Andy, by Bobby Warner

Andy had a pet turkey named Sam. Andy’s father, who had been out of work for a month or more, told Andy: “Son, we’ve little food left, and nothing for Thanksgiving dinner. Sam will have to be our Thanksgiving meal.”

Grief stricken, Andy fried to find a way to save Sam. Finally he came up with an idea.

Andy took Sam and a sharpened hatchet to his dad and said, “Here is Sam, Dad. If you were Jesus, would you kill him?”

Deeply shamed, Andy’s dad pawned his wristwatch and bought a canned ham for their Thanksgiving dinner meal.

Victims, by Russell Conover

The cops were combing the scene, about which they’d received some suspicious leads. Individuals lay still all over the room, showing no signs of life. However, there was no sign of violence or otherwise foul behavior.

“So, what exactly happened here?” a gruff-voiced cop asked a witness.

“Nothing out of the ordinary, actually,” the witness replied in a calm voice. “Everyone had gathered here, for a traditional reunion, when all of a sudden, they all passed out and didn’t move.”

“And how, exactly, is that ordinary?” the cop asked, skeptical.

“Victims of the Thanksgiving post-food coma.”

The Best-Laid Plans, by Jane Reid

Danny was determined to rid Pluto of That Cat. Their immigration permit forbade no pets. The other colonists didn’t seem to care about what they saw as a minor transgression and a comfort to Alice. But Danny, who had no use for shades of gray, viewed the cat’s presence as a big black mark on the colony.

So finding online instructions, Danny carefully built a trap and baited it with a choice piece of meat.

When the trap was sprung, Danny was appalled to find he had caught a rat.

“Danny Boy, you really should reconsider the cat,” said Alice.

Spektrum Conference Centre, Oslo: November 2013, by Gordon Lawrie

Norwegian Prime Minister Solberg arrives, exchanges pleasantries with the waiting press, then disappears into a room offstage. She’s followed by, in turn, Obama, Cameron, Hollande, Putin, even Pope Francis. Each expresses hopes for peace before vanishing.

Suddenly, the press room gasps. It’s Assad. He, too, speaks to the press, then disappears. Even the leaders of Daesh and the Syrian rebels show up.

Minutes later, Solberg reappears to announce that peace has been agreed.

Sadly, it transpires that all the politicians were merely the same thirteen-year-old boy performing astonishing impersonations. Pity. He made a lot more sense than the real things.

Star Wars?, by Joy Essien

Dan could not believe his eyes. “Am I here to watch Star Wars or what?” Blinking, he looked at the screen again. The advert showed people reciting lines of the Lord’s Prayer. Dan swiveled round; scanning other patrons for emotion, but the darkness obscured their faces.

A mind war began within Dan. Images of his simple, childhood faith filled his mind. Changing, the images revealed the total lack of piety in his adult life. The contrast was too much.

“I must write a protest letter or I’ll sue them. My sensibilities have been hurt,” Dan thought, as he walked out.

The Origins, by Emma Baird

Checking the door was firmly closed, Ardell’s Head of Marketing opened her desk drawer.

She poured herself a hefty slug of bourbon. It had been a stressful few months. Sales at Ardells had suffered and its management team twitched nervously.

“What can we do?” they railed. They lowered prices, they extended opening hours and they employed the pushiest salespeople, incentivising them with impossible targets.

Nothing had worked – and now it was Thanksgiving. She hadn’t even made it home to her family.

Oh well, she might as well put on a sale tomorrow. Call it something. Black Friday maybe?

(Untitled), by Marlene Goldberg

Rebecca understood deceit. Words were weapons for her father, Laban. Her mother whispered: “Man is the head of the household, but woman is the neck. Man must think he decides, while doing woman’s bidding.”

Isaac admired Esau’s prowess in the hunt as well as his dedicated service. Rebecca was not swayed by this seeming prodigal son, whose reputation as womanizer and corrupt dealings were intimidating the neighbors. She must prevent the blessing he planned to bestow on Esau. Jacob was far more deserving. With fur-lined arms, lamb stew to taste like venison, Jacob approached his dying father. Isaac blessed him.