Arnold Fletcher


            Life had always been cruel to Arnold Fletcher.  Born with two legs instead of one, he was the village outcast.  As a young lad while the other children of Hopsville were hopping around gleefully, playing games of tag, football and the national sport of hopscotch, poor Arnold slithered about helplessly.

            “Ha-ha!  Look at stupid Arnie,” screamed the children as they took turns picking Arnold up and watching him fall to the ground, legs flopping uselessly.

            “You wait,” cried little Arnold, “one day, after expensive surgery, I’ll be normal and then you’ll be sorry!”

            Poor Arnold slithered off, to the jeers of the entire village of Hopsville until he vanished into the horizon.

***

Years passed, many in fact, so many, that many had forgotten the poor crippled Arnold.

Until one dark autumn night; when a strange sound echoed through the village of Hopsville.

            Crunch, crunch, crunch, crunch. It was the sound of leaves being hopped on, only it wasn’t a hopping causing the crunching.  This was something never before encountered by the village folk.  By dawn a crowd had gathered in the village rectangle.  All eyes turned towards the direction of the unknown sound.

            In the distance they saw a figure.  It seemed to be a man, but it could not be.  This creature did not hop.  This thing’s leg was split down the middle.  Both halves swung to and fro carrying the creature towards the village.  The men of the village rushed the women and children indoors.  Frantically the men hopped back to the rectangle to protect their land from the approaching monster.

            Steadily the creature became easy to see.

            “It’s Arnold Fletcher! Ha-ha! We were afraid of him? Ha-ha!” the village folk burst with laughter.

            Arnold stopped two feet in front of the crowd.

            “Remember how I said, ‘I would return,’ do you?” Arnold pulled out a baseball bat and began breaking leg.  He rushed into the houses where the women and children were hiding reaping his vengeance from the past. Finally everyone was helpless.

            Throughout the village all one could hear was the moans of the men, women and children.  Above it all stood Arnold, laughing madly.

            “You bunch of misfits,” screamed Arnold, “now you need me. Don’t you?”

            Arnold then pulled out a chainsaw and proceeded to cut off one of his legs.  Arnold place a tourniquet above the stub of his left thigh.

            “I said, ‘I would return,’ and I have,” screamed Arnold above the roar of his Black and Decker Chainsaw.  In just a matter of minutes Arnold had joined the ranks of the normal. While hopping for joy, Arnold tripped on his amputated left leg, fell into the wishing well, and drowned.

            Life had dealt Arnold another cruel blow.  He had been born with two left feet.