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Letter from Brianne Scanlon to Ron Hammond, Post-dated Thursday, March 19, 2019
Detective Anderson gave me your contact information and said you could help. I think my brother, Ben and I may be in danger, and it might be my fault. He just told me about this guy who came to his house last week with a really big grin. Well, I know who he is and why he’s coming after Ben. At least, I know who he used to be.
His name is Malcolm Foye, and I was actually dating him for about 4 months. I met him at a friend’s Halloween party last year. I actually asked Ben for a ride there and he may have even met him since he stayed for a drink or two, but I’m not certain. I remember Malcolm was the only person at the party who wasn’t wearing a costume. He looked so different then.
I went dressed as Harley Quinn, and I remember giving him a hard time about not dressing up for the party. The first thing he said to me was “You sweet talkin’ me? All that chit chat’s gonna get you hurt,” which threw me off guard at first, and also turned some heads because not everyone there understood the reference. Then I remembered it was one of the Joker’s lines from the movie Suicide Squad and I had to explain that to a couple of guy friends of mine who looked like they were ready to tear him apart. I’m not like a super-fan of the comic books or anything, I just liked the character’s style in the movie.
Once I saved him from being pummeled, we actually had a chance to talk for quite a while. I’d never been interested in an older man before, and I thought he was probably 10 or 15 years older than me around his mid to late 40’s, though he looks much older now. At that point, he had a full head of hair and nice teeth, and I didn’t see a wedding ring on his finger. I have to admit, he was rather charming. He had a great sense of humor and even though I thought he needed some styling help with his choice of clothing, he seemed like a catch.
We were out on the back porch talking for a couple hours at least. When we decided to go back inside, most of the party had left except for my friend who lived there are a few of my close friends. They were gathered in the living room playing some kind of game. As we approached them, we saw a Ouija board laying out on the coffee table, and all 5 of my friends had their hands on the planchette.
Malcolm and I just stood and watched for a few minutes. I never really bought into the whole afterlife thing until recently, but everyone there seemed to believe they had made some kind of spirit communication. They were asking questions and believed the planchette was being moved by some disembodied spirit. I was intrigued. When they invited us to join them, I thought “why not”. I looked at Malcolm and said, “are you up for it?” His reply was odd. He had a smirk on his face and said “I already know what they’re going to say” and then leaned against the wall to watch us.
We took turns asking questions, and when it was my turn, I made sure to take the skeptic’s approach and asked, “if you’re real, can you make the lights flicker?” The planchette moved to the word “yes” and we all waited in anticipation. After 10 seconds or so, the next person began to ask a question, but just as they started speaking, the lights flickered on and off for about 4 or 5 seconds. This freaked everyone out, and people started letting go of the planchette. I was the last person touching it, and I felt it turning under my fingertips. It didn’t appear to be pointing at a specific letter on the board, but I realized amidst the lights going on and off that it had turned to point toward Malcolm.
It happened in what seemed like a split-second, but as the lights continued to flicker, I would see Malcolm clear as day in the light, but when they turned off, his silhouette looked like… something else. His outline was significantly taller than he was, I’d estimate between 7 and 8 feet tall, and he almost looked like a giant bird, except he had horns growing out of the sides of his head curving and pointing down at the floor. I could have sworn I saw long wings folded by his sides, and what looked like talons for arms.
At the sight of this, I took my hands off the planchette and the lights immediately stopped flickering. Of course, I thought I might have possibly had too much to drink because when the lights stayed on, I looked at Malcolm and he seemed confused at the way I was looking at him. He just said, “wow, that was interesting” very nonchalant and everyone else just laughed it off as coincidence. The whole thing made me really uncomfortable, but I half-heartedly tried to laugh it off like everyone else, and then I retreated to my friend’s spare room.
Malcolm actually followed me and asked if I was okay, and he kind of put me at ease by convincing me that what happened was just a coincidence. We set up a dinner date for the following weekend, and began to see each other.
About 3 or 4 weeks after that, he invited me to his church for a 10:00 a.m. service. I arrived about 10 minutes til, and sat in one of the pews in the far back, thinking it would be easier to find him when he walked in. I also hated that part of the service where everyone was supposed to stand and greet one another, so I was hoping I wouldn’t be next to anyone else. You see, I was raised in a very religious home, and kind of walked away during my rebellious teen years, and never really turned back.
The service started a few minutes late, and I was surprised to hear Malcolm’s voice behind me when I was turned around toward the entrance looking for him. He was actually the person giving the sermon. I could tell he was scanning the congregation as he spoke, and when his eyes met mine, he smirked just a little, but continued on. He spoke of the end of days, and legions of demons scouring the earth. It was the typical fire and brimstone fear tactic that I had experienced growing up, but it was different in a way. He never spoke of repentance. He just focused on the message of preparing one’s self for the apocalypse, but without the “getting saved” portion that I had grown so accustomed to. Aside from that, it seemed like stuff I’d heard before.
I began attending more and more services as we dated, and eventually I began serving the church throughout the week. Once people knew I was romantically involved with Malcolm, they treated me like royalty. It was a welcoming feeling at first, but over time, as I learned more about what they were about, it became increasingly uncomfortable. They called themselves the Order of the Divine Acolytes. I thought this name was a little old-testament, but it wasn’t until I really got involved that I started to see some warning signs.
We would hold smaller, more intimate worship sessions throughout the week, usually at night. Over the course of the next couple of months, Malcolm would begin experiencing… changes. One Friday night, we were all gathered in the church when he said we were going to do something different that night. He said it was time to recommit ourselves to the cause. He invited a small group of us up to the pulpit, and it was then that he removed his head piece. It was like a tall hat that he would wear when he gave his formal sermons on Sundays. When he took it off, his head was completely bald. This was shocking to me because I had just seen him a couple of days prior and he had a full head of hair.
Something seemed different about him. Normally he would sneak a little wink at me when he was speaking in kind of a flirty way. He was all-seriousness that night. There was an altar there, which had been draped with a white cloth that he uncovered. On top of it, there was a chalice. It was beautifully shimmering, all silver, with gold lining the rim of the cup and the base. Everyone’s eyes grew wide, as if they were admiring the beauty of this cup like I was. I don’t know why, but when I was looking around at everyone’s facial expressions, it occurred to me that the crosses which had been hanging on the wall were all gone. I looked around the room, remembering the giant cross at the back of the stage, the crosses on either side of the pews, and the one that hung above the rear balcony. All were missing except the one over the rear balcony. That cross had been hung upside down that night.
As I turned around to look at Malcolm again, he held a large ornate dagger in his hand. It was sheathed, but the craftsmanship looked similar to the chalice, and there were rubies on the hilt. He laid it to rest on both of his hands with his palms up. And he went around the circle we had formed. There must have been 10 of us, and he addressed us one by one, stating our name, and asking if we were prepared to declare our allegiance. When he came around to me, he stared at me coldly, and I almost felt threatened. He said, “Bri, will you declare your allegiance?”
I considered how to answer for a moment, but looking around the room, the eyes looking back at me seemed prepared to harm me if I said no. I looked at Malcolm once more before answering, and I swear he grew taller and some of his features seemed different. Perhaps it was the lighting, but he was truly… intimidating. Yeah, intimidating is the perfect term to describe him in that moment. I was compelled to say yes.
After everyone had confirmed, he unsheathed the dagger, and I watched as he gently took the tip of it to prick the index finger of the first person. He held the dagger horizontally over the cup with his right hand, and with his left, he pinched the bleeding finger, placing three drops of blood into the chalice. He didn’t even clean the knife before moving to the next person. Every instinct I had told me to run, but I couldn’t. He went around the room until it was my turn. I felt light-headed as he squeezed the drops of blood from my finger, but I was able to remain upright.
Once everyone had their turn, he performed this ritual on himself, then he sheathed the dagger. He then grabbed the chalice, and walked a second time around to each of us. He placed his still-bleeding finger in the chalice and dipped it into the blood, then wiped it on our foreheads in the symbol of an upside down cross, chanting something in Latin which he repeated with each of us. And then he marked himself, saying something a bit different. At that moment, his face became shrouded in shadow, and his eyes… his eyes turned black for just a moment, then returned to normal. I had never witnessed anything like it before, and I wondered if I was the only person to see it. As I looked around, everyone seemed giddy almost. They were all looking at him rather emphatically.
And then we were done. Everyone acted like they had just finished a normal Sunday service. I heard one person invite another to a barbecue the next day, and someone started talking about their kid’s performance in the school play. The more people just acted normally, the more uncomfortable I felt. Malcolm approached me and asked if I wanted to go out for coffee. At that point it was after 9:00 p.m., so I turned him down saying I had to be at work the next morning, and I wanted to be able to sleep that night.
I went home and had the worst nightmares of my life that night. I must have woken up every 10 or 15 minutes the whole night, thinking someone was in my home. I couldn’t tell if I was dreaming or not, but I kept seeing myself lying in bed surrounded by shadowy figures of people. They were all just standing there, staring at me. And at the very foot of my bed, I saw one shadow that stood out among the others. It was taller, and had wings, which would flare open when I tried to look at its face. I just thought if I could see details, I might see… well, I thought I might see Malcolm’s face. The problem was, every time the wings would open up, I’d wake right up, and then doze off a few minutes later to repeat the same process.
I also noticed that I had begun missing time. There were periods of hours that I couldn’t remember throughout my days, but apparently I had continued showing up where I needed to be and nobody mentioned me being missing or anything. I was still getting paid for my scheduled shifts at work. What time wasn’t missing was blurry. Life began to feel like a dream state where I would be going through the motions and doing my job, for example, at the hospital, but I wasn’t in control of my actions. You know when you multitask like having a phone conversation while you’re driving? Well you don’t really think about the driving part, you just do it, only there were times where I would be preoccupied with my thoughts and visions of the shadow people, but at the same time I was aware that I was stealing medications regularly from the hospital. I’ve never done that, and I could lose my nursing license if I got caught! I could also recall an occasion where I searched for, and download specific medical records onto a flash drive. I had no motivation to do this, but it was like I was willfully letting someone else drive my body, and I just sat by and watched without objection, barely aware of what I was doing. And then I remember giving those things to Malcolm. Those were the times that, upon delivery, I remembered that grin getting incredibly wide, and his face just stopped looking like it belonged to him. I hope that makes sense… sometimes it doesn’t even to me.
I began avoiding Malcolm for a little while after that until he called me out on it. He knew something was off, and wouldn’t leave me alone until I agreed to meet with him. And of course when we met up, he was charming as usual. I don’t know why I fell for it, but he still had that mix of flirtatiousness and wit that was impossible to push away. I found myself questioning my thoughts connecting him to that winged creature from my dreams… I was beginning to think I needed a shrink! We started hanging out again nearly every day, but since that night when we did the blood-letting ritual thing, he was always talking to people and inviting them to his church. He was a master of segues. He actually bought this couple coffee once. They had been behind us in line, and said it was his good deed for the day. Of course, that struck up a conversation where the couple thanked him, and he used that as an opportunity to plug his church. He was like a politician, crafting his words with great care, like one of those “choose your own adventure” books only there was a single ending that all paths led toward. He could read when people became uncomfortable, and knew exactly when to back off. I didn’t know whether to admire him or be afraid of him. He was so persuasive.
He continued to take every opportunity to do this, even when we were out on dates, which frustrated me to no end. He began attending church events without inviting me, which I was fine with. I wasn’t sure how I felt about it anyways, and I’m sure he was keen to that. I still went on Sundays, and started noticing a theme every couple of weeks. People in the congregation that I had once met were going missing. I’m not sure how many others may have noticed this since new people kept arriving. Core members who knew them would hold group gatherings to pray for the missing, and then a couple of weeks ago, I saw some news coverage that showed not only the name of the latest missing person in the congregation, but their picture as well. It was someone I remembered from the blood-letting ceremony. When I brought this up with Malcolm, he thought I knew, but in reality, I didn’t know anyone’s name from that night. It wasn’t until the photo was shown that I made the connection.
We continued on, and eventually he started asking about my family and friends, and why they were never around. When I told him I don’t just introduce all of my boyfriends to them, we had the whole talk about commitment and decided we were more than just casual as a couple. That was when I agreed to introduce him to Ben, with only one condition. He agreed not to talk about church when we met.
So I called Ben and arranged a dinner over at his place. Malcolm seemed excited when I told him, and not the least bit nervous when I mentioned that Ben had a tendency to be a little overprotective of his little sister. He asked me to pick him up at the church before heading over to Ben’s place, so I did. I pulled up right outside the door and honked a couple of times. When Malcolm didn’t come out right away, I decided to head inside the to see if I could find him. The lobby had a TV that had the local news on. Right before I reached the door to the chapel, coverage of a homicide caught my attention. I stepped closer to the TV and watched as they identified the victim as Gerald Hubert. The photograph of the man they showed was another one of the men that had been at the blood-letting ceremony with me. In a flashback in my mind, I realized he had been standing right next to me that night. They found him dead in a local hotel room with initial reports that he took a shotgun to his own head.
As I watched, the TV suddenly turned off. I turned around to see Malcolm with a remote in his hand. Three other members of the congregation stood behind them. All of them were standing perfectly still, just staring at me. Malcom said “are you ready to go”? I didn’t want to let him know that I recognized the man on the news, so I tried to act casual when I said “yeah” and conjured up a smile. Then he suggested we take his car. I got the impression that disagreeing would be unwise.
The drive over to Ben’s was quiet and I hadn’t even really looked at him since I got in the car. When we pulled up in front of his house, Malcolm finally asked what was wrong. When I turned to look at him, I was surprised to see his appearance had changed even more. He looked pale and sickly, like he had aged 10 years since the last time I saw him. He also didn’t seem to have any eyebrows. It reminded me of someone who was undergoing chemotherapy, but that couldn’t be right. He would have told me, and with the amount of time we spent together, I would have known.
I told him that I’d been having second thoughts about our relationship. I wasn’t about to let him know I recognized the guy on TV. I just knew I needed to distance myself from him. He didn’t say much at first. He just asked if we were taking a break or if we were done for good. I told him I wasn’t sure yet, and that I’d have to think about it. That’s when he really flipped out. He started lashing out at me in the car, saying things in a tone of voice that I didn’t recognize. Things like “if you think you can do better, then you’re not worthy of my presence” and “I would live to regret the day I turned him down”. He even said he’d be waiting for me to come crawling back. When I said “that will never happen”, he became enraged. He wasn’t just angry, he was furious.
That’s when he began yelling at me in Latin, spit running off his chin and spraying in my face. I didn’t realize how far down in the corner of my seat I was cowering until Ben opened my car door and I nearly fell out on the ground. He must have heard the yelling and came out to investigate. I’m glad he did too. I’d never seen that side of Malcolm before. Ben pulled me out of the car and stood me up, and Malcolm got out of the driver’s side and stood there on his side of the car. Ben said “I think it’s time for you to leave.” Malcolm just smiled. He was calm again, and you’d never guess he had just finished yelling in my face two seconds ago. Then he said the strangest thing. He said, “These are strange times marked by unexplainable things happening all around us. Look around you. He who has eyes, let him see.”
Ben told him one more time to leave, and said that if he ever showed his face around me again, he would personally deal with him. Malcolm’s face changed again. It was as if his pupils dilated to the full size of his eyes, and he smiled a larger smile than I’d ever seen on him before. He said in an extremely calm voice, “You’ve already earned my protection, but you haven’t paid the price. I’ll be collecting soon, and if it can’t be from you, then it will be from someone dear to you.” He looked at Ben when he said this.
At this, Ben started walking around the car to get physical with Malcolm, but he quickly got in the car and slammed the door. He drove away slowly, and as he did, I could have sworn I saw something… irregular. It was dark outside, but I thought I saw Malcolm’s head turn completely around to look at us while he drove away. He was still grinning. Once he was out of sight, I started crying. When we went inside, I asked Ben what he thought about that smile he gave. Ben acted like he hadn’t seen it, and said it was pretty dark out and really didn’t even get a good look at his face. I ended up staying the night at Ben’s on his pull-out couch. He agreed to drive me to my car the next morning, which was still at the church. Thankfully, we were able to pick it up without having to interact with anyone there.
There’s one more thing. I’ve been watching the news and I saw another man from the church. He was killed in a hotel nearby. I’m worried that either Ben or I might be next, and we either need protection or we need to get away from here. I know I don’t have what you’d call hard evidence that these are related, but you have to agree this isn’t merely a coincidence. I could really use your help.
It’s abundantly clear that at least some of these documents are related to one another, and I think I’m going to need to take some time to conduct some research going forward before I produce any additional episodes of the show… or at least to get these more organized and find out which ones might be related. There’s also a few people I’m going to need to get in contact with. I have many questions. These accounts make me wonder if any of this stuff is still occurring, and I’m wondering why I’m being both encouraged by a disembodied voice and discouraged by some anonymous person sending me voice messages.
So in review, all of these documents pertain to events pretty local to the Southern California area from what I can tell, and some of the documents go back as far as the 80’s up until as recent as last year. I still need to find Detective Mark Anderson. I’m also going to try to do some research on this Order of the Divine Acolytes as well.
And you should know that I have recently received communication from someone claiming to be the previous owner of the documents I’m calling The Storage Papers. And last week, I actually met with this man. I want to do some research before I share our discussion in order to validate his identity. I just want to make sure he’s not some internet troll who’s been listening to the show, claiming to be someone he’s not. But IF this person checks out, you’ll know very soon. I may be away for a few weeks, but I will be updating my social media accounts with news and information in the meantime.
I’ve said it before, and I just want to say it again. Thank you for listening to The Storage Papers. This concludes Season 1, and oh man, do I have some big plans for Season 2!
I would love to hear from you if you are able to corroborate information from any of these episodes. You can reach me on Twitter and Instagram @StoragePapers. Today’s episode is Episode 10, the Divine Acolytes. You can also leave me a voice message at anchor.fm/thestoragepapers. Please let me know if I have your permission to share any information you provide.
If you haven’t written a review on your podcasting platform of choice, I would really appreciate it if you would now after hearing the entire first season. I’m really interested to hear your thoughts and opinions. Or if you want to reach out and share your favorite episode with me, it would be great to hear from you. Thanks again for listening! I’ll be back soon with more detailed accounts from The Storage Papers.