An Evil Heart Finally Destroys its Master
Harold Taylor was an unkind, self serving and lonely old man who never married. Drunk and drunker, he spent most of his days lost in the bottom of a gin bottle. Surly and sour he had always been but alcoholism had taken his bitterness to a new level. He blamed the world for his plight but could never realize how he wasn’t quite right. No wisdom or discernment was gained over his seventy-two years of evil existence. A man of meager means he survived off of his social security, disability and small pension he received from his factory job of forty years. The house he lived in was his family’s home that he inherited after the death of his father whom he hadn’t spoken a word too the four years prior to his death. The two men had a minor dispute over some tools and so he erased his elderly father from his life.
When the God fearing Christian man passed his congregation laid him to rest and held a grand ceremony for him because his son wanted no part of it. Mrs. Taylor passed away fifteen years earlier from a heart attack so the house was willed to Harold and he gladly moved from his one bedroom apartment into the house his father built with his own two hands. Now elderly himself Harold had no offspring to will his belongings to or even fight with. He was once engaged to a woman when he was in his late thirties but he couldn’t find it in his heart to be kind to her children from a previous marriage. He wanted nothing to do with them; he only wanted the woman, not the work. Eventually she grew tired of his ill behavior and broke off their engagement. Stubborn Harold acted as if he didn’t care but little did he realize, that would be his last chance for love. Never again would he even date more less find someone who wanted spend the rest of her life with him. His nasty demeanor and foul disposition kept women at bay. Never a very handsome man who didn’t make grooming or even hygiene a priority; Harold was considered a catch by no one, especially as he aged.
Over the years the house got to be a bit run down but Harold was too foolishly cheap to invest in its upkeep. Instead he let the building slowly deteriorate giving it little attention. Occasionally he would have some of the neighborhood kids cut the yard and underpay them for their services. The kids in his community grew to dislike him greatly as he always yelled at them to stay out of his yard and called the police anytime he heard anyone having too good of a time. A party could be two blocks over and he would still call the law to complain about the noise, In the window he would sit smiling angrily at the party goers dispersing under threat of arrest while he sipped his gin from a jar.
Some of the curious children of the community inquired with their matriarchs about the old man and why he was so mean. They all received similar reasoning from Nana and Big Mama alike.
“Why is that Old Man Taylor so mean. Mikey’s ball went in his yard and he wouldn’t let us go in his yard to get it back. All he ever do is yell at us and say he gonna call the cops if we go in his yard.”
The woman paused from stirring her pot and shook her head with a look of disappointment on her face.
“Baby, some people in this world are just miserable. They’re angry and bitter inside because they don’t have enough Jesus in their hearts. That old Mr. Taylor is miserable and misery loves company Baby. There is nothing he enjoys more than to bring misery to someone else life. It really is sad but until he welcomes Jesus into his heart he will always be unhappy. I want you to stay away from that evil man and his horrible house.”
“Maybe we can invite him to church or he can come to Sunday school with me.”
The woman chuckled while shaking her head.
“Yes Baby, I think he might need to start in Sunday school to learn the basics. You pray for that man but you leave him alone okay? I don’t want his evil to enter your life. Now go play; I’ll call you when supper is ready.”
The curious young man listened to his grandmother and went outside to play with his friends. On the way to his friend’s house he was stung by a bee or wasp of some kind. The boy ran back to his nana with tears in his eyes, rubbing the infected area. Nana treated his arm, calmed him down and put a bandage on it.
“You gonna be just fine Baby. Now go on back out there and play with your friends. And don’t worry; nobody gets stung more than one time in a day.”
He trusted what his grandma said because Nana ain’t never lied. Down the block he walked with a smile so bright it rivaled the vibrant Florida sun above. As he approached Old Man Taylor’s house he heard buzzing then he saw the bees swarming about. He looked up to the side of the mean man’s house and he could see the insects flying in and out of an opening in the attic of his house. The boy knew how nasty the man could be and his grandmother told him to never go to the man’s house. He didn’t want to disobey his grandmother but he feared for the man’s safety. IF one bee could cause him so much pain, he couldn’t imagine how bad a thousand bees would hurt. Back home he ran to his nana to inform her of the situation so that she could warn Mr. Taylor.
“Boy, what are you doing back in this house? I thought I told you to go out and play until supper time.”
“I did, I mean I was but the bees.”
“I know you didn’t get stung by a bee again.”
“No, Old Man Taylor.”
The woman was confused, sometimes kids made no sense.
“Old Man Taylor got stung by a bee?”
“No Nana, come see!”
He grabbed her by the hand and dragged her down to the old man’s house. Up to the side of the attic he pointed and his grandma was shocked at what she saw.
“Oh Baby, we’ve got to warn that evil man right away. There must be over ten thousand bees up in that attic. They’re flying in and out twenty at a time. I can’t imagine how many are on the hives. I want you to stand right here away from the bees where I can see you and I am going to knock on his door to let him know how bad it is.”
She hustled across the street, waving at and shooing bees away along the way. Finally she reached the front door and before she could raise her hand to knock, Taylor snatched the door open. He saw her approaching the house through the window from his favorite sitting chair where he was sitting drinking gin from his favorite drinking jar. He answered the door angrily, reeking of alcohol.
“What do you want woman?!?!”
She took a step back to keep from inhaling any more of his stench.
“I wanted to warn you that there are a bunch of bees flying in and out of your attic. You may want to call an exterminator.”
He scoffed then spit.
“Bees, raccoons, opossums, spiders, ants and termites all kind of bugs and critters live up there. I don’t bother them and they don’t bother me. They don’t bother me but you and your damn grandkids do. Get off my porch and go on back down to your own house with all them damn kids in it. Oh and keep the noise down or I will be calling the law!”
The Christian woman took a deep breath then looked across the street at her impressionable grandson. She decided to approach the situation with love rather than meeting his tone and level of disrespect.
“Okay sir, I just wanted to warn you is all. I’ll get off of your property and I will pray for you as well. We wouldn’t want to see any harm come to you.”
She turned and walked down the steps to the side walk never looking back. Taylor didn’t care, he yelled his insults and blasphemous comments to the back of her head.
“Don’t you bother talking to your imaginary God on my behalf! That is the biggest myth of all time. Jesus don’t even believe in Jesus!”
He laughed an evil laugh, swallowed the last of what was in his jar and slammed the door. Hand and hand Grandmother and Grandson walked back to the house to prepare for supper. As they strolled back to the house they discussed forgiveness and the Lord’s grace and mercy on our lives. That night they said a prayer for evil Old Harold Taylor. Their prayer was not in vain because it was pleasing to God that they forgave and prayed for Blessings for someone who had chosen to be their foe. Unfortunately their prayers would not save the hardened heart, feeble mind or frail body of Old Man Taylor. Three days later the temperature would reach the high nineties and the bees would be especially active working on their hives and producing honey.
The weight of the honey was pressing on the ceiling of the one story house, honey dripped through to the floor in some areas. Down walls slid sticky liquid attracting other insects and pests. A drunken Harold sat in his chair drunk, getting drunker as his house was collapsing around him. Creaking and cracking could be heard throughout the house as if the attic was haunted. The old man still remained oblivious to what was going on in his small dwelling. Until suddenly, crash!
The ceiling in the living room came crashing in and with it thousands of bees. The bees were all agitated after being displaced and slammed to the floor. Other bees from hives adjacent to the fallen one poured out as well. These flying killers were angry and there was only one target in their sights, the startled old drunk who was too slow and inebriated to escape. He tripped and fell to the floor. Within seconds he had been stung over a hundred times and unknown to him he was allergic to bee stings. His eyes, throat and lips swelled as insects walked every inch of his body. The buzzing of their wings was the last thing he heard as he died an excruciating death in supreme pain before suffocating to death.
The body of Old Man Taylor would not be found until a month later when the city was flooded with complaints about the bees coming from the house. Eventually the body was removed; the house was condemned and then demolished. Harold was buried in an unmarked grave with no one to morn him. The anger and hatred building up in his evil spirit grew quietly undetected just as the hives in his attic did. Eventually the two movements of malice met and one destroyed the other. The story of Old Man Taylor would be told to children from the neighborhood as a cautionary tale for years to come, an example of how holding on to hatred can harm or even kill you.
About the author
Author Cam Rascoe born Cameron Marquee Rascoe on August 3rd 1973 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is a multi talented artist utilizing his God given gifts to educate, entertain and inspire his fellow man.