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Rated: 18+ · Fiction · Sci-fi · #2290932
The sentence in bold is a prompt from my list that I used to inspire this one.

Eating your neighbors tends to bring down property values. Having learned this shortly after arriving on this world, the Famishams had found a unique solution. Door to door solicitors were found to be a nuisance to them and apparently their neighbors.

“The problem is attracting such beings so they can be lured inside as needed,” said Rumbleton, the patriarch of the extended family at their first family meeting after moving in to yet another new community.

“They tend to come in fits and starts, as well, my love, so we must figure out a way to avoid the feast or famine situations we’ve encountered elsewhere,” Hungria, his beloved wife mentioned.

“Why don’t we order a couple of large freezers online and harvest all that come our way even if it’s more than we need immediately,” suggested Grumbledore, their eldest son.

“I’m not a big fan of food that’s not fresh,” piped up Heavers, the grandfather as he made a disgusted face.

“Nonsense, Heavie, you’ll eat anything you can find! Roadkill, the odd rotting corpse. Food is food, hunnybuns!” his wife Burpeous reminded him.

All the other family members threw out suggestions, but Rumbleton liked the freezers idea.

“Who can do it discreetly and on the dark web?” he asked.

Starrvena jumped up, offering to do it immediately. The family was aware she knew the dark web like the back of her hand, so it was settled. In no time at all, the appliances began to arrive. Unfortunately, they all arrived at once, attracting the attention of their new neighbors.

The Lawsons and the Tierneys, the closest ones, arrived at their door just after the freezers were taken inside and set up in the basement of the modern glass and stone mansion.

“Welcome to the neighborhood, we’re the Lawsons!” said the yuppie pair.

“Yes, glad to meet you, we’re the Tierneys” added the older couple.

“Can I help you with something?” asked Rumbleton dismissively as he kept them outside on the steps. The two couples looked at each other.

“You must be a hunter,” Mr. Tierney ventured brightly.

“What makes you say that?” asked Hungria, coming to her husband’s side.

“The freezers we saw you carrying in. Usually necessary when you get wild game, especially large animals,” Mr. Tierney stammered.

“We have a large extended family that must be fed, so it just seemed logical to prepare,” Rumbleton told him.

“I see,” said Mrs. Lawson uncertainly.

“How many are in your family?” Mr. Lawson asked.

“Are you a census taker or some other government agent?” inquired Grumbledore politely as he joined his parents.

“No... why do you ask?”

“Because unless you are, we are not required to answer any of your questions,” the son replied still politely.

The neighboring couples quickly got the broad hint and scattered back to their homes. The Famishams watched them go.

“Will they stay away, do you think, Dad?” asked his son.

“Who can know what humans will do, we’ll have to see,” his father replied.

They retreated into the house and locked the doors. The tinted glass on the windows was one way to prevent nosy neighbors. Something the Famishams had learned the hard way.

The very next day, the solicitations began. The first one, a vacuum salesman was quickly invited in. It had been some days since the family had eaten. More soon followed and the freezers came in handy.

“Can you believe those people? They never go out for groceries, ever!” Mrs. Tierney said over the fence to Mrs. Lawson.

“What do you think they eat?” Mrs. Lawson wondered.

It wasn’t long before the Famishams made a big mistake. A pair of policemen in full dress uniform showed up at their door, soliciting for the Police Benevolent Fund. They were naturally invited in.

After a few minutes, shots were heard firing inside the house. The neighborhood was agog, as squad cars showed up and the house was surrounded. When the officers broke in, all they found was two of their own, babbling incoherently with smoking guns in their hands.

“I tell you! I don’t know what they are, but I know they ain’t human,” one was heard repeating over and over while he was loaded in an ambulance.

“They vanished, that’s all I know. One minute they were there, mouths open like they were ready to eat me! The next, after I drew my gun, they were gone!”

When the police began looking for evidence that the family had even been there, all they found were multiple freezers, all of which were empty.

762 WORDS 2/19/2023 {size}
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