Sock Monkey, Crucified

It’s Halloween and I couldn’t let my favorite holiday go by without a post. Nothing eerie, nothing scary, just a little odd.

Think about this.

Chester Hendricks was not a superstitious man by any standard definition of the word.  He wasn’t scared of black cats and he cared nothing about breaking a mirror or walking under a ladder.  He considered himself firmly rooted in reality, assured that whatever happened could be explained with science.  He brought that understanding to every part of his life and all his relationships.  But it wasn’t easy; his surety of the preeminence of reason often put him at odds with his daughter and her husband, both evangelical Christians.  Worse, it threatened his relationship with his granddaughter whom he loved as much as life itself.

It was his granddaughter he was thinking of that cold Halloween evening when he pulled into the driveway in Stammerfield.  As he stepped out of his car his left hand pulled his coat tight around him in a vain attempt to escape the bone chilling wind that carried waves of sleet from an early nor’easter.  His right hand clutched a black leather valise. He carefully made his way to the front door and knocked twice.  It opened quickly, as if to do so might admit only him and not the terrible storm.

“My God, Dad, why are you out on a night like this?” asked his daughter.

“You know damned well.”  His voice was rough, strained, forced, betraying obligation rather than desire.

“Bill is at church.  The Fall Celebration is tonight.”

“Good, the less he knows the better.”

He pushed his way past her and towards the stairs that led to Trisha’s room.  She tried to stop him, tried to keep him from doing what he had to do, what he had no choice but to do.  His steps resounded in the stairwell, quickening as he approached the topmost landing.  He thrust his right hand into the valise and without trying the door, forced his way through it.  Trisha screamed a heart-wrenching little girl scream to ward off her attacker, but with a single fluid practiced motion he removed his hand from the valise, grabbed his terrified granddaughter and…

And what? 

What was in the valise? 

Why did Hendricks come on Halloween?  

Why did he force his way into Trisha’s room?  

And what about that title ― “Sock Monkey, Crucified”?

How would you explain it?  Where would you take this story?  Should I tell you what happens next?

Let me know.

And have a wonderful Halloween!


About Kevin_Fraleigh

I am a novelist, and much of my writing is predicated on the concept that within each of us is a hole. For some of us, the hole is a divot, shallow and insignificant. But for many of us the hole is a cavern, deep and expansive. We try to fill it with sex or drugs or religion, but the cavern has an insatiable appetite. This is where the dark things live―the things that fill our nightmares. The things that claw at our minds. The things that inspire the stories of horror, madness, and twisted realities. From the depths of that cavern come the seeds of my stories. Won’t you join me in the dark edges of reality? Learn more about me from my blog at You can find my novels at,, and most eBook retailers. You can also read some of my full length short stories at
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3 Responses to Sock Monkey, Crucified

  1. A good beginning and I’ll let you finish it because I believe that you have a good ending.

    I like your picture because I can’t tell if you are a visionary or just keeping your eyes on the road, maybe both. Thanks.

  2. Sandra says:

    He pulled a Pentacle from the valise. He wanted to celebrate Samhain with his daughter while her husband was at the “Fall Celebration.” The sock monkey was used as a poppet to keep him away until the ritual was completed. ?????? 🙂

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