Ichabod Crane, town schoolmaster and self-proclaimed supernatural expert, wants to better his situation by marrying the wealthy Katrina Van Tassel. But, there is a rival for her attentions.
Local hero, Brom Bones.
Brom lives to torment and tease Ichabod, leaving the schoolmaster wondering if he is more interested in besting his rival than winning Katrina’s hand. Especially when each time Ichabod goes into the backroom of his favorite tavern – a place men can be men –his imagination conjures Brom's face on every lover.
Late one night, Ichabod is chased by the legendary Headless Horseman. Terrified the ghost wants his head, he tries to outrun the specter. To his horror, he is taken captive by the evil spirit.
Ichabod awakens, naked and tied to a bed, only to discover the Headless Horseman is none other than his rival Brom Bones! Brom confesses that Ichabod has been haunting his own fantasies and he vows to make Ichabod Crane his in every way.
Ichabod wants to believe the pleasure Brom offers comes from his heart, but he is afraid it is another one of Brom’s tricks.
Though surely an enemy's touch has never felt like this...
Squinting into the dark room, Ichabod’s vision began to cooperate and he soon could make out shapes in the dark. He was not alone. With him was a tall figure in a long black cape the proportions of which were surely made for a giant. A choked whimper escaped him.
The Headless Horseman had taken him prisoner!
“What is it that you want with me?” Ichabod demanded, unable to disguise the tremor in his voice.
There was no answer. However the air crackled with the menace of what might come. Or perhaps the threat was insinuated by the fact Ichabod was tied naked to a bed. Such was not a customary welcome in these parts, nor did it bode well for the intent of his captor.
The ghost stirred on the other side of the room and the hairs on Ichabod’s scalp and neck rose to sharp attention when he heard the scraping sound of a knife. His eyes, still accustomed to the dark, struggled to work in the sudden glittering orange light which now filled the room. Surely that glow must have come from the pits of Hell itself!
Ichabod thrashed against his restraints, convinced beyond a shadow of doubt that the Hessian was sharpening a butcher knife over a flame to ease with the task of removing Ichabod’s head from his body. But, struggle as he might, he could not loosen the ropes. Collapsing in defeat, he fought to swallow his rising alarm. Dread coiled like a scaly constrictor around his insides and tears began to pour down his face. He could not stop them nor could he contain the trembling of his body.
Seeing no means of escape, he began to plead, “Do not take my head, Hessian, please.”
There was an answering chuckle that registered somewhere in the lucid recesses of Ichabod’s mind. “What use would I have for your head when I have my own?”
Racing along with the sheer panic and dismay, a spark of familiarity ignited in Ichabod and he ceased to cry. He repeated the sound of that voice in his mind, wondering if his ears had deceived him, like his eyes. His altered perception was not unexpected, what with being naked and bound to a bed. Yet, now that he looked more closely he saw that the monstrous being before him was in full possession of its own head and, therefore, did not have a use for Ichabod’s own cranium. Nor was the masked specter honing a blade with Hellfire. His captor had simply lit a lone candle and that sharp sound had been the match striking the wall.
When the specter turned and pulled off its mask, black corkscrew curls stretched, then sprang back into shape. Ichabod gasped in surprise.
Why, the head atop the Horseman’s neck belonged to none other than Brom Bones!
His fright and terror were replaced with new emotions at the speed of an advancing legion of demons. Anger and rage filled the mild mannered schoolteacher. He fought the bindings furiously. “What is the meaning of this, Brom Bones?”
The man said nothing as he unclasped his long cloak and draped it across the chair. He tossed the mask aside, too. Ichabod now realized the black mask was how this dastardly man had camouflaged the existence of his head as he chased him through the black night. He must have known Ichabod's wild imagination would allow the shadows to render his cranium invisible and turn that blasted pumpkin on the pommel of the horse into the Hessian’s missing head!
Thoughts raged in Ichabod’s mind like a swarm of molested bees and he tried to gather them up and make sense of them. For everything there was a likely explanation and he could think of only one reason Brom Bones had taken him captive.
“You believe doing this to me will help you win Katrina Van Tassel?” Ichabod cried, his muscles bulging as he strained to break the ropes once more. “Is it not bad enough you have broken into my schoolhouse with your gang and left the place in complete disrepair? Is it not enough that you mock me for being tall and thin? Now you should tie me naked to this bed in order to humiliate me? Is there no honor in you at all?”
Ichabod had worked himself into a hysterical state of agitation and Brom Bones did not seem surprised as he calmly took a seat on the chair. “It is for none of these reasons you speak of that I do this.”
His pulse roared in his ears and he wrestled with the restraints, hating that his nudity was laid bare to his enemy and that he was so utterly helplessness. “Release me!”
“No, not until I have my way.”