Monday, April 19, 2010

"The Return of Andrew Bentley." August W. Derleth and Mark Schorer.

Review: Uncle Amos calls on the narrator to guard his burial vault in the event of his death which then occurs two days later, of an over-dose of medications, probably suicide. Uncle Amos fears the return of evil Andrew Bentley from the dead for the purpose of taking Uncle Amos’s body from the vault in order to install evil Bentley’s even-more-evil “familiar” in Uncle Amos’s body, thus allowing the familiar to roam the world by day and by night in the body of Uncle Amos.

Uncle Amos had stabbed the evil Bentley to death, and now, short of a religious exorcism, Uncle Amos, in a letter from beyond the grave says that Bentley’s bones must be burned in order to rid the world of the familiar that Bentley has conjured to life.

The parish priest arrives with a cross that keeps Bentley and the familiar at bay while the narrator burns Bentley’s bones, including a piece of Bentley’s finger that the narrator had wrested from Bentley when he was trying to open Uncle Amos’s burial vault.

The world is now rid of Bentley and Bentley’s familiar and Uncle Amos can rest in peace.

Famous Ghost Stories. Ed. Bennett Cerf. New York: The Modern Library, Random House, Inc., 1944.

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