Rings on Her Fingers is a scary story for kids about a grave robber who digs up a woman’s corpse and steals her jewelry. It is based on an old folktale, found in England and Ireland, called “The Thievish Sexton”. A version of this story was included in Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark.
One day, Florence Wyndham suddenly took ill and slipped into a coma. Despite all that the doctors tried to do for her, she eventually died. Her husband was heartbroken. She was buried in a small cemetery about a mile from her home.
In the middle of the night, a grave robber broke into the cemetery. He was carrying a lantern and a shovel. He began to dig her up. When his shovel eventually hit wood, he scrambled down into the grave and prised the coffin open.
Holding up the lantern, he looked at the corpse inside and saw two gold rings on the dead woman’s fingers. Taking hold of her cold, dead hand, he began trying to pull off the rings, but they were stuck fast.
He decided that the only way to get the gold rings was to cut off her fingers. Taking a knife out of his pocket, he sliced into the finger with the with the first gold ring and, to his horror, it began to bleed.
He heard a rustling sound and the woman’s corpse began to stir. Suddenly, it sat up straight in the coffin. The terrified man jerked backwards and accidentally dropped the lantern. He was left in complete darkness, crouched down in the grave, frozen in fear. Just then, he felt ten cold fingers around his neck.
The man let out a horrible scream and scrambled out of the grave as fast as he could. In a panic, he began running, not daring to look back. Blinded by fear and confusion, he had no idea where he was going. He just kept running through the pitch darkness.
In his terror, the man didn’t realize that he was fleeing in the wrong direction. He ran headlong over the edge of a cliff and fell down onto the rocks below. He fell on his own knife and it stabbed him straight through the heart. The thief bled to death at the bottom of the cliff.