Many moons ago, in the small sleepy town of Dirroh on the outskirts of Volusia county, a pig farmer's son, named Adam, could often be seen at the front of the crowd during the monthly public hangings. Dirroh was plagued by crime. It was the perfect half way point between two larger communities, and it seems all the ills of both culminated in that poor small town. 

In those days, anyone of any age could view the public hangings, and in truth, the young were encouraged to do so, as a kind of teaching. When Adam would show up early without parents, the other adults that gathered there, looked upon him with admiration more than anything. He was obviously there to learn a lesson. But Adam was there for other reasons.

After one such hanging, the executioner, named Bill, caught up with Adam as he was walking home. "Say boyo, why does ya always come to these hangin's we have? Is it yer folks that make ya come?" Adam answered back, "No Sir." Bill shot back, "Then why in the world does ya come ta every one, and ya stands right up there at front?!" "You won't believe me." said Adam. "Just like Ma and Da, you won't believe me." Bill's eyes narrowed and he thought for a moment before saying, "Ya just try me son." Adam stopped walking. He looked around to see if anyone else could hear. Sensing only Bill could hear him, he said, "I can see if they're guilty or not."

The boy had such a stone cold face when he said this that Bill felt a chill. Bill paused and then said, "And how exactly does ya know that?" Adam calmly went on to explain: "The moment the noose goes around the neck, I see a color around their whole body. I've figured out after seeing so many now, that when I see a deep red color, they're guilty for sure. But when I see a bright yellow light around them, they aren't. Once they're dead, the glow fades away." Bill looked away, wondering if he should ask his next question. After all, Bill was the person who pulled the lever and had been so for many years. He had to know, and so he asked, "And how many since ya figured this out, have had that, ya know, good glow?" Adam looked up a Bill and said, "Just one. Jim Perry." Bill thinks back, "Wasn't he the one that stole all that tobacco? He was a pipe smoking' fella right? The one that asked fer one more pipe full before the hang in'?" Adam nodded his head yes and said, "Jim didn't steal the tobacco though." The sudden smell of lit pipe tobacco wafted through the air as Bill's blood ran cold. Adam broke the silence with, "Jim and I take walks together."

With that, Adam started walking again. It took Bill a few moments to decide what to do, but he soon caught back up with Adam. "Hold on." said Bill. "Ya take walks with a dead man? Ya mean his ghost?" Adam responded, "I do." and grinned a little. Bill half believed him and half thought the boy was headed for a future of being locked up in an asylum. Curiosity got the better of Bill that day. He asked young Adam, "When is the last time you took a walk with Jim Perry's ghost?" Adam stopped and slowly turned so that he was facing Bill straight on. "He's with me right now. I'm sad to say this Sir, but Jim isn't very happy with you. You're one of the five that caused him to die. Jim tells me that he had to wait until the time was right, but, well, the time is right." 







AuthorOlie Sylvester