The beginnings of a friendship between a boy and his Scarecrow.
There's a boy named Joel whose 10. He's smaller than most 10 years old's his age. Because of this, he gets ridiculed all school day long. Joel spends most of his time playing on his Grandparent's farm. Tending to the animals, fixing fences, and harvesting fruits and vegetables for sale.
One day, as Joel dashes out the school bus, three boys chase him down the long pebbled road. They stop short of the family sign, but Joel keeps running. Huffing and puffing, Joel races through the cornfield.
The boys heckle echo throughout the farm ground. They reluctantly leave, but not before crushing a carved pumpkin.
Caressing his forehead, Joel stares at his bloody hand dazed. Vision clearing, he is startled by the sight of a disheveled Scarecrow. Its clothes are tattered and worn. Straw and leaves spill out around it, leaving little present. The head that was burlap, is now hollow and slouched, curiously on its post.
Joel races to a nearby shed and spots a wooden box. In the wooden box were old clothes, hats, and gloves. Straining, Joel drops the box along with a few tools and supplies. Taking down the old Scarecrow, he constructs another.
As night falls and the crickets come out for their nightly concert, the cornfield is lit by small string lights like fireflies. Admiring his work, Joel can't help but think his Scarecrow was missing something.
"Joel, come inside honey", his Grandmother hollers at the night sky.
Walking into the wallpapered house, the sweet smell of pie engulfs the kitchen. Glancing over at his Grandfather's handy work with a pumpkin, Joel's eyes brighten up.
"I'll be right back", Joel says. The words fading as he races out the door.
He glues the small triangle eyes and jagged smile onto the stuffed sack head. Propping the head onto the body, Joel grins.
"Hello, friend. Maybe you can protect me."
The next morning, fog cascades over the farm. A chill accompanied by small droplets made it for an uncomfortable day. As Joel struts down the pavement to meet his bus, his eyes cross over the cornfield. The Scarecrow slowly waves Joel goodbye. A trick of the fog he thought. Glaring back The Scarecrow stands erect, arms spread like wings. Just as he left it.
The day carries on like any other day. Balled papers rain down on Joel. A barrage of screams torture his ears. Slapped. Poked. It seemed as the day became darker, the worst Joel's day got. As the bus pulls away, the boys taunt Joel. They pursue him down the pebbled pavement, but this time they chase beyond the family farm welcome entrance. Swirls of grey clouds line the horizon of the field. The stalks sway aggressively as Joel trudges through from the bullies.
Approaching closer, the bullies corner him in a semi-circle around The Scarecrow. Pushed to the damp ground, Joel shuffles towards the foot of the straw man.
"Aw, did you fall?", one boy says.
"Baby gonna cry", teases another.
The boys share curious looks. Scanning around for the sound.
Their heads shoot up to the sky, but this wasn't thunder. A low growl rumbles among the boys. Wide-eyed, the bullies stare slack-jawed as The Scarecrow climbs mechanically off its post. Its small triangle eyes shine a bead of orange. Its jagged smile stretches across its burlap head. Leaning forward, The Scarecrow releases a ferocious scream. The Scarecrow snatches a bully as the other two run. Their cries echoing in the field.
"Ahhh. I'm sorry. Let me go," the bully screams.
Joel looks on in awe as the bully's pants quickly darkens.
"LEAVE. HIM. ALONE.," The Scarecrow scowls.
The Scarecrow drops the bully. Joel and his new friend watch in delight as the bully howls away.
The Scarecrow pats Joel on his head. Climbing back onto its post, The Scarecrow returns to its frozen state. Joel smiles.
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