before those pine trees were supplanted into their memories of a past place on a planet revisited.
* * *
Even though stone walls on the property remained dead silent when the wind was calm, they still possessed an elemental vibration which was easily, eerily detectible to those who knew who how to listen, how to feel. One need only lay the body down, to rest upon the altar and sense the Earth beneath. It was the sensation of a mighty river rumbling through the planet hundreds of feet below the surface. It was the most incredible discovery, phenomenal in Nature. One need only be still long enough to look with new eyes, to see and touch, to feel and listen to perceive God in all things of the Mother ... Earth.
"Touch the earth and listen to the rocks for they remember. They know and remember all that has come to pass here."
"To find the Universal elements enough, to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter; to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird's nest or a wildflower in spring — these are some of the rewards of the simple life."
From the moment the Perron family began exploring the sacred grounds of one of the original Providence Plantations, everything changed. They were already deeply rooted there; they already belonged to the place in the country long before it belonged to them. A mysterious connection occurred. Perhaps it was more a matter of reconnection. From the instant Carolyn saw a listing in the newspaper she had bought on a whim, the process began as a series of events that would ultimately transport seven mortal souls through time and space, where they'd engage or re-engage with spirits in an inextricable bond, perhaps one formed long ago. Life and death intermingled as one at the farm, as everyone involved was on the same wavelength of an alternate reality: an inter-dimensional excursion where they could ride the astral plane: existence. It was important, more than a field trip deep into a bountiful countryside, its wonders to behold. It was a journey which would prove to last a lifetime. So began an odyssey of epic proportions, an odd, unexpected diversion along an otherwise ordinary path, with profound spiritual implications for all. If it was a curse it was likewise a blessing ... the darkness and the light.
* * *
There was always something stunning to discover—an act of Nature, an act of God around every corner, under every rock, behind every bush—no need to beat around it to raise the dead. This land conspired with the spirits, complicit in their travel affairs. Cavernous aquifers riddled a trembling Earth beneath bare feet hundreds of yards below a quivering surface. They felt the vibrations created underground, as if the perpetual low-level earthquake was shaking or stirring them to the core from a distance, subtly infiltrating a body and mind with a barely detectible frequency of its own. Like a mighty freight train, an ancient canal ran full steam ahead, an invisible river roared through the rocks below. They could sense its tremors, the faintest aftershocks.
"Adopt the pace of nature, her secret is patience."
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Carolyn spent a great deal of time in her garden during the three seasons she found tolerable. Yet as the fourth approached, as light began shifting into narrow, slanted shafts spilling across the wooden floors of a farmhouse, her mood descended with the sunlight. Alas, she began receding into its shadows again. As winter set in she'd relegate herself inside, living light deprived, in concert with the angle of a fiery orb. A bleak season, bitter cold and barren, during these months she would become a reclusive writer, as solace, delving into her own space in mind. Sometimes, as an act of protest, channeling her anger onto the pages, she would write about war and peace. The supernatural torment she endured found its way there in another realm, in a life and death intermingling of pain on the battlefields of Earth. Transmutation. The dream had become her nightmare. It was winter again. Cruel cold found its way into her bones, into her thoughts, pouring forth onto the pages of her life.
"I closed my mouth and spoke to you in a hundred silent ways."
For some reason, the death and after-death of Prudence Arnold haunted her most profoundly. It forced her to consider the youngster's gruesome end, to think of her own girls, to go where no mind should in those darkest hours just before dawn. So many children, too many little lost souls, long gone and often forgotten. Local graveyards were brimming with tiny tombstones one could easily stumble over, buried beneath dense brush, the names all but lost to time or never etched in stone at all. Some went unnamed, likely painful to assign an identity beneath such tragic circumstances. Some lost in childbirth; many more were claimed by the first disease that made its presence known, imposing its harshest sentence upon the innocent. How many souls perished in their home before them? Wondering if she would ever survive the loss of one of her own, Carolyn fought her way out of this mindset whenever it took hold or had the chance to become a morbid preoccupation, but her dreams, her sleep was often disturbed. Bad dreams. Dear Prudence ... screaming and screaming through the slash across her throat, drowning in her own blood. At times, closing her eyes felt like a death sentence, impending doom awaiting, lurking in the background, lingering at the darkest corners of a subconscious mind, further burdening a deeply troubled mother. Oh! What a world!
To sleep, perchance to dream ...
Late September Song: winter fear
Time hangs its head in desolation;
through the dusty window
I watch a hedgerow
of wilted hollyhocks
a mocking pile of corpses
fallen brown and broken
stacked against the icy walls
Time warps and drifts.
It mimics thought and dream,
distorting beyond recognition.
I seek my bed and ask —
what day is this—what year?
I dream and madness crawls,
old terrors come creeping,
bony claw-like creatures, into my salt beds
for I have become aquatic.
Swimming blindly through a dense nimbus
of swirling brown water—searching,
groping for the child who is lost there
while her gurgling cries call to me,
draw me down,
and drown me in a vortex of sorrow.
"I have witnessed things I dare not call up into the scrutiny of daylight. They are not safer to conjure beneath wings of sleep. There, I have no control over what monsters appear in my dreams."
Ellen Hopkins "SMOKE"
* * *
Jumping the gun on the season, pre-dreading it a bit earlier than usual that year, another winter of discontent had arrived. Even though Carolyn would remain indoors for the duration, except when absolutely necessary to venture out, her daughters were less reticent about the cold. Snow days were a rarity. When they occurred it was cause for celebration and it had to be pretty bad for them to cancel school in those hearty communities. The girls would rise up early then listen for the cancellations: NO SCHOOL Foster / Glocester! A transistor radio set on the bathroom counter, Salty Brine had his special way of announcing the good news. It meant Burrillville was next on the list! Oh joy! Oh rapture! Everyone would abandon any primping or preparations for the day, stoke up on a pot of oatmeal then gather up on the power lines. The snow was so pure in the country, creating a silence as golden as the hue after a storm. As wind took its place behind exiting snowfall, faces, ears and necks got covered but no one came inside until the clarion call to the troops came at dinner. Mess. They certainly were! Following mom's familiar finger straight into the bathroom to peel off the snow and ice-encrusted outerwear, it was all left hanging in the warm room, there to dry just in time for the next excursion into a winter wonderland at twilight ... the most magical time.
"Go to the winter woods: listen there, look, watch, and the 'dead months' will give you a subtler secret than any you have yet found in the forest."
From the trees they clung to on windy days these girls watched and listened, reflecting upon their exposure to the elements. To be immersed in Nature as a child is the perfect gift of God. For the young, life is all about discovery. Exploration: navigating without the benefit of a compass, finding their way in the dark. Specific environments in which they dwell ultimately determine the nature of the discovery. Those who are raised on concrete streets wedged between skyscrapers learn to navigate these treacherous paths as their terrain, avoiding the hazards as obstacles posed by such an unforgiving landscape. Carolyn's girls knew better. Before any of them reached adulthood they had developed a keen appreciation for what they had and never seemed to notice what they did not. Roger had grown up on the mean streets of a city. Carolyn grew up in the swampland of Georgia. Neither had known the luxuries of life their children could now take for granted, but never did. They were grateful, realizing what a privilege it was to have that much land at their disposal at all times. It was their land, too. These children knew well those wild woodlands. They knew they had been blessed with a lovely estate they could call home. But they knew they had to share it ... that it wasn't theirs alone.
Excerpted from House of Darkness House of Light by Andrea Perron. Copyright © 2014 Andrea Perron. Excerpted by permission of AuthorHouse.
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Table of Contents
Prologue in Prayer,
A Proper Introduction,
I. A Place in the Country,
II. Fire in the Hole,
III. Wicked Woman ... Evil Ways,
V. Ghostly Cries and Whispers,
VI. Down the Hatch,
VII. Warren Peace,
VIII. Bless Me Father,
IX. Rock On with your Bad Self,
X. A Fly on the Wall,
Epilogue in Epitaph,