It was one of those full moon Halloween’s that you remember from childhood. The cold meant that fog rose from the ground and like tentacles it reached out to snare you in its grasp. Fog and moonlight played tricks with the shadows and your imagination did the rest. You saw things that night that even now you’re certain it’s still there in the fog. Waiting.
My brother and I took a short cut through the woods. Going around was two more kilometres we just didn’t want to walk. The trees stood tall and silent, waiting, watching, knowing someone would come. We played in this forest and knew all it’s secrets. This night we’d need all we knew to escape what waited.
It’s what we didn’t hear that tipped us off. Taking our time we climbed into the trees, carefully, silently, twenty feet up, we picked our way out of an unseen trouble. Ten feet in from the edge we found it. The mismatched shadows that told us here be monsters. Silent hand signals outlined a plan and we slipped away.
This monster took special care to handle because it’s arms and legs and size made it dangerous. To take this monster you need to catch each piece alone and scare it to death. We knew this monster all to well.
Once in position I waited and then screamed before running left. The monster scattered at the scream and one piece charged me. I let it get close and then ducked to ground and let this shadow pass me. Ten feet past I let it hear psst. It turned to get me and my brother raised up one solid thump and the shadow fell silent. We dragged to the clearing and silent as ghosts we went into the trees once more.
The shadow now sprawled and twisted while it searched for us. Waiting, we bided out time, boredom was our friend, bravado what we wanted next. Ten minutes in the dark is a long time for some. It gave us a straggler and quietly, carefully, we got so close. Standing with my back to a tree I said “looking for me?” The reaction instant, the grab from behind caused the shadow to scream. We laughed as it tore through the trees in the hopes of escape we made lots of noise giving chase, but just as quickly melted into the trees.
The shadow scattered. It’s lesser appendages breaking free and escaping into the dark and the safety of the open field beyond. We stayed quiet. We waited for the menace that drove this monster. We waited patient as ghosts for the shadow that liked to hurt little children.
It came to us and circled know we must somehow be near but never looking up. We let it settle into it’s circle and on the fifth pass we strung our own trap. “Hey dummy” I said. It charged me and two feet short tripped and crashed head first into a tree. We pounced binding arms and legs with vines and branches. Ensnared we carted it to the edge of the forest and in full view threw it out of the forest.
The shadow turned into a boy. A bully actually. A bully is nothing without his gang. This gang would remember this Halloween for a long time. Would remember, that two ghosts can scare any monster.