Story of a Suffering Soul’s Salvation

In the community of Layo of the province of Canchis during the 1960s, rumors were heard of the existence of a being that swam at night and hung around the community. At first, people did not give the idea much credence. They said it was mere gossip, until one day, one of the women went to light her stove very early in the morning to prepare breakfast, and found two fingers with blood belonging to a baby about 7 months old. Surprised, she ran to warn her neighbors, but they did not believe her. To test what she was saying, they immediately went to her house.

On seeing the bloody scene, the community members organized themselves and began to make night and day guards to catch that being. They spent 5 days and they found absolutely nothing.
The sixth day, a woman from another community (Qollapurco) arrived at the Layo community in the afternoon with tears, telling the residents that their baby of just 3 months had disappeared due to a lack of caution. On hearing this, the villagers organized again because there was another reason to find this condemned soul.

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They divided themselves into groups of 10 and headed towards a hill where there was lush vegetation. Near sunset and using flashlights and torches they found a machay (stone cave). When they entered, they saw a woman sitting there who had very long hair that covered all her face. Suddenly she got up and shouted so loud that the echo of her voice was heard in the mountains. Very scared, the comuneros ran in the direction of Layo to tell others what had happened in the cave.

The next day they returned to the place where they saw the woman, but this time more organized with sticks and ropes. Upon entering the cave they did not find anyone although they found blood marks on the floor.

They made the proper report in the police station because now everyone had to be more careful and protect their children. All the surrounding communities learned of what happened and grew more and more fearful.

One of the following days, a group of cattlemen who returned to the community herding cattle while mounted on mules, met a woman along the way who was sitting in the middle of the road. One of them got down and asked her, why she was so alone in this place. She did not answer. When they stood up, they realized that it was the same woman that everyone was talking about. She had very long hair and her head and feet were upside down.

Looking towards the other side, all the muleteers realized that she was a condeno, a soul condemned to wander the earth while suffering for sins. They got off their mules and with their sorreagos, their smoothers, they surrounded her and rubbed her repeating the following sentence: “God forgive you, blessed soul”, They scourged her so much that suddenly the woman became a white dove and flew away because at last her soul had paid for all of her sins and had been saved.

When the comuneros learned of what happened, tranquility returned to their lives

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