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Halloween Story Writing Contest
2008 Halloween Story Contest : Showcase : Academic Nightmare

Halloween Creative Writing Story Showcase

Academic Nightmare

By Lauren McQuiston

Halloween StoriesIt's Halloween night… where am I? Out trick-or-treating with my little sister? No. At an awesome costume party? No. I'm at school, patrolling the campus to earn extra volunteer hours. All of my extracurriculars will surely be the death of me. Whatever, I'm too old for Halloween anyways.

School hallways are really creepy after hours. They smell like a musky combo of formaldehyde and mothballs. Maybe the Biology teachers forgot to dispose of the rotting flesh from today's lab units. My steps reverberate off the walls, echo all around me and burry themselves six feet under. Alright, I'm starting to creep myself out… I've had way too much candy corn or something. Old folk stories and horror movies are dancing in my head, taunting me, questioning my sanity. I'm the only one here. Everyone else bailed and I don't blame them. I'm all alone; why do I sense the presence of another? Why are my palms sweaty? Why am I practically jogging?

I turn a corner and smack through a cold gust. My body hair rises, I can see my breath. Telepathic alarms are ringing in my ears, amplifying my senses. I hear girls screaming in pain as if a thousand burning needles are piercing their flesh. I hear splashing, like milk on tile and a distant gurgling noise. The stench of the vacant hallway is stronger, the air is sticky. It's becoming hard to breathe. All these sounds and feelings blend together frightfully well, a symphony written my Satan himself.

Behind me a voice whispered, "You have entered our world…"I turned and saw a flash of blinding light. I cringed and closed my eyes. As I refocused I saw things that weren't there before. I saw mutilated bodies festering in pools of blood and bile, small children crying under their parents' bodies; suspended from the ceiling, swaying in the stillness. As I floated along the walls, they turned to me. Their eyes ripped out from their sockets but still able to see, still alive, and still in pain. As I passed they reached for me, beckoning me to stay. I knew I had no choice.

I am now part of their world. I am no longer one of the living, but I am not dead. My soul has been absorbed by so many other peoples' identities; I am a prisoner of the hallways. My eyes are ripped from their sockets, but I can see. I see boys walking their girlfriend to class then running to their own. I see kids ditching class to smoke in the bathroom. I see a lonely girl rushing to the library at lunchtime, An academic nightmare. I see myself in her… It hurts me to see this.

Take my advice. Go out and have fun this Halloween, go trick-or-treating, go to a party… life is too short not to. •

© 2008 Lauren McQuiston

10/13/08