Chamber Of Chills #6: "Where There's A Will!"

Chamber Of Chills #6
"Where There's A Will!"
September, 1973

Steve Skeates: Writer
Wayne Muromoto: Artist
Frank McLaughlin: Inker
Jean Izzo: Letterer

The flames from the ceremonial fires and the glow of the full moon
combine to cast forbidding shadows, but what catches the eye is the knife
held in one hand.  A head made of clay is before him, and the desire to
kill is upon him.  The blade sinks deep into the molded head, as the
wielder of the knife remembers what has brought him to this point.  The
three of them had left the city for a vacation in the Tropics, but why
had she insisted on bringing her friend along?  Did she want him as a
chaperone or was he the chaperone?

John had always managed to throw his money around, making him look cheap
in the eyes of Shirley.  Harvey chastened when he was thrown John's share
of the tab, while the girl looked at him with expectant eyes.  Harv was
far from being impressed, but grateful for the cash.  The grateful
feeling died when he saw them kissing each other goodnight.  John had
wanted both of them to leave him alone for the night, but promised to see
them in the morning.  Even without him there, Shirley couldn't stop
talking about their absent friend, and refused Harvey when he offered her
another drink.  With the girl in her room, Harv had the moon all to
himself, and enough time to regret what he had lost when John entered
their lives.

A mumbling sound catches Harvey's ears, and he enters deeper into the
jungle, where he sees an old man practicing voodoo.  The elderly man
doesn't want an audience, but Harv has some money to pay for his
admission.  After hearing what he needed to get rid of his friend, Harvey
buried the old man with his own hatchet.  The rites begin with John's
name being chanted over and over, and tomorrow, Harv would learn how well
it went.

The following day finds John moaning in bed with a fever, but he puts it
off as it being hot in the Tropics.  They go together for a swim, with
Harv wondering how long it would take for John to head for the morgue.
The soon-to-be dead man is ready for another dip, but Shirl is in a
reading mood.  As their vacation comes to an end, John has had the time
of his life, and promises to remember his friends in his will.  Back in
the city, it would be a few days before Harvey would be seeing John

They find John in bed, and in a grumpy mood.  After Harv gets him some
coffee, he's convinced them that if he dies, he rather do it in peace.
As they leave the flat, Shirl confides in Harvey how outside of him, she
loves John most of all.  Now in his apartment, Harv is ready to get rid
of his competition, and sinks the blade into the clay head once more.
John's body is found by the maid, and the competition for Shirley's
affections is over.

It's been one month since it all began, and now Harvey sits with Shirl
for the reading of the will.  The lawyer admits that this particular will
is unusual, but perfectly legal.  John Coburn had practically spent his
entire fortune, but he left Shirley with what little money he had left.
For Harv, the lawyer reads how his client felt that he never really
understood him, and reads what Coburn has left for him.  His one
remaining possession... his curse.  A hand which held a knife becomes a
fist which slams down on the table.  As one hand reaches for his heart,
the other claws for the will.  Shirl watches as Harvey begins to change,
as the growl grows from within his own throat.  The hands and his mind
have become more bestial in nature, with this comes a final
understanding.  Even as he crashes through the office window for the
outside world, Harv knows why John Coburn didn't want to see a doctor.
Shirley watches the retreating figure growing smaller in the distance,
but even she can see that Harvey has become -- a werewolf.  It was a
killing for love, not for money, but he had to be there for the reading
of the will. 

Steve Skeates has written stories for Aquaman, Blue Beetle, Creepy, and
Plastic Man.

Wayne Muromoto is credited by the Grand Comics Database as "Wayne
Muramoto" and this is his only pencilling credit.

Frank McLaughlin has inked for D.C., Marvel, and other companies.

Jack Russell, the Werewolf By Night first appeared in Marvel Spotlight
#2: "Night Of Full Moon -- Night Of Fear!" (February, 1972) by Roy
Thomas, Jean Thomas, Gerry Conway, Mike Ploog, and John Costanza.

Brother Voodoo first appeared in Strange Tales #169 (September, 1973) by
Len Wein, Gene Colan, Dan Adkins, Glynis Wein, and John Costanza.

Steve Chung
"Where There's A Review!"