Halloween had always had a special kind of magic to it. Becky Lump was about to discover some of that magic for herself. It started out as any other typical October afternoon did. She swept the floor and took inventory of the costumes in Uncle Sal’s costume shop. She was fifteen and did not always feel like being under the constant surveillance of her Uncle Sal. Uncle Sal worked the cash register.
He always had to work the cash register. He did not trust people when it came to money. He knew how to count it and he knew he could count on himself not to steal any. Her work day started after school everyday. Luckily the shop was open all year long and that gave Becky a steady job. Uncle Sal had raised her from birth.
Becky never got to know her parents. She was glad.
‘’Anybody who would abandon a beautiful child like you did not deserve to know you,’’ Sal would frequently tell Becky.
This always made Becky feel special. As a child, Becky would be ostracized. This was especially prevalent in elementary school. Some of the children even made up cruel songs like, Becky the Unwanted or Orphan Becky. The girl escaped through reading and through the apathetic nature of teens, middle school was a breeze and high school was not too bad, yet.
In fifth grade: Becky met her current best friend, Tamika. Becky’s friend, Tamika, was a half inch taller than Becky and her black frizzy hair looked the leaves on a palm tree. After work, Tamika and Becky went out to a local pizza place. Kevin’s Pizza Shack. The video arcade machine made a series of zapping noises and the boy playing the machine poured about a year’s allowance into the machine.
The girls ordered a large cheese pizzas and a couple of diet Coke’s and grabbed a seat in a booth. They spotted a boy from school. Of course this was no ordinary boy. The boy was her crush, Cory Brown. There was a problem with Cory. He was a total hunk but he had a girlfriend. Her name was Julie Gray. She was a total stuck up snob and was rude to everybody.
She pushed Tanya Hankins in the mud and told her she looked like a pig in mud. Tanya was so upset, she punched Julie and got suspended and of course Miss head cheerleader, Julie Gray, did not receive any kind of reprimanding whatsoever, ‘’Isn’t he so cute?’’ Becky asked, as she stared at Cory.
Tamika just shrugged. ‘’He’s ok I guess, if you’re into white guys.’’
‘’Ha hah:’’ Why you have to make everything about race?’’
‘’My dad says, the day I bring a white guy home is the day I pay for college alone.’’
‘’Ouch,’’ Becky said. ‘’You’re dad sounds kind of harsh.’’
Tamika just shrugged. ‘’He’s ok I guess. He just comes from another generation. ‘’
‘’That’s still no excuse,’’ Becky replied. ‘’Love is love.’’
‘’That should totally be a bumper sticker,’’ remarked Tamika.
‘’You really think so?’’ Becky’s voice sounded chipper.
‘’For sure,’’ Tamika answered.
‘’How are you and Walter doing?’’ Becky asked, before taking a sip of her Coke.
Tamika looked down, stirring her drink with her straw. ‘’Walter and I broke up.’’
‘’Oh, I’m sorry. When?’’
‘’This afternoon,’’ Tamika said, looking up into Becky’s blue eyes.
‘’Bummer,’’ Becky stated. ‘’It must feel awful. Do you want to talk about it?’’
‘’Nothing to talk about; he met this other girl and likes her better. That’s the end of it.’’ Tamika shrugged. Her lips started to quiver. Silence fell between the two friends/ ‘’It’s his loss,’’ Becky said.
Becky looked over at Cory and let out an audible sigh. Tamika looked up and noticed her friend scoping out Cory. ‘’Forget it, girl,’’ Tamika warned,
‘’Forget what?’’ Becky asked.
‘’Julie has that dude wrapped around her little finger,’’ Tamika said.
‘’I know that, but a girl can dream can’t she?’’
Tamika kind of smirked out of the side of her mouth. ‘’I suppose so.’’
The unthinkable happened. Cory got up and walked over to the booth where Tamika and Becky were sitting. ‘’I’m having a Halloween party on Saturday: and I’d love it if you and your friend would be there.’’ Cory stated.
‘’No thanks,’’ Tamika said.
‘’’’How about you, Becky? Will you be there?’’
Her heart beat up against her rib cage violently. ‘’S-sure,’’ Becky muttered, allowing herself to get lost in the green eyes of her crush.
A grin crossed Cory’s face. ‘’Great, it starts at 8:00. See ya there, ok?’’
‘’Ok,’’ Becky murmured.
Cory returned to his girlfriend and Becky was left in romantic daydreams but Tamika found a way to snap her friend out of these ludicrous fantasies of stealing the hunky Cory away from Julie. ‘’Do you think going to that party is really a good idea?’’ Tamika asked, allowing her elbows to touch the table; while holding her elbows against the table.
‘’Yeah; why not,’’ Becky shrugged.
‘’Suppose it’s like a Carrie thing and they try to dump pig’s blood on your head or something.’’
Becky laughed. ‘’You watch too many old scary movies.’’
‘’Don’t you find it a little strange that Cory and would invite you to one of his girlfriend’s parties?’’
‘’Maybe Cory is just trying to be nice.’’ Optimism filled Becky’s voice.
‘’Get real, girl,’’ Tamika scolded. ‘’You know Cory does not do anything without Julie orchestrating it. Julie hates us and would not want us to go to one of her snooty parties unless it was a way to totally humiliate us.’’
‘’You worry too much,’’ Becky said. ‘’You really should trust people more.’’
‘’I trust people plenty,’’ Tamika reassured her friend. ‘’But Julie is a snake that walks on two legs.’’
‘’You’re too funny; you know?’’ Becky said, tossing her blonde hair over her shoulder.
‘’All I’m saying is be careful,’’ Tamika warned. ‘’I don’t want you to get hurt.’’
‘’I won’t get hurt,’’ Becky assured her pal.
The two became mute and no further conversing took place between the two chums for the rest of dinner. Soon it was Halloween. The party was on Halloween night and that was the evening Becky took her cousin, Daniel, trick or treating. That would last from 6:00 to 8:00. Becky’s costume was Cinderella. She wore a blue dress with big puffy sleeves and she wore her hair in curls.
It took three hours to do so but when she finished, she thought she looked stunning. The night was fairly warm. It was one of the perks of living in California. It was seventy degrees even in the evening. Daniel wore a San Diego Padres Baseball Uniform. The moon appeared to be bright yellow. Daniel seemed to have springs in his step, because it barely seemed like his heels touched the ground. He walked with a grace suggesting he was a youthful athlete. He was only nine years old and lead his little league team in stolen bases.
Kids ran up and down the streets, carrying pillow cases and wearing masks. Cries of trick or treat rang out through the air. ‘’Isn’t Halloween awesome?’’ Daniel asked.
‘’Becky just shrugged. ‘’Yeah, I guess it’s alright?’’
‘’Alright,’’ Daniel asked. ‘’Halloween is totally magic.’’
‘’Magic,’’ Becky asked. ‘’How is it magic?”
‘’Well,’’ Daniel began. ‘’You promise you won’t laugh at me?’’
‘’I promise,’’ Becky answered, crossing her heart with her fingers.
‘’I’ve been reading up on this stuff called Halloween magic and I have to say it sounds way cool,’’ Daniel said.
‘’What makes it cool?’’
‘’Well,’’ Daniel started. ‘’On Halloween night; you can see fairies and goblins and conjure spirits and stuff.’’
‘’What’s so cool about that?’’ Becky’s stare seemed so cold to Daniel.
‘’these things can enchant you and your life.’’ Daniel said.
‘’Really,’’ Becky asked.
Daniel nodded. ‘’Yep, sure can.’’
‘’Prove it.’’ Becky challenged her brother.
Daniel led her into a set of woods known as Parkers Woods. They came to a red house at the end of the woods. Daniel knocked on the door and a man opened the door. The man wore dark brown slacks and also wore a shirt with the sleeves rolled up to the elbows.
‘’I don’t do trick or treat, kid,’’ the man said.
‘’No, we’re here to learn about Halloween magic,’’ Daniel stated.
The man grunted. ‘’I see. Well, you certainly came to the right place.’’
He waved the cousins into his house and led them to the kitchen. The man went to his bed room and came back carrying a magic wand. He handed the wand to Daniel. ‘’Halloween Magic exists in the heart of us all,’’ the man said.
‘’Oh brother,’’ Becky rolled her eyes.
To enact it you must do two things,’’ the old man said. ‘’First you must believe and second, you must place this wand over your heart and say; I invoke the ghost of Halloween to enchant my life this evening.’’
‘’I want you to have this wand, young man,’’ the old man said.
‘’Really,’’ Daniel asked. ‘’How come,’’ Becky’s cousin asked.
‘’Because I believe you need this more than I do,’’ the old guy proclaimed.
‘’Wow, thank you,’’ Daniel announced, giving the stranger a hug. The old dude smiled.
‘’But remember, young fellow,’’ the old guy said. ‘’Halloween magic is not a toy and can be rather dangerous; be careful.’’
Daniel and his cousin left, while Daniel carried the wand. Daniel returned to his neighborhood and finished trick or treating and afterward, Becky rushed off to the party. By the time Becky arrived; the party was in full swing. Tamika greeted her at the party. ‘’Hey girl,’’ Tamika said.
‘’I thought you weren’t going to come to this party,’’ Becky interrogated her friend.
‘’I did not trust that Julie; so I came to make sure you were alright.’’
‘’Well, thank you for that,’’ Becky said.
‘’Where is the wicked witch of the west anyway?’ Tamika stated, looking around.
‘’Beats me,’’ shrugged Becky.
Julie appeared in the middle of the staircase. ‘’Ladies and gentlemen,’’ Julie spoke in her nasally voice. ‘’The girl of the hour has arrived and you all know what that means, right?’’
The mass of teens all cheered in unison. Nothing was distinguishable but it was just one big jubilant noise. ‘’Becky dear,’’ Julie began. Tamika stuck her fingers down her throat to make fun of Julie. ‘’ We have a surprise for you,’’ Julie said.
‘’What is it?’’ asked Becky.
‘’Cory is going to give you a kiss,’’ Julie insisted.
‘’He’s what?’’ Becky asked.
‘’Cory is going to give you a kiss; I mean, unless you don’t want a kiss from the captain of the basketball team.’’
‘’No, I do, trust me.’’ Becky agreed.
Julie let a deceptive smile cross her face. ‘’I thought so. Shut your eyes and Cory will give you that kiss.’’
Becky did as she was told and several students grabbed Tamika and threw her in a nearby closet and locked the door. Tamika banged on the closet door and one of the partygoers turned up the volume on the stereo to drown out the banging and swearing noises Tamika was making, inside the closet. Becky felt a dog kiss her nose and she opened her eyes. Julie was holding up her Beagle. The Beagle let out a yawn and Becky’s eyes filled with hot tears.
She ran from the house, in tears. Someone released Tamika from the closet. She saw the front door was still open and followed her friend into the warm night. When Tamika found Becky, the blonde had her face buried in her hands. Her shoulders bobbed up and down and Tamika knew Becky was crying.
Through sobs, Becky informed Tamika what happened and the sympathetic friend felt her temples aching and burning. ‘’I’m going to go rip out the hair on that jerk’s head,’’ Tamika threatened.
Becky grabbed her friend by the shoulder. ‘’Violence won’t solve anything.’’
‘’Maybe not; but it’ll sure make me feel better,’’ Tamika grumbled.
This made Becky chuckle despite her humiliation. ‘’I don’t want you to get in trouble. Think about volleyball. You don’t want to mess up your eligibility, do you?’’
Tamika sighed. ‘’I guess not. I just wish there was someway to get even with Julie.’’
‘’Well, maybe we’ll figure out a way later. Ok?’’ Becky suggested.
‘’You want to get out of here?’’ Tamika asked.
‘’Yeah, totally,’’ Becky stated.
The girls began walking. There were very few clouds but the scenery was rather pretty. Halloween lights of orange and yellow hung on houses and jack o lantern’s grinned from front porches. Tamika was the first to part from the pairing and Becky was the last to go home. What she found when she got home, truly baffled her.
She walked into the kitchen and saw a creature sitting at the table. The creature stood about five foot two and was half naked and emaciated. Daniel sat across from the critter. ‘’Howdy,’’ the thing said to Becky.
‘’Daniel, what is this thing?’’ Becky asked.
‘’This is a goblin. His name is Gruel,’’ Daniel said.
‘’You’re joking, right?’’ Becky questioned.
‘’Nope, I’m totally serious; he’s a goblin, I conjured him using the magic wand the hermit in the woods gave us.’’
‘’Of course,’’ Becky said. ‘’This night has been weird enough; why not believe in goblins?’’
‘’I have seen with my gift of sight; that you have suffered a great humiliation tonight. Am I right?’’ Gruel asked.
‘’Yes,’’ Becky answered. ‘’How did you know,’’ Becky questioned.
‘’I see all.’’ Gruel stated. ‘’Would you like to get revenge: on those who wronged you?’’
‘’Yes, as long as no one got hurt,’’ Becky admitted.
‘’Daniel,’’ Gruel said, turning his focus to Becky’s cousin. ‘’It’s time to go to bed.’’
‘’Can’t I stay up and see Becky get her revenge?’’ Daniel whined.
‘’I’m afraid not. It is past your bedtime and you must go to sleep now!’’
Daniel obeyed and went up to bed. ‘’This party is still going on, yes?’’ Gruel asked, already fully being aware of the answer.
‘’Yes, why,’’ Becky asked.
The goblin grinned, ‘’because we can still get that oh so sweet revenge.’’
The monster snuck into Uncle Sal’s costume shop and stole a hooded costume. He walked into the party while Becky remained outside. She watched through a window, as the goblin snapped his fingers and watched as the partygoers’ heads all turned into pigs. Becky’s mouth fell open.
She let out a grunt of her own. She could not speak. What had this monster done? Yes she wanted revenge but this seemed crazy. The goblin came back outside and Becky reprimanded him. ‘’What are you doing?’’ Becky asked.
‘’I’m getting revenge for you,’’ the goblin’s voice sounded dower.
‘’This is too much though,’’ Becky insisted. ‘’Change those kids back.’’
‘’I certainly will not,’’ Gruel insisted.
‘’Why not,’’ Becky asked.
‘’Because,’’ Gruel began. ‘’I decide what is appropriate for revenge, not you.’’
‘’But you’re doing it for me,’’ Becky insisted.
‘’Wrong,’’ Gruel said, his yellow eyes glaring into Becky’s eyes. ‘’I’m doing this for me.’’
‘’What,’’ Becky asked, shaking her head.
Gruel leaned in until Becky could smell the spoiled meat breath of the critter. ‘’Goblins are mischievous by nature; once we start, we can’t usually stop.’’
‘’Yikes,’’ thought Becky. ‘’I’m doomed.’’
All of a sudden, the front door swung open. Julie, I recognized her clothes, stood in the door way. She let out a series of excitable grunts and alerted the other pig people. Several of the other pig people filed out of the house and soon Becky found herself surrounded by disgruntle teens.
Gruel had vanished. That was the trouble with goblins; they were gone at the first sign of trouble. That was a good rule of thumb for anyone trapped in any horror film or horror story. If any paranormal being helps you out at anytime, they would vanish at the first hint of trouble..
The pig’s all kept their original eye colors. That made the scene even creepier because the pigs looked all the more human and yet; more monstrous because of the eyes. The teens made oink, oink sounds and grunting noises. There were about fifty pigs at the party. The pigs started circling the terrified Becky.
‘’Wait a second,’’ Becky called to them. Her voice shook and she felt dizzy. ‘’I did not do this to you; a goblin did.’’
This seemed to anger the pig men and women. They started gnashing their teeth and one of the pigs, even lunged at Becky. She evaded the pig. She ran and fifty angry teens chased her. Terrible squeals filled the night. House lights came on but no one came to Becky’s rescue.
By the time Becky reached her own front door, she was panting, out of breath. She hurried up the steps and raced inside. Locking the door, Becky panted; her back resting against the doorframe. It felt cold. ‘’What am I going to do?’’ the shaky kneed girl thought. She thought of those hideous creatures outside; physically ripping and tearing her entrails out. ‘’Totally gross,’’ she imagined.
Becky pictured her Uncle Sal coming home to angry horde of teen pig people. She fantasized about her poor uncle being beaten to death by those swine. She thought of Daniel waking up and finding her dead. Worse, what if once they killed her, the angry partygoers murdered her and killed Daniel and Uncle Sal too?
Becky shuddered. She heard the swine outside. Their angry grunts and growls filled the night. The disgruntled noises were nearly deafening. The frightened teen thought her ears would start bleeding. The pigs outside started pounding on the front door, boom, boom, boom.
Becky felt the door start caving in. ‘’No,’’ muttered Becky.
An arm smashed through one of the windows in the living room. ‘’Crap,’’ Becky said.
Daniel came down the stairs, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. ‘’What’s going on,’’ Daniel asked.
‘’Daniel,’’ Becky said, ‘’run!”’
Realizing what was happening, Daniel hollered, where?’’
‘’Out the backdoor,’’ Becky ordered.
Becky raced toward the kitchen door. The door busted down. Pig guys and girls started crawling in through the broken window and more windows started getting broken. Pig people started jostling each other to get in through the doorway. Becky struggled unlocking the door for a moment, but she got it and Daniel and his sister started raced out the kitchen door and Becky ran straight into the goblin. ‘’Gruel,’’ Becky exclaimed,’’ help me, please?’’
The pig people poured out of the house and the Gruel grabbed Becky and squeezed her elbows and the bend in her arms. ‘’What are you doing?’’ Becky squealed.
‘’Let go of my sister, Gruel,’’ Daniel insisted.
He swatted and slapped and eventually punched at the goblin but Gruel’s grip only tightened. The pig boys and girls all surrounded the goblin and Daniel and Becky. ‘’You’re hurting me; please let me go, let me go, please?’’ Becky pleaded.
The eyes of fifty pig people gazed behind swine faces. ‘’Do you believe in Halloween magic?’’ The Gruel whispered in Becky’s ear.
‘’What,’’ Becky asked. ‘’Y-yes, I believe.’’
‘’Prove it,’’ Gruel growled.
‘’What? How,’’ Becky said, her voice quivering.
‘’If you believe, your belief will save you.’’ Gruel said, ‘’and if not, well, you don’t want to find out.’’
The Gruel vanished and Daniel and Becky pushed their way past the swine people and started running. Becky’s tennis shoes slapped against the pavement and poor Daniel’s bare feet slapped against the pavement. ‘’Where’s the wand?’’ Becky asked.
‘’Gruel has it,’’ Daniel replied.
‘’Seriously, that sucks.’’ Becky responded.
Daniel heard Gruel’s voice in his head. ‘’You don’t need a wand for Halloween Magic; Gruel says it lives in the hearts of people. We just have to believe.’’
‘’Are you sure?’’ Becky asked.
‘’You got to trust me, sis,’’ Daniel assured his sister.
‘’I believe; I believe,’’ Becky muttered to herself.
The world started to become a big blur and Becky found herself back at the party. Everyone was back to normal and Julie was still holding her Beagle. He licked his lips and yawned. Tamika came screaming out of the closet. Her face was twisted into an ugly and hateful grimace.
‘’I’m going to beat you down,’’ Tamika threatened Julie.
Becky grabbed Tamika’s shoulder and said with confidence, ‘’Revenge is not worth it; believe me, it’s not worth it.’’ Becky chuckled. Relief washed over her like a warm bath of love and gratefulness.
Instinct told her to look over her shoulder and Becky saw Gruel waving at her, through a window. He gradually faded away.