Let’s Eat Grandpa!
By Jeffrey Bishop
Tell Time: 2 minutes 30 seconds
Scare Rating: 2/5 Ghosts
The Winscomb Family had much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. They had a warm, safe home and loving family with which to share the season. Everyone was in good health, although Grandpa’s heart attack in the spring had certainly brought a scare to their safe, almost-perfect world.
Mom had just finished setting the table, while Dad was busy carving the turkey feast. Part of his job, he was certain, was to also take frequent samples of the tender meat. “To make sure that it’s cooked well,” he pleaded to Mom as she scowled at him.
Robbie, 7, and Janie, 5, had helped with desserts and the bean salad, but Mom had put them onto making decorations from construction paper to keep them occupied and out from under foot. As final preparations were under way, it was time to press the two into service yet again.
“Kids!” she called out from the next room where she folded the napkins for each place setting. “Get Grandpa and Grandma. Let’s eat!”
The kids dutifully obeyed, barrelling up the stairs to the guest bedroom where the senior Winscombs had retreated. But as they set about their role, a strange trance came over them.
“Let’s eat Grandpa! Let’s eat Grandma!” the two chanted in that endearing accent common to youngsters. However, with glazed, red eyes and bared teeth in their salivating mouths, the elementary-aged pair were suddenly, decidely un-cute. It was plain that the entranced children had a gamier, older holiday meat in mind all of a sudden.
Robbie peeled off the path and headed to his room to retrieve his Jr. Scout pocket knife from his footlocker, while the younger Janie went to her bedroom for plates, forks and an eerily sharp serrated plastic toy knife from her play kitchen.
“Let’s eat Grandpa! Let’s eat Grandma!” the children continued chanting as they regrouped in the hallway and headed toward their grandparents’ room at the other end of the passageway.
“Let’s eat Grandpa! Let’s eat Grandma!” they repeated as they opened the door Across the room, Grandpa was laid out on the bed, snoring violently. Robbie raised his knife and headed to one side of the bed, while Janie clacked her knife against the plates toward the other.
“Let’s eat Grandpa! Let’s eat Grandma!”
As they closed in on dinner, Grandma rose out of the rocker near the window and reached into the candy bowl on the side table. From it, she scooped out a few small red items and popped one into the mouth of each of her grand-monsters.
“Have some commas, little ones!” she said lovingly. Grandpa woke up just as the youngsters came out of their trance. He reached out to pull the two into a warm embrace.
“I’m so glad you kids are having Grandma and me for dinner,” said Grandpa.
“You have no idea, Wilfred!” said Grandma wryly, before turning her attention back to the children.
“Just remember your commas,” she lovingly scolded them. “And respect your Grammar, too.
“Now, let’s eat turkey!”