It was a hot one. The Sun smoldered and The Valley baked. The air was filled with sounds of family gatherings and The Van Man smelled cooked meat everywhere.
He had an invitation to make good on. A friend's party in Toluca Lake. From the description, it was beers, hot dogs and pool with enough space for the kiddies. How nice.
Van Man arrived with a jump in his step. He was hungry and it had been a while. He knew it would be good to see some old friends. He recognized cars as he walked up the driveway and into the backyard. It seemed that everyone was inside. Van Man noticed the abnormally large grill as he passed it. Some delicious goodness cooked inside. He figured it was industrial-grade. Good for grilling. He strolled up the side steps that led to the poolside area. There was no one except a little girl in a wooden swing, blonde curls like Shirley Temple. She stared at him. It was very quiet and he stared back.
"Hey, man, where's the party people?", asked Van Man. He thought he was being cute. The Little Blonde Girl stared at him and the swing creaked back and forth. Van Man looked around. "Nobody here?", he asked. The swing stopped. Van Man noticed her legs were too short to stop it with her feet. Little Blonde Girl reached out to him. He backed up a step, confused. She stretched grotesquely to him and it seemed to Van Man that her arms got longer. He took another few steps back and ran out of ground. Van Man hit the pool and water rushed into his throat. He opened his eyes and caught glimpses of dead bodies lying at the bottom. He choked and panicked and splashed around. He was desperate to find the ledge of the pool. As he struggled to stay above water, Van Man thought he saw many children standing around the pool, watching him as he gagged.
He found the ledge, pulled himself up and realized he was right. Many children stood and stared. As he pulled one leg out of the water and propped his knee on the ledge, two twin boys grabbed his arms and held him in place. Their triplet brother rushed up and sliced Van Man's throat with a straight razor. He grasped his neck. Blood spewed. Ten children ran to Van Man and took ahold of him. They pulled and drug him along the ground. He kicked and swatted, but he could not overpower them. He noticed mutilated party goers strewn about the backyard. Blood was splattered everywhere. A headless corpse sat in the swing where The Little Blonde Girl had been. Two of his friends sat in chairs. Their throats slashed to the bone and faces contorted in horror.
The children pulled Van Man to the grill where Little Blonde Girl waited. She wore a chef's hat. "Meat!", she screamed and lifted the grill lid. To Van Man's horror, three severed heads crackled and popped. The eyes had long been melted. They were skewered together on the same stick with a potato between each head. Van Man tried to scream, but only gurgled. Little Blonde Girl raised her hand high. He noticed the butcher knife she held. "Meat!" She ran at The Van Man and his eyes widened. The knife butchered its way into his face. Over and over. The children laughed joyously. The real fireworks had begun.