Weekend Writing Prompt: The Halloween happening that got a bit too real


WRITING PROMPT:The Night It Happened”
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Take one of the seasonal Halloween offerings—a haunted house, a haunted amusement park, a haunted maze, a haunted hay ride, a ghost tour, a booze-infused costume party—and write a scene about what took place there last Halloween that will forever be referred to in conversation as “The Night It Happened.”

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7 thoughts on “Weekend Writing Prompt: The Halloween happening that got a bit too real

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  2. Jaynesgirl

    Until the night it happened, I didn’t think she was serious. We’d talked about staying overnight in the empty Sullivan house lots of times, but I never thought we’d actually do it. I should have known better.

    "Come on!," Jenny said, "Halloween is the perfect time. What else are we going to do? Go "Trick or Treating?”"

    I finally agreed, partly to have something to do and partly just to shut Jenny up. She can be relentless when there is something she wants, and she always manages to wear me down. I know better. Half the time what Jenny wants is something that will get us both into trouble. Still, I gave in as always.

    We packed up and “headed to our friend Angie’s house” for the night. Our parents didn’t even question it.

    We walked down the street dodging trick or treaters running around in sugar-fueled frenzies. We headed around the corner and then down the next side street to where the Sullivan’s house sits.

    Looking around to make sure nobody was paying attention, we walked through the gate, around to the back of the house and pried open the basement window.

    "You first," I said to Jenny.

    "Scaredy Cat," she said as she slipped through the window and dropped to the floor.

    I did the same, watching for stray spiders and wondering how many mouse droppings we were crawling through on the windowsill. I turned around and jumped as I walked into Jenny in the dark as she stopped to turn on a flashlight. She handed to it me with a condescending look before pulling another one out of her backpack for herself.

    "This way," she said, and I followed, cringing at every cobweb. Jenny saw a door at one end of the basement and decided we should go through there before heading upstairs.

    She opened the door and shrieked as dozens of glowing eyes peered back at her, and backed into me in her rush to get away. Her light turned up toward the ceiling where more eyes glared down at her.

    She screamed again and ran for the window, with me following breathlessly behind her. I’ve never seen her climb anything as fast as she did the shelves in front of the window, not even checking to see if I could do the same.

    She was out in the yard headed for the gate before I caught up with her and grabbed her arm, barely able to breathe. She was so pale all I could do was laugh harder and fall helplessly onto the grass. I remembered something Jenny hadn’t. Mr. Sullivan was a taxidermist.

  3. Edna James

    The night was filled with eerie sound of the forest with owls hooting and animals’ scurrying through the multiple layers of dried, discarded, remnants of what was.
    A perfect fitting for Halloween, All Hallows Eve; a night filled with fun and fear, scares and nightmares, costumes and fake blood.
    The school day crept by so slowly the teenagers could feel their skin ageing with every sweep of the second hand as it torturously made its rounds on the huge ghoul colored face of father time.
    Tonight was the haunted hay ride. It wasn’t the most romantic place, but hey what guy wouldn’t’ want a well endowed female climbing all over him from fright, clutching closer for the body heat, and the open mouthed kiss they would share along the dark, rickety trail some farmer cut out just for the special hay ride.
    The plan went down the sewer as soon as the wagon entered the gnarly tree lined path. As if the pitch black, bone chilling breeze, and hidden speakers filling the night air with spooks and hoots, wasn’t enough; the whole ride was extremely creepy.
    Halfway down the trail, the recording skipped to a complete halt, the wind stopped completely, and the haunting cry of something otherworldly headed their way. The group of teens clutching at each other, screaming, crying, and yelling for the driver to get out of there didn’t drown out the fast moving entity headed directly for them. The closer it got, the louder it became. The hayride suddenly wasn’t moving and the driver was gone.
    Within seconds the pounding of hoofs could be heard, as if the unseen screamer were riding on horse back. Just as the screeching became deafening and clomping louder, a sudden breaking of branches forced all eyes in the direction the crashing came from.
    It was then a pale orb was hurling through the air directly at the teenagers, screaming, crying, and praying ensued.
    With a loud, wet slopping, the ghastly, white orb covered in blood and long hair landed dead center in the wagon.
    The pounding resumed, screeching filled the air, and without warning all present witnessed a black horse leaping over their heads and the wagon. The rider was a female in a white dress, blood covering the shoulders, and not a head in sight. Looking down, a pair of blood red eyes were blinking up at the passengers and the mouth gapped open in deathly silence.
    The teens jumped out of the wagon, tripping over one another as they ran back to the barn.
    They didn’t stick around to see what other horrors lay in wait for them. Nor did they see the four grown men laughing so hard they had tears running down their faces. It had been one of the best scare tactics they had ever pulled off and it was sure to be the one that was known as the night it happened.

  4. Mark James

    Zac. . this was spooky fun!

    I gathered them in the Old Place, drew a circle around the ancient bones under the house, and made them sit inside the chalked line.

    “You both know why we’re here,” I said.

    The black candle in the middle of our circle was the only light. Their faces came and went in the orange glow. “History assignment,” Billie said.

    “Is not,” Samantha, his little sister said, “a whole bunch of people died here a long time ago.”

    “There’s grave dirt smarter than you,” Billie said. “That’s history.”

    “A century ago,” I said, “this house saw terrible goings on.”

    “Is that how old you are?” Billie said.

    “A few years more than that,” I said. “When I was your sister’s age, the French Revolution hadn’t come along yet.”

    Sammie piped up. “Did you wear a wig, like in the old time pictures?”

    They got under my skin, into my blood, but I loved my grandkids to death. “Paintings,” I said. “And yes I did.”

    I let the silence stretch out until the two of them were pale, breathing shadows. “All those years ago, a secret plague prowled these very streets.”

    “The swelling sickness,” Sammie said.

    “Grown men wept in the streets. Babies died in bundles. Women tore their hair in grief.”

    “Never to cross our bones,” Billie whispered.

    “In the middle of the groans of the dying and the screams of the living, the Thirteen gathered in this house, and summoned a darkness more vile than the plague.”

    “To save our souls,” Sammie said.

    “And every Samhain our line comes back, to honor the Pact.” Clouds raced by overhead. Moonlight stabbed through the shadows. “Blood calls to blood,” I said.

    “I’m scared.” Sammie pressed her face into her brother’s arm, squeezed her eyes shut.

    His face pinched and strained, Billie took her in his arms.

    I stretched my arms straight up, felt moonlight on my skin. “We are descended from the Thirteen,” I said. “And we have come to pay our debt.”

    Under the house, bones stirred. A dry dusty sound filled the night. The town clock struck the first midnight bell.

    As the hour tolled, dust swirled in the center of the circle, took on the shape of a bone white dagger, edged with wickedly sharp teeth.

    “In exchange for long life,” I said, “a sacrifice was demanded.”

    “No.” Billie’s voice was a low moan. His grip on his sister crushed him to her. “Make it stop,” he said.

    “The sacrifice was given.” My temples throbbed in time to the hammering beat of my heart. “And thirteen generations were bound by blood to come and pay homage to the bones of the dead.”

    I bared my throat to the hideous blade. “Here now is the last sacrifice of our blood.”

    #

    Newspaper article: October 31, 2010
    A year ago today, two children, William Carver, 10 and Samantha Carver, 7 were found tragically murdered, near the mangled body of their grandfather in the ‘haunted’ house on Baker Road. If you’re going out there to take a look for their ghosts, bring a flashlight and some candy for the kids.

  5. Dare Gaither

    Happy Halloween to All from Transylvania County, NC! 🙂

    “What’s up for Halloween?”

    Bill stared at me, waiting for my response.
    His sphinx-like expression was still disconcerting.
    It was a constant reminder of The Night It Happened.

    I flashed back to last year’s Halloween jaunt.
    The Johnson farm had been turned into a haunted corn maze.
    Old man Johnson had died the the year before.
    The new owners found more profit in tourism than in farming.

    Bill was determined to visit the maze.
    He and old man Johnson had a love-hate relationship going back
    to the summers Bill spent working on the farm. Every Halloween
    Bill took revenge on the grumpy old man by wrapping his beloved
    John Deere tractor in layers of toilet paper. Bill had wanted one last
    parting shot in honor of Old man Johnsons’s demise.

    Our group was the last one to enter the maze.
    Bill was as nervous as a long-tailed cat
    in a room full of rocking chairs. We are all feeling
    a little spooked by the time Bill found the perfect
    location for papering.

    He pulled out the roll of paper hidden in his jacket.
    Suddenly we heard the low rumble of a tractor engine.
    Bill dropped the roll and stumbled backwards.
    The ghostly outline of the familiar John Deere tractor was
    heading right at him. Old man Johnson sat hunched behind
    the wheel with his straw hat covering his head.
    We scattered like chickens among the corn stalks, but
    Bill just stood there in frozen horror.

    I circled around to get behind the tractor, hoping to
    escape unnoticed. I am a bald-faced coward when it
    comes to the supernatural. I crawled among the corn stalks,
    watching the nightmare unfold before me.

    Bill finally tried to run, but he tripped over the
    stubble of mowed stalks and fell to the ground.
    He lay flat on his back, screaming at the top of his lungs.
    The tractor moved inexorably toward him.
    I turned away as Old man Johnson slowly drove the huge machine
    over Bill’s writhing body. Squinting through the corn stalks,
    I saw the tractor continue on down the maze and disappear
    into the darkness. Old man Johnsons’s unearthly laughter
    filled the cold night air.

    I crouched amid the corn stalks trying to catch a glimpse of Bill.
    He seemed to be okay as he slowly sat up.
    I crawled over to him to see if I could help
    now that the danger appeared to be over.
    He just stared at me without uttering a word.
    That’s when I noticed his eyebrows were gone.
    The ghostly tractor had mowed Bill’s eyebrows right off his face!

    “Well…what are y’all doing this year?”

    Bill’s words brought me back to the present.
    I stared up at his browless eyes.
    The missing brows had never grown back.

    “We’re heading Dugan’s Pub for the Halloween Bash.”
    I hesitated and then added, “Wanna come?”

    “Yeah, why not.”

    I’m glad Tom is the designated driver.
    I couldn’t make it through the night sober.

  6. Janel

    Nick took another drink and sighed. The boss banned liquor from the Halloween party this year. Instead of gin and tonics or white wine there was a disgusting green “slime” punch and sickeningly sweet strawberry “blood” cocktails. It was all his fault and he knew it. After last year’s fiasco the only spirits allowed at office parties were the paranormal kind.

    The party wasn’t any noisier than a usual day in the office. People were milling around the room, dressed up as conservative vampires, mummies and kings. Nobody was smiling and the sound of laughter was rare. A wave of yawns spread around the room like a plague. Harry checked his watch and Sheila started texting someone. Michael stared at the punch bowl like he was afraid something would crawl out of the green ooze at any moment.

    Last year’s party was raucous and bawdy. Elizabeth strutted around in stilettos pretending to be a hooker from the 1970’s. Milt the caveman walked around grunting at everybody and hitting them over the head with a foam club. Penny wore a naughty nurse uniform with a skirt so short there was almost a fist fight as men jockeyed for position behind her when she bent over to pick up a dropped napkin. Larry donned a giant diaper, huge bib and other than a pacifier, that was his whole outfit.

    The boss had popped for top shelf liquor. Nick found the martinis to be very tasty with a jumbo olive and pickled onion. Around 11 PM he flopped into the chair in his cubicle and spun around like a 5-year old visiting his daddy’s office. Larry staggered into the cubicle.

    “Hey, Larry. How’s it going?” Nick stopped spinning the chair, but his vision stayed unfocused.

    “Not bad,” Larry itched his rear end, “but I think I’m getting diaper rash.”

    “Then why don’t you take it off and be a newborn baby?” Nick started spinning the chair again, each revolution brought a different view of Larry removing costume pieces until he was finally naked.

    Larry took off running through the maze of cubicle dividers, crying like a baby. Hoots of laughter and squeals signaled his arrival in the reception area where many of the party goers were congregated. Most people were too drunk to do anything but laugh and cheer Larry on. Nobody was laughing on Monday when Larry began packing up his desk and nobody was laughing now, either.

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