By L. Ron Hubbard

"A vintage story of creeping, surreal threat and horror... one of many fairly, incredible ones." — Stephen King

Professor James Lowry did not think in spirits, or witches, or demons. no longer until eventually a gradual spring night while his hat disappeared, and without notice he could not keep in mind the final 4 hours of his existence. Now, the quiet collage city of Atworthy is altering - just a little first and foremost, then quicker and extra frighteningly at any time when he attempts to recollect. Lowry is pursued via a depressing, mystery evil that's turning his entire global opposed to him whereas it whispers a caution from the shadows: should you locate your hat you will discover your 4 hours. for those who locate your 4 hours then you definately will die...

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Are you ailing or anything? There wasn’t nothin’ incorrect with them eggs, was once there? ” “No,” acknowledged Lowry. “No. There wasn’t whatever fallacious with the eggs. ” “You forgot your switch! ” Mike known as after him. yet Lowry used to be already at the sidewalk, striding speedily away, using each college to maintain from working, to maintain from glancing over his shoulder, to struggle down the frozen numbness which threatened to paralyze him. “Hello, Jim. ” He dodged after which, due to the fact that it used to be Tommy, felt a surge of elation. “Hello, Tommy. ” “You glance shaky, outdated man,” stated Tommy. “You’d greater take greater care of that malaria or the previous insects will carve you hole. ” “I’m all right,” stated Lowry, smiling. Tommy was once obviously on his method to church for he used to be wearing a depressing go well with and a dismal topcoat. Tommy, concept Jim, was once a remarkably handsome man. “Did you are taking your capsules on time table? ” “Pills? ” “Quinine or no matter what you're imagined to take. ” “Well—no. yet I’m alright. hear, Tommy, I don’t recognize while I’ve been so comfortable to determine anyone. ” Tommy grinned. “Glad to determine you, Jim. ” “We’ve been buddies for a protracted time,” acknowledged Lowry. “How lengthy is it now? ” “Oh, approximately thirty-four years. basically don’t say it. whilst one is as previous as i'm and nonetheless attempting to act the Beau Brummell, he doesn’t wish to have his age get round. ” “You going to church? ” “Sure. And the place else may I be going? ” “Well—” Lowry shrugged and, for a few cause, chuckled. “We’ve been assembly on that nook, now, at approximately this time, for a protracted while,” acknowledged Tommy. “Where’s Mary? ” “Oh, she didn’t get a lot sleep final evening and she’s staying domestic this day. ” “I want I had an excuse like that. Parson Bates is a baron between bores; I don’t imagine he’d ever heard of the previous testomony until eventually i discussed it to him at considered one of his wife’s unending teas. ” “Tommy . . . Tommy, there’s whatever i would like to invite you. ” “Fire away, outdated best. ” “Tommy, while I left you the day past afternoon, it used to be a couple of area of 3, wasn’t it? ” “Just approximately, I may still think. ” “And I did depart, didn’t I? ” “Certainly, you left,” answered Tommy, fairly amused. “And I merely had one drink? ” “That’s correct. Say, this factor is de facto bothering you, isn’t it? Don’t try and cover whatever from the previous seer himself. What’s up? ” “Tommy, I’ve misplaced 4 hours. ” “Well! I’ve misplaced thirty-nine years. ” “I suggest it, Tommy. I’ve misplaced 4 hours and . . . and my hat. ” Tommy laughed. “It’s now not funny,” stated Lowry. “Jim, should you examine me with these critical eyes of yours and inform me that you’re part from your brain over a hat—well, it’s humorous, that’s all. No offense. ” “I’ve misplaced 4 hours. I don’t comprehend what occurred in them. ” “Well—I feel that might fear a fellow. yet there are many different hours and many different hats. disregard it. ” “I can’t, Tommy. Ever for the reason that I misplaced these 4 hours, issues were occurring to me. bad issues. ” and intensely speedily he sketched the occasions of the evening simply handed. “Down the stairs,” acknowledged Tommy, very sober now. “Yes. i am getting your point—and i am getting greater than that. ” “What’s all of it approximately?

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