The Flamethrower Indicident
Binghamton, New York. October 31, 1984.
Mickey Donnelly told his mom that he was going to hang out with Evan and Anthony giving out treats to the kids who hadn’t outgrown dressing in costume. Last year was his graduation from donning makeup and fake brains. As he walked toward Stever Drive he ate the last of his bite-size Milky Way while some bite-size Spiderman got his pillowcase filled with sugary treats. He walked up the hill and heard his name whispered in the cool evening air.
Mickey looked toward the bush next to the light-blue siding and found Evan crouched next to the bush dressed head-to-doe in executioner’s black.
“What are you doing? The seniors won’t be out yet,” Mickey said. Every year the juniors and seniors of Chenango Valley High School engaged in an all-out egg war that left streets littered with yolk and broken shells. They didn’t know that a splinter group made up of kids who hadn’t gotten their licenses yet was going to enter the fray.
“Check it out,” Evan hissed. He produced a mini-rocket launcher that might have worked a while ago on the usual battlefields but would suit its purpose for tonight’s skirmish.
“Wow, does that thing work?” Mickey asked.
“It’ll work,” said a voice behind him. Anthony Michaels’ cheese-eating green was covered with braces and surrounded by chapped lips. He adjusted his tinted glasses and fished a small bottle as well as some matches from the inside pocket of his Members Only jacket.
“Someone’s coming!” Evan called out. It was too late. A group of seniors whose brains had been impacted by too many falls of playing like battering rams saw the trio and strode up to them, eggs in hand, ready to plaster their scalps with the souls of baby chickens.
“Hello boys!” one of them said. “We can do this easy or hard. Your call.”
Mickey raised his hand. “I’ll make you a deal. You can do with me what you will but let these two go.”
“No way, man. I remember this punk,” as he gestured toward Anthony. “He pegged me in the butt with a snowball last winter.”
Mickey shrugged. “Fair enough. But do you mind if I tie my shoes first?”
The seniors laughed as they looked at Mickey bending down to re-tie his shoelaces. Anthony carefully poured out some contents onto the lip of the launcher then looked at Evan and mouthed “Now!” Evan lit the contents and a purple flame hissed from the lip. He pointed the launcher at the seniors, who collectively stuttered. One of them may have soiled himself.
“Crap! Let’s get out of here!” the soiled senior yelled as his compatriots followed.
“Crap! How appropriate,” said Mickey before the trio fell near the bushes laughing.