Ужас Данвича

Chapter 1

Thethin,shininglineoftheMiskatonic’supperreacheshasanoddlyserpent-likesuggestionasitwindsclosetothefeetofthedomedhillsamongwhichitrises.

Asthehillsdrawnearer,oneheedstheirwoodedsidesmorethantheirstone-crownedtops.Thosesidesloomupsodarklyandprecipitouslythatonewishestheywouldkeeptheirdistance,butthereisnoroadbywhichtoescapethem.AcrossacoveredbridgeoneseesasmallvillagehuddledbetweenthestreamandtheverticalslopeofRoundMountain,andwondersattheclusterofrottinggambrelroofsbespeakinganearlierarchitecturalperiodthanthatoftheneighbouringregion.Itisnotreassuringtosee,onacloserglance,thatmostofthehousesaredesertedandfallingtoruin,andthatthebroken-steepledchurchnowharbourstheoneslovenlymercantileestablishmentofthehamlet.Onedreadstotrustthetenebroustunnelofthebridge,yetthereisnowaytoavoidit.Onceacross,itishardtopreventtheimpressionofafaint,malignodouraboutthevillagestreet,asofthemassedmouldanddecayofcenturies.Itisalwaysarelieftogetclearoftheplace,andtofollowthenarrowroadaroundthebaseofthehillsandacrossthelevelcountrybeyondtillitrejoinstheAylesburypike.AfterwardsonesometimeslearnsthatonehasbeenthroughDunwich.

OutsidersvisitDunwichasseldomaspossible,andsinceacertainseasonofhorrorallthesignboardspointingtowardsithavebeentakendown.Thescenery,judgedbyanordinaryaestheticcanon,ismorethancommonlybeautiful;yetthereisnoinfluxofartistsorsummertourists.Twocenturiesago,whentalkofwitch-blood,Satan-worship,andstrangeforestpresenceswasnotlaughedat,itwasthecustomtogivereasonsforavoidingthelocality.

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