It was dark outside and a little bit damp. The neighbourhood glowed street lamp orange.
"I love this time of year," said Alice.
What was not to like? It was Halloween after all.
"Can we walk up the path now?" asked Abner.
"I want want some sweets already!" cried Gretchen.
Alice nodded and opened the front gate. The path was lined with twinkling jack-o'-lanterns and a vibrating tombstone that blasted spooky disneyfied sounds.
"You ready?" asked Alice.
Grecthen and Abner nodded.
The trio, in unison, knocked on the front door.
"Trick-or-treat!" they cried.
The door slowly creaked open to reveal pitch black.
Alice's heart began to race.
Without warning, the pitch black doorway lit up with rapid flashing.
"Ah, the strobe light," said Gretchen, nodding in approval.
The rapid flashing revealed a ghostly long haired figure creeping down the hall.
"Nice touch," grunted Abner.
The trio were so mesmerised by the spooky spectacle, that they were caught unawares by the screaming monster who jumped out from behind the door.
"Arghhh!" it screamed.
Alice jolted straight back, almost knocking Abner over in the process. They began to laugh.
"Great one Mrs.Bertrand!" said Alice, shaking.
Mrs.Bertrand pulled off her grotesque mask.
"Thanks Alice," replied Mrs.Bertrand. "You're the first trick-or-treaters to my house this evening. I even got my daughter down from uni to help!"
They waved at the ghostly figure.
"The first you say?" asked Alice, puzzled.
"There's usually hordes of children cuing up and down the road to stand here!"
"I know, it's been very quite so far Alice," replied Mrs.Bertrand. "Now, time for some treats!"
She began to pass out the sweets.
"One for Alice and one for...you know I'm sorry but I always forget your cousins' names?"
"It's Abner and Gretchen," said Alice.
"That's right!" replied Mrs.Bertrand. "You must really like those costumes because you wear them every year!"
"I know, right?" said Gretchen, laughing. "We just love them too much!"
"You three have fun now!" cried Mrs.Bertrand.
"Thank you!" replied Alice
The trio made their way down the road. Abner and Gretchen started taking stock of their sugary haul.
"You know guys," began Alice, kicking up a few leaves. "A costume wouldn't be a bad idea for next Halloween."
"What do you mean?" replied Gretchen.
"This is the only time of the year we are allowed to be seen in public and not cause mass hysteria!"
"And we get sweets!" added Abner.
"Never mind," said Alice. "Now, I seem to have more sweets in my bag this year and it's not even late!"
"Same with us," replied Abner.
"Have you noticed how quiet the neighbourhood is?" asked Gretchen.
It suddenly dawned on Alice that they were the only beings about.
"Too quiet," said Alice, suspiciously.
That quiet was soon interrupted. The sound of heavy foot steps and shouting could be heard from the bottom of the road. Through the faint mist emerged a beige figure, running at full pelt.
"Miguel?" Alice said, surprised.
"Alice!" cried Miguel, slightly out of breath.
"Don't worry Miguel," replied Gretchen. "We'll give you the sweetie wrappers to eat, like we do every year."
Miguel shook his head "No, something happened!"
"What?" replied Alice, concerned. "And why aren't you handing out sweets like we agreed?"
"That's the problem," said Miguel, with a nervous laugh. "I got bored and wanted to be out trick-or-treating...So I got someone to cover for me."
"Who?" replied Alice.
"Um...well...everyone else was out and she was so eager to help," continued Miguel.
"Who Miguel?" Alice repeated, this time a bit firmer.
Miguel lowered his head and mumbled.
"Sorry...say that again?"
"Medusa!" cried Miguel.
Abner shook his head. Gretchen laughed.
"I cannot believe you got Medusa to pass out sweets!" cried Alice.
"Well Alice, it's an American holiday...so we should technically say candy," quipped Miguel.
"Timing Miguel," replied Abner, giving him a good nudge in the ribs.
"That explains the slow night," giggled Gretchen.
Alice rolled her eyes and pulled out her phone.
"Hi Marigold, we got a code grey" said Alice, annoyed. "Meet us at the rendezvous point in ten minutes and gather the whole gang."
Alice and the Kinderfoot creatures gathered out front of her house.
"I take it this is not your choice of Halloween décor Miss?" asked Marigold.
"Absolutely," replied Alice.
The whole front garden, up and down the pathway too, was littered with stone statues of terrified
Alice took a deep breath, shook her head and exhaled.
"Could be worse...Marigold, does everyone have a hammer and chisel?"
"Yes Miss," replied Marigold.
"Great," continued Alice
"Remember guys, it's just like that trip to the zoo when Medusa got out and had a look at the monkey enclosure. Only this time can we not chisel the heads off!...I'm looking at you Jack! And please Nero, there are children inside the statues...so no gobbling up!"
Alice held out her hand.
"Marigold, reflective glasses please. Right guys, you know what to do."
Abner, Gretchen and Miguel held open a giant duffel bag.
"On the count of three. One...two...three!"
Alice knocked on the door.
The front door whooshed open to reveal Medusa in all her reptilian glory.
"The trick's on you!" hissed Medusa, eyes dancing wildly.
Her terrifying grin vanished as she saw her reflection in the glasses.
In flash, Medusa's skin started to tighten and crack. Every inch of her turned stone grey.
Marigold flew over and knocked on Medusa's head.
"Rock hard,"chirped Marigold.
"Bag her," said Alice.
Abner,Gretchen and Miguel bundled Medusa into the bag and dragged her upstairs. Alice walked back outside to survey the carnage. She sighed and shook her head.
"Another eventful Halloween, wouldn't you agree Miss?" asked Marigold.
"Wouldn't have it any other way," replied Alice.
More fantastical Kinderfoot stories here
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