Thank you to all of you who submitted grotesque stories for our Halloween Contest. The winner is Dan Moreau with his story, The Sinkhole. Congratulations Dan! He will receive a free year subscription to HFR. Here is his story...enjoy! We hope everyone has a gruesome Halloween weekend.

The Sinkhole

The city put up traffic cones and caution tape around it but that didn’t stop people from falling in. Every day the pile of bodies at the bottom of the sinkhole grew bigger. They were mostly joggers, walkers and cyclists. A few dogs too.

The hole was several stories deep. If you didn’t die from the fall you died of starvation or exposure because once you fell in there was no getting out. You were trapped. Some of the fallen cried for help but their pleas went unanswered. Teenagers threw beer cans down on them but never any food. The cans were always empty. They made sure of that.

At the weekly city council meeting a concerned public citizen raised the issue of the people in the sinkhole. He was booed out of the city chambers. The people in the sinkhole deserved to be in there, was the general consensus. They had fallen in on their own. No one had put them there or pushed them in. They had made their own bed.

After dark, moans of despair and wails of pain rose up from the sinkhole filling the otherwise tranquil night air. Residents who lived nearby got to wearing earplugs to fall asleep. Then there was the stench. Summers were worst. People kept their windows shut. They hung air fresheners on their front porches. The smell of decomposition bloomed like algae. Quietly, people complained. Letters to the editor were written.

One day the city came by with bulldozers and dump trucks, filled the sinkhole and paved it smooth. Months passed. The citizenry all but forgot about the people trapped inside the sinkhole, some of who had been buried alive.