As the medical examiner rolled over the male body lying in the street, it became obvious that all that was left was a human shell. Somehow his innards had been sucked dry. There were two puncture wounds a foot across on his chest and in the center there was a hole that look as if it had decayed into a gooey mess. Whatever had killed this young man was not human and everyone at the scene knew it.

Later, back at the station, the captain was ranting about what would happen if the press got ahold of the story. “The headlines will read, ‘Man Killed by Unknown Creature.’ What is even worse, the preliminary report by the M.E. indicates the man was killed by a spider bite – a rather large spider bite. In fact the damn thing has to be bigger than a German shepherd!” Not one detective in the squad room was laughing because they all knew it was true. Three of the detectives were at the scene and the rest were required to view the body at the morgue. No way was the captain going to be the laughing stock.

“Listen up,” the captain spoke in a loud voice that was never his style until now. “Next week is Halloween and I don’t want the kids out trick or treating unless we get this guy…Oh, hell, you know what I mean. We get this critter or else. This whole department is on high alert until this mess is cleared up.”

Mildred was pleased that her pet spider “Frank” had been able to feed on such a young man. He wouldn’t need to eat again for at least a week. Her experiment with growth hormones had been a total success and because of her nurturing, Frank did not appear to be aggressive with her. She was able to get a harness on her huge tarantula without a single hitch. It was if the spider knew he was going out for the hunt.

As the week went by, the police were coming up empty. It appeared as though whatever beast had murdered the young man had perhaps moved on, which pleased the captain no end. Halloween night came and there were no reports of any serious crimes except the annual throwing eggs at police cars and the such. The small town was quiet and all was well. The captain and mayor were satisfied the creature had indeed left the area.

A week later a report came in about a foul smell omitting from a retired professor’s house at the edge of town. The local Animal Control officer drove up to the quaint house and was almost overcome by the stench. He immediately called the police; Jeremy had no doubt that the smell was from a dead human body.

When the detectives responded, they waited for the M.E. to arrive before entering the house. With gas masks on, two detectives went in first after breaking down the locked front door. There were flies everywhere and loud scratching behind what appeared to be the basement door. The detectives drew their weapons while the most experience officer slowly opened the door inward only to be met by large, long hairy spider legs that were able to slam the door against the opposite wall while a huge spider pounced on the detective and faster than the eye could see huge fangs penetrated into the hapless officer’s chest. The second detective started shooting the spider with his .45 ACP until the clip was empty and the spider sank down dead. The first detective with the nasty, dead spider hugging him in death had to remove his bulletproof vest to get away from the spider’s fangs. Had he not been wearing it, there was no doubt he would also be dead.

The two detectives slowly descended the stairs only to find the hollow body of retired Professor Mildred Holloway lying on the floor in what appeared like a lab of sorts. It seems her pet spider could not wait longer than a week to feed because Mildred would not go out Halloween night. She was afraid all the police patrolling the area might harm her dear Frank.

The End

Short Story By: Mitt Winstead

Happy Halloween everybody!


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