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Rated: E · Short Story · Comedy · #2265643
Our Paranoral Research --- Not Good Research, but amusing.
         It was a frigid morning in July. Bren and I were spending a few days near the Forth of Firth for the fourth. It was the fourth and five and the other team had the ball. The rain was coming down in sheets --- the ones on our bed! As soon as we discovered that the wet sheets were white rather than yellow, we got up and got dressed. If the sheets had been yellow-wet, we'd have gotten up sooner.
         It had been a restless night. From the moment we hit the hay, we were both itching like crazy --- and I eas crazy as an itch. We had been kept awake by the cackling of witches. Or so we thought! We got up to chicken out. Oh, uh. I mean we got up to check it out. We kept very quiet as we crept into the library, wondering all the while, "Why don't publishing companies get arrested as bookmakers?" We felt cooped up as we walked down the narrow aisles.
         Suddenly before us, we saw a spectral apparition! It looked to be as light as feathers. Bren recognized the supernatural being first. They had once been neighbors.
         "That's a poultrygeist!" she hissed under her breath.
         Sure enough, the feathered fiend jerked its head toward us and heaved a heavy book about sighs at us!
         I sized things up instantly! Getting this wispy bird crispy wasn't going to be easy! I was afraid he'd fly out of our largest frypan. I was also afraid that he was a he. Hens are much more tender than roosters. I wanted desperately to capture this bird and give it to Bren. The question was, "Why?" After all, I was perfectly safe right where I stood. I stand for courage, honour, and integrity though! So, I did! I stood there and even applauded for those virtues. I didn't have to stand for long, though. There isn't much courage, honour, or integrity left in this bird-brained world.
         Having braved the fearfully feathered fiend and disovering new consonance, I turned to Bren and said sharply, "Go get 'er, Bren!"
         If looks could kill, I'd have just joined the paltry poultrygeist in the next world.
         I didn't want the spectral soup base to think we're rude, but how could I prove our friendliness to this ghost?
         The most reasonable way to become acquainted is to follow the lead of the other fellow; to learn his ways by observation. Since the bird had heaved a light book about heavy sighs, I chucked a book about steaks. It is critical in this kind of situation to throw in as many puns as possible, good or bad.
         The book passed right through the apparition's ghostly giblets! I suspected that chicken didn't have the guts to just take it on the beak!
         It slowly turned its transparent tenders toward us. I feared the wurst! Chicken ghosts are oft known to carry a large knockwurst in a hidden holster. This could be dangerous! If only I had a knife! And some horseradish!
         I glanced at Bren and could see the terror in her eyes. It was a reflection of my own eyes. I could see my face reflected, too! This fear was definitely not pretty! We had to get get away! Even that haunted hen was less frightening than the reflection in Bren's eyes!
         At my signal, we rushed at the poultrygeist en messe! That blasted bird had defecated in the diningroom!! It was too late to alter our attack. We slid in the devilish droppings all the way across the room! Caught off-guard, the feathered fiend had no time to turn transparent. It squawked as we crashed into it, still squawking about the crappy floor and the crappy puns!
         Knocked off its drumsticks, it crashed to the floor and slid in its own gravy out of the library and into the kitchen! Now, we had it where we wanted it!
         As I headed toward the butcher block, the chicken knew its goose was cooked! It was about to get the axe, and it didn't qualify for any unemployment compensation at all!
         I snatched the axe from the block and rushed the fiendish foul, which seemed to be in no hurry at all! I swung with all my might! I might have swung even harder if I hadn't been tired from sliding in all that goose-grease. Pardon. Chicken-grease. The poultrygeist started running around like... well, like a chicken with its head cut off. And it was! It ran up and down the room! It ran like a chicken possessed! It ran for every office in the state! (Only elected to two, though. Over-qualified for the rest.)
         Finally, it ran out of the kitchen and out of energy. I collected the carcass, put it lovingly into the stock pot, and stood quietly while Bren spoke a few words over the deceased.
         "Dearly beloved, we are gathered here to join this bird and this dressing in tasty, tender supper.
         "Marinade is a preparation not to be seasoned lightly. It was instituted by our Chef to both flavour and tenderize our food. It is an altogether honourable food treatment at any institution or hotel restaurant.
         "For this cause shall a man cleave off the head of a chicken and shall pluck and clean the rest of the chicken, that he may avoid getting plucked at the local fried chicken joint.
         "It is easier for a chicken to be placed into a pot than it is for a man's cash to pass from his wallet to the cashier.
         "Ashes to ashes, earth to earth, dust to dust. If we burn it, we'll still eat it, but only if we must."
         Who would be likely to burn it?
         A man.
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