EpigraphA series of notes from Seth Emery
I received a tip from a friend in the bureau about a strange attack on a family in West Texas, about five miles south of Dark Ember, TX. He informed me that the local authorities have been uncooperative and there is not enough details or evidence for the federal authorities to conduct a proper investigation.
I am in Fort Worth, TX. I just spoke with the mother (Lucy age 35) and daughter (Amber age 16) involved in the attack near Dark Ember. After showing Lucy my credentials as a federal contract investigator, I requested she allow me to speak to Amber and herself, separately. Lucy told me a story about a man that tried to grab Amber from the passenger seat of her car as they pulled away from a gas station off the interstate on the night of May 9. She described the man as dirty, unshaven with light brown hair. About his attitude, she used the word rabid. I then spoke with Amber. Her story is quite different from her mothers and I sensed there was some hard feelings between them because of this. Amber said she saw an animal roaming around behind the gas station while her mother pumped gas. When her mother got back in the car and started the engine, this animal darted straight for the open passenger window and tried to pull Amber out. She described the animal as dog-like, but instead of paws this animal had claws. She said the animal was covered in black fur. Lucy walked me out when I was done speaking with Amber. Lucy informed me that Amber has been in shock since this incident and she is having trouble understanding what really happened. Lucy tried to get me to understand that Amber made up this story about a wild dog creature as a means to cope with what had happened. I told her I understood as I walked to my car.
I just arrived in Dark Ember, TX. It is a little more than five miles North of Interstate 20. I almost missed the turn off about half a mile West of the gas station where Lucy and Amber were attacked. I made a quick pass through town. A sign just outside of town states a population of 735. From the little of the town there was to see I can believe it. Can a town be described as Spartan? I saw one school, one church, a small grocery store and tiny building designated as the Sheriff’s department. The town is so small it doesn’t have a movie theater, a motel, a gas station or even a Wal-Mart. I’ll have to drive east to Odessa to find a decent hotel. Tomorrow I’ll find a library and do some research on Dark Ember.
I found some interesting facts about Dark Ember at the library. The town was originally built near a silver mine in 1866. The mine was suddenly closed after a harsh winter in 1867. Records indicate that at the time that the mine closed, the town boasted some 800+ settlers. As far as the reference material at the Odessa Public Library indicates that most if not all of the families of the original settlers have chosen to remain in Dark Ember. That can’t be true, can it?
I’ve been doing some legwork and so far I’ve discovered that Dark Ember has no exports and very little imports. Aside from food and other necessities shipped to the local grocery store and gas lines throughout the area, the town seems largely self sufficient. The town produces it’s own electricity and they have a water reservoir. What I haven’t been able to find out is why anyone chooses to live there or what caused them to close the silver mine a hundred and forty years ago. Why does this town even exist?
I decided to take a look around Dark Ember and see what impressions I can get from it. I didn’t notice it the first time I went thru, but the town starts out wide and then narrows as you get to the other side. The town is shaped like an arrow head with the church as the point. I think the church may be the oldest existing structure in Dark Ember. Is it possible that the town was built this way on purpose? Is the church what holds this town together?
I was trying to find the location of the silver mine in the area surrounding Dark Ember when I met the local sheriff, Daniel Warner. I told him I was a land surveyor and that I worked for a company in Dallas that was looking for a place to build a factory to make super small microprocessors or some such. 1.) I don’t think he believed me, and 2.) He strongly suggested I inform my company to look elsewhere.
Just got back to the hotel. I wanted to take another look around town during the church services, but my earlier thoughts about the church being the fulcrum of the town didn’t pan out. No one attended church this morning.
I came back to Dark Ember in time to see the townspeople going into the church! At approximately 5:30 they started going into the church. I think by 6:00 the whole town must have been inside. They seem to be a spirited bunch. I can hear singing and chanting from half a mile away. I’m going to see if I can get a look around while everyone seems to be in one place. I should have at least 30 minutes before the service is over.
I just saw the biggest dog I’ve ever seen!
The preceding was received in the form of emails from a phone belonging to Seth Emery. There have been no further emails.