Jim and Dave were brothers that lived in a small village quite aways off to the side of the large kingdom of Gallinstine. They had inherited their father and mothers cows and farm when they disappeared mysteriously after one summer out at the small farm a mile away from the desolate town. Soon the time came when the two boys were old enough to go to the farm and care for the cows. Jim had just turned 18 and Dave wad now 20.
It was a long ride on horse back to the small cottage and left much time to talk.
“Hey Jim. What do you think it will be like living so far from the village?” Dave had asked after a while of jokes and laughs between the two brothers. Jim looked down, still smiling, at his large white horse and petted its brown flakes before looking up. His smile all but gone.
“Lonely,” he answered. They continued the rest of the trip in relative silence.
When they finally arrived they were elated to find that an old man lived less than a half mile away just down the large green hill that the little wooden cottage with the oak roof sat on. So very excited that they barely stopped to put their old moth chewn clothes in single dresser og the single room of the little old cottage. The dresser was worn to soft edges from use and covered in dust showing that while it once was frequently used it had now lain dormant for quite some time.
As soon as they were unpacked they hopped back on their mares and headed down the hill. It took almost 35 minutes but soon they arrived at a shack much smaller than even their cottage. Looking at each other they knocked on the rickety door sending an echoing hollow noise through the structure.
They stood there for a moment their horse tied to a post grazing. Much of their day had passed and they would have to leave soon. They turned to leave when a crinkled, angered face popped out.
“What!?! What do you want!?!” The old man hissed his face in an anger fury. His large bushy eyebrows pushed together. He had long greasy gray hair and a little stubble on his sagging jaw.
Dave pushed Jim back speaking up trying to be kind and joyous.
“I’m Dave sir, and this is my younger, Jim. We just moved uphill. We inherited the land from our parents.” He spoke slowly.
“I’m Robert. Not that it matters. Strange people your parent were. Stay away from here and we won’t have any problems.” The old man growled his wrinkled face disappearing behind the door.
The young boys were upset about their encounter with Robert. They had no friends out here. And they arrived home the went straight to bed.
Many months passed. In the morning they took the cows to the pasture to be milked then at evening they took them back and tended to the garden. Once a month they would head to town to sell product. However they were very lonely. One day they made a scarecrow and decided to name him Robert.
Every time a crop came in bad or a cow died or a calf didn’t make it they would yell at Robert and smear food over his burlap face and laugh.
“It’s all your fault Robert!” “You cursed the crop didn’t you Robert!”
This behavior carried on for months.
One day as they ate dinner Dave looked over.
“Hey Jim,” he said a look of puzzled confusion crossing his face as he stared at the scarecrow. “Doesn’t it look like Roberts grown to you?” The thought was silly but as Jim stared he said,
“Well Dave let’s check. See he was shorter than me when we made him. He only came to my nose. So let’s put him up and surly I’ve grown so then we’ll know.”
So that’s exactly what they did, and sure enough Robert was even taller than Jim.
They threw Robert and stated at each other. They came up with a plan and pulled out the large brown trunk that they had brought their clothes in and stuffed Robert. They locked him up and forgot about him. Months passed and they had fallen back into their routine from before the scarecrow. That’s when they heard about the death of old man Robert down the hill.
One day they forgot the milking stool when they took the cows out to the pasture.
“One of us has to go,” said Dave. He would never admit it but he was afraid to be near Robert by himself. Little did he know Jim felt the same way. Jim bent down and picked up two pieces of hay.
“Whoever draws the short straw has to go get the stool.” He said solemnly. They both held their breath and Dave reached out to grab a piece. It was two inches. Jim opened his half to reveal a short half inch straw.
“No.” He whispered as Dave let out a sigh of relief. He did feel bad for Jim. But it was his idea.
Dave waited quite some time and it was almost noon. He decided his brother was more important than the cows and made his way up the hill. And he reached he look at the roof and their he saw a display most gruesome. There was Robert kneeling as if proposing stretching Jim’s skin out to the sun to dry. Dave let out a gurgling scream cut of as he saw his brothers body devoid of skin his muscles, guts, and bones laying their his eyes still in his skinless head staring in glassy tearer. Dave screamed again and the scream bent and changed to a scream of fear as Robert turned to smile at Dave with a stringed burlap smile. A mouth he obviously cut after killing Daves brother bloody and ragged split cheek to cheek.
Nearly one week later the townspeople were course as to why Dave wouldn’t talk when he came and why Jim look so much taller and lively. It wasn’t till the next year when Dave went missing and his brother didn’t go to his funeral that the townspeople suspected anything. Then one day when Jim was out on a trip to other towns someone headed out to the old cottage and found Jim’s bones in a large wood trunk with the words it’s all your fault carved into it and Dave’s journal find they find that Robert had worn Jim’s skin and cursed Dave to silence and binding. When Jim didn’t come back they assumed Robert was gone.
Through the decades the town would be tormented by Robert and soon the whole kingdom was tormented by him. It was believed that the negative energy mixed with old man Roberts death attracted s demon to the scarecrow. Finally over 200 years later Robert was captured and burned…
Or so they say.