I’ve been dispatched to Blairsville, GA for my first assignment.
It’s a nice place, not too cold this time of year. The locals were helpful enough while I tried to find my way.
I did my research beforehand, like any good journalist.
But I couldn’t find any occurrence or mention for the reason I’ve come out here.
The hill is alive, they say. Some locals gave me strange looks when I asked about it. Looks that seem to suggest I shouldn’t speak of such things. Or even know of them.
Word came across our offices (from one of the mysterious sources) that the hill was alive, or at least something large was living under it.
I was tasked to find Martha Fitzgerald: the lone resident that is still living on the hill.
“Oh, it’s definitely alive. The whole hill! I hear it at night, sometimes it sneezes. Late, when the clouds are heavy and dark and it thinks no one is awake, it even hums to itself.”
Martha has lived on the hill her entire life. Her great grandfather built it while her great grandmother was pregnant. “Twins,” she says “is all that the hill ever let us Fitzgerald women birth.”
I know my assignment, I know my job and what I’m supposed to report on. I try to keep an open mind and push her for more.
“Not for sacrifices or anything like that. It just likes things that come in pairs. Sit out with me here tonight, drink some lemonade, or whisky, and watch as the twin lights float up the hill.”
The lights, according to local legend, are the souls of two children found during the Civil War- found living in a cave in the hill, who spoke perfect English and could even do basic math. They were only 3 ears old.
Martha is in her 70’s. A kind woman with dyed black hair and soft grey eyes. We sit on her porch and she draws her finger across the sky, outlining the spine of whatever is inside the hill.
It’s probably been there forever. It’s shy, so it doesn’t say much. But we get a long very well. Better than my late husband and I ever did
She makes us sandwiches and drinks and we watch the sun go down. Even the sun sets in a slow, lazy Southern way. Blairville is a quiet town of only 566 people. A small town that won’t let anything disrupt it’s peaceful evening.
She rolls a cigarette – she’s been rolling them since she was 13.
The ground begins to vibrate and her eyes twinkle.
I took out my cheap airport point-and-shoot camera and try to capture the two lights as the move along a dirt path. I asked if we could follow them and she scolded me, telling me not to disturb the spirits.
I don’t know what is in that hill, under the short bushes and sparse trees. There is definitely something there. I pointed at the moon, strangely full but dim.
“That’s not the moon. The moon is behind us. I think it likes you.”
That’s when Martha told me it was time for bed and escorted me to my little rented car.
“Don’t let the townsfolk scare you any,” she warns. “The hill isn’t dangerous. It’s not a monster. We’ve been keeping an eye on each other for nearly-gone a hundred years now, and I’ve never felt better.”