Monday: February 23, 2026
7:50 AM; CLINSTONE ELEMENTARY, BUS DROP OFF
Snow fell gently from the sky, swirling in mini winds of snowflakes toward the ground. Each unique little snowflake molded in with all the others as soon as it hit the sidewalk, vanishing into nothing while slowly growing into something.
Although the snow fell at a relatively slow speed for now, it was expected to pick up and get heavier as the day went on. Still, it was Minnesota, and they were used to snow. The principal assumed he’d have to let the kids and teachers go home early, but the more hours they managed to work in before the snow picked up, the better. More hours now meant fewer hours to make up for at the end of the school year.
“No running,” Mister Knight reminded as a young child jumped off the bus and slid on the sidewalk. “It’s still a bit slick. We don’t want anyone to fall,” he added.
“But it’s like ice skating,” the child said.
Mister Knight chuckled, shaking his head. “Not if you fall on the sidewalk, kiddo,” he said. “That’d hurt, wouldn’t it?”
The young boy looked down at the sidewalk before nodding. “Yuh-huh.”
“Go on inside where it’s warm,” Mister Knight said. The boy nodded excitedly, running toward the school for only a split second before remembering the no running rule. Mister Knight sighed softly, shoving his hands into his pockets. He didn’t particularly enjoy snow or the cold, but he’d lived in Clinstone all his life, and moving away to somewhere warmer had never crossed his mind. His job was a plus, too. He enjoyed watching students learn much more than he enjoyed snow.
Mister Knight frowned at the odd sound somewhere to his left. He turned his head, his eyes finding nothing out of the ordinary. He tilted his head back to look at the roof. His brow furrowed. Was that a man standing up there?
Before Mister Knight could utter a single sound, the man jumped from the building. Mister Knight’s eyes widened, his mouth open in shock as a rope stopped the man from hitting the ground, yanking him upward several inches as his neck broke.
A little girl screamed, drawing immediate attention to the event. The man’s eyes were open, his head cocked to the side at an inhuman angle.
If heavy snowfall didn’t cancel school that day, a dead man hanging from the old school bell definitely would.
BOOK NINE: END
BOOK TEN: THE EXECUTIONER
Thank you for reading THE BONEKEEPER! Did you enjoy the story? Consider dropping a comment or a like down below!!
Love what I do and want to help support me? You can ‘buy me a coffee’ on Ko-fi!