Heidi felt the neck give way, cookie dough pulling apart ever so slowly as she dragged out the execution for the benefit of the onlookers. Many of them fainted in terror at the display of raw power, the child in her arms not daring to scream or even twitch during her violent death.
“Has anyone at least brought the offering?” She shrieked, the mad smile never leaving her lips.
A gumdrop cake walked toward her and passed a handful of daisies to the goat at her side, never daring to make contact with its grinning face. “They are as you commanded, Lady of Madness. From past the Sillybum Cove and through the Chucklebuddy Plains, they have come.”
She twisted her head up to the side, her smile somehow getting a little wider even as red frosting gushed down the front of her dress from the severed head in her arms. “And the lollipop harvesters? What news do they bring from Huggyfriend Forest?”
The cake glanced up, making eye contact with Heidi for only a moment. Before he could move, the grinning goat bit through the top of his head, torn gumdrops and chewed cake bursting out as the goat emitted a bubbling giggle. He chewed the remainder of the mess in his mouth, its hard candy skull crunching in the goat’s mouth as he continued to hum to himself. Heidi clapped her hands as she reached down and took the daisies from the corpse’s hands, stopping to tear open the chest and tap dance in the broken body for a moment.
“Everyone sing the happy song. Now!”
The crowd snapped to stiff attention, careful to stay in perfect rhyme as the goat glared at each person in turn, his ears cocked to the slightest variance in pitch.
“Multiple homicide, acts of war,
Tsunamis crashing onto crowded shores,
Multi-car pile-ups, orphanages on fire,
A semi truck on icy roads losing its tires,
Folks getting sucked into heavy machinery,
Suicides that blow brains all over public greenery,
Sure do put a smile on my face!”
The goat drove its horns into a frosted cake, lifting him up into the air and dancing as his cream filling spilled all over the crowd. Heidi laughed, then reached out and grabbed a gingerbread man by the neck, bending it back until he was at eye level.
“Once again, what word of the lollipop harvesters?”
The man didn’t dare look away. “Dead. All dead. Killed by Disembowler Crabs.”
Heidi held the severed head in front of her face, laughing as she loosened her grip on the man’s neck. “And the sugar kiss farmers?”
“Their insides torn to shreds by the Boretooth Dragonflys in the area. Among every plant, there are hundreds of dead, their bodies bloated by the spores of the Quivering Death Mushrooms that also grow there.”
“Incompetents.” The goat muttered, its voice that of a heavyset child who’d been inhaling helium. “We should devour their candy-coated innards now, Lady of Madness.”
Heidi held up one finger to the man’s eye, bringing the tip ever so close. “Speak to me of YumYum Lane. What of the Chocomallow Knights? Do they still hold Yippyskippy Keep?”
The man swallowed, his thoughts turning to his carrot cake wife and the four cookie children he had at home. He knew the chocolate chip one couldn’t be his, but everyone made mistakes. He’d railed at her, almost turning the cookie cutter on her and then himself, but he’d stayed his hand. He still loved her, though, even after she had hurt him more than any pastry had before. He could not understand why until this very moment, a fraction of a second before he was to meet his death.
“Terry Diablo has destroyed them all.”
Her teeth sank into his cookie neck, tearing hard candy and soft cookie apart with a vicious shake. She spat out the remains, pointing one finger at the goat. “Ready the Gurgletummy Fleet. We meet our enemy tomorrow. His magnificent hair won’t save him again.”