Thursday, May 04, 2017
The Horsingdon Transmissions No.124: Perfect White Teeth
A path through Horsingdon Woods passes an old iron gate: all that remains of a property once known as 'Mad Bess' Cottage'. Very little is known about 'Mad Bess' herself - or how she came to her presumed state of derangement - other than the fact that she died in the mid-1800s, and was reputedly a witch.
Three years ago, the body of a woman in her late 20s was discovered in undergrowth, exactly on the spot upon which Mad Bess' Cottage used to stand. To this day the identity of the woman remains unknown - as does the cause of death. What is known, however, is the fact that the body was almost unrecognisably human on discovery - although it remains unclear as to whether this was a result of the corpse being in an advanced state of decomposition, or for some other reason entirely; the coroner nevertheless reported that the unfortunate woman exhibited, through the remnant of a wide, horrifying grin, a set of 'perfect white teeth'. Why someone should make an observation of this kind in a case like this I do not know; but I find something rather chilling about the fact that a corpse, found in what was presumably a horribly-disfigured state, nonetheless retained possession - visible through its madly-crooked smile - of a set of perfect white teeth.