Deborah loves all books, her favorites being mystery and romance. She writes fiction on her spare time.
It was one of those nights, that felt like there was nothing much better to do but watch tv. There was nothing to do!
I had a week off, and I would be the only one home. That was because I lived alone. This season I would be visiting family for a week, but for now I was a guy alone. Tonight, on this night was Halloween. Not that I had any plans this Halloween, except for that big bucket of candy on my table. My childhood had always been exciting on this day, before entering into my boring days of adulthood. It was only fair to give out candy since I had enjoyed plenty of it every Halloween as a child. I hadn’t decorated, just scattered plain pumpkins on my porch, not even carved.
I didn’t know how many trick or treaters I would have this time, there were only 3 last year. Well right now it was barely dusk, or twilight, whatever! I flipped the switch that turned on the porch light all the same. Just so I would not forget.
I flipped on the TV.
There was this really dumb show on television. The doorbell ringed, too bad they didn’t have a freaky tune for door chimes. A few kids were trick or treating.
“Trick or treat,” they said in unison.
One of them was wearing a superhero costume. I dropped candy in their bags and smiled with a “Happy Halloween!”
The movie was working into a suspenseful beat. Minus well have some popcorn too. I didn’t think I would miss a lot of the flick. Why not cook some up?
I went into my small kitchen and rocked my pan over the burner. The music from my television was really into a crescendo now. The kernels started popping. I went ahead and poured my real butter over the top.
I sat on the couch with my big bowl of popcorn.
The doorbell range again. I got up and came to the door. I saw someone almost as tall as me standing there, like a man. He was wearing a one-piece black costume and white mask covering his face. I guess it was supposed to be like some sort of bad Michael Myers impersonation.
He didn’t say trick or treat or anything. Just held up this small orange bucket, with a Jack- O – Lantern face on it. I dropped candy in it. He didn’t say thank you, just pulled his bucket back.
I closed the door.
Hurray one of those crummy television shows. Apparently, the movie was gone! I picked up the remote and found the terrifying flick. I must have accidently pushed the button before answering the trick or treating.
There was screaming on the screen! I couldn’t tell if it was a haunted house or psycho monster flick.
I got up again for the doorbell. A bunch of little trick or treaters held up their bags. While I gave them candy, I suddenly could see him behind the trick or treaters, the guy with that mask was almost on my porch.
I asked the kids if their dad was there with them. I saw a parent wave close by, I shook my head and smiled. They ran off!
I looked right at him, without saying anything. He didn’t move for a long moment, then he turned and walked away. I closed the door.
I then jogged back to the couch and popcorn. There was something eerie about the masked face. Maybe it was the blankness of the white mask. I could not see his eyes.
The faces on tv, I hadn’t gotten their names, were crying now, and talking about how impossible something was with intense expressions. I popped more popcorn into my mouth. I could hear a weird knock at the door. It sounded like something small was banging against the wood.
I got up with more candy and opened it to find him standing there again with a stupid knife in his hand as he held out the bucket.
“One trick or treater per house man,” I said as I closed the door.
I couldn’t be sure, but I thought he might have used the back of his knife to knock on the door. Was it real? I wondered if I should call the police, there were little kids out there after all, but then I decided against it. The moron probably thought it was a funny prank to pull on Halloween!
I was about to sit down when the bell chimed again. I Picked up my bat to answer the door. I opened it and put the bat aside. It was just little kids. I didn’t grab the candy from the bucket, lucky I had some in my pocket. My hands met a bunch of goo, I guess the chocolates had melted inside of my pockets.
“Just a second,” I said.
I got more candy from the bucket, lollipops and dropped them in their buckets.
“Thank you!!!” They all said.
I looked around and didn’t see anything. There were still trick or treaters everywhere.
The movie was getting to the screaming part of the plot. The door chimed again. It was getting too late for trick or treaters. How long was this flick?
I checked the peek hole. I sighed, at the aggravating costume. A teenager in a vampire outfit was in front of my door. I dropped more candy into the pillowcase. It looked like the twenty-one- and eighteen-year-olds were all out now. I spotted that creepy white mask again a good distance from the house. The singular teenager joined the group, as two guys with wolf ears came up.
“Do you want some candy bro?” I asked the one with a monster wolf head. “Thanks,” they both said, probably grateful I had spared them the trick or treat.
Five minutes later, I filled my bowl with more popcorn.
There was more knocking!
I opened the door and saw him and slammed it closed. I grabbed my cell phone automatically, but it was temporarily out of battery. I didn’t want to open that door again to find that ugly white mask behind it.
I forgot about it and continued watching the movie, the guy on tv was shouting at something in the dark. Suddenly the woman in the movie confronted the lead, “All this time,” she said. “I didn’t know who it was or who orchestrated it.”
“What do you mean?” He asked her.
“You know who it was?” she insisted.
“It can’t be, your wrong!” He shouted.
I listened closer. The suspense built up, I found myself waiting to know the big reveal.
“The whole night and the knife,” She screamed. “It was…”
The weird knock on the door again interrupted her.
That’s it! I had had enough!
I went to the kitchen in a hurry while listening to the knocks become more demanding and grabbed up the fire extinguisher. I walked right back to that door and opened it, to of course, find him behind it again. I barely realized he was holding up the knife, whether to play scare or threaten I didn’t know, before he was already being covered in that white foam and mist. I continued to spray as he went backwards falling to the ground. He jumped up quickly, and I was sure I wouldn’t only use the snowy foam of this extinguisher if he came any closer. But he didn’t, he ran! I was positive I had heard coughing and spluttering as I had covered that white mask with white foam. He ran far until he disappeared and was gone. I closed my door again thoroughly satisfied.
I saw the credits. I huffed out in disappointment; I hadn’t figured out who had been terrorizing those bunch of people. I got something to drink and sat down to watch another movie with my popcorn. This movie was much scarier than the last one it looked like a ghost story.
My landline phone wrang. I chatted with Griffin; he invited me for tomorrow.
“That sounds great,” I told him.
He told me he was watching a creepy movie with people in a dark house.
“No kidding, that’s what I was watching,” I said.
“The name was The Mansion of Terror! The hot girl finally confronted him and finally knew who and what was causing the trouble.” He proclaimed.
“Who was it?”
“I missed that part,” he said, “just the end of it.”
“Me too,” I grumbled.
“You have got to watch the news, there is something happening in the town.”
“I will, bye then!”
I hung up.
I shrugged and flipped the remote to another channel. There was a creepy commercial on. The News clips mentioning my town came on and reported that there was a suspicious guy in the area. The newscaster claimed he was found with white noxious material all over him and that the police still didn’t know why he was found in such a peculiar condition.
I stopped eating the popcorn holding it in my hand.
“Apparently he was taken to an institution for evaluation,” she said.
She continued to report the strange story. His parents said he had been watching to many horror films. Apparently, he had repeatedly watched Michael Myers movies. His parents also said he was going to apologize to the community. She announced that he kept scaring people at their homes, and even threw rocks at someone’s window. The police picked him up.
He must have been harassing other houses in between bugging me. Then she said they had no explanation, as to why he suddenly came home covered in that white substance. The police thought it possibly may have been from something that is found in a fire extinguisher, though he had given no explanation for it.
The newscasters thanked her and mentioned that it all sounded unusual, especially the part about the white stuff found on him. The announcers nodded and started to talk about the biggest Jack-o-lantern someone had carved in the city. That was it!
I finished my popcorn and called it a night.
The next morning, I enjoyed what was left of the candy, and what didn’t land in the trash can. I had never told anyone, that it was I who had sprayed him.
There was the rest of the year to deal with and life to experience.
Halloween was over!
© 2022 Deborah Minter