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The Empty Eyes Of The Scarecrow

The Empty Eyes Of The Scarecrow

 

By David Eveleigh

 

Copyright 2016 David Eveleigh

 

Shakespir Edition

 

Dedicated to Erik Larsen for telling me that I have no talent.

 

Efeu” is an open-source character created by David Eveleigh. She may be used by anyone, for any purpose, totally free of copyright, under the sole condition that the work featuring her is accompanied by this paragraph. Feel free to use her as you see fit, just make sure she doesn’t start using you.

I first met the Brock family in early 1934, before the war officially started. Alfred Brock was just a slip of a lad at the time and gifted with a bounty of youthful curiosity. During my subsequent visits to the New World, I always made sure to check in on him and his small clan. It was I who taught them the mystic arts and how to use them to ensure a good harvest. As little Alfred grew into a man, he became somewhat enamoured with me. I was flattered, of course, but explained to him how such a coupling was not meant to be. I think the meaning of my words sank in as he grew to an elderly gentleman and I remained a mere maiden. Still, a mutual respect remained and he often sought my expertise on matters which were beyond his mental capacity.

For example, he found himself confused on an issue of what defines us as people, our inner thoughts or our outer deeds? I answered him in favour of the latter, for it is our actions which shape the world, not our ruminations. A million good intentions are not worth as much as a single good act. So too are a thousand intellectual ideas not as valuable as one intelligent deed.

Let this be a warning to all who read these pages. Any society that places a high value on intelligence shall inevitably place a higher value on the mere appearance of intelligence. It will come to praise lofty-sounding but ultimately empty ideas more than intelligent courses of action. However, no thought can substitute a deed. For this reason, I should much rather see a nation of true Herculeses than false Platos.”

-Translated from Efeu’s private journals

 

There was no doubt about it, the scarecrow had moved.

Six hours had passed since Sissy and the other pledges had settled into the old Brock farm for the night. Three hours ago, the scarecrow had stood silently in the abandoned cornfield, silhouetted by the bright harvest moonlight. Scarcely one hour ago, it had been a sentinel near the barbed-wire gate. Now, as Sissy looked out the window to the barn, she saw that the protector of the field had disappeared completely. She turned away and paced nervously.

Once, this room had been home to a flock of sheep. Sissy almost suspected that, despite her education, she too was just another member of the herd. She had dreamed of being accepted into Alpha sorority. She wanted to be a sister so badly that she was willing to do any degrading thing that she was asked. At least, she thought that she was. Here it was Hell Night and her final hazing was to spend the night in the old Brock farm’s barn. If she could do that, then she would be an Alpha sister. But with each crawling hour, her feet grew colder. After all, they said that old Alfred Brock had been some kind of Neo-Nazi. They said that he had used the Thule Society’s secrets to ensure his farm’s prosperity. Sure, he was long gone now. But Sissy could not shake the feeling that the magic remained, that this entire decrepit land was somehow alive.

And there was no doubt about it, the scarecrow had moved.

The scarecrow which had worn a swastika armband. Even now, no bird dared to settle in the wild cornfield. But Sissy had dared. She was not a bird. Birds were free. No, she was a sheep spending a night in the barn. But not anymore. To hell with the sorority. To hell with every sorority. Sissy broke from the herd. She stretched her wings and opened the barn door.

And there it stood.

The silent guardian of the cornfield. The scarecrow with the swastika armband. Its empty eyes stared into her soul as it gripped a pitchfork in its gloved hands. Sissy screamed, a scream that was met with laughter.

From either side of the door emerged a respective figure. It took Sissy a moment to recognize them in the moonlight. Emma Lin and Keisha Goldberg, the Alpha sisters who had cooked up this little adventure. They reeked of alcohol as they giggled their heads off at Sissy’s expense.

“Real funny, you guys,” she said with boiling blood. However, before either of the sorority sisters had a chance to reply, the scarecrow’s hollow eyes flashed blood-red and the barn’s musty odour was overpowered by the bitter almond smell of Zyklon-B. The silent sentinel plunged its pitchfork into Emma’s back. She screamed in terror and agony as the monster twisted its weapon in her young flesh. Then, the screaming stopped and Emma’s corpse was tossed aside like a rag doll.

Keisha froze as the scarecrow fixed its eyes on her.

“Please,” she pleaded, “I don’t wanna duh-duh-die.”

She fell to her knees and prayed to the silent sentinel. But this graven image offered no salvation. No forgiveness. No mercy.

The prongs of the pitchfork found her throat. Keisha gagged and choked on her own blood. Her body twitched in death spasms, then became still.

Sissy was the only one left. A stupid lamb who had been led right to the slaughter. It was almost funny how she had once imagined everyone else as being a flock. She supposed that everyone did. Tears streaked down her face when she saw the irony.

“I’m not one of them,” she cried, “Please, I was going to leave. I’m…”

She gagged as her eyes fell on the two corpses.

“I’m not a sheep.”

The scarecrow stood still. Sissy could feel its red eyes probing her in body and soul. It lowered its weapon and pointed to the door.

“Th-thank you,” she said. She raced out as fast as she could into the night air. She alone had been spared from that walking holocaust. As she ran, she heard the death screams of the other pledges. The bleating of sheep in a slaughterhouse.

When the sun rose the next morning, the scarecrow stood silent and still in the abandoned cornfield. It had ensured the farm’s prosperity.

 

The End

 

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The Empty Eyes Of The Scarecrow

  • ISBN: 9781310705540
  • Author: David Eveleigh
  • Published: 2016-05-03 17:05:07
  • Words: 1112
The Empty Eyes Of The Scarecrow The Empty Eyes Of The Scarecrow