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Spinetinglers // The Return of the Pumpkins

It must be Halloween time again because Little Billy is out smashing pumpkins. To Little Billy, seeing those pumpkins out on his neighbors' porches means SMASH time.

Each year, he waits until everybody has gone inside and it is really dark outside. He then begins smashing! Not a pumpkin is spared. Little Billy does not sleep until all the pumpkins in his neighborhood lay smashed on the ground. There has not been a single Halloween that he has skipped this tradition.

That might not be the case after what happened this Halloween.

It was THE night and Little Billy was ready to go out smashing pumpkins. He waited like always for it to get dark and everybody to go inside for the night. While Little Billy was getting ready, there was something strange going on in the neighbors' front yards. The pumpkins were having a meeting! They had heard about Little Billy smashing the pumpkins every Halloween.

One pumpkin shrieked, "My cousin was smashed, and I want to get back at that kid."

Another pumpkin replied, "That's an ingenious idea! After Little Billy smashes us, we'll come back to life and haunt him while he's sleeping."

On Halloween night, Little Billy uttered, "Well, it's time to do my usual smashing." So, he went outside and started smashing. He came back smiling as he crawled into bed. "Boy, I did a good job tonight," thought Little Billy as he fell asleep.

While Little Billy was asleep the smashed pumpkins took a new breath of life. As soon as they were back to one piece they shouted, "Let's get him." So they went off to Little Billy's house. They crept in really quietly and sat on the floor.

One pumpkin whispered, "You guys wait here while I scare him. After he wakes up, all of you guys act like ghosts of our smashed relatives. Okay?"


The one pumpkin crept up to Little Billy and yelled, "BOO!!!"

Little Billy jumped out of his bed and landed on the floor.

The pumpkin shrieked, "I am the ghost of a pumpkin past that you smashed. I have come to haunt you for the rest of your young age. I will not hurt you if you don't hurt any more of my relative pumpkins. My friends have come to help me scare you. Don't think you are dreaming because you aren't!"

Little Billy woke up laughing because he thought he was dreaming. Just to be sure, he rolled out of bed and got dressed. He went outside and found one more pumpkin to smash. Little Billy laughed all the way home thinking about his dream. He climbed back into bed.

As soon as he fell back asleep, all the pumpkins crawled on Little Billy's stomach. Little Billy woke up in a panic. He was paralyzed with fear. Something was holding him down. The pumpkins were all around him, sitting, standing, holding him down.

He cried, "Why are you doing this to me?"

"Because you smashed one of our relatives, and I said I wouldn't hurt you if you didn't hurt us anymore. But you didn't believe me," the head pumpkin remarked.

Little Billy begged, "Give me one more chance."

" All right, we'll spare you, but you'd better not hurt any of our relatives again. As a matter of fact, we'll leave you something to remember."

All at once, all the pumpkins jumped on Little Billy's chest. When they got up, there was a huge orange pumpkin tattooed on his chest. The pumpkins happily went away.

The glow of the jack-o-lantern tattooed on his chest reminded Little Billy that his smashing days were over.

Ghostly clues finger black-hearted murderer

Marc, 10, is a sixth-grader at St. Paul's School in Clearwater.