Eight year old, Sasha Bennet stood in the pumpkin field, twisting the new jumper grandma had made around her hands. She disliked pumpkins and hated jack ‘o lanterns even more. She wasn’t sure were the fear came from, but no one had been able to dispel it. There was just something…creepy, she decided, about the bright orange vegetables and what most of them would become.
Letting go of the jumper, she cried a little, no longer caring about being a big girl. She just wanted to get away from the pumpkins and go home, but she wasn’t sure which way that was any more. She wiped her face with a dirty hand and looked around. There seemed to be nothing but pumpkins for miles.
It was growing late, she noticed by the colour changing sky and the fact that it had also gotten colder. Sitting down, she wondered if they’d come and find her soon. Her brother and cousins must have gone back all ready after finishing playing hide and seek. They must have gotten bored of trying to find her. She hadn’t meant to wonder so far, but Troy had been teasing her again and she had wanted to prove she could hide better than any of them.
Wrapping her hands around her knees, she rested her chin on them and stared at the large pumpkin in front of her. Deep lines cut their way down the surface, as if someone had made them. It was too lumpy, she decided and it seemed to be glaring at her too. A part of her wasn’t sure that was possible, but she couldn’t help it. The pumpkins felt like they were closing in, they filled her vision and rustled in her ears.
Sasha closed her eyes and put her hands over her ears. She couldn’t help but think that they were coming for her. They were going to get her and turn her into a pumpkin head scarecrow. Like in that movie she had watched. Tears flood her and she cried hard.
‘I don’t want to be a pumpkin head!’ she shouted.
Something brushed against her and she screamed. Scrambling up, she jumped away and fell over a pumpkin. Pain shot through her arm and leg, causing her to continue crying. A dark shape flickered before her and a soft meowing sound made her pause. Rubbing the film of tears away, she saw a black kitten sat on top of the pumpkin she had fallen over.
‘You scared me, kitty,’ she sniffed.
The kitten meowed again and jumped down into her lap. She stroked the soft fur gently, before hugging him. The kitten touched noses with her and began to purr.
‘Are you lost too? Where’s your home, kitty? Or don’t you know the way, like me?’
The kitten rubbed its head against her cheek and settled into her arms. Sasha stroked the black fur more and felt a lot calmer. She wasn’t alone now and weren’t pumpkins meant to be afraid of cats? She wasn’t too sure about that. What if they were on the same side?
Sasha held the kitten up, ‘Did you come to save me from the pumpkins? Or did they send you to take me to their king?’
The kitten meowed and she wasn’t sure what that meant.
‘If you’re a good cat, you’ll help me find the way home,’ she decided.
Placing the kitten down, she stood up and wrapping her hands up again, she set off walking. The kitten trailed after her, meowing often and at first she changed her direct by that sound. However, she quickly got tired and it was growing darker. She sat down amongst some small pumpkins and hugged the kitten.
‘I think we are more lost then before,’ Sasha spoke, ‘and it’s almost too dark to see now. The pumpkins are going to get us!’
She buried her face in the kitten’s back and felt hot tears tingle her eyes. She sniffed and moaned softly. She could hear the wind picking up around her and rustling the vines and leaves. How soon would they come to get her? She wondered.
A voice shouted something. Sasha shivered and looked around. Did the pumpkins know her name? There was a beam of light in the distance. She shied away from it and lay down; hoping that it pass over her and so would the pumpkin heads. The light and the voice didn’t go away though, they become stronger instead. Until, at last, she recognized the voice of her grandma.
Hurrying up, she shouted, ‘I’m here! Grandma! It’s me!’
Clutching the kitten under her arm, she stumbled towards the nearest light beam, which had now been joined by countless others. Tripping on a vine, she cried out and stumbled into a rough material and legs. Sasha screamed and shoved herself backwards, but strong hands grabbed her. She screamed again and again, as she dropped the kitten and tried to fight off the pumpkin head.
Something else grabbed her and wrapped around her, smoothing her screams and struggles. When she stopped, she realized it was only a blanket and she was actually in her grandma’s arms and not the stick ones of a pumpkin head.