The ghoul had been satiated, having stopped off at a local graveyard for a bite.  The glossy black 1963 Ford Galaxie 500XL was gassed up.  The car was made for the open road.

Thornton Sharpe had snatched it up for a steal at an estate sale for a dearly departed human.  He had picked up the car and then later had dug up its owner for a reunion of sorts.  Actually, it was more like a snack for the road for Thornton. Both car and former driver were delicious.

Since then, the ghoul had covered thousands of miles.  Along the way, he had amassed quite a few stories, as well.  Thornton hadn’t planned on stopping along the way.  At least, not until he got hungry again.  Fate had other plans.

With thumb outstretched, a skeletal hitch-hiker stood beside the road.  Thornton had never seen a living skeleton before.  Maybe he could do with some company for a few hundred miles.  And this passenger wouldn’t tempt his appetite as there was no flesh on the bones.

Thornton pulled the midnight black convertible over.  Without exchanging a word, the skeleton opened the door and climbed in shotgun.  Thornton smiled his finely pointed teeth at the thing.

“Where you headed, mac?” Thornton asked.

“Where the road leads,” the skeleton replied.

Thornton shook his head and took his foot off the brake.  He punched the gas pedal and the car skidded slightly until the tires caught enough traction.  “My name is Thornton Sharpe.”

“Barker,” commented the skeleton, “Charlie Barker.”

“Ahh, Mr. Barker, I hope you aren’t averse to riding with a ghoul,” Thornton stated.

The skeleton replied, “Please.  Charlie will do fine.  No, Mr. Sharpe.  I don’t have a racist bone in my body.”

“Thornton, as long as we are on a first name basis.  That’s good to hear.  I may need to stop in a few miles for a snack.  I wouldn’t want to inadvertently offend you with my dietary needs.”

“Not at all, not at all, my good fellow,” Charlie noted.

“So, what does a skeleton do, exactly?”

“I collect things.”

Thornton said, “As do I.  Like what?”

“Tell me: do you like scary stories?” Charlie asked.



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