Halloween. Halloween is a favorite time of year for many children. It is the time of year when the air gets crisp and the leaves get crunchy. All the warm smells of cinnamon and pumpkin come out, and the sticky, sweaty clothes are replaced with warm, cozy sweaters. Kids have been waiting all month for the one night where they can eat as much candy as they want, and talk to strangers! Everyone pities the kids who don’t dress up and pass out candy. But this year, they’re the lucky ones.
It was Halloween night, 2016. Matthew and his friends were getting ready to go trick-or-treating. Matthew was super excited, Halloween was his favorite holiday. Matthew was in the 7th grade. He had bright blue eyes and auburn hair. He had freckles that covered the top of his nose, right about where his glasses sat down. His voice was somewhat deep, but still had that middle school puberty sound. He was about the height of his mother, but was still an ant when compared to his dad.
Matthew was 13 years old, it was his first year being an official “teenager.” He was hoping his parents would let him go out with his friends instead of being babysat by his parents. His friends have been making fun of him for a couple of years now, for they had been allowed to go by themselves since they were eleven. This year, Matthew made the executive decision, go with his friends, or don’t go at all. But it all lied in the hands of his parents
“It’s now or never.” Matthew thought. “Try to act as mature as possible.”
Matthew went through his little-prepared debate to his mirror a couple of times. In his head, everything went perfectly. But he was smart enough to know that not everything was going to go perfectly. But trick-or-treating was in a couple of hours, so even if he wasn’t ready, he had to ask now.
“MOM! DAD!” Matthew yelled while racing down the stairs. “I need to talk to you!”
“What is it, sweetie?” His mom said while running out of the kitchen with a dirty apron.
“Finally decided you’re too old to go trick-or treating?” Dad said. “I’ve been waiting for this day to come!”
“Sort of…..” Said Matthew. “You see, I was hoping, well, maybe you might just let me…..go out for Halloween with my friends tonight.”
“You’ve been asking that question since you were eleven, and what has been the answer every time?” Dad with a blank expression on his face as he continued to watch the T.V.
“I know.” Said Matthew “But I’m not eleven anymore dad, I’m thirteen!”
“I think he should go!” Said Mom as she came out of the kitchen again, this time with a plate of cookies.
Matthew was surprised with what his Mom’s response was, for she was the one who turned him down every year when he asked. She would always go on with her little rants about how it’s not safe to be out alone when the streets are crowded and there is a lot of commotion going on. She had a good point, and Matthew knew that, but it never stopped him from asking again next year.
“What?!” Dad yelled. “Honey, you know it’s not safe….He’s a CHILD!”
“He has to go out and see the world at some point!” Mom proclaimed. “Why not tonight? He is allowed to go, that is final.”
“Thank you so much Mom!” Matthew said while jumping up and down. “I’ll call my friends right now!”
Matthew sprinted up the stairs and contacted his friends right away. He couldn’t wait to tell them the news. He started getting ready, he was going to dress up as the grim reaper, death itself. What Matthew didn’t know was the debacle that was going on downstairs between his parents.
“JILL!?” Dad said angrily at his wife. “Do I have to remind you of the bad history we have had at Halloween.”
“Be quiet!” Jill said in a hushed tone. “Just because we had some bad luck in our past Halloweens, doesn’t mean he will. Besides, it’s not everyday that-” Before she could finish her sentence, the doorbell rang.
“I GOT IT!” Screamed Matthew from upstairs.
Matthew struggled to run, because of the gown he was wearing for his costume. This was his first time wearing a gown. When he finally got to the door, he was greeted by a group of his closest friends.
First there was Adam. Adam was like a brother to Matthew. They have been friends since kindergarten. He was the popular boy in school, the boy that all the guys wanted to be on a team with, and all the girls, well they just wanted to be around him. He had dark blonde hair with hazel eyes, and there wasn’t a day that you could catch him wearing something non-athletic. Which totally explains why he’s dressing up as a football player. But besides all of the athleticism, he is actually a very nice, down to earth boy.
Matthew’s other friends were Hannah and Carmen. Hannah and Carmen were twins, and best friends. They weren’t identical, but they were definitely close in looks. They both had dark brown hair and piercing blue eyes. They had a fair complexion with, without one blemish. They were quite pretty girls. They may look similar, but their personalities differ. Hannah is more of a tomboy kind of girl. While most of the girls in her grade can be found twirling their hair and taking selfies, you can find Hannah playing football with all the guys. Carmen is the opposite. Carmen never goes a day without wearing a dress, or a nice pair of cacky’s. While Hannah is at her soccer practices, Carmen and her mom are usually at the mall looking for a new outfit. Carmen was obsessed with Matthew, and she wasn’t afraid to show it. Matthew found that, well, off putting. Hannah and Carmen were wearing creepy doll twin costumes. Hannah was obviously not happy, because they had to wear a dress.
As soon as Matthew was about to walk out the door, his Dad grabbed his collar.
“Now, listen.” Dad said. “You don’t go out of this neighborhood, and you DON’T go to any creepy houses, you got that?”
“And most importantly, you have to promise to not go into any houses, boy.” Dad said this with a genuinely scared look on his face.
“I promise, dad.” Said Matthew. “Gotta go! B-” Matthew slammed the door shut.
After the group finished going around the entire neighborhood, they realized their pillowcases weren’t even a quarter full! Matthew heard what his dad said…”Don’t go out of this neighborhood.” So he was about to head home. But his friends had a better Idea. They were going to the big house one block away from the neighborhood.
They approached a big, ominous house that looked like it was hundreds of years old. Candles were glowing in the windows, and the grass looked like it has never been mowed. The group ran up the cobblestone pathway, onto the creaky porch. Adam rang the doorbell. The door slowly opened the door, and a very, very old woman opened the door.
“TRICK-OR-TREAT!!” Everyone said simultaneously.
“Well, I don’t have any candy right here, but come inside and I’ll fix you up with something delicious.!”
Matthew remembered what his Dad told him. “I’ll just wait outside for you guys.” He said.
Matthew waited for what felt like forever! Until finally, the door opened again. Everyone came out eating giant candy bars. They looked like they were in some sort of daze.!
They were walking home when Adam said something interesting. “I can’t take my helmet off!”
Just as he said that, the twins started shrinking, until eventually, they were dolls. Their eyes were green and they looked like they were angry.
Matthew was in a state of shock at first, but instinct took over, and he ran! When he got home he was out of breath, but he needed to talk to his parents.
“DAAAAADDDDD!!!” Matthew screamed at the top of his lungs.
“What is it?!” Dad replied from the living room.
“Everyone ate candy from a creepy old lady and turned into their costumes!”
“Was the lady little?” dad asked.
“Did she have weirdly green eyes.”
“Did she tell you to come inside?”
“Matthew, I have to tell you something.” Dad looked very worried.
“What is it dad?”
“The same thing happened to your mom and I.”
Students in St. Clair County, MI