Putting My Feet in the Dirt 31

Harold picked up the wooden calendar to change the date from the 30th to the 31st. Halloween, he thought to himself. I wish the kids would come around here. I always have treats, but they won’t come.

Harold Hemmings was an elementary school teacher in the village of Trans. It was a small little town in the Ozark mountains. This time of year it was beautiful and inspired many city photographers to snap the scenery. Harold did his best to keep the school children at bay, with the constantly changing weather–one day 75 degrees, the next 35, and it rained havoc on their little minds.

Since costumes were outlawed, this year Harold decided to please the students with an after school party in the park across the street from the school. The parents were delighted to have a couple of hours respite before picking up their children. The party costumes were hidden in the students’ desks in the classroom, but displayed as the children donned them over their clothes. All seemed to be going well. Treats were plenty and consumed quickly. Punch served and spilled and delicious cupcakes left smudged frosting on small mouths. Harold packed up after every child went home and drove to his house.

That evening, Harold put out his offered treats but with no expectation the children would come. It was getting late and the moon was still full. No tricksters even though the clock struck ten. Harold went to blow out the candles in his jack-o-lanterns and turn off the porch light. It was then it happened, the haunting of Harold Hemmings.

As he blew out the candles, he felt a chill run down his spine. He shivered thinking the evening had grown cold. Second candle blown out and a green mist joined the candle smoke. It traveled up and surrounded Harold. He was mesmerized by the event and just stayed there in the bending position of blowing out the flames. The porch light flickered and went out, as did the other pumpkin candles. The moon flew under a dark cloud and all he could see was the green mist in grey smoke.

Harold tried to stand up straight but his back was unable to. He tried to grab the porch railing to right himself but he seemed frozen in that position. He shuffled over to the wicker rocker and sat down, and that is where he remains today.

Unbeknownst to Harold, the school board superintendent did not advocate any Halloween or other such activities in or around the schools in his district. If such happenings occurred, he would go into his basement, unlock the secret room door and don his wizard hat. A small spell was cast and the warning to others like Harold was done.

October Writing Prompts


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