(Cross-posted from Writeon)
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Weekend Writein Fiction Challenge: In 500 words, imagine what happens when a ritual is disrupted.
The two dozen or so members lined up in two flanks creating an aisle that ran from front to back of the room. The windowless inner-sanctum was illuminated by a single light that hung in the front.
Each member wore a hooded mask. While a few were plain white, most were decorated with fearsome designs, such as snarling teeth and blood dripping lips, and arcane imagery and devilish symbols. They stood in silence shuffling their feet anxiously as they waited for the ceremony to begin.
Suddenly, a bright yellow shaft of light raced down the aisle and quickly disappeared again as the door at the back opened and then closed. Two figures entered: the first was a young girl, blind-folded with her hands bound in front of her; next came the Grand Poobah himself, the Fearless Leader of the Order.
The Leader had his hand on the girl’s shoulder, gently guiding her forward as they walked slowly up the aisle. She looked like her wobbly legs would collapse under her as she sensed the ghastly faces glaring out of the gloom.
When they reached the front, they turned and faced the assembly. The hanging light cast the Poobah’s snowy white robes and cowl in a ghostly luminescence. On his right, was a small table that held two saucers: one with the Sacred Balm, and the other with the Holy Communion.
He addressed the assembly: “My fellow members of the Royal Order of the Knights of Ivanhoe, we are gathered here today to induct a new member into our order. She has passed the Test of Courage and completed the Holy Quest and proved herself worthy of full and complete membership.”
Then, a thin, reedy voice piped up from the back. “She can’t get in!,” it said.
A shocked mumble swept across the audience.
“Who said that? Is that you Sue Ellen?,” the Poohbah huffed in anger.
“She can’t get in, because she’s a JERK!”, the voice chirped.
“You’re a jerk,” another hollered.
“All girls are jerks,” someone opined.
“Are not!,” another offered.
A pink orb, one that looked suspiciously like a Spalding High Bouncer, sailed from the back of the room and struck the bare light bulb that dangled from a wire plunging the room into total darkness.
The inductee turned to escape and walked straight into a column that supported the ceiling of the unused storage room in the basement of 1200 86th Street.
All hell broke loose among the membership with much pushing, shoving, hood ripping, not to mention shouting and hollering.
“Chipsies on the ball!”
“You bit me!”
As the Poobah stepped to the left he upset the upended orange crate that was serving as a table, smashing both of his mother’s saucers while he stepped on the communion.
“Damn,” he thought, “I spent the whole morning smushing those bugs and Wonder Bread into wafers.”
He also felt something else crunch under his foot:
“You stepped on my hand! I’m telling Mommy!!”
“Meeting adjourned, meeting adjourned,” he hopefully cried.