Foggy headed, blurry eyed, head pounding, coffee in hand I stumbled to the bathroom. "My God, my eyes!" Coffee spewed onto the mirror. I blinked; then blinked again. "What the…?" I grabbed a bottle of Vision. Dousing each eye, I watched as the huge, bloody, pulsating veins began to diminish leaving me fixated on ebony black pupils that yesterday were as blue as the ocean.
I closed my eyes and tried to focus. What had happened at that stupid party? Goose bumps prickled my arms. Shivering I opened my eyes to discover the bathroom had become engulfed in an icy haze. A demonic ethereal chant echoed about the room, "You are mine; you are mine." The walls vibrated and the echo altered into a depraved cackle. I shrank against the sink, hands shaking, eyes darting, "Who are you… where are you." I mumbled.
"You are mine; you are mine. You will do my bidding."
My heart threatened to rip through my shirt as I wrenched myself from the sink and bolted from the house. Like a mad woman, I raced about the yard searching for anything, anyone to explain what was happening. The fiendish laughter followed. I tried to scream. I tried clasping my hands over my ears. The laughter continued.
"Who are you… what do you want?" I pleaded.
"I am in your head; I am in your heart. Tonight is Hallo Eve. You will do my bidding."
An uncanny warmth assaulted me and I began to thrash about like an epileptic out of control. Then as quickly as the siege started, it stopped. I felt refreshed, fearless, energized. I stared blindly around unable to recall why I was outside, until I spied the hatchet. Ah, my costume prop. Yanking it from the stump, I trotted back inside my mind racing with thoughts of tonight's Halloween festival.
I had just finished teasing my hair to resemble a lunatic ax murder when Zerchonia arrived. Dressed in a blood drenched, white shirt, she sported a ghoulish red gash around her neck that looked so real it made me shiver. "Wow, great costume."
She giggled. "Not bad yourself, you look like a guy. The black contacts add a nice touch."
Pulling at the ace bandage I'd wrapped tightly around my breast, I gave Zerchonia a scowl. "I can't believe I let you talk me into binding my breast."
"Oh, quit whining, here let me fix it. There, how's that?"
"Where's your axe?"
"On the table."
"Aha, a real one. What, no blood?"
I handed her a tube of fake blood. She grinned, covered the blade and handle with the sticky goo then took my right hand and did the same.
"Okay, all set, let's ride."
We arrived and headed for the bonfire. An eerie familiar voice fluttered in my ear. "At the stroke of 10 you will strike."
Grabbing my hand Zerchonia pulled me toward the activities. "This is going to be fun. Almost as entertaining, as last night when Derek put that silly spell on us and dared us to dress up in these stupid getups. We need to find him. You do know he thinks we'll chicken out right?"
I grinned. "Well, the joke will be on him, won't it?"
Neither of the girls saw Derek lurking at the edge of the woods, nor did they see the smug, wicked, smirk that curled about his lips.
I linked my arm in hers and smiled. "Come on let's have some fun, we'll find Derek later."
Several hours later, laughing so hard my sides ached; I nudged Zerchonia with my elbow. "Hey let's take a break." She nodded, pointing toward a log about 20 feet from the fire.
"Did you ever see Derek anywhere?"
Zerchonia shrugged. "I was having so much fun, I forgot all about him."
We both jumped when Derek appeared from the woods behind us, his phantom costume ominous in the flickering glow from the fire. "You girls looking for me?"
"You shouldn't sneak up on people like that." His devilish grin sent a shiver down my spine. "Where's our $50," I waved my hand over my outfit. "As you can see we fulfilled our end of the bet."
"Yeah, big shot, with your spooky spells and crazy bets, it's getting late. I need to be getting home. Cough it up Derek."
Derek winked at Zerchonia then glanced at his watch. "My wallets in the car; come on ladies follow me. A bet's a bet."
We started down the footpath, single file. We were almost at the end of the trail, when a fiendish howl began ricocheting through the trees, "You are mine, do it; do it now!" My body shook, my eyes rolled back in my head, then all was still.
"Zerchonia stop!" I screamed.
She turned, giving me a quizzical look. "What?"
"Get down, now!"
"Why - -"
"Just do it, now," I demanded.
She knelt, eyes darting up and down the path, her fear evident even through her ghastly makeup.
"Where's Derek?" she whispered.
I scanned the narrow path withdrawing the hatchet from the sheath around my waist. "Shhh. Lie flat and close your eyes."
"You're scaring me," she said, but obeyed.
My hatchet sliced through her neck like a butter knife then disintegrated. A familiar haunting laugh echoed through the rustling trees.
The next morning two cops stood at my door, badges in hand.
"Were you at the Halloween Festival last night?"
"What time did you get home?"
"What's this about?"
"We're questioning everyone who attended the festival last night." The men glanced at each other then looked her dead in the eye. "There's been a murder."
"What!" Stumbling backwards, I grabbed the back of a chair, clutched my robe in my fist, and prayed I wouldn't faint.
"Who… who," I stammered.
They stepped into the room, and shut the door. "Do you know a Zerchonia Watson?"
I nodded, then everything went black.
Debbie Seko is a freelance writer, mentor, blogger, and creative writing instructor. She received her first by-line in 1995 for a short story inspired by her mother. She is a member of Writers Village University, Helium.com and in 1993; she appeared in Outstanding Authors of America. As an aspiring writer, she admits her biggest hurdle is finding the time to write, which she believes is universal to all aspiring writers. Currently she is working on several short stories and a romance novel. When not writing Debbie spends her time teaching, caring for her aging father, and visiting with her grandchildren who are the light of her life. Debbie resides in a small town in Southern Georgia with her husband and Toy Poodle, Sassy.