As all followers of Durkon Thundershield know, trees are evil.
I think it most likely began with a fight. A raccoon, not quite fully grown, and something else. Given the tree’s location inside an RV park, probably a dog. A large dog, because raccoons fight nasty. And the raccoon was losing. It had taken some nasty injuries, particularly at the end of its nose. So it ran up the tree to escape.
The tree made sure that didn’t happen. It trapped that young raccoon and made sure it would never leave.
Or, and it wouldn’t surprise me any, maybe the tree hired a hawk or eagle to make the hit on the raccoon and bring it the corpse. Who knows what dark rituals trees might perform?
However it happened, the tree soon had a dead raccoon in its grasp. And for a long time, as the body decayed and bits and pieces fell away, it did not let go. Finally it was left with just the bare clean skull, minus the lower jaw, tip of the snout, and a few teeth.
About a week ago I went around our motorhome rolling up the awnings before a storm. We planned to hit the road soon and didn’t want the awnings to be wet. As I attended to this task, I passed under the tree.
And the tree tried to kill me by dropping that raccoon skull on my head.
Fortunately for me, this tree hadn’t had a lot of practice in dropping things on people. It missed by about three feet. I grabbed the skull (so I could identify it later) and got out before the tree could find something for another try.