Porter and Parker were discussing the story of Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman. Chet asked them if they had recovered from the hayride that would not end…yet? Chet went on to tell them that Buddy had not only not been to school for the past 3 days but that his mother had reported him missing to the police. You may recall that Buddy was Gomez the Shy Ghost, in Parker’s dream of Halloween that she had on the return hayride after the visit to the Haunted House. Buddy was a short and spunky character! He was either your best friend or he would fight you at the drop of a hat… Buddy loved bobbing for apples! He was the bobbing for apples champ last year at the all school Halloween Party!

The mystery centered around what had happened to Parker and Porter and Chet at the Haunted House on the night of October 7th? The hayride to the event had been fun and they all had laughed and told ghost stories and enjoyed the smoke that was wafting from Doc Irvin’s pipe. Doc enjoyed cherry tobacco and he seldom missed an opportunity to either load his pipe with more smoking material or he would repeatedly relight it, as it seemed to loose fire every few minutes..or he was cleaning it and subsequently running pipe cleaners through the mouthpiece of the instrument or busily scraping the bowl in order to release tars and tobacco residue. Doc was the picture of calm and assurance and Porter wonders if the pipe contributed to his placid demeanor? Chet believed that they had entered a time portal or time machine when they entered the House and that what they perceived as reality was morphed by their experience. Porter felt that they should chalk it up to a fright, primarily by the talking Orange Head, which at first glance looked like a pumpkin, but in reality was a human head that looked artificial! Not only because it could speak…but by the palpable eeriness of what it said! The Head spoke of war and destruction while assuring those listening that it was the only hope for the survival of the human race… Parker recalled that the room in the Haunted House began to spin when she listened to the talking orange head…and that she felt disconnected from reality! The next ting that she knew she and Chet and Porter were outside of the House and she was extremely relieved to be so. Both Parker and Porter asked Chet what he had meant when he said, ‘He’s here!’ Chet responded that his mom, Thelma, had been a woman of the scriptures and had spoke to him about the Bible every day. Thelma had told Chet that an end time for the world as they knew it…was coming… She spoke of an antichrist and the seven last plagues of the wrath of God…and she spoke of Armageddon… Chet said that when he heard the Orange Head speak…that he was reminded of all that his mom had warned him of!

Mrs. K called the class to attention and informed them that recess was over and that it was time to go back to work. All of the sudden an alarm began to ring loudly! The three knew that by the sound of the blaring bell…it was the bomb drill! They began to file out…single file…and kneel against the painted block walls of the connecting hall. Mrs. K told each of the class to place their hands over their head and that they were too…Duck and Cover! It was 1963…and last year, at about this time of year there had been the Cuban Missle Crisis…and their moms had cried…and their dad’s had built bomb shelters…and the kids wondered how covering their little heads with their little hands would save them from…The Bomb…

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Porter woke up in is king size bed. He placed his feet on the floor and gingerly walked to the rest room. He thought about the strange dream that he had experienced and reminisced about Parker and Chet… Porter laughed when he considered that in 2 weeks he wold be 63 years old…as would both Parker and Chet during 2020…

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