"A Seed for Cora Lee"
The bayous of Louisiana can be a difficult place to live; but too often they are an easy place to die! Cora Lee and her family are destined to confront maximum evil as their faiths are tested by supernatural events that have overtaken New Orleans.
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A novel about the values of family, faith and love in 1969 New Orleans when an evil overtakes the lives of many in the old parish. Should troubled or tormented lives be ended by violence, their spirits are apt to engage the living for a period of time. And, while a dark abyss awaits those impure souls that are destined to arrive, the gate to Hell never opens for a soul that is pure. Some will even attempt to make deals with Satan before it is their time to go; yet, those that do deal in this manner are subject to a final ethereal decision.
For all of mankind, throughout history, the unyielding conflict of “good versus evil” has complicated the process of human evolution, and that of spiritual development. We are often in a flux, either a continuum of non-deliberate consternation or splendid rapture. The desire to discover an intricate balance between any conceived ideas about dualism, irrevocably dictates how we live our lives. Sometimes this struggle will change a person’s perception of life and serve to measure the extent of their innermost fears.
Frequently, an intervention from the Valley-of-Death assures us that life has an ending, as well as a beginning. This is as it should be, for it is the predetermined blueprint for life. Often, man races through his life with utter disregard for righteousness or truth; thereby, setting course into a stormy squall of illusion or self-gratification.
Finally, man’s salvation might be a definitive search for an answer to the question: Can human beings combat evil forces that seem destined to secure a foothold on Earth? The natural instinct to survive goes well beyond the human shell to ultimately extend into the realm of spirits and beliefs. It is here that a dimensional roller coaster can complicate and baffle the mind. Strengths and weaknesses become exposed when humanity is caught in the throes of evil; for the squeamish or faint of heart, this is the place where fright is born and heart attacks are created! Cora Lee and Leon Baptiste have serious plans to make their small, out-of-the way bayou cabin a “real” home. On a humid and stormy, wet Louisiana morning, they have completed making love following Cora Lee’s recurrent nightmare that someone is “taking” her baby. The pretty Cora Lee has had two miscarriages; yet, she desperately wants a child to complete their family. She is certain this will be the day she conceives again, and is able to carry the pregnancy to full-term. The handsome Creole couple prepares for Leon’s departure to his job on the shrimp boat; where he’ll stay a few days. Following the care given their animals, he kisses her and drives away in the pick-up truck.
Meanwhile, driving north on Highway 10, Detectives Raleigh Spencer and Floyd Ketchum are transporting the psychotic rapist and triple-murderer, Colin Cyrus, up to the Feliciana Forensic Facility for the criminally insane. Nursing a hangover, and fitted with a real bad attitude, Det. Ketchum, who’s sitting in the passenger seat, begins to taunt and belittle Colin. When Colin responds with a comment about his “sexual fantasy” regarding Floyd’s mother, the short-tempered detective explodes and draws his police revolver. The surprised, but compassionate Raleigh quickly intervenes and words are exchanged; an ensuing struggle for control of the gun takes place. A slick, wet asphalt road becomes dangerously treacherous for Raleigh, who must divide his attention between driving and containing his combative partner.
Then, the unmarked police unit suddenly skids out of control and crashes; Floyd is killed instantly, and Raleigh is knocked unconscious. Colin survives and escapes into the thick, cypress coverage of the bayou. But, not before he has a “strange” conversation with Raleigh, who has regained semi-consciousness. Realizing the potential for danger, and the psychotic murderer’s violent history, Raleigh begins to slowly track Colin through the thick foliage and muddy terrain of the Louisiana bayou. Colin spots the Baptiste cabin and finds security in a nearby shed. His personality “changes,” and when he sees the petite Negro woman standing in the doorway of the back porch, he quickly makes his presence known; after slaughtering their two boisterous dogs, JoJo and Rascal.
Colin violently rapes Cora Lee and kills Leon following a heated fight; he is shot with Floyd’s gun, which Colin had retrieved from the wrecked police car. Leon had returned to the cabin after forgetting the “special” meals Cora Lee had prepared. Raleigh finally catches up to the escaped prisoner at the cabin and sees him standing over the big, Creole man’s body. He is forced to shoot the resistant, crazed Colin to death. Raleigh then cares for the traumatized and speechless Cora Lee until the ambulance arrives from the city. They travel to Charity Hospital in New Orleans, per telephone instructions from his boss, the calculating and deceitful Captain Mobley. Just before arriving at Charity, an eerie “cloud” formation lowers itself on top of the ambulance, and unbeknownst to the occupants and residents of New Orleans, a “time-shift” transformation begins to occur.
Following Cora Lee’s hospitalization, and subsequent recovery, she subconsciously buries all memory of the violent rape. Her treating physician, Dr. O’Brien, and her sister, Mae Ella Wallace, become concerned about her well-being, while attempting to hide Leon’s death from her. But, Cora Lee starts having dreams and secretly speaks to the dead Leon who tells her that she is “pregnant.” Raleigh becomes guilt ridden, and as time passes, must piece together the meaning of a string of bizarre deaths and “spirit” visits. A pompous and self-serving Superintendent of Police, Alfonse Jourdan, lays the blame of the escaped prisoner, and his acts of violence, directly on Raleigh and Floyd’s shoulders. He plans to use the Times Picayune reporter, Christine Daly, as a foil in his scheme to offset bad publicity. The overweight Superintendent is also a heavy drinking, closet cross-dresser who has been saddled with a gold-digging ex-wife, the beautiful redhead, Miranda. Their respective demise is horrifically appropriate, involving insanity and brutal encounters with menacing, little “shadow figures.”
A large murder of crows convenes and terrorizes the home of Mae Ella, her husband, Thomas, and their eight-month old son, Brandon. These crows are uniquely evil and cunningly intelligent; they seem to be “watching” the “now” pregnant Cora Lee who has come to live with them following her discharge from Charity hospital. Thomas’ plan to rid his property of the menacing blackbirds is met by a vicious attack, which leaves him bloody and emotionally scarred. Devoutly religious, Mae Ella reluctantly seeks guidance and help for her family through a colorful and insightful “Voodoo” woman. And, of course she keeps the visit a secret from Thomas.
It seems that Colin Cyrus had made a pact with Satan himself, and Cora Lee’s baby was promised to the Prince of Darkness; thus, guaranteeing a higher position in Hell for the insane, mass-murderer. Furthermore, the deaths of those individuals who have led a life void of integrity and righteousness begin to mount. And their “reincarnation” as evil spirits forms a “ghostly” army for Satan’s forthcoming claim to the baby. With help from a Catholic priest, Father Ignatius, Raleigh is informed that the sign of Satan is 666! Also, he learns that he must be at the right place, and at the right time, to stop Satan’s evil plan. Should he fail, the baby will become a powerfully evil source for Satan’s “big push” to corrupt mankind, and circumvent the influence of Christianity on humanity.
Eventually, all the elements and ingredients are in place for the fully pregnant Cora Lee to be “pulled” back to their bayou cabin…to give birth!
bayou story, ghost story
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