There were so many dead bodies stuffed into Gram’s freezer chest that it was kind of like wandering through a cryonics lab. You know, one of those places where they turn rich old guys into Popsicles? Gram had been hearing odd noises from her cellar for a while now, and she was convinced it was this dying freezer she kept there. So my punishment for the day was to clean it out and stuff everything into these jack-o’-lantern leaf bags that Gram had been saving since who knows how many Halloweens ago.
In grandma land, even the contents of the freezer were way different than what I was used to. Agreeing on what a freezer should hold seemed to be the only thing my new stepfather and I had in common. But here, instead of meeting up with my best buds Ben and Jerry, I was finding nemo and his friends, wrapped up in white packages with writing on the outside so you could clue into whichever member of the magical forest had taken a hit and when.
I stuffed “Duck” and then “Venison” and “Walleye” into another one of the pumpkin bags. Man, those packages had been waiting to be set free longer than I had. Maybe the noises Gram had been hearing weren’t from the freezer. Maybe they were from the ghosts of all these dead things, plotting up some serious revenge.
By the time I reached the bottom of the frozen graveyard, Gram’s cellar was feeling a lot like one of those the-killer-is-in-the-basement places, where the stupid kid always ends up kicking it in slasher movies. only one big ice-covered box was left. I bent over the side of the freezer chest and tugged at the corner of the box. Not enough leverage—the thing was iced in place as if it had been gorilla-glued.
I hoisted my upper half deep into the chest and yanked again. No go. I leaned way over, hanging on to the edge of the freezer with one hand while I grabbed the box with the other. Then I got my Hulk on and gave one last mighty pull.
That’s when nemo and his friends finally took their revenge. Turned out the stupid box was heavier than I’d realized. I leaned too far and pulled too hard, and then the box broke free and I over-ended into the appliance of death.
As I was falling in, something rolled out of the box into the bottom of the freezer. the last thought I had before I landed on it was that maybe I had some mutant form of jet lag or something. Because I could have sworn it looked exactly like a head.
A frozen human head.