The Spectre Spiders
William J. Wintle
William James Wintle (1861-1920) was a Welsh writer who distinguished himself as a versatile writer before becoming an Oblate for the Abbey of Caldey Island in Pembrokeshire, Wales. There he wrote a collection of supernatural horror stories specifically for the enjoyment of eight boys who attended there. Wintle wrote that the stories were originally told on Sunday nights while "crouching over a wood fire on a wind-swept island off the Western shore". 'The Spectre Spiders' is the story of a disreputable loan shark who starts to imagine strange, spiderlike creatures scurrying around his house. He consults an eye doctor, who finds nothing wrong with his vision and prescribes rest and relaxation. But the spiders become more concrete and larger...and then something terrible happens to his dog. He is discovered dead one morning...an empty skin full of bones...sucked completely dry. From this point things go from bad to worse....