Its All Hallows’ eve; a night of masks and costumes, of tricks and treats. The time when those things that make our blood run cold and draw goosebumps from our skin step out of the darkness and into the light, to be celebrated for one night only before retreating to the realm of campfire stories and the occasional nightmare. Vampires and werewolves and witches roam the streets alongside an undead horde, and even the occasional appearance of a superhero or long-dead actress can’t alter the overwhelming perception that on this night, the streets do not belong to us – to humans.
One human is out on this All Hallows’ Eve. A girl pauses outside a cemetery, dressed for the evening in a rich, dark velvet hood. She’s ready for a night filled with her favourite tricks and her favourite treats, and although the sun has not yet set it seems as though dawn will come far too soon.
A basket of apples, all red as blood, rests in the crook of her arm; gifts for children whose costumes impress (and much kinder on the teeth than candy corn and other sweets).
She’s also ready to dole out tricks to anyone who can’t find it in themselves to spare a treat for those brave enough to venture out tonight. Last year, one grouchy old man was turning kids away from his door with an unkind word and a shake of his cane. She remembers him, in his dressing gown, chasing her down the street while she laughed and white streamers of toilet paper fluttered from his porch, drifted across the hood of his car.
Smiling now and looking toward the night, the girl takes an apple from her basket and examines it closely. Flawless. Just like the night ahead – it was going to be a real killer.
Something twists in the polished skin of the apple, a reflection of movement in the trees. A crease forms between the girl’s brows as she glances over her shoulder. Nothing there, just the wind amongst the trees.
With a sigh, her smile returning, the girl steps inside the cemetery. The main street is just beyond, past the ancient tombstones, and the girl picks up her pace as the sun sinks toward the horizon. Night approaches, as do other things.
See you tomorrow for part 2 of the All Killer, No Filler story.