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The Cry of La Llarona

It was well into the night when the boy reached his home in Mexico City after running for several minutes.  When his mother asked him what was wrong, he told her a story of a mysterious woman who had appeared out from the shadows.  She had been screaming something in a bizarre almost possessed voice, and had grabbed him, dragging him toward the river with a pair of skeletal hands.  It was only when the church bells started ringing that she finally vanished into thin air.  When the boy’s mother heard the story she began weeping saying, “That was La Llarona.”  The ghost that had left her curse in the city had struck again.

No one knows where La Llarona came from.  Many say her actual origin could have been a woman named Dona Luisa de Olveros, who had been publicly executed by hanging in Mexico city hundreds of years ago after killing her children with a small knife.  Luisa had been in love with a Nobleman known as Don Nuno de Montesclaros.  After bearing the nobleman’s children, she had learned of his engagement to another woman and appealed to him to do the honorable thing and marry her for the sake of their children.  Turning her down, Don Nuno told her he didn’t want anything to do with her because of her Indian heritage.

After the murder, Nuno oversaw her execution and ordered she be left hanging for several hours before she was finally cut down.  That night throughout the city, people were awoken in their beds by a tremendous shriek echoing down the streets.  A woman was calling out to her children in distress.  As a search party was assembled to look for the source of the screams, they were never found.  A few of those who had been close to Luisa said the voice was unmistakably hers.

Time passed, and every now and again another encounter with the eerie apparition would appear.  And over the course of hundreds of years, there have been quite a few opportunities for the ghostly apparition to make her appearances and terrify witnesses.

She isn’t often seen in peoples’ houses, but on the occasions she is, it is most often to children as they try to get to sleep.  Once a mother awoke when her son came into the room.  The boy was hysterical.  He said a pale woman with incredibly long hair was floating on the far side of his room staring at him all night and occasionally whispering to him when he closed his eyes from fright.  Something about the woman aside from the fact that she was floating terrified him.  It was almost as if she was a corpse being guided by invisible puppet strings.

Other incidents occurred when people found themselves alone either on the street or in the surrounding wilderness.  One story states that a small girl in the woods spotted the mysterious figure hovering on the river with an eerie cry coming from her unmoving mouth.  When she turned to flee from fright, the apparition appeared behind her – still screaming but much louder.