During the Salem Witch Trials in the 1600’s, my great-great-great-great grandmother, Abigail Pryor, was hanged in front of her two children, accused of practicing dark magic and consorting with the devil. Her husband, Eric Pryor, was on a two week hunting trip and returned home the day after it happened. A widower with two motherless children, Eric was consumed with grief.
The accuser that caused his beloved wife’s death was named Morgan Lawrence. Goody Lawrence used to sneak into Abigail’s garden at night and steal herbs and chickens. Now that may not seem like much, but it was what Goody Lawrence used them for. You see, Goody Lawrence was going to be divorced by her husband soon, and so she used the chicken’s blood and herbs to make potions and charms to bind him to her.
One night, Abigail was out gathering up the day’s washing when she heard a low voice chanting over the fence. Curious, she went to investigate. Peering over the fence, she saw Goody Lawrence in a black cloak standing over a bubbling pot, blood smeared across her lips. With a scream of terror, Abigail ran for the town magistrate. Goody Lawrence sent out her familiar, a large black wolf, to catch her and bring her back. Goody Lawrence planted evidence of witchcraft in Abigail’s home and began pointing fingers.
Abigail was hanged a few days later.
My great-great-great-great grandfather wasn’t satisfied with that answer. He knew his wife was no practitioner of black magic. He investigated deeper and found truth. Goody Lawrence had fled when Eric had come close to catching her. And so the witch hunt began.
Eric finally caught her many years later. He burned her at the stake. As she burned, Goody Lawrence screamed down retribution, laughing about her children. They would carry on her legacy, she warned. Unbelieving, Eric had one of his sons, a priest and a witch hunter, bless the ashes so the witch’s soul would not return and rebuild her body.
A few months later, Eric was killed by a rogue bear. His other son, Joshua, my great-great-great grandfather, followed the bear and found another witch, Goody Lawrence’s daughter. My family has been hunting down the Lawrence coven ever since, seeking to completely wipe them off the face of this earth and avenge my family’s murders.