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The Storm Hag
retold by
S. E. Schlosser

She lurks below the surface of the lake near Presque Isle, her lithe form forever swimming through the weeds and the mire. Pale and green of skin, her yellow eyes shine luminously in the dark, and her thin long arms wrap themselves around the unwary, while foul-green pointed teeth sink into soft flesh and sharp nails at the end of long bony fingers stroke you into the deepest sleep there is. She is called by many names, but to sailors of Lake Erie, she is known as the Storm Hag.

The creature is a sea witch, an evil Jenny Greenteeth who summoned the storms and pulled shipwrecked sailors down into her evil embrace to live with her forever at the bottom of the lake. Sometimes she waits until the calm right after the storm to attack. When the sailors relax their guard, lulled into thinking that the danger had passed with the storm, the Storm Hag bursts forth from the dark waters of the lake, spewing forth lightening and wind like venom. And the ship will vanish - never to be seen again.

There is only one warning before she strikes. If you listen closely, you can hear her singing against the harsh wind and the thrashing waves:

"Come into the water, love,
Dance beneath the waves,
Where dwell the bones of sailor-lads
Inside my saffron cave."

If you can, flee immediately, for the Storm Hag is right beside you. If you cannot, then pray to your God for mercy, for the Storm Hag will grant you none. Her whirlpool will suck down your ship, and her long green arms will lovingly stroke you into the depths of the lake, where she will feast on your body among the weeds.