Then a sudden silence. A deafening silence. As still as a grave. A cat, seemingly oblivious to the events of the last few minutes, awoke from is slumbers, stretched its legs and shivered as it looked around the remains of the room. It licked one front paw and then the other, and then stepped over the witches hats, plastic sickles, and ghoul masks which littered the floor before leaping onto an upturned cupboard and jumping out the window into the garden beyond.
A gaggle of giggling children masquerading as witches, warlocks and ghosts banged on the solid oak door oblivious to the events of the past few minutes. Trick or treat they yelled through the letter box, trick or treat?
Nothing. No response. They turned to walk away, and then started running towards the gate. Suddenly they heard a loud, deep and menacing creek as the door began to open behind them. As one, they stopped and turned. Beyond the open door was pitch black, not a glimmer of light. And standing there, a tall figure in a hooded blood red cloak, leaning on a stick. There was a deep and hollow black void where its face should have been, just two iridescent green eyes shone out from the darkness. The children stood transfixed unable to draw their eyes away from the creature before them. It slowly raised an arm then began beckoning them with a spindly grey finger. They we unable to resist and started marching in step, left right, left right towards the house and the sinister creature drawing them in. As they marched they muttered strange words and turned their faces to the heavens.
They stopped in front the door and stamped their right feet on the ground. One of them, a child dressed as the grim reaper began to shimmer then start to grow in height, a little at first then shooting up to face straight into the abyss beneath the grey hood. He started jabbering and babbling in a shrill shrieking voice, faster and faster and rising into an echoing deafening scream.
Slowly the cloak began to drift downwards until it lay in an empty heap on the ground and the grim reaper became a child again. There was a bloodcurdling scream from behind them, and then the cat wound itself between the children’s feet, and wandered back into the house. The door slammed behind it. The children turned, dazed, and began to wander away from the house.
Just as they reached the gate, the door flew open behind them. Treat shouted a voice. I’ll give you a treat. They turned to see a grey haired old lady holding in her hands several bags of sweets. The hallway was a blaze of light and the sound of music filled the house. Treat she cried, treat! They ran back towards the house as the memory of the last few minutes evaporated in their minds. The old lady drew them into the house. Then she took on a sinister, menacing look. The cat purred louder and louder as it twisted and turned between her feet. So it’s a treat you want she cried and with that there was an enormous crash and the shrill shriek of shattering glass as the panes blew inwards. The curtains billowed and blustered as a ferocious blast of wind filled the room sending ornaments, pictures and books spinning around and bouncing off the walls, floor and ceiling. Then a blinding flash of lightning shot through the smashed windows. Not white, but blinding scarlet forks and fingers of electricity, which hissed and crackled as they criss-crossed the room leaving rivulets of blood streaming down the walls.
All that was supposed to have happened many years ago. No one knew whose the children were. The strange creature and the grey haired old lady remain a mystery, and today a modern house stands where the old one once stood. Most of the villagers believe the whole story to be the result of a fertile imagination, a story which has become more exaggerated with each Halloween.
It was the last night of October. A group of locals were leaning on the bar of the village pub, chatting and drinking ale, when the door blew open with a bang, and in strolled a stranger in a hooded blood red cloak........
Written for Writers Island and (Fiction)Friday and Sunday Scribblings