One thing was for sure, they were not going to get fucked out of a proper Halloween. The night was middle-aged, but there was still time to do what was their God given right.
“Aren’t you a little too old for trick or treating?”
Mr. Benson, he of the horrid comb-over, man boobs and disturbingly bulbous earlobes, clutched his bowl of candy to his gut, refusing to dole out any of the mini chocolates. His house smelled like onions and old man farts.
“I didn’t know there was an age limit,” Jon said, holding out the plastic shopping bag.
“And where are your costumes?”
Jon and his buddies Ray and Chelsea stood on Benson’s small porch dressed in regular clothes. Chelsea was a little goth, so her thick black eyeliner, pale skin and all black outfit should have counted for something.
“We forgot them. So how about just one candy each?” Ray said, grinning like a wide-eyed lunatic.
“Grow up and get a job!” Mr. Benson shouted, slamming the door.
Jon laughed. “Well, looks like it’s all tricks for bitch tits.” He grabbed the cardboard skeleton on the door and tore it down. Chelsea stomped on it for good measure while Ray filled the mailbox with shaving cream.
The trio of sixteen-year-olds ran across the street, swallowed up by the blackness under a busted streetlight. It was the first real chilly night of the fall and the streets were emptying out of monsters and superheroes, firemen and fairies. By the light of the half moon, Jon could see the heavy vapor of their breath.
“How much you got?” Chelsea asked, ruffling the candy in her bag.
“Not much,” Ray said. “Couple of chocolates, some old lady candy and actual freaking pennies. Who the hell gives out pennies?”
Jon dumped his pennies on the sidewalk. “I think it was that old Irish lady. She mixed them up with those lemon balls. I bet she’s had those balls since the 70s.”
Ray laughed, slapping Jon’s arm. “I bet she had a lot of balls in the 70s!”
“You guys are gross,” Chelsea said, rolling her eyes. “She’s older than our grandmothers.”
“And just as cheap,” Jon added. “You guys wanna go around the block, see if anyone’s still answering?”
Ray checked his other bag. This one was filled with cans of shaving cream, a few remaining eggs and two rolls of toilet paper. “Yeah, I got enough for at least one more block.”
This was the year they swore to have their cake – or candy – and eat it, too. Tricking and treating! Next year, it would probably just be running around on mischief night. This was their last hurrah, even if they didn’t bother to dress up.
“This time, we let Chels ring the bell. They’ll think she’s like someone from the Addams Family and we’ll just sneak our bags in,” Jon said, leading them up to a lighted porch.
They’d tried the I’m just getting candy for my sick little brother act but got very little action. The adults were being awful stingy this year. Jon knew it didn’t help that he had the makings of a sweet beard and mustache and Ray was six feet tall.
“You guys are hysterical tonight,” Chelsea said, ringing the bell. “I should have gone to Trish’s party.”
Ray flicked her ears. “You know that wasn’t even a possibility. The three amigos and Halloween are like PB&J. You’d be miserable without us.”
She swatted his hand away. “Yeah, well, someone has to babysit you two.” Jon saw the flash of a smile in her reflection in the door’s windowpane.
A curtain pulled aside. A woman shook her head when she saw them, refusing to open the door.
Jon shrugged his shoulders. “Should have answered the door.”
There was a painted pumpkin on the porch railing. It had the face of a witch, warty nose and all. He tucked the pumpkin under his arm and walked to the middle of the street. “Care to do the honors?” he asked Chelsea.
“Why, thank you,” she said. Rearing her leg back, she kicked a hole in the witch’s face. Seeds and guts splattered her black leather boots. “Now that’s nasty.”
Ray and Jon played a little soccer with the wounded pumpkin before kicking it down the street where it settled over a sewer grate.
“One down, like twenty more to go,” Jon said, eyeing the long row of houses ahead of them.
They were the only ones on the block still trick or treating. Some people said they were out of candy, but most didn’t even bother answering the door. In return, Jon, Ray and Chelsea TP’d one tree, emptied three cans of shaving cream and egged two cars sitting in a driveway.
“We better move to another street,” Ray announced when all of the eggs were gone, their impact setting off a car alarm.
They jogged for two blocks, the cold night air stinging their lungs. They stopped outside a small apartment building, fishing out candy from their bags, dropping wrappers on the ground. “Think there are any razors?” Chelsea asked, munching on a peanut butter cup.
“That’s such bullshit,” Jon said. “All those stories are made up to stop little kids from eating all their candy.”
“Do you guys wanna try some more houses or call it a night?” Chelsea said. “I’m cold.”
All of the porch lights on this stretch were out. Halloween had come to an official close.
Then Jon spotted something that made the hairs on his arms and upper lip stand on end. “Check that out!”
Three houses down was a long walkway lined with carved pumpkins. There had to be at least twenty. A few still had guttering candles glowing inside. There was no way they could walk away.
“You got your shit kickers on?” he said, lips curled up in a devilish grin.
“Oh yeah!” Ray said, running to the house.
Chelsea clutched her stomach. “Oh, that doesn’t feel so good.”
“That’s what happens when you eat like ten peanut butter cups. Come on. You can squeeze them out like Willy Wonka later.”
Ray waited patiently by the first pumpkin, triangle eyes and an inverted triangular nose with a jagged, gap-toothed smile. It was a classic jack-o-lantern, just asking to be bashed.
“Time to sign off with a twenty pumpkin salute,” Jon said. They each picked a pumpkin, eyed one another, pulled their legs back and kicked as hard as they could.
Ray was the first to scream. “Ow ow ow ow! It’s got my foot!”
Jon was about to tell him to stop screaming like a girl when something clamped down like a bear trap on his ankle. He heard the bone snap, felt fire run up his leg to his balls. The pumpkin’s mouth had slammed shut on him. Its eyes narrowed as it chewed on his foot.
“Oh my God, it hurts!” Chelsea wailed. She was on the ground, a pumpkin munching on her foot, two others gnawing on her hands.
Ray lost his balance, falling beside her. Three pumpkins rolled from their perches, mouths opening wide, tearing into him. The largest of them engulfed Ray’s head, cutting his agonized lament short.
“What the hell?” Jon tried to hop away, but the pumpkin on his foot was suddenly as heavy as an anchor. His other ankle rolled. He face planted on the hard concrete. His front teeth shattered like porcelain. More and more pumpkins spun toward him, their carved teeth impossibly sharp.
The pumpkins soundlessly masticated the three amigos, gobbling them like Halloween candy.
~ Hunter Shea
© Copyright 2015 Hunter Shea. All Rights Reserved