06: House of Worship

Judith’s discomfort is causing tension with Claire, and things are getting heated, and the recordings are getting more and more odd… Also, remember: always take the time to get to know your neighbours, because you never know what memories of a terrifying blood cult they might have.
CONTENT WARNINGS: Hauntings/paranormal experiences, cults, knives, fire (mentioned), alcohol

[SFX: beep. Studio]

OWEN: Hi, and welcome to day 12 of us listening to bizarre recordings.

JUDITH: Yep, found plenty of Claire and I trying to replace the knobs in the kitchen and complaining about lightswitch covers. This would’ve been a terrible home reno show.

OWEN: No offense, but… yes.

JUDITH: Some taken.

OWEN: We did find some other stuff that’s a lot more interesting.

JUDITH: Yeah, so back when Claire first got the house, there was this neighbour who seemed to know about the house’s history. One day when I was on my way over, I saw the same lady out walking her dog and decided to see if she’d want to answer a few questions. Like, maybe she could give some insight into the history of the previous residents.

OWEN: You know, this would be easier if you properly named your files.

JUDITH: I think it works. See? This one was called “TO EDIT – FINAL 2 FOR REAL THIS TIME.”

OWEN: After this, we’re sitting down and renaming everything.


[SFX: beep. Walking outside. Dog barking.]

NEIGHBOUR/DEBBIE: [cut off] -h well, hello there. Noodles, be nice!

JUDITH: Hello! Uh, sorry, I don’t think we actually met before. I’m Judith.

DEBBIE: I’m Debbie Costa, long time resident, first time properly introducing myself to you [laugh]. Out for a walk around the neighbourhood?

JUDITH: Yeah, I thought I’d explore, get to know the area a bit better.

DEBBIE: Well, I’ve been here for ages now and it’s a little rough around the edges, but that’s always been a part of the charm. I mean, until the charm throws up on your front step.

JUDITH: Haha, yeah. Hey, uh, can I ask you a question?

DEBBIE: Sure, what about?

JUDITH: It’s just, when we first met, you told me and my friend about some rumours pertaining to the house. I’m hoping you can give me some more details.

DEBBIE: Oh, [sighs] well, I’ll tell you what I can! Do you want to walk with me? I’m just taking the dog out.

JUDITH: Yeah, sure. Is it ok if I record?


JUDITH: Great. So, I mean, what happened?

DEBBIE: Well, I grew up in this neighbourhood. My parents bought that house right over there not long before I was born, and after they both started declining health-wise a few years ago, I moved back in to help them out. They both passed about… 2 years back, and I’ve been there ever since. It’s a little big for me, but I love living so centrally. Anyway, I get the feeling you’ve got some questions about the Wreed house.

JUDITH: Yeah, I do.

DEBBIE: Well, I knew the family who lived there, or used to, anyway.

JUDITH: Oh, uh, the people who owned the house were actually my friend’s grandparents.

DEBBIE: Well, small world. I was friends with their daughter.

JUDITH: Really?

DEBBIE: Yeah, Dana. We were in the same grade, but different schools. She was nice, though. Funny, good runner, great hair.

JUDITH: Huh, yeah. Dana was Claire’s mom. She, uh, didn’t actually know her, so any info is appreciated. Maybe I’ll get her to come talk to you sometime?

DEBBIE: Hmm, yeah.

JUDITH: Ok, this is going to be a bit weird but you mentioned something about a… cult? I assume it was an exaggeration-…

DEBBIE: Actually, no. I didn’t want to scare you two, but something was amiss in that house.

JUDITH: Like what?

DEBBIE: Well, when Dana and I were young, we’d sometimes hang out at her place. She had an attic bedroom. It felt so private and exciting. We would gossip and read magazines together. Her parents always seemed nice. But then they… I’m not sure, I don’t even know how to say it, but they got in with some sort of unsavoury group. I started seeing strange people hanging around the house at all hours. Not from the area. I think they might have been from Etobicoke.

JUDITH: Tell me about it.

DEBBIE: With all these strangers around, I would joke to Dana about how they must’ve started doing group therapy sessions, I think she did some kind of counselling? Or maybe they’d created their own little church, and at first she would laugh, but after awhile… it didn’t seem as funny anymore. She got quieter and quieter when we were together and I saw her less and less. I thought, well, that’s weird. Maybe she’s mad at me? Or she had done something that had gotten her in trouble? But that wasn’t it. Dana was the kind of person who would just tell you when something was bugging her. I think something more sinister was at play.

JUDITH: Like what?

DEBBIE: Her mother was a sort of dabbler in some kind of holistic or spiritual thing – you know, crystals, really complicated meditation rituals, bitter teas – that kind of thing. She once told me that the greatest strength is the fire inside of us, which is a nice platitude, but a little too new age-y for my tastes. She started a small practice out of her house, but I remember noticing that her client base was growing. More strangers started quietly showing up there and it was a more diverse group than before, some younger people, and definitely more men. It used to be mostly other women her age, but it got to the point where most nights, if I was coming home late, I’d catch a glimpse through the window and see a full living room, with Minnie and, surprisingly, Hugh holding court. I went off to university in Ottawa around this time. I came back for a visit one weekend and as we came up the road, I saw that things at Dana’s house were… different. The curtains were closed the entire time I was back home. When I stopped by to say hello, Minnie answered the door but didn’t invite me inside or ask if I wanted to see Dana. She looked… tougher than she had before. Like she’d stiffened. She was not a tall woman but it felt like she towered over me. I was in no uncertain terms to leave and, to be honest, I was pretty rattled by the brusqueness of it, so I went home and didn’t make any plans to return. I know now that I should have tried harder to see Dana, but I was young, and I was afraid. But I was still concerned. The other neighbours seemed to be keeping their distance as well by now. These peculiar men and women were outside the house at such random hours, even late at night. If you passed one of these people on the street, they would just look through you, like you weren’t there, like they had such… disdain for you. It felt like they knew something you didn’t. It was so strange. Dana’s family had always been relatively friendly and open. They’d been a part of this community, but now they were secretive and secluded. And they stayed that way until they died, I guess.

JUDITH: Wow, so, what happened to Dana? Did you ever see her during this time?

DEBBIE: Well, the story is that she ran away, and I remember hearing about her eventual passing from Anita, another neighbour. But… [long pause] I saw something, one night when I was back… late 1988ish. My family and the police told me that it must have been a dream, that I misremembered it, but you know, why believe a sleep-deprived teenage girl when you can just accept easy answers?

JUDITH: What did you see?

DEBBIE: I had been up one night writing an essay and all of a sudden I heard this scream. I mean, that’s not too unusual in this neighbourhood, but when I looked out of my window, I swear I saw a dark haired woman in a light blue dress, running like the devil was after her. The front of her outfit was covered in what I still think was blood, though I couldn’t prove it, it was just too dark out. But… what else would it be? It was late and she was far away by the time I got my bearings, but… I know, I’m certain that it was Dana, running barefoot into the night. I ducked into the kitchen to call the police, and when I got back to the window there was no sight of her. I spoke to the officer about it, but there was no evidence that anything had happened. They talked to Minnie and Hugh but… I don’t know what they told them, but they weren’t too concerned after that, at least about my assertion that it was Dana running away in terror rather than because she felt like it. I tried to speak to Minnie as well, but she ignored me and went back into the house. I never saw Dana again.

JUDITH: Did you know that she was pregnant?

DEBBIE: Honestly? I had no idea. I hadn’t seen her in months, but even if she was, it’s not surprising that they kept it quiet. I just… I always had a bad feeling after that night, but without any trace of foul play, they didn’t seem too keen to dig deeper into it. They labelled her as a runaway, a troubled kid taking off, maybe because of the baby. I guess… If I’d seen what I thought I’d seen, there should have been blood on the street, in the house… The woman I saw was drenched in that dark liquid. But nobody found anything. Eventually, it got back to me that Minnie claimed that Dana had apparently left before that night, but that is definitely a lie as far as I’m concerned. I’ve always had such a bad feeling about that whole situation and I always will.

JUDITH: Good lord.

DEBBIE: I’m sorry dear, it’s distressing to hear. I honestly haven’t spoken about that night in… so many years. I’m sure your friend will be fine though. It’s just a house, in the end.

JUDITH: Yeah, I hope so. [SFX: dog barking]

DEBBIE: Yes yes, ok Noodles, let’s go back home. Well, I hope that helped. Oh, and Judith?


DEBBIE: Stay safe.

JUDITH: Thanks.

DEBBIE: Have a good day! Come on, Noodles.

[SFX: beep. Judith is heading into Claire’s kitchen]

JUDITH: [yelling, entering the house] Hey Claire, hey, uh, so I just had the weirdest conversation with the neighbour and uhhhhh- oh, I see you’re sharpening up your knife set?

CLAIRE: Do you ever have those days where you just hate everyone?

[SFX: Knife sharpening]

JUDITH: Yeah, like, basically every day in this city. I feel like I’m constantly getting honked at when I try to cross the street and I’m like why are you honking at me, I’m right!

CLAIRE: Yeah, sure, like that I guess.

JUDITH: Why? Did something happen?

CLAIRE: I don’t know. Sometimes I just feel so frustrated lately. I’ve been trying to calm myself down and ease my mind, but it feels more and more like every time I start to quiet my brain down, it drifts into all these thoughts about how… horrible people are. How people are just disgusting bags of meat. [SFX: static pops throughout] It’s like there’s this pit of anger in the bottom of my stomach just… smouldering. I can feel it in there and it makes my whole body feel weird and hot and suddenly I look around and see what a disgusting mess everything is. How wasteful and mean and rude people are. It feels like… we’re all just one big gross mistake.

JUDITH: Did the Conservative party text you again or something?

CLAIRE: There are the people walking down the street. The ones with their eyes glued to their phones. They don’t look, they don’t see anything. They’re barely even awake, bumping into each other as they rush to their next meaningless task. They dodge in front of cars, and they yell, sweaty and greasy and filthy. These sneering cowards, they’re all trash, all of them. Maybe these people deserve to be hit by some jerk cabbie blowing a stop sign. Maybe we all do. I close my eyes and it’s like I can smell the burning tires and the blood. Nothing of importance will have been lost.

[SFX: Loud knock at the door.]

CLAIRE: [total change of tone] A knock! Ooo, I think it’s pizza! Better get that.

JUDITH: Wait- hang on a second, what the hell was that… weird rant?

CLAIRE: [laughs] What are you talking about? [SFX: another knock] I’m gonna get that. I am so hungry.

JUDITH: [quietly, to self once Claire leaves the room] I should hide that knife block.

[SFX: In distance – door opens, soft talking, door closes]

CLAIRE: I’m sorry, I know I said I’d start cooking more, but I had a coupon fo-… what’s wrong?

JUDITH: Nothing… ok, it’s not nothing… you were saying some crazy stuff back there. It was a little upsetting.

CLAIRE: I was? I don’t think it was that weird. What did I say?

JUDITH: Some pretty dark things.

CLAIRE: [nervous laugh] Ok, sure, you know me. Real dark and eeeevil.

JUDITH: No, seriously, here, listen to this.

[SFX: beep]

CLAIRE: I… honestly, I must’ve… zoned out. I kind of remember saying that, but it didn’t feel weird… did I seem…

JUDITH: Are you sure you’re ok and that there’s not… anything else at play here?

CLAIRE: I’m ok. I… I guess I haven’t been sleeping too well lately. I think I’ve started sleepwalking again. I keep waking up and my sheets are on the ground and my shins hurt. I guess sleepwalking gives me shin splints.

[SFX: Door knock]

CLAIRE: Huh? I already got my pizza. This better be a second pizza!

JUDITH: I doubt it, although that would be great right now. I’ll get it.

[SFX: Door opens to outside.]

JUDITH: Oh, hi, uhhh… Birdman?

A BIRD: That’s A. Bird. I know you’re not the lovely Claire, but I hope you’re having as satisfying of an evening as I am?

JUDITH: Yeah, ok, I’m going to pretend like this isn’t happening and I am going to close the door. Thanks for trying, Mr. Bird, stop coming around here, inquiring about the house. [SFX: Door starts to close, but is stopped]

A BIRD: Ah, but you’re not the one I want to speak to. Could you tell me if the lady of the house is available?

JUDITH: Nooo, but I could tell you where to shove i-


A BIRD: Oh, there you are Claire! How marvellous to see you. Looking luminous, as always. Anger becomes you.

CLAIRE: You have got SOME NERVE showing up here again. Stop coming around, stop talking to the neighbours, stop knocking on my door or my window or whatever, just STOP.

A BIRD: [tuts] You really should learn to guard that tongue of yours before you – oh, what is the parlance of the day – “wreck yourself”?

JUDITH: Not even close.

A BIRD: You should really watch yourself, though, Ms. Sterback. You never know when your words will come back to haunt you.

CLAIRE: And what does that mean?

A BIRD: It means that if you’re going to say – or perhaps write? – things that could be misconstrued as a personal attack, then there might be some much more serious ramifications than a dapper young man coming by your door.

CLAIRE: Is that a threat?

A BIRD: Be careful of what you write on the internet, young lady.

JUDITH: Ok, first off, she’s only like, 5 years younger than you. At most!

CLAIRE: How do you know what I do on the internet? Do you even know what the internet is? Did your latest meeting of the Historical Society for the Preservation of Ill-Advised Clothing have a roundtable about it?

A BIRD: Well… I suppose a little bird must have told me. Tweet tweet. Next time, I would think before posting that A. Bird is a… “Cartoon villain of a real estate developer with an overpriced silk scarf where his heart should be.” That this person is, “A vulgar moron whose business should be razed as community service.”

CLAIRE: Oh? You think you’re not a cartoon villain? That’s rich, seeing as you keep coming by here to harass me. I know it’s you tapping on my windows at night.

A BIRD: [surprised] Excuse me? I’ve done no such thing. That is a baseless claim.

CLAIRE: I’ve seen you sneaking around. You’re trying to scare me out of here, aren’t you?

A BIRD: I promise you, I am no-

CLAIRE: [static starts to build] You piece of trash, you come into neighbourhoods, you tear them up so you can put another pile of money in your empty pool and your emptier heart and someday this whole place will burn, and you will be in the middle of it and I will laugh-

JUDITH: [very quietly] Claire, I’m going to ask you to keep your hands at your sides.

CLAIRE: What are you even talking about, Judith?!

JUDITH: [whisper] There is a knife in your pocket, Claire. I’m king of not loving this hostess with the mostess-homicidal tendencies thing of yours…

CLAIRE: [surprised] Oh. Right. Whatever. Now YOU. What do you want from me? Besides your POUND OF FLESH.

A BIRD: Why, I simply want what anyone else wants – to not have his character viciously attacked in a public forum!


A BIRD: A moment on the lips, a lifetime on the internet, my dear-


A BIRD: Of course, we might not have to take this all the way to court…

CLAIRE: You want to take this to COURT?!

JUDITH: Oh my god.

A BIRD: Well, certainly, a man in my position simply cannot tolerate character assassination of this nature!

CLAIRE: Character assassination?! You mother fu-

A BIRD: But… perhaps this was all simply a misunderstanding. Perhaps there’s no need for you to pay for a lawyer while I drag this out-

JUDITH: Just get to the point, you absolute twit.

A BIRD: Now, this could benefit all of us, I assure you! I simply want to make you some money, Claire. Sell me the house. I’ll name you an excellent price I assure you.

CLAIRE: What is WITH you and this house?

A BIRD: I have interested parties. Would you rather have me hand you a briefcase of money, or would you rather we draw this process along further?

CLAIRE: Leave. Now.

A BIRD: Of course, of course. I’m sure you need some time to think about my offer, I’ll be back soon. Hopefully you’ll have an answer by then.

CLAIRE: If you come back, I will not be the only one being bled dry.

A BIRD: Is that a threat? I really don’t think you know who you’re dealing with here-

CLAIRE: [spooky voice] LEAVE.

[SFX: Crash. Splintering would. The porch thingy has fallen over barely missing Bird’s head. Bird yells before regaining his composure.]

A BIRD: [shaken] Well, you certainly should get this porch fixed. Although, of course, if you’re not ready for the responsibilities of a homeowner, you do have my card-

CLAIRE: [spooky voice] NOW. [SFX: Another crash. A yelp]

A BIRD: [Nervous, but mocking, from far away] Goodbye, Claire. Do consider selling before everything crashes down all around you! The clock is ticking! [SFX: Slammed door.]

JUDITH: Well, Adam was right about that support beam. Um, Claire?

CLAIRE: [normal voice] I… yes?

JUDITH: Are you OK?

CLAIRE: Fine. Fine. He just makes me so FURIOUS, I swear I just want to grab him by the neck until-… stop looking at me like that, I’m fine.

JUDITH: Jury’s out. OK, maybe we just need to calm down a bit, maybe take a few deep breaths?

CLAIRE: Yeah. Yeah, ok.

JUDITH: You said he’s been tapping on your windows?

CLAIRE: Someone is! It’s got to be him. I’ve been hearing weird noises in the night, and then recently I’ve been hearing this tap-tap-tapping sound, and I think he’s been doing something to creep me out so I don’t want to live here anymore.

JUDITH: Uh, but, uh… I don’t want to add to anything…


JUDITH: But… you did notice that the porch collapsed right?

CLAIRE: What? Oh. Well, great.

JUDITH: I don’t like bringing this up, but-

CLAIRE: Just spit it out.

JUDITH: Do you want me to call Adam? He might be able to fix this, or at least make sure the rest of the house doesn’t collapse in the short term.

CLAIRE: Can’t we leave it for now? [SFX: crash] Oh for crying out loud. Fine. Call him. You’re right. I need to cool off. I literally have the rage shakes. [walking away] Just call Adam and get him to deal with this.

JUDITH: [to herself] Sure, ok. What the…

[SFX: Beep. Studio]

OWEN: Wow. That porch really is a death trap. Did you… You heard she had some weird distortion on the recording going on back there, right? I’m not losing my mind?

JUDITH: Yeah, can you play that back? Right before the crash-

OWEN: Yeah, sure.

[SFX: Beep]


[SFX: Beep]

OWEN: Yeah, she went real freaky there.

JUDITH: And as soon as she said it, that porch beam came down. It barely missed Bird guy’s head.

OWEN: Yeah…

JUDITH: I don’t know. Claire was just so angry and I’ve never heard her like that before, like, ever. It wasn’t just that I could hear the anger in her voice, I could feel it, and it felt like my ears were going to pop. I don’t know. It was like something out of the movie Carrie. … you know the movie Carrie, right?

OWEN: Pfft, do I know Carrie! Well, let me tell you…

JUDITH: You’ve never seen it, have you?

OWEN: Horror movies give me nightmares.

JUDITH: No, but… even the air around her felt… dense. Charged. Hot. I don’t know. Here, I want to listen to the recording of that weekend. Adam was going to come by with some buddies of his to fix the porch, and Claire and I were going to work on the backsplash. I don’t know, what if something is feeding off of her anger?

OWEN: What if it’s feeding it to her? She’s already got a few cracks, how hard would it be for something malicious to… push through?

JUDITH: I don’t like that at all.


[SFX: beep. Claire’s kitchen]

JUDITH: Hello everybody, despite the fact that everything in this house seems to want to kill us, Claire and I are continuing on with Yes! In My Backyard.

CLAIRE: [sighs] Cool. Sure.

JUDITH: Look, we don’t have to do this right now-

CLAIRE: No, no, I’m sure the world is just dying to hear about our DIY backsplash.

JUDITH: Ok, wow. Don’t take it out on the tiles. I do wish you would just tell me what’s been bothering you today-

CLAIRE: Would you please stop asking me how I’m feeling? I’m tired of feelings. I’m tired of thinking about feelings. And I’m really tired of talking about them. How do I feel? Oh, I don’t know. I’m living in a haunted house. I’m trapped in a mundane job that barely covers the bills but that I can’t quit because how else will I afford the minimum payments on my mountain of student debt and I’m basically being blackmailed by a psychopathic realtor. Also, my love life is a giant flaming pile of garbage. So, yeah, maybe I’m not feeling so great! But I’m sick of talking about it because talking doesn’t change anything. So what’s the point? Instead, let’s just… talk about how we’re going to glue these tiles onto this stupid wall.

JUDITH: [trying to keep things light] OK, sure, how about we instead talk about your feelings – about a kitchen island? Maybe butcher block counters?

CLAIRE: I swear to God, Judith, you are so annoying sometimes. Do you have an off switch?

JUDITH: Ok. You know what, Claire? I know you’re going through a rough time. Believe me, I know. I’ve listened and I’ve helped and I have tried very, very hard to be supportive in whatever way I can. But you don’t get to act like a petulant teenager all the time, I’m not your mom, so-

CLAIRE: That’s right. You’re not my mom. So maybe you could stop trying to control everything?

JUDITH: What is that supposed to mean?

CLAIRE: [mimics Judith] Work on the house! Break up with your boyfriend! I know best because I’m ambitious and perky and I work out 5 days a week or whatever-

JUDITH: I’m sorry, are you blaming me for your breakup with Adam? Because it really sounds like you’re blaming me. I definitely didn’t tell you to ghost your live-in boyfriend-

CLAIRE: Well you never really liked him!

JUDITH: You got me! He was, at best, fine. But admit it, Claire, you didn’t like him half the time anyway. The last four months you were together, all I heard about was how you felt suffocated and wasn’t sure if you wanted to continue things. I haven’t heard you say one good thing about him in AGES – quick, say something nice about him. Right now.

CLAIRE: He’s… very practical.

JUDITH: Yeah, true love there.

CLAIRE: That’s not the point, I-

JUDITH: Do you remember the last time you asked me something about my life? I have been working my ass off to help you and to fix this house, and all you do is complain and run away. I don’t want to control you, Claire. But I do want you to get your shit together.

CLAIRE: Oh, screw you, Judith. I don’t need this from you. You know what? I don’t need anything from anyone. Just leave me alone.

JUDITH: And how would that help? Do you think being alone is the best option? You can just hide away in the ho-

CLAIRE: Ok, you know what-

[SFX: beep. Studio]

OWEN: What happened to the rest of the recording?

JUDITH: A bunch of glasses just slid off the counter and shattered everywhere. I guess I turned the recorder off in the fray? There’s another file. I turned the recorder on just because… I didn’t know what else to do.

[SFX: beep. Kitchen, sweeping up glass]

JUDITH: -doesn’t make SENSE.

CLAIRE: Why not?

JUDITH: Because now you’re getting into some bizarre territory with all this “ghosts are here to talk to me” stuff and it’s not like you!

CLAIRE: Maybe it’s given me something else to think about! Maybe I need something to believe in other than the constant emptiness that is my life! At least now I have something to think about outside of the stupid day to day stuff. Don’t look at me like that. You can’t honestly say that odd things haven’t been happening.

JUDITH: Yes, odd things have been happening, but… I just can’t believe this. It’s not ghosts! It’s that stupid realtor or it’s the house settling or it’s infrasound or whatever.

CLAIRE: WELL THEN WHAT IS IT? I hear weird sounds at night. I hear crying. It’s someone who needs help.

JUDITH: Help with WHAT? Their back taxes?

CLAIRE: I don’t know! They’re trapped, or something bad happened. Maybe something bad will happen to me!

JUDITH: Claire, listen to yourself. I’m worried about you, this is bizarre.

CLAIRE: Yeah, well, that’s nice, but I need more than that, I need more than feelings of worry.

JUDITH: You know that’s not what I mean.

CLAIRE: I know, I… I’m just so tired. Physically and… emotionally, I guess.

JUDITH: Yeah, me too.

CLAIRE: I’m sorry. I’m just so angry lately. I don’t really know why, it just feels like there’s this bubbling feeling and all of it is just leaking out everywhere.

JUDITH: It’ll be ok. We’ll figure it out.

[SFX: from outside, small crash of some wood falling over on the porch and someone going “goddamnit!”]

JUDITH: Right after we figure out whether or not someone just got crushed to death on the porch.

[SFX: beep. Studio]

JUDITH: I never want to listen to those tapes again. They stress me out too much. There’s one thing though that’s not on there.

OWEN: What?

JUDITH: After we cleaned up the glass, I checked the table. It’s level. They shouldn’t have been able to just slide off.

OWEN: So, what do you think about the ghost theory now?

JUDITH: I’m a lot more receptive to it.

OWEN: Well, while you mull that over, I want to talk about the cult house.

JUDITH: Right, yes. I did some digging and it looks like the “cult” was formed in 1902. They published a bunch of pamphlets about how the world was going to end and the only way to survive was to be the one that brought it about.

OWEN: Seems counter-intuitive, but ok.

JUDITH: Yeah, they’ve got some questionable reasoning going on. Anyway, they claimed that they knew the path to salvation, and the only way was to rid the land of the “torpid and green.”

OWEN: Green as in the colour, or “green” as in new?

JUDITH: I’m not totally sure, but if I had to hazard a guess… I think the second one. Did you find anything out about the house at the archives?

OWEN: Uhhh… [SFX: paper] It definitely had a bit of a… reputation, at least prior to her grandparents moving in. There’s a couple of oral histories of the area that mention what sounds like Claire’s house, and it’s not favourably: it’s all weird sounds emanating from it, how foreboding it could be, creepy figures in the window. There were a few crimes reported there though, the most high profile case is the one involving that Alma lady, but aside from that… a domestic dispute, two thefts, a missing person’s case? But there’s nothing of note after Claire’s grandparents move in.

JUDITH: The key to this lies with them. I know it, I know this is all tied to them and that stupid house.

OWEN: Yeah, and I’m sure we can figure it out but, for now, can we put this on hold and get dinner first?

JUDITH: … yes. Yeah, that’s a good idea. Let’s go.

[SFX: beep]