|Produced for:||Fantomen 14/1978|
|# of pgs:||32|
The story starts with a nightly scene from a ruined abbey in France where a group of people dressed in long robes hold a ceremony to ask the Lord of Darkness to stop a wedding from going through.
The Phantom has received a letter from Diana who is visiting France to attend her cousin Marie's wedding. Diana is concerned about her cousin and asks him to join her in France. After the wedding ceremony Diana tells that the groom Jean-Paul Laurant has received anonymous phone calls warning him from going through with the wedding. Marie leave the wedding reception to open a package that contains a block of ice with a devilish face. She faints from the shock. The Phantom and Diana attend to her and it stands clear that somebody has gone to great lengths to send the couple a gruesome wedding present.
The Phantom and Diana decide to stay a few extra days and follow the newlyweds to Jean-Paul's old castle that he recently inherited, Château de Vantellaine. Jean-Paul plan to open a hotel there. During the drive there on the winding mountain road somebody try to kill them with a rockfall.
At the castle they are meet by the family lawyer Lejeune and Mr and Mrs Defarge, housekeepers. Lejeune show them around the castle and telling them of the great parties held in the castle by a forefather, marquise Gernain de Laurant, whose oppresion of the locals led to an uprising where the marquise and his wife was killed. When Marie is left alone in a room, she sees a ghostly face looking at her through a window. When Marie retires to her room, Lejeune and Mr Defarge arrange for Marie to drink a sleeping potion, then carry her off to the ruined abbey nearby to perform a snake ceremony to her.
Marie wakes up and is scared out of her wits by the men in long robes and runs off. Outside she faints near the edge of a cliff, where she is found by her husband. The Phantom investigates the ruins and finds a doll used to perform black magic. It stands clear that something evil wants to scare of the new inhabitants of the castle. The Phantom, Diana and their friends relocate to another village nearby for a few days. Visiting the village of Vantellaine, the Phantom start to ask questions about the castle and discover that the castle grounds are used by a satanist cult.
Meanwhile, Diana has borrowed a bicycle to return to the castle to pick up Marie's wedding ring. When she has not returned for hours, the Phantom and Jean-Paul return to the castle. They discover that she has been taken prisoner by the satanist cult but falls through a trap door down to the cellar. While the satanists prepare to use Diana for their ghastly ceremony, the Phantom and Jean-Paul manage to get out of the cellar and find various artifacts that verifies that the castle is used by a group of devil worshippers. The Phantom interrupt the horrible ceremony and free Diana. Lejeune who is the leader of the cult disappear when the smoke turns into a devilish face that sinks over him. The cult members disappear in a panic. Outside they meet Marie who has brought villagers with her to help rid the castle of the cultists. Now the villagers are prepared the newlyweds with their plans to start a hotel in the castle.
- Marie, Diana's cousin
- Jean-Paul Laurant, the groom
- Julien Lejune, lawyer
- Mr and Mrs Defarge, housekeepers
- Charles de Gaulle Airport
- Abbaye de la mort noir
- Château de Vantellaine
- Cap Galeray
- There are times when the Phantom leaves the jungle and walks the streets of the town like an ordinary man.
This story has been published in the following publications:
- "Evil Forces", The Phantom #1835 (2019)
- "Pahan pauloissa", Mustanaamio 22/1978