In the small town of São Francisco, right in the middle of Brazil, at the margins of the huge river with the same name, lies an old Church, constructed by Catholic German missionaries.

Many decades ago, somebody found an entrance to a huge cave in front of the church, near the margin of the São Francisco River. The old people from the town were terrified by the discovery: a feeling of ancient fear and uttermost guilty was presented at the eyes of the patriarchs of our small community. At the very entrance of the cave, there was a small statue of the Virgin Mary.

In a dark, hot night of the Brazilian Summer, they told me this story. At the beginning of the century, a young girl was found pregnant (some even say that the father was a priest). Rejected by the traditional families of the town, she was expelled from home. Just after giving birth, she threw the baby in the waters of the River, and killed herself.

But the old ones say that the baby didn't die. A giant Dourado ("Golden", in Portuguese) fish took him and raised him in an underground cave, which extends itself under the Old Church at the margins of river.

There, the baby became a huge monster, half human, half fish. He sleeps there, in the darkness, until the Judgment Day, when he will free himself breaking the Church in two, and bring death and suffering to the sinners of the city.

The priest of São Francisco, worried about the fears of his community, removed the statue of the Virgin Mary from the entrance of the cave, and ordered the men to seal the opening forever. A small chapel was built over the entrance, and nobody talks about it anymore.

This is story of the Monster under the Old Church, as I heard from the elder people of São Francisco, Minas Gerais, Brazil, when I was just a small kid.

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