It’s Father’s Day. Sadly, I lost my father many years ago. But I still recall one memory that is burned deep in my brain. While it may seem far-fetched, the following story is true. While some people remember going fishing with their father or playing catch with him, I remember a family dinner we all had that turned out a little different from most. It wasn’t my father per se but it was my great-grandfather. I never met him. Never, until that night.
My great-grandfather was a very rich man. He was richer than God. Having money has it perks but it also can drive the family mad. We all are out to get each other, doing all we can to win out his love. If we win his love, we win his money. How can anything go wrong? It’s not wise to talk bad about your family but sometimes it is for the best. You see, I had a relative named Emily. She was different. She was also great-granddaddy’s favorite. When my family grew older and others passed on, Emily stuck behind. She took care of him. She nursed him and brought him whatever he wanted. She was there for him no matter the day, no matter the hour. It was her way to get the money we all felt we rightfully deserved. Sooner or later, the demands and the years of abuse got to her. While that was part of it, it was the ‘accidental death’ of her sweetheart that pushed her over the edge.
Now, we don’t know for a fact what really happened to her sweetheart. It’s hard to say that a gunshot to the chest was an accident. I mean, he was shot point-blank. His face was recognizable but there was nothing left of his chest. It was gone. Just an empty hole. Emily and the rest of us believe it was a scheme set up by great-granddad but we won’t say anything. We can’t. He is our great-grandfather. We can’t go around telling people he was a murderer. That makes us look bad. Plus, talking bad about great-granddaddy can cut us out of the will. We were all determined to get the money.
We weren’t there when this happened but we know the story. We know what really happened. We know this wasn’t a simple accident. The maid told us. She was there for most of it. According to her,
Emily, distraught over the death of her beau, took revenge on daddy. It was many years ago while she was taking care of him. One stormy night, Father’s Day in fact, great-granddad was off his rocker. He was screaming and hollering for his cake. Emily promised him a Father’s Day cake. He yelled and yelled. Not being able to take it anymore, she picked up an ashtray and smashed his head in. It was like putty. His head caved in, killing him instantly.
He died over a [censored] cake! A cake! Really? Maybe that really wasn’t it. Again, that is all speculation. We’re not really sure if she did it or not. But to some, it was good riddance to bad rubbish. We loved our great-granddaddy but sometimes he would drive our family mad. After his death, Emily would always return home. She liked to make a grand entrance. While we all waited in the living room, sipping on coffee and eating snacks, she would drive in at six. It was clock work. She was never a minute early and never a minute late. You knew it was her by one of two ways. It was six and the odor or whiskey would blow through the house. Emily loved her whiskey.
When it was six on Father’s Day, Emily arrived. Maybe she is full of guilt or maybe she is just being the good daughter but before she came inside to enjoy a family meal with us, she visits his grave. There, she would ask for forgiveness. She would tell him how sorry she was for bashing his head in. Did she really say all that? We think so. We just won’t admit it. We know she did it. We do. But we can’t say a thing. We just play it off like great-granddaddy died of natural causes. Cause a bashed in head it normal. It’s a common and natural cause of death. I know, right?
It was getting later and later and no one has heard from Emily. Instead of twiddling our thumbs and worrying about her, my sister and her husband decided to cut a rug. They danced the night away. They weren’t very good dancers but that’s okay. They were having fun. That’s all that mattered. After their dance, he stepped out for a smoke. That was the last we heard of him. Our grandmother, after little convincing went to look for my sister’s beau and Emily.
Now, I know this may sound implausible and you will probably say I am making this up but I assure you. The rest of the story is true. This is when we discovered that the things that go bump in the night do really exist. With half our family missing, my sister and I went to look for them. Well, I went to look for another drink and my sister was worried about her husband.
Women are scared of the dark. They always need a man to guide them through the darkness. And to think, women always say they don’t need a man in their life. Turn off the lights and then you’ll change your mind.
We walked in to the kitchen. We noticed some footprints on the floor. Very strange since we are a clean bunch of people and we hate dirt. We like to keep our house clean. We go to open the door and this is what happened. This is what scared the living hell out of us. Our great-granddad was back. He had returned from the grave to get his damn cake. It wasn’t no ordinary cake. This cake was special. It was the decapitated head of our grandmother. He garbled out,
It’s Father’s Day and I got my cake! Happy Father’s Day!