Warning: Graphic Violence, read with care. May disturb reader.
This is a slight crossover between The Boxcar Children and The Series of Unfortunate Events. It isn't necessary to read The Series of Unfortunate Events to gain the full effect of the story as it is a very minor part of the story.
Violet yawned, her blue eyes half closed, in an expression of drowsiness. She slowly creaked open her door and peeked outside. No one was in the hallway. She took a deep sigh of relief and crept downstairs.
Walking into the kitchen, Violet stubbed her toe on her chair. She cursed reflexively. Surprised by her reaction, Violet slapped her hand over her mouth, hoping to muffle the noise. If Jessie ever heard her use those words she would surely make her wash her mouth out with soap.
Glancing towards the counter, Violet located her target. There, sitting on the pristine marble it was.
The cherry pie they had eaten for dessert. There was one piece left. This was her time. She never. Ever. Got the last piece of pie. Until now.
Greedily, she eyed the piece of pie. She grabbed the whole plate. Systematically, she licked her lips and approached the silverware drawer.
Her left foot bumped into a foreign object. Down she went. Trying to retain the silence, Violet curled into a ball to cover her food.
She landed on something surprisingly soft, compared to the tile of the floor. It was clammy though… and a little bit… sticky.
Frowning, Violet touched the object. It was squishy, almost twice as wide as she was and perhaps two feet taller. It also had a scratchy beard.
Reaching a realization, Violet yelped, dropped the pie and ran to the hallway. She flipped on the lights. The lights came on and Violet screamed. Her hands and clothes were covered in blood.
She didn't want to look into the kitchen, but she did anyways. In the kitchen, covered in blood, was her grandfather.
Violet shrieked, alerting her siblings.
Violet fell to the floor, trembling. She curled up in a ball. Her guardian was dead. What did that mean for her and her siblings? She had loved him so much.
There was a loud crash as someone fell out of bed, Henry most likely. She heard thumps as he raced down the stairs.
"Vi! What's wrong?"
He appeared at the bottom of the staircase, wielding a wooden baseball bat. He silently took in the scene in front of him; his grandfather's dead corpse, his traumatized sister. Violet ran and buried her tear stained face into the front of his shirt, sobbing.
He rubbed her back through her shirt and murmured assurances reassuringly.
"Shhh… Everything will be alright… Why don't you wake everyone else, and I'll take care of everything down here?"
He gently directed her towards the stairs and she complied, sniffling. She trudged up the stairs and walked into her older sister's room.
"Jesse. Jesse! Something has happened!" Jesse rolled over and glanced at her sister with confusion. Seeing the tear streaked face, Jesse was quick to comfort her sister.
"Grandfather… Grandfather… He's dead!" She broke out in a wail.
Jesse frowned, frozen.
"Oh God. No!"
Grandfather was dead. What should they do? Should they run, like last time? They still had the boxcar, but they couldn't move it… they could find another. No, they can't run. It's in the middle of winter, they'd freeze to death. They had to stay and stick it out.
Jesse ran to Benny's room and in one savage motion ripped off his blankets.
"Jess, What the he…" He trailed off after he saw the tear trails on Violet's face.
"Grandfather is dead. Get up."
Violet's bottom lip trembled heavily at her harsh tone.
Benny quickly put a shirt on, and he followed his sisters downstairs. Jesse, the eldest of this trio shoved a coat into each of her siblings' hands and sent them to wait outside.
Jesse entered the kitchen. Henry was calmly walking around the cooking area with a tissue, occasionally narrowing his eyes and wiping a surface.
"Henry! What ARE you DOING! This is a crime scene! You're erasing evidence!" He shrugged, nonchalantly.
"If we're entertaining the police, I want our house to be spotless." Jesse rolled her eyes in exasperation.
"Did you at least remember to call the police?" Henry paused, his hand hovering over the counter.
He tilted his head, and smiled faintly.
Jesse let out a groan.
Her brother could quite possibly be the stupidest person in this house. Honestly, Benny had more sense than him!
Henry forced himself to keep the polite expression on his face. The nausea of what he did was threatening to upchuck his pie.
His sister didn't know any better. No one did. No one understood like he did.
What he did… was terrible. It was also necessary. Some would even describe it as poetic justice.
It was a sacrifice he made for the good of his siblings. They would understand, if he ever told them.
Jesse grabbed the home phone and dialed 9-1-1.
"Hello, this is 9-1-1, what's your emergency?"
"Well… It's not really an emergency, but we are in need of police, if there's someone else who really needs some assistance, you should send it there first. We can wait."
"… This is 9-1-1. What's your emergency, young lady? Keep in mind that there are harsh repercussions for faulty emergencies."
"There's a corpse in our kitchen, so it's not really going anywhere…" The person took in her calm tone.
"…I see… and what is your address?"
"Ok, we'll have someone there momentarily. Please stay on the line." Jesse picked up the phone and placed it on the table, disregarding it. She smirked. They needed no other information. She really didn't see the point of sticking around.
"Henry let's go wait outside."
Jesse grabbed Henry's upper arm, and with a grunt lifted him to a standing position. He looped his arm around her slender shoulders, pressing her into his side.
Jesse, suddenly overcome with emotion asked,
"Henry, what's going to happen?" She sniffed, and rubbed her eyes with the palm of her hand.
He sighed, and didn't answer as Jesse let him escort her out of the crime scene.
Jesse rested her head against Henry's shoulders and looped her arm around his waist. In the pocket of his sweatshirt, she felt a hard lump, maybe four inches long.
Frowning, she reached into the pocket, as she clasped her hand around the cold metal object , Henry noticed and slapped her hand away.
"Henry, what is that?" His expression darkened.
"Nothing, you need to be concerned about." Jesse frowned, but accepted it. She clenched her hand into a fist and removed Henry's warm arm from her shoulders. Jesse went and sat next to Violet, who was still crying.
In the distance, the children could hear the police sirens wailing.
Jesse examined Henry. He appeared to tense up, after hearing the sirens and clenched his hands together in a large mound of fingers.
Henry didn't even glance up when the police arrived. Jesse walked to meet them.
"Are we at the right address?" Jesse nodded.
"Grandfather is in the kitchen. Second door on the left. Enjoy." She muttered the last part sarcastically.
One police officer, a younger man, in his thirties stayed outside. He sat opposite the children, on the sidewalk, about a few feet away. He got out a notepad and prepared to take notes.
"Tell me exactly what happened." The man commanded.
His pen stood poised, ready to scribble down information.
Jesse looked down at her lap, unsure of where to start. The teenager gasped in shock. Her hand was sticky and covered in crimson liquid.
Later that day, a police officer directed Jesse and Violet towards a standard cruiser. Yet another officer directed Henry and Benny to another.
The children glanced towards each other, concerned.
Seeing their wariness, the officers didn't hesitate to reassure them.
"You're going to the same place. It really doesn't matter. We're going to take you to the Police Station."
Defeated, the children entered the cruisers.
Arriving at the police station, the children were placed in a room.
Jesse continually made discreet glances towards Henry. He sat stoically, avoiding eye contact.
Jesse frowned. Together her, and her siblings had solved enough crimes, apprehended enough perps, and interrogated enough suspects to recognize a crime.
Her grandfather, to her knowledge, had no enemies. Nearly everyone loved and respected him.
What she did know, is that Henry had a guilty conscience. About what, Jesse didn't even want to know.
Perhaps she should let the police officers handle it. However, if Henry did commit the crime, did she want him to be convicted? No... she didn't. This was a private affair. The police had no business in it.
A woman walked into the room. The woman was overweight, with mousey brown hair cropped in a short style.
In a clipped, business tone the woman spoke.
"Hello. My name is Karen Mcgoogal. I am your social services representative today. How are you all doing?" She paused to crouch down in front of Benny and Violet.
"It must've been so hard to see your grandfather like that. I'm sorry for your loss." She rested her hands on the two youngest children's shoulders.
Violet sniffed wetly and tears started to gather in her eyes.
"Jesse wouldn't let me see the body." He pouted.
Jesse let out a warning growl.
"That's not something you needed to see."
Ms. Mcgoogal carefully removed her hands from both child's shoulders. She wiped them on her grey skirt, as if to cleanse herself of their impurities.
Jesse and Henry rolled their eyes.
The woman sat down on the opposite side of the desk.
She opened a large folder on the desk.
"So, we are looking at three temporary housing options. Glistening Pines for..."She glanced down at her folder.
"...Violet and Jesse and for Green Meadows Little Benny and the Juvenile Male in-between house for Henry."
Benny scowled at being called little.
The two older children frowned, and Jesse spoke.
"We would like to be put together, if at all possible." The woman smiled sweetly but her eyes conveyed her exasperation,
"Unfortunately, that is not currently an option. I'm sure you will be reunited soon enough."
Violet's lip trembled heavily and Benny inched closer to Jesse.
"Jesse, I don't wanna go! I'll be alone!" Benny whined, his words showing his emotion.
Henry perched on the chair, composed, but one could see the slight twitch in his lip and eyelid.
Jesse leaned forward in her chair, over the desk.
"I'm sure arrangements can be made. After all, with the influence our grandfather has in the community, surely something can be done." She gave the woman a withering stare that would make a small child cry.
"Nope. Nothing can be done. Come with me."
The children scowled, but followed the woman reluctantly.
Jesse was furious. That woman had snubbed her, to be sure. She knew that Benny was only five years of age and daft. Give him two months in the home, and he would surely forget about his siblings, her and their grandfather.
This woman simply didn't care. The way she had treated them... as if they were a fly to be swatted was terrible. They were people too, albeit irregularly short ones, at least in the case of Vi, and Benny.
Who knows how long they might have to stay in their respective Godawful homes. They had no relatives to take care of them, and limited contacts/associates.
Furthermore, what were the chances, really! They were orphaned, not once, but twice.
If it's karma, then she better pray for her soul.
Violet waved solemnly at the car, holding her two brothers hostage. She clutched her hand tightly around the bigger hand of her sister, Jesse.
Jesse told her that before she knew it, they would see them again, but Violet found it hard to stop her tears.
Eventually, she gave up. Tears poured down her ruddy cheeks.
Jesse glanced up sharply, and noticing the streams originating from Violets's eyes, for the third time today, wiped them off carefully.
"Just a few days." Jesse murmured, squeezing her sister's hand in reassurance.
"Days!?" Violet wailed horrifically. Jesse groaned.
"We've never been separated for that long!"
"It'll be alright." Jesse reassured her.
The pair headed into the annoyingly cheerful building.
About an hour later, Benny grinned as he caught sight of boys playing ball in the front yard.
He turned to Henry, as if to ask permission to leave.
Henry looked strangely emotional. Henry never cried.
Henry put a hand on either side of Benny's head. The older brother stared deep into his sibling's eyes.
"Keep your head up. Enjoy it while it lasts, because we'll meet again soon." Henry gave a watery smile and lightly pushed Benny out of the car.
Benny was excited.
At first, he was upset that he wouldn't get to see his siblings as much, but now he would have other people to play with.
When he played with Henry, Henry held back. Jesse never wanted to play. He couldn't play with Vi, because she was a girl. But now, now, he had friends!
Henry sighed as he looked towards the In-Between Home.
It was a grey, dingy building with windows that were nearly all covered by blinds.
It was no doubt filled with many juvenile delinquents. Perhaps some had even done worse than what he had. Great.
Henry extended his chest out and slightly moved his arms outwards. It made him appear more threatening, or at least he hoped it created the illusion of denser muscles.
A week later, the car pulled up to the sidewalk, landing in a rather muddy puddle.
Violet squealed and Jesse rushed forward to join her two siblings in the vehicle.
Henry beamed, pleased to see them all together.
The woman, from the driver's seat began to speak.
"Good, now that I have you all here, I have something I want to discuss with you.
You had one person filing for guardianship. As it turns out, you're distantly related to him. Conveniently, he also lives nearby.
This man is single, 48 and has always wanted children. You're so lucky I found him. Most people wouldn't take all four of you. His name is Taco Funlo. That's where I'm taking you now."
Henry coughed, a raspy noise. He smirked.
"That's quite an unusual name."
Jesse turned to examine Henry. He looked unwell. His eyes were bloodshot, his skin pale and clammy. He appeared as if he had done something.
She knew what he had done. He was a killer. Unfortunately, it was unforgivable.
She wasn't going to rat him out, but she needed to take care of it himself.
Jesse could barely stand to be in the same room as her brother, the cold-blooded killer.
The woman paused in her description.
"Ahh, here we are."
The woman pulled the car up to a dingy house. It had a suspicious dark tower in the back with a strange bird cage contraption hanging from it.
Violet looked out the window with dismay.
Jesse glanced outside, with barely concealed glee. It would be so simple to blame Henry's retribution on a man with half the shadiness of this house. After all, Jesse couldn't go to jail. She needed to take care of her remaining siblings.
"It looks dusty." Violet mumbled discouraged.
"And quite dilapidated." The woman scowled.
"Mr. Funlo is a very successful actor. He will make a great guardian. I'm sure the house is quite luxurious for those who are used to living in a boxcar. Almost too luxurious." Henry gave a faint smile.
"Touche." he whispered.
The woman stared at the children expectantly.
"Well, what are you waiting for? Get out of my car." The orphans exited the vehicle and walked up the moss covered sidewalk.
Henry knocked on the door. The door slowly creaked open.
A man peeked his head out of the doorway. On first glance he was tall,slinky, stinky and rank.
Henry found that his second glance didn't change his opinion much.
The man was wearing a very dingy bathrobe. It was grey and looked ancient. Violet cringed. That bathrobe looked like it hadn't been washed in months.
In addition to the bathrobe, he was wearing a fluffy, itchy looking, pink feather boa. It had a ridiculous overall appearance.
The man did have a small tattoo in the shape of an eye on an ankle. It was such an ugly symbol. Either the man was a heavy drinker and he was heavily intoxicated when he received it or he had terrible taste. Possibly both.
The social service worker, opened the door and walked out of her vehicle, apparently pleased by the man's appearance from afar. Jesse gagged at this realization.
The man smiled an evil grin when the woman appeared. He tilted his head in a mock bow, took her hand and placed a chaste kiss on it. Jesse covered her mouth in horror.
"Hello, ma'm. May I be correct in assuming that you are the person I talked with on the telephone?" The woman giggled.
"Yes, my, aren't you the charmer. You tease!" She batted her eyelashes at him.
His sly smile widened as his gaze turned towards the orphans.
"Are these… the wealthy orphans we discussed earlier?" The woman nodded, still smiling. Jesse narrowed her eyes suspiciously.
Taco Funlo's eyes gleamed, as if covered by an oily substance.
"When is the meeting about the funds transfer?" The woman didn't even break her sappy expression with her response.
"There is no meeting. The orphans… err… children will inherit the money when they come to age."
A fierce transition came over the man's face. His face hardened with evil intent. Taco Funlo scowled.
"Well then. Goodbye."
With one arm, he dragged the four children inside the deplorable house. With the other, he slammed the door in the woman's face.
The orphans and the rouge actor stood staring each other down. The actor glared at the children, angry that they had denied him their fortune like so many others had done.
The children returned the gaze steadily.
The actor smirked, turned and walked up a grand, rickety staircase. The children followed.
Taco Funlo stopped at a flimsy wooden door with several locks. He opened it and shoved the children inside.
The orphans winced as their elbows hit the hard wooden floor. Their hearts sank as they heard the lock click into place and the door slam closed.
They surveyed their surroundings. Inside, there was only a pile of rocks, one cot and some cardboard boxes.
Henry rolled his eyes at the pile of rocks. Taco Funlo obviously thought that rocks were an appropriate toy for children. On second thought, maybe not. Maybe he wanted the children to bludgeon themselves to death with them.
Benny glanced at the rocks, disinterested. Then, his face lit up and he ran over to inspect them for fossils.
Jesse rolled her eyes. Benny would be pleased with anything.
"Jesse, Jesse! I found a fossil!" Benny clapped his hands excitedly. Jesse turned away.
Henry frowned as he gazed through the grey, dingy window. The sun was slowly setting to the right of the dark tower he had seen earlier. There wasn't much that they could do in a locked room. They might as well fall asleep.
Due to a unanimous decision, Violet and Benny shared the flimsy cot while Jesse and Henry lay down on the dirty floor. Violet and Benny were the smallest, by far. If one or two people were going to be comfortable tonight, it might as well be two.
The group got ready for bed and soon they were all fast asleep.
In the morning, they awoke to see that their door was unlocked. The orphans crept downstairs silently. In the kitchen they found an old box of expired cereal and a note.
To the orphans,
Here is your breakfast. Eat up, because by law, I am required to feed you (I'm outside the courthouse right now, protesting that). Here is a list of chores that I want complete by the time I return, or there will be severe repercussions. Do you even know what that word means? Of course not… you're just children. Enjoy your breakfast.
Wash all the windows
Chop wood for my fireplace
Fix the cable antennae on the roof
Bail out the basement, it rained last night
Rake all the leaves in the yard from this year and the past 7 years
Separate the leaves by color and type
Sharpen my extensive collection of knives
Clean and polish my musket, rifle and pistol
Being sexist, as most people were when the boxcar children books were originally written, Henry declared that Benny and he would tackle numbers 2, 3, 7, and 8.
This was because Violet and Jesse, being women, were obviously too incapable of cleaning any type of firearm. They could sharpen knives, Henry supposed, but only if they were kitchen knives.
Eyes narrowing at the realization, Jesse huffed. Henry always insisted on being "a man". He could be very offensive. He thought that Benny was more skillful then her.
Whatever. It's not worth arguing about.
Jesse grabbed Violet's hand and dragged her outside to the yard. The sooner the outdoor chores got done, the better.
Eventually, around two'oclock the children had finished their chores. They met inside for a light lunch.
The only things in the kitchen cabinets were bread and spam, even so, they were so hungry that the children didn't hesitate in eating their fill.
Afterwards the children just sat, staring at each other in misery. Their situation was far from ideal. The two youngest children, Benny and Violet trudged upstairs slowly, returning to their small room to look for fossils.
Jesse calmly leaned back in the wooden kitchen chair, staring at Henry, the cold-blooded killer.
"Henry, I would like to go exploring. I'm going to go investigate the tower." She folded her hands on the table.
"Jess, you can't! It's too dangerous!" Jesse's eyes sparkled. Her plan was working perfectly.
"I'm going whether or not you want me to." She maintained her steady gaze on the young man.
"Fine, then I'm coming with you in case there is trouble." Jesse turned her face towards the table to cover her glee.
Her time has come.
The two siblings, Henry and Jesse walked outside and up to the tower. They found that the door was unlocked so they both slipped inside.
On the first floor they found nothing of interest so, they continued upwards.
On the second floor there were costumes everywhere. This would be common enough for an actor but what surprised Henry was that there were weapons in great numbers as well; knives, tasers, pepper spray, dynamite and firearms.
Poor Henry didn't notice when Jesse slipped a small hack saw and some thick rope into her sweatshirt pocket.
At the top floor, Henry entered first into the small room. The tower swayed dangerously.
With a snap, Jesse activated the trap.
The rope on the floor snapped to attention and the ring that Henry's foot was in, wound around his ankle, hoisting him up into the air precariously.
Jesse strode forward winding the rope around her brother again and again, rendering him useless and vulnerable.
"I'm sorry it had to end this way, brother." Jesse traced the hack saw around Henry's jawline, ending on his left earlobe.
She tried to avoid looking at his frantic, horror filled eyes.
"Jesse! What are you doing? What does that mean! Please! Let me down!" Jesse didn't pause in her actions, she leaned forward whispering in Henry's ear.
"I know what you did." Henry froze, and his skin visibly paled.
"I don't know what you're talking about Jesse." She smiled teasingly.
"You killed grandfather, didn't you? I've had a long time to think about this Henry, when we were separated. You deserve what's going to happen to you today. You deserve every bit of it."
Henry's brown eyes filled with unshed tears. He was to meet his death, by his sister. Oh! The agony that was sure to follow.
The sister positioned the foot-long hack saw at the top of Henry's shoulder, as if she was going to saw off his arm. She dragged the saw back and forth over the shoulder. Soon, Henry was screaming and both of their clothing was stained crimson.
Jesse was in the middle of trying to unstick the saw out of Henry's shoulder, it had caught on something, when the door to the room creaked open.
Taco Funlo entered the room and surveyed the scene. Jesse's eyes flickered from Henry to her blood covered hands to Mr. Funlo. Could she possibly incapacitate Mr. Funlo? He looked scrawny but she knew that he had several inches on her and a few pounds. There was no telling if she could take him.
Henry screamed violently for assistance, but none came.
The man paused, rubbing his goatee in confusion and deep thought. He obviously had just returned from a play and looked absolutely ridiculous.
He was wearing pastel pink tights and a furry coat that looked like it was made from lion's fur. It made Jesse's head hurt just from looking at it.
"Sweetie, darling. You're going about this all wrong." The guardian said.
He strode over and yanked the saw out of Henry's shoulder. Henry screamed as the pain overtook his body.
"Now. What's your motive?" Jesse clutched the saw tightly as she glared at the intruder.
"He killed my grandfather." The man looked taken aback.
"Really? I thought it was that little girl. She had a shady look about her… Oh. Nevermind me then. Carry on."
Jesse, slightly confused positioned herself again next to Henry who was pleading for her to show mercy. She glanced back to Taco Funlo. He seemed to want to say something. She sighed, knowing she would regret asking.
"What is it?" He grinned a filthy smile and his yellow teeth showed.
"A saw. Really? That is soooo last century. You need a murder weapon with a bit more pizazz."
"Here," He handed the girl a shank made of a strangely warped and reflective blade.
"I made that from the exterior of a toaster." Jesse rolled her eyes.
"No. I'm not stabbing Henry with a butchered kitchen appliance." The man frowned.
"Fine, but at least use a chainsaw, it's 89% more effective at cutting through bone."
Jesse accepted the chainsaw with another roll of her eyes.
"Alright, but get out. This is a private matter I would like to settle alone." The man nodded, curtseyed and left the room.
From behind the door, she heard his call.
"Come find me when it's time to do the dismembering and hiding of the body. I'm sure I could give you a few pointers."
Taco Funlo sat on a ratty armchair as he listened patiently and peacefully to the screams of Henry. He continued to sit there, idly buffing his nails into a shine, until they died away and the noisy protests were no more.
Mr. Funlo entered the room, mouth set at a grim smile. Jesse sat by the body of her brother, crying.
"Darling, go to your room. I'll take care of the next part." She sniffed but nodded her assent.
Jesse wiped her eyes and climbed down the ladder in the tower, contemplating what Henry had been about to tell her before he died.
"Jesse. I know… I deserve all of this, but… Grandfather… he… he…" And with that, he died.
What could he have been about to say? Perhaps he was going to call Grandfather an insulting name. Yes, that was probably it. She would never know for sure.
Unknown to Jesse, Violet watched through the window, at the tower, in dismay and desperation.
Her brother was dead. More importantly, her sister killed him. She couldn't live with this.
Violet left the room silently, already sure of what she was going to do.
She was going to do what grandfather told her never to do.
Stuffing rags under the bedroom door, to spare Benny, she made her way downstairs.
Violet stoically greeted Jesse at the front door and then broke the pipe above the furnace, spreading the carbon monoxide everywhere.
It was not long before both of then succumbed to the poisonous gas.
*One year later*
Benny relaxed in the plush armchair, an expression of contentment evident on his face. He smiled at his new father/ wealthy guardian.
Count Olaf, haven taken an extensive life insurance policy out on each of the orphans before they even entered his home, was wealthier than Grandfather had ever been.
His father, having just entered the room grinned a sleazy smile and sat down on a dark purple armchair next to Benny. He handed Benny a glass of sparkling wine. Benny accepted it without a bat of his eyelashes due to the fact they did this everyday now.
This was their daily evil plot brainstorming session.
"So… Benny, my apprentice, how do you feel about bribery versus blackmail?" Benny swished his wine around in his glass contemplatively.
"I prefer blackmail, but I haven't had much luck with it." Count Olaf tilted his head in confusion and deep thought.
"Please elaborate, my son." Benny placed his now empty glass down on the luxurious coffee table.
"Well, I blackmailed grandfather to take us in. I hated living in the woods and knew that he killed my dear parents."
Count Olaf blinked in shock. Benny continued, a slight smile in his voice.
"My siblings were SO slow on the uptake."
Count Olaf reached out to hug Benny enthusiastically,
"You are SO much better than that nasty Spats girl."
The End. Thank you reader for following this one-shot. I won't say that I *hope* that your childhood book series was tarnished by my interpretation of it, but if it were to happen I wouldn't be displeased. This one-shot was far from canon. Thanks again for reading.