Page Turner Challenge: Picks
Home Smoked by Mela Sarkar
“Boathouse. Another boathouse. More boathouses,” said Ron, pounding on each one briefly as the boys scrambled their way along the pebbly beach. They were nearly at the end of the bit of beach behind which a row of cottages straggled. Beyond the last shack on the beach the forest came down to the edge of Georgian Bay. “Hey,” Ben called, “this one’s open. And I don’t think it’s a boathouse. There’s a chimney, and smoke coming out. Smells like bacon.”
“No, it doesn’t, idiot,” said Ron. “More like that Polish place Mom likes where they make that special sausage, what is it? Smoked something. It’s a ”
“Smokehouse!” put in Ben. “But why would you have a smokehouse on the beach?”
The boys put their heads around the door cautiously, expecting every second to be chased out by the irate owner of whatever it was that smelled so delicious. The interior of the smokehouse was dark and windowless, with smoke going up in one corner. Something large and meaty was revolving dimly in the smoke. Ron had a reputation as family risk-taker to uphold, so was the first to approach this object. He was also, therefore, the first to stumble back through the door, white-faced and retching. He threw himself down on the boulder-strewn beach, breathing hard.
“Ron, what is it?” asked a mystified Ben.
“It’s oh, god, Ben, don’t look. I think it’s a person. A dead person. His top half. Hanging upside down. And his head’s gone.”
Mela Sarkar is from Montreal, QC