Burning Jack gives all a fright,
He turns the hottest blood to ice.
When you hear his voice, you’ll find
You’re too scared to look behind
The voice was high, hollow, echoing, but it was more resonant and impossibly loud than Ashton had ever heard. The voice rattled his bones and shook the earth as it cursed and threatened them both. They both rode away from the voice as fast as they could, and the horses did not protest. Ashton dared not look back, but he saw the red-orange light casting his shadow in front of him, he smelled the stench of burning flesh, he heard the sounds of the horse behind him, and decided to heed his son the next time he got scared.
The voice was coming closer, the light was getting brighter, and Ashton’s horse was sweating and panting. Ashton couldn’t make the horse go any faster, so he was left with no choice. He veered off the road.
He twisted and turned in the most evasive patterns he could. He cringed at how slow his horse was going to navigate the branches, but he continued his evasive maneuvers. Eventually, Ashton noticed something.
The ghost was gone. The flaming light has vanished, the stink of a burning body was gone, and all was quiet. All was quiet! Ashton heaved a sigh of relief, and laughed in spite of himself. There was nobody else in the forest with him. No horses, no people, not even… Oscar! Ashton called out for his son.
“Oscar!” he cried, “Oscar! Where are you!”
There was no answer.
It was also then that Ashton realized, he had no idea where he was either. There was no path in sight, no familiar trees at all, nothing at all to help him navigate. Oscar was lost, and so was he.
Sometimes Burning Jack does more
Than simply settle his own score.
Sometimes he will get you lost
And worsen all the more the cost