A Halloween Story

A Halloween Story

Angela Wu

The amber-brown leaves blew from a crooked tree, swirled up into the sky with the full moon
behind them, and landed on the shoulders of a tall, cloaked figure who stood in front of the door of a
lighted house with potted flowers and two jack-o’lanterns in front. His cloak was marked with silver
designs and an aura of mysteriousness and charisma surrounded him. A golden bell hung on his wrist, but
it didn’t make a sound when he moved.
Inside the house, a woman was busy setting up the chair and hustling her kids and some of their
neighboring friends onto a large, blue and red rug at the fireplace.
“Be good when he comes, kids.” She said, grabbing a basket full of candy and setting it in the
middle. An owl hooted somewhere far away. “We’ll be back soon.”
“May I come in?” Just then, a raspy voice sounded from outside the door. The mom shot a
warning look at the loud and energetic children then opened the door and tilted her head at her from the
door, asking,
“You’re the storyteller Mary hired?”
“That’s me. Can I come in?”
“Yeah,” the lady said, thinking in her head, Why can’t Mary hire someone less creepy than this
man? Oh well. She stepped to the side and watched the man as he walked past her. Then she walked out
the door, to her friend’s car and called,
“I’m here! Let’s go.”
The car drove away, the lady having an uneasy feeling in her chest.

In the house
The children looked at each other, then looked at the shadowy figure. One of the mom’s kids,
Derry, raised his eyebrows. He thought at first that it was ridiculous for her to treat them like babies,
locking them up and forcing them to listen to some dumb storyteller. He wasn’t interested in stories
anyway. But when the storyteller walked in, he immediately stopped complaining to his friends, and
looked closer.
Now this is more like it! The storyteller himself was dressed so convincingly like some figure
from another world!
“Mary? Get me the jack-o’lanterns,” was the first thing he said.“I will be using them as props.
Kids, ready for an exciting and frightening story?”
“Yes!” The ten or so children cheered, unwrapping bits of candy. At first they had been a little
scared by this man’s appearance as not being able to see what he looked like was frightening, but his
warm words and deep, pleasant voice quickly cured them of any doubt. When the hooded figure took the
jack-o’lanterns, he seemed to flinch.
“Hmmm, since this will be the last story I’ll be telling you,” he started, sitting comfortably on the
cushioned chair, “I’ll make it a good one, yeah? I’m sure you love this holiday, but do any of you know
what it is?”
Feeling an inexplicable urge to please this man, Derry, remembering what his mom had once told
him, quickly raised his hand.
“A day the seal between the human and demon realm weakens!”

The man laughed lowly, his chuckle echoing within the walls of the cozy house and within the
hearts of the listening children. The tips of their hearts seemed to tremble to his sound.
“…you seem quite informed,” he said in a low voice, leaning back on the chair, the silent bell
shaking. “Good, good. I’m in a good mood today.”
“Once upon a time,” he continued, fiddling with the frayed edges of his dark cloak. “No, not the
right one. Let’s start again.”
It’s starting! Everyone sat straighter.
“There is a legend of a beautiful one, someone who can appear both as a handsome, pale blue
haired, silver-eyed youth, and a wispy, beautiful pale girl with large, dark eyes. It is said that on this day,
the youth will appear, and wherever it goes, something will happen to those it meets. They will be left
with their hearts gone, still alive and their eyes glazed. Smiling, a crazed smile and usually frightened to
death. If you are the unlucky victim of this monster, there is no escape. The only way is to somehow
break free of it’s trance, to clear one’s mind of fear and attraction….but that is impossible. This youth
isn’t like the monsters you read about, not the violent and scary-faced ones who can smash you to pulp,
nor the haunting and quiet ones who can make you go crazy with fear. This demon is like a gentle,
flowing river of blood, a tinkle of a town bell, or the blur of one’s reflection on an unmoving lake surface.
To give you an idea of this monster, I will tell you a few stories.”
The figure smiled, and the flames in the fireplace seemed to have diminished a little.
“It was a quiet night during the full moon. Too quiet, thought a fisherman who stood alone on his
small boat. In front of him was the sleepy village, and seeing the eerie dark and hearing a crow’s caw, he
started rowing faster to the dock. There was a small ripple in the unusually calm lake where his small boat
floated. Just then, he heard someone singing, from behind him in the depths of the dark forest. His
paddling stopped, and he turned around. His pupils contracted and hearing the beautiful and luring singing
of an undoubtedly beautiful lady, his hands seem to move on his own accord, closer and closer to the
other side, further away from the light and into the darkness.
The singing stopped abruptly. The fisherman shook his head, and picked up his paddle which had
fallen. He suddenly felt his palms sweating and fear rose in his heart, urgent and fiery.
Get back to the village.
He heard another ripple in the lake and looked down. His heart seemed to stop.
There was another human, or thing, standing behind him. The reflection was blurry, but it shook
his bones. What..what was this thing? He could not turn, he couldn’t move.
“Scared?” The thing rose, grew bigger as his eyes were forced to turn around. It was a beautiful
girl, pale, with dark eyes. She smiled, and it grew bigger as her lips stretched to her ears, revealing sharp,
white teeth and a long tongue. “It will be quick.”
He did not even have the strength to scream. She moved, her claws sinking into his heart and
pulled it out a red, still-beating organ. The long tongue of hers licked it and she smiled wider and started
singing again.
“No one from the village was ever heard from again.”
The children stared at the man with wide eyes, as gradually more darkness bathed the room.
Derry seemed to suddenly realize something and stood up, but the man only tilted his head and closed his
eyes, continuing.
“There was a man walking down a empty cobblestone street in a sleeping city. He reached a
bridge, where there was a single lamppost on it, casting a green-yellow light across the bridge. His
footsteps stopped. On the bridge stood a single girl, seeming to be from another world. She had long, dark

hair, and she was combing it. He walked closer, wanting to touch her, but then she turned around. The
wind rose. Can you guess what happens next?”
There were many of the children who were crying, the candy left forgotten. Derry had finally
stood up and shouted, “Who are you?”
“Do you know who I am?” The man suddenly chuckled and he stood up. The fire went out. A
quiet voice sounded behind Derry. Cold sweat gathered at the edge of his temples. His neck shook, but he
could not turn it. Suddenly, he remembered what his mom had told him.
Jack-o’lanterns disperse evil. Evil cannot hurt you when there is the light of jack-o’lanterns to
aide you.
“Too late,” the quiet voice whispered next to his ear and he imagined a long, blood red tongue
sticking out. He scrunched his eyes. “I crushed them.”
One of the children said, “Hey, what’s going on? Mister Storyteller, are you going to finish?”
“As you wish.”