High school football, oh such a special time of year. One of the biggest parts of fall in some communities, how can you not love the changing seasons and the cooler nights. Or maybe this is simply a sentimental moment for something that is beyond our own understandings.
From the 50
The lights burned down, their working buzz faded into the night. Jack Terrence gave the field one last look before he stepped through the gate, wrapped the chain into place, and then slipped the padlock into the chain ends. It had been a good night, Central High football did him proud in this last game, and he was ready to call the end of the season a success. There had been some loses early on, but the boys pulled through at the end of it all. They didn’t go all state or anything like that but he was proud to say that he took a bunch of misfits and made them into a cohesive unit. Maybe next year they might catch their break, stoke their fire. They have the potential to make it all the way.
“What are you two still doing out here?” he said. He caught Timmy Hollins and Sara Jenkins wandering toward the field. Probably didn’t expect to see him still here. The kids sometimes snuck into the field after a game. They liked to do what kids like to do. Made Jack chuckle, he remembered some times like that with Suzy, long before they were married. They had some good times out at the 50 yard line. “Hello? I know you two heard me. What’s going on?”
They had their backs to him. Timmy’s wrapped his arm around Sara’s waist as they walked away from the gates. They weren’t that far away or moving that fast, they should have heard him. “Kids,” Jack grumbled. Well, if they were heading away from the field he wouldn’t have to play dumb about it later if they got caught.
But then, he knew Timmy. It wasn’t like him to just ignore a direct question like that. A debate raged within him, not a hot and terrible debate. Should he confront them and maybe put the fear of an adult into them on the chance that they are heading out to the football field or should he leave them alone? Sure, kids will be kids but he did try to engage them.
As they walked away they stopped and started several times. He thought they might be waging a war of their own. Should they go out to the field or should they go home? Jack watched them for a few minutes as they continued their dance of stop and go, stop and go. “Pish,” he said. He decided to leave them be. They weren’t hurting no one anyway. Probably got spooked when they saw him at the gate anyway.
While he walked to his car lightning filled the sky. Strangely uncharacteristic, a clear night with a bright full moon and thunder was absent with each flash of lightning. Even then it wasn’t that it filled the sky. The flashes came from the main parking lot, where he had left Timmy and Sara a few minutes before. As fast as the lightning had come on, it left just as quickly. Jack’s car was in the teacher’s lot, all alone in the darkness of night.
His car fired up like a champ. Within moments the heat kicked in and began to clear the fog from his windows. He pulled out of his space and followed the path to the main lot. Timmy and Sara were still there, still doing their stop and go dance. They hadn’t moved from where he saw them before.
As his car’s headlights splashed across their bodies he noticed an odd movement. A flash of movement so quick it disappeared when he tried to focus on it. He’d talk to them when he drove up close enough, that was it. See what’s going on then and maybe even offer them a ride home.
“Hey, how’s it going?” He yelled out through his open passenger window. They didn’t turn toward him, their faces focused straight out in front of them. And then the movement again. Their faces or what should have been their faces pushed off their heads. Small legs dropped out underneath the fairs like ants carrying a large crumb.
Their faces dropped to the ground in a flash of light again. A focused beam that shone down directly onto Timmy and Sara’s bodies. The beam emanated from the belly of a saucer floating in the air above them. Successive bursts of energy from the saucer sent Jack and Sara to the ground. Their bodies crumpled and then crumbled to dust within the light.
But it was their faces, faces with tiny evil limbs growing underneath them, that added a new dimension to the crazy Jack saw. The bodies beneath the disembodied faces started to writhe and grow. Jack watched new bodies form underneath these faces. Blood and gore from the rapid growth dripped and flowed off the budding creatures.
As their faces turned, their line of sight focused directly over into the area where Jack watched them from his car. A keening screech pierced into the night. A sound that could originate from nothing human came from their throats.
The sound broke Jack free from the spell the spectacle wrapped him in. He slammed the car’s accelerator to the floor and left rubber on the pavement where his car used to be. He didn’t even look into his rearview mirror to see if they followed him.