A Matter of Extreme Importance

The following is a piece of private correspondence between Inspector Bunting and Governor James Beauforth. I have chosen to release it to the public as a matter of personal and national integrity.

Kittery, Maine 20th April 1722

Dear Governor Beauforth,

Although I have restrained from expressing this for as long as I could reasonably stand, I feel that my constitution will suffer too tremendous a blow if I continue to do so beyond this very day. I suggest you find a sturdy wooden table or piece of furniture upon which to brace yourself, else position your person in a way which will allow you to receive some amount of shock, for this following statement of mine will undoubtedly deliver just that.

I have in my mind a not inconsiderable amount of suspicion that the doctor of our dear hamlet, Roderick Hollins himself, is – and has been for an undeterminable amount of time now – some manner of dark and unnatural sea creature.

I am aware of just how outrageous this may sound, but please believe that exhaustive investigation by myself and other men of unquestionable character and ability has lead to this terrifying, yet horribly likely conclusion. I formally, and – to be blunt – I desperately ask of you your counsel on this weighty matter.

Additionally, though please understand I mean not to condescend, I must stress the importance of discretion. The gentlefolk of the County need not the trouble of knowing that their own physician is actually the likes of which swarthy seaman of old might have warned of on their cartographic charts with a scrawl noting ‘here be monsters.’ Heaven help us.

Signed and sealed,

Inspector H. Bunting

P.S. I have included below a rubbing of an artist’s draft of the doctor’s true appearance since the words to properly describe this horror escape me.

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