You scour the remnants of your brother’s last meal and his map for guidance in destroying the seal. Though you can see notes on the creation of the seal, you find nothing that tells you how to remove it.

You glance at the glass of water on the table. Could it be that simple? It’s just a chalk drawing on the floor.

Gerard’s breathing echoes throughout the room. The candles begin to flicker madly. You have to try something. You grab the glass and empty the contents over the center of the seal. The water splashes down, removing the chalk  as it washes over the intricate design. The seal begins to smoke, and an intense heat comes from it. You rush to the kitchen and fill a pitcher with water, taking the stairs back down as quickly as you can. The water sloshes about in the container, threatening to wrench it from your grasp, but you hold it tightly.

The seal still smokes, and you can see several figures within the vapor. You let the contents of the pitcher fly. The air itself seems to sizzle as the water covers the floor. The smoke clears. The exposed concrete is scorched black. Resting where the seal once was is Gerard’s knife, the blade still wet with your brother’s blood.

You collapse on the floor, spent.

 

 

 

You come to several hours later. The blood on Gerard’s knife has started to dry and turn rust-brown. Your memories of what happened are beginning to fade, as if the knowledge was too much for your mind to handle. Somethings are stuck, though: an inhuman smile, the laughter of children, and your brother, commanding you to run.

He is gone forever, and something much, much worse than the things you can’t remember is coming. You just hope his research will be enough to save you.