Horror and Thriller Fiction posted April 29, 2014

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Part two of the story...

The Crypt of Hubbard Hayle: Part 2

by Dean Kuch

“What about Old Man Coleman's dogs, them mutts he keeps in the boneyard with him?” Tim looked like a kid who'd just got caught with his hand down his britches. He'd been trapped — like a big, fat juicy rat — without even realizing it.

“Oh, those hounds? They're long gone, he had to get rid of 'em,” I lied. “The town couldn't afford to pay him for their dog food anymore, so Coleman had to let 'em all go. We got nothin' stoppin' us between the gates, and Hubbard's crypt.”



The Crypt of Hubbard Hayle


~Part 2~




By the time we'd reached the rusty, doddering gates, the sun had almost given up for the day. An orange hue covered everything. Fluffy, billowing black clouds began churning, rapidly roiling in. We both detected the scents of rain and ozone in the air. Timmy shot me a worried glance.

“No sweat, Timster. We'll be outta' there faster than you can shake a stick at,” I fibbed again. I'd planned on making Timmy spend the night with me in the decrepit, crumbling crypt. I had to know — once and for all — if all the rumors about old man Hayle grabbin' kids from his creaky casket was true, or just so much bull crap. If it was, then Timmy was there for back-up.

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Hubbard Hayle had been a prospector during the great California gold rush of 1848. He up and left his farm in Ohio, lock stock and barrel, then made the arduous seven and a half month trip by sea to the West Coast, where he settled down in the relatively small town of San Franciso in the fall of 1849. At the time, a little over seven-hundred souls resided there. However, it began to grow quickly, swelling to a booming populace of over thirty-six thousand by 1852. He'd eventually gotten extremely lucky, hitting a mother lode near the American River at the base of the Sierra Nevada foothills. He cashed in his gold at the Exchange and Deposit Office on Kearny St., then made the trip back across portions of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, past South America, eventually ending up in Ohio, where he'd begun.

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Jebediah Lewton, 1853

Hubbard Hayle became a multimillionaire, running one of the most meticulously tended, profitable farms in Plattesville, Ohio. Most felt it was well deserved, this windfall fortune Hubbard had worked so diligently for. However, there was one in Plattesville, a railroad man by the name of Jebediah Lewton, who felt Hubbard had come by his fortune too easily. He vowed to bring him down, and bring him down old Jebediah did.

We'll get to more about that story another time.




Duh...Danny. I don't like this; I don't like it one bit!” Timmy was trying to chew on a piece of beef jerky and speak at the same time. Not a pretty sight.

“C'mon, Tim, my boy, what's not to like? We got our gear, and there ain't a grown-up in sight. You bring that copy of Penthouse magazine I told ya to grab from your old man's closet?” Timmy shot me a look then, one which conveyed confusion and fear simultaneously.

“Yeah, I got it. July issue, right? Redheaded chick in the centerfold, with huge fake boobs, and a flamin' bush that even Moses himself would be jealous of. It's in my bed roll. But how did you know...?”

I cut him off at the knees mid sentence. I didn't want to have to confess that I'd snooped around in his mom and dad's closet while he was blowing the butt trumpet day before yesterday. Old Timmy could stink up a morgue when he took a dump.

Besides, I was really partial to redheads.

While I maintained a brisk, steady pace on the climb up Harlan's Hill, Timmy's pace was not nearly as enthusiastic. He moved more like a snail in a wind tunnel across a floor filled with molasses, than a kid on the adventure of a lifetime. Maybe it was our differing perspectives on the task we'd set out to accomplish — going onto old man Hayle's vault and swiping something to prove to ourselves and everyone else in Plattesville that we'd been there — which caused us to attempt to reach our destination at varying speeds. Whatever it was — the extra weight he carried around constantly, or his trepidation on following through with our mission; I was forced to stop and wait for him to catch up several times.

“Geez, Louise, lard ass, get your finger out of it and let's keep a move on!” Timmy stopped abruptly, crossed his arms, then just stood and stared at me. Usually, insulting his weight spurred him into whatever action I wanted him to undertake, but we were dealing with a cannibalistic child eater and known pedophiles's vengeful ghost here. So — there was that.

“Let's go, move it or lose it, sister!”

He didn't budge; he just stood there with that smug Jimmy-face plastered across his mug again.

“I ain't going nowhere until you apologize to me.”

“Oh, I get it.” I attempted to use my vast knowledge of fourteen-year-old psychology against him — at least where it pertained to Timmy, and what got under his skin  — as I attacked his psyche and already bruised ego. “You're scared shitless, so you're gonna' make up any excuse to get out of your promise, ain't 'cha? I see how it is. You're just plain chicken shit!”

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I was completely unprepared for what happened next. Timmy let out a belching, bellowing warrior's yell, then charged me like a bull elephant protecting its turf. If I'd been warned somehow; if he would have given me some indication, I could have easily side-stepped him, and that would have been the end of it. But, he didn't, and I couldn't, so he hit me head-on. The force of the impact sent us both to the gravel-strewn pathway, and over the slight dip in the hill. We landed with a thud in a tangle of brambles and honeysuckle.

The blow knocked the wind out of my lungs, and I saw a side of Timmy I'd never seen before then. All those years of fat jokes, insults and degradation finally came to head there on Harlan's Hill. His eyes were blood red, and I saw something in those eyes that nearly caused me to toss my cookies.

I saw murder in those eyes.




High atop Harlan's Hill, deep in the bowels of a neglected and virtually forgotten cemetery, a crumbling tomb echoed with the sounds of fluttering leaves and brisk autumn breezes. Within its crumbling, dank and musty walls, something stirred from its prolonged slumber, something that defied all human logic or reason.

A lone field mouse drew closer to its nest of newborns within the decaying concrete and mortar shelter. Rising up on her hind legs, she jutted her nose into the air to breathe in the scent of an unfamiliar danger. Startled by the peculiar odor, she scampered quickly back to her nest, then hunkered down for the night, and whatever else the darkness might bring along with it.

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Thanks to all the readers who've decided to follow along so far. I hope you enjoyed reading part two of the story, and I'm working diligently to bring you part three very soon.

Pleasant screams!
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