Sow The Wind, Reap The WhirlwindbyJAMESBJOHNSON©
ALL CHARACTERS ARE ADULTS.
SOW THE WIND, REAP THE WHIRLWIND.
The kids loaded the Caravans with their tools and ropes, after destroying all the Confederate burial monuments in the Old Sylvan Abbey Cemetery. The project was for extra credit. Their professor loathed the South. He was from New England. He stayed behind to wait for them. He had a Halloween party to attend. He didn't come right out and explicitly offer extra course credit to destroy a cemetery but he made it clear that grades are sensitive to subjective considerations.
A couple of the students were black, three were girls, the rest were white boys, all from the local college.
Admiring his work, one student laughed, "I'd love tuh be here when them crackaz see what we done." One of the girls pressed her body and lips against him. "And I wish they could watch what I'm gonna do to you in a little while." She giggled and groped his crotch with a hungry hand.
Another girl said, "Let's go, this place creeps me the fuck out!"
The third female sat in her van applying make-up and contacts when she felt a hands press against her ribs then move down to her abdomen, caressing it with a circular motion, like lovers do. She smiled, thinking it was her boyfriend.
"I was thinking you'd want to go home first!" She giggled.
Silence, and lips pressed against her neck, was the response she got. She closed her eyes and smiled, then glanced in the rearview mirror but saw no form reflected in the glass but her own. She lowered her eyes to her waist; the light in the van was dim but she plainly saw a man's broad hands lying on her stomach.
She then slowly turned her head and saw the hands attached to muscular arms and a strong body missing a fair piece of its face. For a long moment her large, calf-eyes absorbed the scene without a trace of thought. But moments later her friends observed her, screaming and running aimlessly outside the van. There was no one in her van.
Her lover and friends loaded her in to a different van where two of her companions were making out and groping each other; she ignored them and looked out the window, listening to the rumble of the approaching storm. Outside the warm breeze moaned across the empty cemetery. The boiling air flowed through every tree, fingering every leaf and branch and furrowed bole, forgetting none.
The breeze soon became wind, plucking off leaves and limbs. First whispering and cooing through the wood like a lover's sweet lies, then roaring like the surf before a gale. The wood became a din of screeches and screams and pathetic groans. Scud flew across the sky like puffs of cotton.
The haunted girl watched the thunder and lightning collide and fight like desperate gladiators. A close strike collapsed an old oak across the lane at the entrance. "We're trapped," she thought. The others walked over to the tree to assess the problem.
The rain started as mist but seemed peculiar to her for being pink, then rose, as the droplets congealed into gelatinous globs that formed on the glass and metal, and jiggled in the wind.
In the distance she heard the rain moving toward the cemetery like skirmishers feeling for the enemy's battle-line. The rain fell with larger drops that looked like scarlet Red Hots, then grew to the size of crimson jelly beans, maybe it was blood red hail, she wondered.
She thought it sounded like hail. It was hail. It was hail that looked like red croquet balls. The lovers, in the van with her, rose up, opened the door and fled, the girl frantic to pull her jeans up and fasten them. She lost her balance, fell, and didn't rise after a large hailstone hit her head; her companion was laid low, too. As were the others out in the open. It was as if artillery had fired grape-shot at them point-blank.
The girl in the van lay on the floor hiding, and covered herself as best she could. The hail destroyed the windows and bruised her arms. The wind sounded like an army of tortured, tormented souls looking for a path out of the grave.
The sky turned the color of rubies just before the whirlwind struck. It noise was deafening; the wind lifted the van, dropped it, flipped it, and pushed it over, and over, across the cemetery. Then it stopped. And after an hour the rain lightened to a drizzle, then a mist that became a heavy shroud of coral hued fog at dawn. The girl lay on the ceiling beneath the cargo.
Then she fell out of the van, stood, and walked around the dismal scene; it looked like photos of Gettysburg carnage. Trees down and broken, dead bodies all about, hung in the trees, impaled onto broken limbs. Not much survived the whirlwind.