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An Offering to the Pumpkin Patch

Updated on September 28, 2016
Dean Traylor profile image

Dean Traylor is a freelance writer and teacher. He is a former journalist who has worked on various community and college publications.

"“You know for a smart fella’ like you; you seem to have a hard time putting two and two together.”"
"“You know for a smart fella’ like you; you seem to have a hard time putting two and two together.”" | Source

“Yeah, I see it,” Toby said, “so what’s the big deal?”

Ray grinned: “You know for a smart fella’ like you; you seem to have a hard time putting two and two together.”

“You blasted, ever-loving, yokel,” Toby responded as he did a quick check of his gun’s chamber. “I knew I shouldn’t have given you a last request.”

“But you always give last requests,” he said. “Isn’t that what the cops say?”

Toby ruminated for a moment as he peered at his unusually gleeful hostage. Dude’s off his rocker, he thought. Even at gunpoint, his latest victim didn’t act like all the others. This one seemed to revel in the thought of being carjacked, robbed, and told he was going to die, execution style. Also, he was quick to answer his trademark “final request” for a place to die.

Toby peered out the car window at the pumpkin patch on the side of the road.

...Ray's grin gave him the creeps. It looked like a Jack O’ Lantern smile.

“Why a pumpkin patch,” he said. “I don’t get it. Everybody chose a park, a vista, the beach. You know, places that held great memories of their shortened lives. But a field of pumpkins? And they say I’m insane.”

Ray flashed that grin again. Toby always had the impression he was the “baddest” of them all; nobody and nothing could scare him. But Ray's grin gave him the creeps. It looked like a Jack O’ Lantern smile.

“Just get out the car, and let’s get this done.”

Ray obliged with Toby following close behind. They walked to the entrance and entered the field full of large ripe orange pumpkins. Strange, Toby thought as he glanced at them. They’re shaped like heads.

Ray started singing. It was in a tongue that Toby had never heard before. He wanted to tell him to shut-up, but this was part of the deal he had with his victims. They sang, chanted, or prayed. It wouldn’t matter. He had the bullets to dash those signs of hope.

Something else caught his attention. The sky grew dark and the wind began to howl. It sounded like whispered words. It sounded like his name.

“Okay, this is good place,” Toby said, unusually nervous. “Kneel down.”

Ray obliged his executioner.

“Any last words?”

"The sky grew dark and the wind began to howl. It sounded like whispered words. It sounded like his name."
"The sky grew dark and the wind began to howl. It sounded like whispered words. It sounded like his name."

“Why Toby James Wendell the Third, thanks for asking.”

Toby nearly dropped his gun: “How did you know my full name?”

Ray slowly craned his head: “I know all things, young fella.”

Toby fired, but Ray didn’t fall. He didn’t bleed. He rose and turned toward him.

“So, tell me Toby, any final words before they come and put you in your rightful place?”

For the first time, fear struck Toby.

“What’s going on Ray?” he squealed. “Are you an angel or devil?”

Ray smiled: “Names not Ray. You’ve probably heard of Jack, and I’m neither Angel nor demon."

“What the…?”

“Like I said,” he said. “You’re a smart fella. You have to put two and two together.”

Toby tried to shoot. But, his futile act was diverted by exploding earth. Toby saw a glimmer of orange and green flash before him. He saw the monsters' orange head and their evil, glowing grins.

One grabbed and wrapped him up in its vines. The other did the same. All the while, Toby’s head turned a bright orange. He struggled, but it was of no use. His body morphed until it was nothing more than vines.

Toby - or what was left of Toby – along with his captors fell back to the ground, looking no different from the other pumpkins in the patch.

The dark clouds above vanished and the wind stopped howling. It was another perfect day. Jack grinned and chuckled. He stood before the pumpkin that was once Toby.

“Like I said,” he said. “You’re a smart fella. You have to put two and two together.”

And with that, Jack laughed. His face contorted into the Halloween entity that now bares his name.

“Names not Ray. You’ve probably heard of Jack, and I’m neither Angel nor demon."
“Names not Ray. You’ve probably heard of Jack, and I’m neither Angel nor demon." | Source

Origin of Jack O'lantern

© 2014 Dean Traylor

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    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 2 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Now this is a Halloween story worthy of a Hitchcock movie. Yikes! Glad I was reading this while it was still light outside. Passing this on.

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