Received by James Padgett
Let me write, for I have been waiting so long to reach you and have you help me. Oh, do help me if you can. I am in darkness and torment in a hell that I never believed in when on earth, but which I now see is more real than the fire and brimstone hell which my very earnest pastor used to tell us about.
I am suffering because when on earth I was a wicked woman and one who delighted in doing evil things because of the enjoyment and pleasure derived from the mere doing of them. You will be surprised when I tell you that I was a prisoner, and in my time poisoned many men and women and children. I mean that I did this in a stealthy and quiet manner - not as did the Borgia of whom I used to read, but in a way that caused no suspicion to rest upon me or anyone else.
My poison was slow but sure and without detection. Why I did this I don't know, except that I was possessed by a legion of evil spirits more wicked than myself.
Well I was a nurse in a large hospital and many a patient died suddenly of heart failure as it was called, but of poison as I knew.
I was considered a good nurse, and, as a fact, was when I was not under the impulse to poison; and many a patient has recovered his health because of my careful treatment. And now the memories of these acts of kindness come to me and, to a small degree, help to dim the memories of the acts of hell which I did towards others.
I was not cruel by nature, and many times in the course of my work as nurse, have I shed tears of sympathy with the sufferings of some poor man or woman who was in torture. But this was when I was free from the awful desires and influences which caused me to turn a veritable devil. When these spells, as I call them, came over me, my craving for a victim was beyond what I can explain to you, and could only be satisfied by seeing the victims in the death struggle.
I really gloated over the deaths caused by my awful deeds, and many a time I have sat beside the patient and watched his life go out, when it might have been prevented by an antidote of which I knew. But I could not let my hellish satisfaction be interfered with in that way, and so I would sit and enjoy the struggle until the messenger of death came and only the cold corpse lay before me. Oh, it was pleasure to my evil cravings and to my evil spirits that I sometimes thought were around me. So you see, I was of all women the most wicked, and of all sufferers I have suffered the most.
Yes, I have tried to fight against these desires when I felt them coming to me, and I have even sought to avoid the awful deeds by leaving the hospital for a while, but all to no purpose. I would be drawn back as if a great chain was attached to me and was pulling me back to my awful work.
I could not deliver myself from these desires and I could not resist the desires for they were stronger than I, and had to be obeyed.
I suffered on earth as well as here, and no one knows my sufferings or the cause of them. I continued to carry on this work until a short time before I died. No one suspected me, and I never hinted that I was suffering from this awful obsession for that is what it must have been.
I never counted my victims, as I would soon forget one in the desire and expectation of another. So you see I cannot tell how many fell victim to my evil deeds.
I have met some of them since I have been here, but they did not know of my deeds, for when they took this poison, they, of course, thought it was the medicine given to help them. So you see whatever of accusation comes from seeing them, comes from my own conscience, and not from their lips or words.
I want you to help me if you can. I have given up all hope, but some spirits have told me that you helped them, and I thought that possibly you might show me some way to lessen my sufferings.
Well, I prefer not to give my name as I died comparatively recent, and the disclosure of my name might work some injury to the hospital. So if you will excuse me I will not disclose my name or the hospital, but merely say that I was a woman of considerable education and about forty-five years of age, and the hospital was in a large city, and I died in 1909.
Yes, I will go with her and do as you say, only do not give me hope if there be none.
Yes, I see some bright spirits.
I have told her and she says that she will help me and love me too, and that I must go with her and believe in her, and I am going and will believe what she tells me; and oh, if she only does help me, how thankful I shall be to you.
So my dear friend, let me say that I will never forget you, even though I now have to say, good night..