the THING

Ted Martin and Sam Miller were good friends. They spent a lot of time together. On this particular night they were sitting on a fence near the post office talking about one thing and another.

There was a field of turnips across the road. Suddenly they saw something crawl out of the field and stand up. It looked like a man, but in the dark it was hard to tell for sure. Then it was gone.

But soon it appeared again. It walked halfway across the road, then it turned around and went back into the field.

Then it came out a third time and started toward them. By now Ted and Tom were scared, and they started running. But when they finally stopped, they decided they were being foolish. They weren’t sure what has scared them. So they decided to go back and get a better look.

Pretty soon they saw it, for it was coming to meet them. It was wearing black pants, a white shirt, and black suspenders.

Sam said, “I’m going to try to touch it. Then we’ll know if it’s real.”

He walked up to it and peered into its face. It had bright penetrating eyes sunk deep in its head. It looked like a skeleton.

Ted took one look and screamed, and again he and Sam ran, but this time the skeleton followed them. When they got to Ted’s house they stood in the doorway and watched it. It stayed out in the road for a while. Then it disappeared.

A year later Ted got sick and died. Toward the end, Sam sat up with him every night. The night Ted died, Sam said he looked just like the skeleton.

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