Everybody loves the Easter Bunny right? He hippity-hops around on Easter Eve, chucking eggs everywhere for the good little children to find in the morning.

But what you don't know, and I didn't know, is that there's an Easter Hare, and he's a bit of a jackass.

See, late one evening as I was walking home from work, I spotted what I thought was a rabbit ahead of me on the path. Except this thing was easily twice the size of the cottontails we've got around here up in the eastern woods. And I realized with a start that it was a hare -- something I never expected to see. Nor wanted to, really. Those sons of bitches have eyes that stare right into your soul. Just like this one did.

And the the hare rose up on his hind legs -- as best he could, it seemed to be missing the end of one foot -- and I realized he was wearing a blue coat. And he fixed me with that penetrating gaze and he said, "Good evening, young traveler. Happy Good Friday."

And I said, "What the hell do you want with me?"

And the hare said, "Ah ha, you cut to the chase, I see. I want you...to find what has been hidden."

"You gonna offer a reward?"

"I offer you a promise. Find what has been hidden by Easter Morn, or I shall take someone you love." And with that, before I could curse the little jackass out, he sank back to all fours (three, really) and hopped away into the underbrush.

All the rest of the way home, I thought about what on earth could have been hidden from the hare. An egg? The hare could just go ask the Easter Bunny. Perhaps a baby hare? But if a baby hare was lost it was probably dead already. Nothing was coming to mind, and I had half a mind to simply ruin my relationship with every single person in my life, so that I would be the only one remaining who I loved, and then I could kick the hare's ass.

But then I realized I didn't exactly like myself, so that wasn't going to pan out either.

I spent all Saturday looking for anything that could possibly have been hidden from a hare. I looked under lampshades and found dead moths. I turned over stones and found writhing centipedes. I swam in the creek and found crayfish. (Wonderful excuse to go swimming.) I looked up a tree and found acorns. I looked down a well and found coins. I looked in my wife's dresser drawer and found a lucky rabbit's foot. Nothing was making any sense. Nor could I explain my frantic searching to anyone without sounding like a kook.

That evening was one of deepest gloom. I hugged my children, wondering if they would be the ones to go. I clung to my wife, hoping I could hold on to her when the Easter Hare came calling.

The dawn came, and as the sun rose my hopes sank. I barely sang a note in church. I slunk towards the Easter egg hunt on the lawn. I turned my gaze away from the happy children.

But then one of them squealed with delight when she opened an egg to discover a lucky rabbit's foot, and my mind went back to the one I'd found in my wife's dresser drawer. It hadn't been a short fluffy white thing like the one the child held. It had been long, brown, and short of hair. I smacked my forehead loud enough to be heard, then, after apologizing to my wife, sprinted all the way home.

I threw open the door, dashed up the stair, yanked open the dresser drawer. There it was. Not a rabbit's foot at all, but a hare's foot. I held it aloft in triumph.

And I heard a cough behind me. I whirled around. There was the hare.

"Excellent work," said the hare. He hopped up to pluck the foot from my grasp, then sank down to attach it to his leg, just as if he were putting on an old boot. "Glad to see you were clever enough in the end. Perhaps we'll have the same bit of fun next year, eh?"

"I'd appreciate some manner of compensation for the grief you put me through," I said.

"Tell you what," said the hare. "Instead of taking someone you love, I shall...take someone you hate. Someone you can't stand. Someone who's been annoying you for a while. I'll get rid of them for you. Just say their name and it will be done."

Well that threw me for a loop. I knew a lot of people who were kind of annoying, but there was nobody in my life who actually cause me any real trouble or offered any threat. "You know, I don't think I hate anyone that much."

"Oh no?" said the hare. "Pure of heart, are we?"

And then I realized I was wrong. "Not quite. Easter Hare, I hate you, for threatening my family and friends. I can't stand you, Easter Hare. Easter Hare, you've caused me mighty trouble. I name you my enemy, Easter Hare. You're an easter egg cunt."

And the hare said, "Well, I guess that makes sense. Wait. Oh, SHI --" And poof, he was gone.

He might be back next Easter. But I think I'll get me a big dog between now and then. I'm not planning to play this game twice.

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