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The Battle of All Hallows Eve
Tonight my world transforms from a peaceful neighborhood to a mass graveyard. The grass, crisp with frost, crunches under our feet as me and my demonic minions charge from fortress to fortress to steal the treasure. The full and swollen moon shines her precious light down on the earth, illuminating our path. Chased my Artemis' steady beams, our breath forms a ghost.
On we march, wary, weary. Then, when our bags weigh so heavily on our shoulders and our feet drag in the trampled grass, we come to the house. The old willow stoops low, its boughs whispering eerily in the midnight breeze. We halt, forgetting our pains as we gather our courage to charge one last time on this mighty castle. Cobwebs adorn the willow; if stands guard outside the great Victorian mansion.
Tombstones dot the yard, walls of death warning all who dare pass that they, too, dared. The wind whistles past us: like ice it chills our bones and our souls. A shiver rolls down my spine and goose bumps erupt on my arms, tingling. Clawing their ways up from ancient graves, they rise: the skeletons of those who came before. One stands on the porch step, its own grinning skull cradled in its fleshless arms. The skeleton's familiar crouches at its feet, a jack-o-lantern, its fierce snarl illuminated by the flickering glow of a single weary flame.
From some unknown crypt, a dense swirling fog creeps in. It shivers and shimmies towards us, curling fingers reaching out to clutch at our ankles, like a greedy child reaching his pudgy hand into the forbidden cookie jar. From somewhere deep in the night, the wailing shrieks of a baby guide us back from our fear-enshrouded stupor.
Bravely, I take the first step into enemy territory and the others follow. The fog swirls in indignation, unaccustomed to the self-liberation of its prisoners. Solemnly we march,, past the graveyards, past the weeping willow, past the headless skeleton with its growling guardian. Then, heard pounding, I punch the doorbell.
The shriek of my alarm drags me back from the depths of dreams where I slumber. For a moment I think, I hope, I yearn, that All Hallows Eve has not ended, that it decided to stay, to continue on into eternity. I feel so sure that when I open my eyes its magic will still surround me, that the demons and goblins fought off morning, that the world has forever been plunged into an endless night.
With my heart still hoping, my eyes snap open and sunlight blinds them. Once more my spirit sinks at the sight of sunlight streaming in through the window, filtered by the curtains.
As I set off for school, once more I pass it: the great Victorian mansion. I pause for a second to reminisce.
No longer do skeletal warriors rise from the graves. Rather, halves of plastic skeletons made specially for Halloween lay propped up in the dirt in front of pieces of foam marked RIP. The sagging willow tree, hung with fake cobwebs and echoing my own exhaustion, is sprinkled with the morning's dew. The plastic bones of a skeleton lay on a pile on the porch step. Remains of a jack-o-lantern lie strewn across the frost-bitten yard, no doubt smashed by local teens looking for fun.
The candle stub, as well as many cigarette stubs, lie on the sidewalk at my feet, cast away and forgotten. As i look around at the neighboring houses, I notice for the first time that their own jack-o-lanterns fared no better.
I sigh and a gentle breeze carries the cloud of my breath up with it. Up, up away from this sunny world with its happy endings. Up to a place where there is no light, only darkness. Soft darkness that cradles, that comforts. Hard darkness that brings fear and terror. Up to a place of adventure, of excitement, where I can fight demons alongside friends, where we can pillage and plunder at will without waking up to the sun's poisoned arrows. Up and away to All Hallows Eve.
But then I realize that the whole fun of Halloween is that it only comes once a year. After all, what would be the use of living in a world without any happy endings?