500 Word Short Story
The Death of Calvin Dandy
Scott A. Gese

500 Word Short Story

The horse drawn wagon delivered Calvin Dandy's wife and son to the graveyard. Mourners gathered to pay their last respects. Calvin was beside himself. His wife had died giving birth to a stillborn boy. This was indeed a dark day for Calvin who wasn't handling it well.

When the mourners left, Calvin remained behind with the men who would fill in the hole.

“What if she's not dead? What if she wakes up in that box? She has to have a way to let me know, so I can get her out.”

The men tried to console him. “Calvin, that ain't going to happen. She and your boy are both gone. We need to cover them up and go about our grieving.”

“No, not yet,” ordered Calvin. “You boys go on. I'll do this myself. I need to get things right in my head first.”

“That's OK by us, Calvin. Just make sure you do it proper like.”

“Don't you worry about a thing. I'll take care of it.”

As soon as the men left, Calvin went into town. He borrowed a drill and purchased a length of pipe from the hardware store. When he got back to the grave he climbed into the hole. He proceeded to drill an opening in the lid up by his wife's head. He then fit the pipe over it. Only then did he fill in the hole.

That evening when the men came back to check on the grave, they found Calvin sitting in a chair next to the pipe.

“What have you got there, Calvin?”

“I put this pipe down to my wife to give her some breathing air if she needs it. Plus she can tell me she's alive. I can let her know it's OK. Then I can dig her out.”

The men walked off not believing what they had just heard. “I think Calvin's mind is gone. We need to let the sheriff know about this.”

When the sheriff heard what Calvin had done he thought it strange, but he let it be for a couple of days thinking Calvin would soon give up the vigil. That is until he noticed Calvin digging up the grave.

He walked out to the cemetery. “What are you doing, Calvin?”

“I heard her sheriff. I was sitting in my chair talking to her down this pipe and she answered me. I need to get her out of that box.”

“Calvin, the only thing coming out of that pipe is the odor of decaying bodies. Stop digging and head on home.”

Calvin was reluctant, but he did as he was told.

The next morning Calvin was found dead at the bottom of his wife's grave. He had come back during the night. When he opened the casket and saw his decayed wife and son, he had a heart attack and died.

The sheriff ordered the hole filled and another name be added to the marker.

© Copyright 2019 by Scott A. Gese All Rights Reserved.