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Hugh Lamb – Return From The Grave

Posted by demonik on September 1, 2007

Hugh Lamb (ed.) – Return From The Grave (W. H. Allen, 1976)

Foreword – Hugh Lamb

W. L. George – Waxworks
H. R. Wakefield – Ingredient X
Arthur Porges – In The Tomb
R. Murray Gilchrist – Roxana Runs Lunatick
Alice Perrin – The Sistrum
August Derleth – The Coffin Of Lissa
A. C. Benson – The Slype House
R. H. Benson – The Watcher
Rosemary Timperley – The Other Woman
Oswell Blakeston – Snow Time
L. A. Lewis – The Tower Of Moab
Maurice Level – Blue Eyes
Ramsey Campbell – In The Shadows
Edgar Allan Poe – Some Words With A Mummy
John Blackburn – Dad
Eddy C. Bertin – Composed Of Cobwebs
Frederick Cowles – Death In The Well
Warden Ledge – The Legion Of Evil
Robert Haining – The Wall
Eleanor Scott – At Simmel Acres Farm

Robert Haining – The Wall: A man wakes to find himself bricked into his flat in a high rise block. At first he suspects an elaborate practical joke but soon learns otherwise. Days pass and somehow the windows too are bricked. He gradually becomes aware of a presence. Somebody has also readied a noose.

W. L. George – Waxworks: East End docklands. Henry Badger and girlfriend Ivy take shelter from the rain at Mrs. Groby’s wax emporium while taking a tour of ‘the strange sights of London.’ The chamber of horrors boasts Crippen, Catherine Wilson the poisoner, Charles Peace and Gouffe the bailiff who “had been carved into pieces and packed in a trunk” and … the corpse of old Mrs. Groby who’s been murdered for the day’s takings …

Oswell Blakeston – Snow Time: Switzerland. A young English boy, bullied by his nurse, scoops his sago pudding into a cigarette box and hides it in a cupboard only to be tormented by it in a nightmare: “The eggs, the nasty horrid eggs had hatched! Long white things were crawling towards the bed, waving their sightless heads to get the direction where they sensed the small boy was lying, then worming their way forward …”

Maurice Level – Blue Eyes: A prostitute keeps her promise to lay flowers on her sweetheart’s grave on All Saints Day, he having been executed for murder. Wan and wasted, she leaves her sickbed and eventually finds a client. She arrives at the cemetery just as it is about to close, but manages to persuade the warden to allow her to lay her bouquet. Only when she returns to the brothel does she learn the identity of her customer …

Arthur Porges – In The Tomb:’The Professor’, recently released from prison, enlists Bull to break into the vault containing the remains of Ruhig who was buried wearing his priceless jewels. In life Ruhig was feared as “the man who never slept” and ruled with an iron hand. To pass the time the Prof brags to Bull about a Polish girl he ruined, blissfully unaware that she was the man’s sister. Bull collapses the tunnel on him. Ruhig lives up to his reputation.

Frederick Cowles – Death In The Well: How Professor Rutter of St. Emeran’s College, Cambridge met his death in Austrian Tyrol, 1929, as narrated by his youthful assistant, John Evans.
Despite the pleas of the custodian of St. Dichul’s Monastery, Rutter disinters the corpse of a long dead – but strangely well preserved – black magician to discover that the key to a treasure trove is sat in the mouth of the severed head. The Professor descends the well unaware that he’s being ‘watched’ the while by a headless monk in a black robe …

Warden Ledge – Legion Of Evil: “My God! ‘Gunner’, they’re killing for the sake of killing.” When magistrate Jack Bairdsly evicts the old hag ‘Madge’, a reputed witch, from her hovel in Long Woods, she wreaks bloody vengeance with the help of an army of blood-lusting … stoats. First they attack the stable and then – with Jack, his brother-in-law, the grooms and all the horses down – they move on to the house, where Mrs. Bairdsley is sleeping …

Like Derleth’s torture tale The Coffin Of Lissa (described elsewhere), this one is revived from the Not At Night series I’m always boring everyone about.

John Blackburn – Dad: Dad was a first division footballer, cross-country runner and all-round brilliant sportsman. His son was born with one leg, the other terminating in a stump just below the waist. Throughout his life the son is tormented by the sight of his fathers medals and trophies which are kept in a state of polished perfection.

When Dad dies – he either fell or was pushed under a bus by his offspring and failed to survive the operation to amputate his legs – his son gloatingly locks away all the silverware and hacks down the tree the old man used to climb.

But the old man returns.

In the guise of a surgeon.

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