Mark Bonner is a young college graduate from Ohio with an exciting new job. He has been hired as a private English tutor at the estate of Raul Garcia, a wealthy businessman of Zacatecas, Mexico.
But there is more to the Garcia family than meets the eye. The Garcias' oldest daughter, Ana, is inexplicably missing. And there is something about one of the guesthouses, which the rest of the family avoids. The maid, Marisol, crosses herself when she passes near the guesthouse, and whispers, "¡Brujas!"--the Spanish word for "witches".
Inspired by Edgar Allan Poe's "The Fall of the House of Usher", "Thanatos Postponed" is a tale of a family with more than one secret, and a story of death "postponed".
Marisol worked quickly. She brought the items I requested the very next night: a small container of kerosene—this being a plastic bottle that would allow me to disperse the liquid over a wide area—and a box of matches.
As she left that night, she gave me her key. We had both nearly forgotten that last but all-important item.
“Are you sure you don't want me to come with you, Mark?” she asked.
“No,” I told her for at least the fourth time. This was a one-person job; and the extent of the danger it entailed was now fully dawning on me. There was nothing to be gained by putting us both at risk.
“Okay, then. Bien.”
I kissed her. I didn't know—though I could reasonably guess—that this would be our final kiss, at least for a long time. One way or another, the mission that I was about to embark upon would put an end to the evenings in my quarters.
I waited several hours after Marisol departed. I wanted to wait long enough to be reasonably certain that the rest of the household would be asleep—especially Raul Garcia.
Finally the hour came when I could delay no more, when to wait any longer would put me unacceptably close to daybreak. I left my guesthouse with the key and matches in my pocket, with the bottle of accelerant tucked against my body.
Three minutes later, perhaps, I opened the door to the other guesthouse, stepped across the threshold, and closed the door behind me.
This time, Ana’s eyes were already open. The girl—or whatever was inside her—began to moan.....