• Michelle Halliwell

The Pineapple Attack

Father Cassidy Stinson, a handsome man who often surprises people with his height when they’ve only previously met on the internet, slams the LEGO price on the table in frustration. He is a master lego builder, however, he is just too famished for coherent thought. He jogs down the stairs and enters his kitchen. The only thing on his table is a beautiful book with a lady wearing a red dress who is releasing butterflies from a jar.

Father Stinson opens the refrigerator, only to be unmercifully reminded that all priests are single guys. There are several things in his refrigerator: a panapoly of random salad dressings, expired milk, and peanut butter. He promises himself he will not settle for another spoonful of peanut butter but his cabinets are equally desolate of anything edible. Feeling like a castaway, he takes his iPhone and calls DiGiovani’s Pizza.

“I’ll have a meat lovers pizza, extra large, no veggies; like a boss. Delivery.” He doesn’t even need to tell them his address because he is a single guy so the pizza parlors in town all know where he lives.

As he sits there, desperately wishing he could speed up the time so that his pizza would be there, he remembers how great it was to offer mass to the multitudes. A black depression falls over him. Sighing, he shrugs, knowing that it is also his duty to fight the spread of the virus. He imagines the succulent pepperoni, Canadian bacon, bacon, sausage; then he sees the heavy set guy with curly hair spinning the pizza doh on his finger, then coughing. Father Stinson sits there in horror, but damn it he is too hungry to turn back now. A long, long forty-five minutes later, a knock comes at the door.

“Father Stinson, that’ll be $18.99.”

“Hi Jeff. Here’s thirty bucks,” Father Stinson says.

“Ah you don’t have to do that.”

“Man you’re out here risking getting sick to bring pizza to a guy like me, so yes I do.”

“Thank you sir.”

“God bless you,” Father Stinson says then rushes inside. The aroma of pizza hyptnotizes him into a caveman like single mindedness to devout or it.

He pushes the butterfly book to the side and opens the cardboard box. A wretched sound like Judas Iscariot cackling up from hell fills the room. Father Stinson screams and slams the box shut. Being quick of mind, a horrid snapshot of a memory fills his head. There were pineapples on the pizza.

Rising and pacing the room, he tries to place a call to DiGiovani's but his phone inexplicably won’t work. He hears the ghostly sound of dead children chanting a macabre nursery rhythm. “Ashes ashes we all fall down.”

“No!” he yells. The pizza smells so good, but it’s evil. He goes to call them again but his phone turns static like an old television without an antenna signal, then it shuts off and will not turn back on.

Father Stinson is too angry, too famished to give up. He approaches the box on the table, even as the ghastly children’s haunting voices crescendo louder the closer he gets to it. He opens the box again, sees the pineapples and they roar at him: “WE ARE PINEAPPLES! WE ARE LEGION!

“NO!” He screams, slamming the box shut again.

Father Stinson runs up the stairs and a minute later comes sprinting back down. He has a container of holy water in one hand and a rosary in the other.

“You will not possess my pizza,” he tells the evil children chanting. They continue their horrid chant, lacing their voices with the laughter of mockery.

Father Stinson starts praying to Saint Michael the Archangel as he opens the lid and sprinkles the pizza with holy water.

The satanic children cry out. Father Stinson sets the rosary next to the butterfly book and picks the pineapples off the pizza. They scream and curse him but he covers himself by sprinkling the demons with holy water, the way one soldier covers another with machine gun fire.

Raw pain and agony, anger and rage, hate and antipathy; radiate from the screaming pineapples as Father Stinson removes them from the warm cheese one by one. The pineapples squirm on his table like worms stranded on a sidewalk. Right as Father Stinson is sure he’s got them all, the pineapples on the table leap up, sticking to his face like little golden-yellow leeches.

“The power of Christ compels you! The power of Christ compels you!” Father Stinson screams as he splashes the remainder of the holy water on his own face. Each time it hits a pineapple, it hisses and turns to vapor.

“We will eat your soul,” the pineapple children are chanting, as Father Stinson’s world starts to go black aroun d the edges.

Then he reaches around the table, finding the butterfly book. He smacks the pineapples on his cheek with it. The laughingly diabolical chant about eating his soul erupts into horrified screaming. Father Stinson hits them again and again until finally there is nothing but silence. Nothing but silence and of course the pizza. He kisses the butterfly book and sets it down.

Exhausted and starving, he sits down as if gravity commands it of him immediately, and begins to fest on the pizza. It tastes like heaven mixed with Italian cooking. He hasn’t felt this good since the last time he said mass before a crowded church. And how many people had been in that congregation?

As father Stinson sits at the table, with an entire pizza in his belly, he realizes that there couldn’t have been more than five-hundred in his physical congregation. If he wants to preach the Word of God to fifteen-thousand people, all he has to do is to simply sign on Twitter. When he does, he finds a story written for him by Michelle Halliwell.

His cup runneth over.


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©2019 by Michelle Halliwell