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: There are those who doubt the power of Satan. The power of Satan to change men into beasts. But the ancient Pagans did not doubt, nor did the prophets. Did not Daniel warn Nebakanezer? But the proud king did not heed Daniel. And so, as the bible says, he was made as unto a wolf and cast down from man. A beast has come among us! But God will defend his faithful. With his right hand, he will smite the foul demon. I say to you, the enemy's ploy is a devious one, twisting the occursed into beasts he seeks to bring us low, and make us as animals. Teach us self-loathing so that we forget that we are made in the image of almighty God himself. Why does our Lord tolerate this mockery? Pride goeth before destruction? A faulty spirit before the fall? I say it is because we have sinned against him. Because our crimes reek to Heaven, and they demand vengeance!
: What if it wasn't a beast at all, but a cunning murderer? Someone who bore a grudge against one of these men. To misdirect the authorities, he kills the men, and then he tears up the bodies to make it look like a wild beast was responsible? Constable Nye
: Ridiculous! Who would go to such lengths? Kirk
: What about that gypsy dancing bear? It could have done it. Colonel Montford
: That mangy thing? Kill three men? I doubt it. Reverend Fisk
: I saw the bodies with my own eyes. Unnatural wounds. Most unnatural. Made by a fell creature I'd say. Kirk
: Damn gypsies wandering the countryside bringing their woe and deviltry with them. They show up and two weeks later *this* happens! My guess is Ben Talbot went to their camp to have it off with a gypsy whore. The bear gets hold of him, and they dump what's left of him in the ditch! MacQueen
: Got nothing to do with the gypsies.
[Everyone turns to look at MacQueen
: Twenty-five years ago now, me Pa found. Quinn Noddy and all his flock. Brains and guts and God-knows-what lying all over the moor for a quarter mile. And, Quinn, the look on his face. Like he'd been eaten alive. Whatever did it was big, had claws, and didn't mind a load of buckshot. After that me Pa went home and melted down me Ma's wedding spoons and cast silver bullets on 'em. Wouldn't leave the house on a full moon from then on. Kirk
: [after a short pause
] I still say that bear's to blame.