Our house was packed with relatives because the whole family had flown in for the holiday. We were all chattering and frolicking about when Father came back home. He had gone out and killed a big one. Bigger than anyone had ever seen-- in our house, anyway. It was so big, he nearly had to drag it home behind him. Everyone marveled at it and admired it. Mommy took it and chopped it and cleaned it and dressed it. When she threw it in the oven and cooked it, its savory aroma filled everyone’s nose.
In the evening, we all gathered around for the feast. Before eating, we gave thanks because we all had so many reasons to be appreciative; good food, family, friends, a warm house, and, most of all, our lives. Years ago, our ancestors were hunted and killed in tradition of this very day, but now, we were the hunters... and the humans were the prey. After saying grace, we gobbled and pecked away furiously at our plates, filling our beaks with the delicious meal we were ever so grateful for.
Hannah was setting the table when the phone rang and she rushed to answer it, hoping it was her friend.
"Oh hello Hannah. Happy thanksgiving. Hope you're having a lovely day. Is Jenny available?" Karen asked breathlessly.
"Yes. Just a minute." Hannah answered and took the phone to the kitchen. "Here mum." As she passed the phone over, she whispered 'Karen' and her mum excitedly grabbed the phone. Being a foster carer, they all knew how important Karen, the social worker's, calls were.
"Yes definitely. Yes. That's great. Yes don't worry. I'll have it done in no time. Yes. Great. See you soon." Hannah felt a little rush as she listened to her mum.
"Tell me. Tell me." She said as soon as her mum pulled the phone away from her ear.
"A little boy is in need of some emergency care and Karen is bringing him over soon. He might not stay long, but he's here for this weekend definitely as it's thanksgiving and all. So no time to waste. I've got to get the bed ready."
"I'll do that mum. You get on with dinner."
Hannah said whilst walking towards the door.
"Thank you hun." Her mum called out behind her.
Hannah loved helping her mum and she quickly made up the bed with the blue sheets and pillows. She placed a blue lamp on the chest of drawers and then decided to put one of her teddies on the bed for him.
As she finished, she heard a knock on the door and swept a quick glance around the room and then made her way down. She looked at herself in the mirror and patted her hair as she walked towards the living room door. She knocked lightly and walked in after hearing her mum calling her through. Her eyes fell on the young boy and she smiled as she greeted everyone. 'He's adorable," she thought to herself. He was looking at her with wide grey eyes and he had a thumb in his mouth.
"Hello Hannah. Meet Charlie. Charlie, this is Hannah." Karen said.
"Hello Charlie." Charlie slowly took his thumb out and after several seconds, whispered 'hello.' As Karen took out papers, Hannah took out the box of toys and sat down to build a tower with the lego. 'Would you like to help me Charlie?' She asked, hoping to break the ice. He looked at her and then the toys and then at her again, then making a decision, he walked straight over and began to play. Karen gave her a thumbs up and her mum smiled at her proudly.
As Karen stood up to leave, several minutes later, they heard the sound of breaking glass from outside and Karen ran to the window. She quickly ran to the front door making sure it was locked as she instructed Hannah to take Charlie upto the loft. The loft had a pull out staircase that could be locked from inside that could keep them safe in an emergency Karen ordered Jenny to call the police and go upto the loft.
"Karen come up with us." Jenny ordered as she picked Charlie up. He was still sitting watching Karen running about. His wide eyes showed fear and he was sucking his thumb whilst rocking.
"No Jenny. I will keep talking and stalling him till the police arrive. I have no idea how he found out. I am really sorry. "
"Karen..." The thumping on the door got Jenny moving and she ran upstairs with Charlie whilst dialling 999 from the mobile. Hannah had already pulled the steps down so Jenny ran straight up and handed Charlie to Hannah. She turned back and pulled the steps up and locked it. She prayed Karen was safe whilst giving details on the phone and cuddled upto the children, hoping to comfort them. Hannah tried to distract Charlie with the toys but he was terrified and wasn't responding. Jenny took Charlie into her lap and put an arm around Hannah, whispering to them that everything was going to be ok. They were safe. The sounds of shouting and banging could still be heard so it was hard to feel safe, but Jenny kept whispering to them whilst she kept the phone glued to her ear, needing someone to tell her everything was going to be ok as well. After what seemed like an hour, but was just a few minutes, a siren was getting closer and Jenny tried to get the children to focus on that rather than the noise downstairs. She then realised that the intruder must have ran away as she could no longer hear noises from downstairs and sighed in relief. She related this information to the operator, who told her to stay in the loft till the police officers came up as they were aware of where they were hiding but would have to check the house and surroundings before letting them out. She focused on the children again, hugging them to her as she imagined Karen explaining everything to the police, some checking around the house, some inside. She remembered the food was in the oven and was probably going to go in the bin. She wondered what she had in the freezer to make a quick meal but couldn't focus properly as she started wondering why the police weren't coming to get them. She hugged the children again needing to feel them close to her as a chill lay low in her belly. She looked at Hannah who had silent tears rolling down her cheeks and she realised her face was wet too.
"Jenny? This is Officer Baker. Can you open the latch please?" A voice called out from below and Jenny stretched to unlock it. As the Officer pulled down the steps, Jenny asked Hannah to hold onto Charlie whilst she went down first and then she would reach up for him. The Officer helped them all down and took them into Charlie's room. Jenny turned to ask questions and the Officer looked at the children and took Jenny out, whilst another officer came to stay with the children. Hannah realised she had some toys in her hands and placed them on the bed for Charlie who was looking at the teddy. She brought it closer to him and he looked at her before reaching out to hold it. Once it was in his arms, he hugged it to his chest and put his thumb back in to his mouth. Hannah sat closer to him and he slowly inched a little closer till eventually, he sat in her lap. The sound of Jenny crying, came through the door and Hannah felt tears over spilling again. Charlie settled in deeper and Hannah quickly wiped her face and eyes. By the time, Jenny walked back into the room, Charlie had fallen asleep and Hannah felt her composure crumble. Her mum hugged her and they sat like that till Hannah felt calmer.
"Honey, we're going to have to go somewhere, but through the back door. When we go down, please... just look straight forward towards the door, ok?" Hannah nodded and Jenny lifted Charlie and they started to make their way down. There was a police officer in front who stood aside to block the scene but Hannah saw glimpses of blood on the floor and as the police officer moved forward, she couldn't help but peep from the corner of her eye and saw a white sheet on the ground and knew Karen was under there. As she quickly looked away, her tears started falling again and Jenny put an arm around her shoulders and pulled her towards the door.
Jenny couldn't help looking too and she felt guilty for leaving Karen downstairs. If only she had pushed her up the stairs or been more forceful, Karen would still be here. Even though deep down she knew Karen would have stayed down hoping to calm the situation, the guilt still wrapped it's slithery feeling around Jenny's heart and squeezed it. From that day onwards, thanksgiving became a day with much more to be thankful for with the hint of sadness outlining it.
After the apocalypse, renegade hordes of fake-tan polo players rode long legged ponies through the streets using polo mallets to whack decapitated heads. They rode through abandoned avenues, weed ravaged by-ways and on out into feral countryside. Their seasoned mounts trampled seedlings and sod like buffalo herds grinding grassy, Midwestern plains. The men kept their chins tucked and their white and red helmets securely strapped. Post apocalyptic polo was a serious game played by somber, ex-gentry who gave no quarter and took no prisoners. Whoever fell behind, got left behind. No residuals were awarded to families of the fallen.
The polo riders swung their mallets with acuity. Any orphaned skull was fair game to be pursued with gusto. Their horses frothed at their bits as wild manes became entangled with reins. Little boys in ragged, white undershirts and sun lighten hair watched the cavalier riders from behind mature elm trees that lined forgotten boulevards. Visions of envy danced in their young, sky-tinted eyes as the riders kicked horse belly with silver spurs strapped to high-shined, English boots.
Abruptly, at the end of an unkept park pasture, the players rode up on an old cemetery. A battered head with it's esophagus trailing was cracked high into the air, over an iron fence, landing with a dull thud in the middle of a cemetery. It rolled to a stop against a crumbling headstone.
The horsemen pursued the head, working their mounts around tombstones and ricocheting the skull off marble and granite monuments like a snooker ball. This play occupied their focus for a long time. Long enough for a scant number of spectators to spontaneously gather. Their hollow eyes grew wide at the garish spectacle. If any of the onlookers took sides, they didn't outwardly show it. The game of ‘head polo’ continued into the early evening, splattering almost every gravestone with bloodstains. No one saw it happen directly, but a player and his horse collided with a tombstone and went down, followed by another.
The still mounted players began viciously attacking the dismounted ones, striking them with their grim mallets. They continued to mindlessly attack each other as more riders went down. The graveyard seemed bent on claiming its own victory. The apocalyptic polo player's soon dwindled in number. The sick, mallet cracking sounds lessened. Soon all the riders lay dead amongst the stone markers, the cemetery lawn awash with ebbing blood, as their steeds wandered off to graze.
The loosely gathered spectators stood mute. Their boney hands grasped the iron rod fence surrounding the burial grounds. Then almost as if acting as one, they entered the hallowed grounds and began dressing out the bodies of the fallen polo players, removing entrails and dismembering arms and legs, leaving the heads where they lay. The hungry spectators then took the spoils back to their hovels and basements and cooked the delicacies in a feast of thanksgiving.
Jabo felt very thankful indeed. He was about to dig into a Thanksgiving dinner, and he had a brand new big screen TV and Playstation 5 waiting for him at home. Best of all, his new TV and console he received for free - thanks to his retail job and knowing how to get past cameras and security, he was going to enjoy his holiday.
Jabo led grace with his extended family, saying some things he didn’t believe about working hard and being thankful for the blessings that come from it. Jabo thought about how hard he worked to get what he wanted by taking things without being noticed, then he grabbed a plate and began putting some of his seasonal favorites on it. He grabbed some white and dark meat from the turkey, a big helping of mashed potatoes and gravy, and a delicious mix of chicken, herb and turkey stuffing. And that was when he stood before the cranberry sauce.
“Hard pass.” Jabo thought to himself, not being a fan of cranberry sauce. Before he could proceed to the desert section of the Thanksgiving spread, a hand made entirely of cranberry sauce came out of the bowl and grabbed his neck.
“No one else can see this, but this is very real.” A menacing voice echoed in his head. “I can read your thoughts, so think back your concerns if you don’t want to sound like an idiot by looking like you’re talking to yourself.”
“Who are you?” Jabo thought to his tormentor. The cranberry sauce hand held a firm grip on Jabo’s neck.
“Think of me as the Thanksgiving Ghost of the Present.” The voice thought back. “You have been a naughty boy Jabo, and if you want me to leave you alone you have some things to return that don’t belong to you. But first I have to punish you. Eat all the cranberry sauce right now!”
“I refuse!” Jabo thought angrily. “I already have to return the things I rightfully claimed, I will not eat this crap!”
“Very well then, I will choke the life out of you, and your family will find your corpse sprawled out on this table with your face planted in the cranberry sauce. You will eat this sauce no matter how this plays out.”
“Fine!” Jabo shot back in his head, and he took the bowl and quickly ate the cranberry sauce to get it over with, feeling sick to his stomach once he was done. So much for enjoying the rest of his food - he no longer had an appetite.
“Excellent!” The spirit jeered in Jabo’s head. “Guess you have some hard work returning stuff to get to. But first, that dog food over there in the corner looks yummy. Go eat that next.”
“Are you kidding me?” Jabo bellowed out loud, his family all staring at him. Jabo gave a nervous laugh and wave, then they all went back to their meals. Jabo noticed a knife made of dog food coming out of the bowl towards him.
“OK, OK!” Jabo thought to the spirit, proceeding to the dog food bowl. Jabo quickly ate the wet salmon dog food when no one was looking his way. Jabo felt like he was going to hurl, but he was afraid of what the spirit would do to him if he did. He thought about how no new, free electronics were worth this torture. He just wanted to be done with this and start living the honest life that was being forced on him. “Are we done now?”
“Let’s keep looking around, there might be more yummy things to eat. It is a holiday after all, and you are so good at sneaking these foods without being noticed.” The spirit replied. “How does it feel to be working hard to keep this food down, without your family noticing? Bet you will work hard the right way from now on. Happy Thanksgiving Jabo - here’s to a banner year coming up for you!”
Thanksgiving horror story
That turkey, she could taste it in her mouth even before she had put it on her plate. The dining room smelled scrumptious with the aroma of Thanksgiving dinner. The whole table was filled with dishes of stuffing, cranberry sauce, green beans, and mash potatoes. But this story isn’t about a perfect thanksgiving. No oh no that is much too boring this is a story of murder despair and agony. It all started with that dinner the plate was filled and suddenly her mom got up.
“I saw something... outside,” She said quietly. They stared out the window. There were rumors going around that strange people were roaming the streets and several house alarms had gone off and people had gone missing. But with warm and full bellies on Thanksgiving, no one felt afraid.
“It’s nothing,” Her uncle reassured and they continued. After the mouth-watering dinner, they decided to go outside to walk.
“We have glow bands!” An aunt shouted, and soon everyone had glowing rings and were bundling up to go outside. She stood in the doorway, her cousin outside talking with her. It was so dark that she could only see her cousin’s light. Then suddenly she felt a strong wind, her eyes watered and looked down. When she looked back up she saw her cousin’s light but suddenly it just...went out, disappeared. Then a minute later she heard a faint scream.
“Mom! Mom!!” She called. Her mother, Jen, came running out.
“What? Where’s Kate?” She asked
“She...She just disappeared I just heard a scream, I think they took her!”
“Something’s out there I know it. Come inside we are going to hide.” She turned taking her mother’s hand and walked inside. Soon all the cousins Aunts and Uncles were inside and in the basement with anxious faces. Some people were asleep, but others were awake and attentive, then they heard heavy footsteps, uneven limping.
“Jen? ’You in there?” Said an unfamiliar voice.
“Yes, they all are, “She responded in a strange tone. Suddenly the basement door opened. and she saw a dozen men dressed in black. People screamed then screamed louder. They entered the basement.
“What are you going to do with us?” A cousin screamed. The room quieted.
“Why that is simple! You see our master,” he spoke the last word shakily with fear, “Well, he eats bones or as he prefers, flesh spoils too quickly. So we must use some people to feed him. And your mother here, She has kindly helped us over the past few months. Now everyone line up now! No doubt you will die after this, but let’s hope you die quickly, most don’t though. All right! We will let you choose. Your spine or your femur. Which one?” She tried to crawl away. There was a closet just 3 feet away. She slipped in and slowly closed the door. Suddenly there was a scream, blood-splattered, and a spine on the floor. Then the closet door opened.
“Hello, little girl! You trying to hide? Don’t worry you can go next.” And her life flashed before her.
My people have been trapped in cages for too long. Shoved into reservations. Demeaned. Hated. Feared. And why? Because our ancestors didn't listen to the gods. They trusted those that should not be trusted.
My name is John. A boring name. A standard name. To blend in. But I don't want to blend in. To crawl on my belly and submit to the rule of ignorance.
Me and my brothers will destroy their fragile towers.
Today, Americans celebrate the day we saved them. We gave them food, hope, kindness. They gave us in return torment. They cursed us with the plague. Now the gods have made their own plague, and we are living amongst it. Humanity is being cleansed. There are rules, and those who do not follow are punished.
It is the end of days. The apocalypse. It has many names. But it all comes down to the same thing.
Me and my brothers, we will survive. We will live. We will walk on the corpses of the guilty.
And today, the tide will turn. The turkey will squawk. We sell our bracelets, our bars overflow with sad men. The Americans will feast on our gifts. It is time to take our gifts back. They were never theirs to take in the first place.
If our tribes had banded together back then, we could have driven away the settlers. They called us savages, Indians, they still call us these. But all along, they have been the savages. And we will prove that today.
We will end them.
With their own waste. Because we, the "savage" people, used all the resources Mother Earth gave us. And we will continue to do so. the wasted flesh and bone will rise, the garbage and trash filling the sea will also rise. The Waste will rise, and we will Waste modern society. The Americans are a weed, relentlessly sucking the milk from Mother Earth. They have made it clear that they cannot change. So we will change. We will use our ancient magic. Our tribes will band together. All of us that are left. We will fight for freedom. For happiness. For Mother Earth.
Witness, men, as the dead walk alive. As the plastic bags thrown into the sea choke the life out of humanity. As the snapped wishbones mend and slice like angry boomerangs. We have centuries of garbage on our side. It has been tossed, wasted, dumped, forgotten. Left in heaps. Today, these heaps will rise again. And while the humans produce pounds of leftovers and toss their scraps, we will come for them. We will use their trash against them.
That is the price you pay for your waste. If we had been left at peace, we could have continued our ways. Lived happily. But you have destroyed us. You have slaughtered our people in the name of your false god. You have stolen our land in the name of Progress.
Now Mother Nature is through with you. Her abandoned children, the people that you turned into waste, will come for you. We are not trash. We are The Waste, and we are about to waste your cities and your streets and your suburbias. We will make the world happy again. We will soothe Gaea's anger.
And it comes at your cost.
So brace yourself, false friends.
Your waste will destroy you.