A Halloween Winter
When John woke up, the darkness was too bright. It was burning his eyes. He couldn’t make sense of what was happening. Around him, snow swirled through the air, coating the ground and the buildings in a white blanket.
It was Halloween. The sudden winter followed an abrupt summer of intense heat and bright light. The memories of which played over and over and over in his head. A vision of blinding white flashes brought feelings of warmth.
Scenes of Halloween surrounded him. People in costumes danced around with witches and ghouls; their deformed faces and bodies bathed in the glow of cold flames. The costumes dazzled with fantastic imagery of blood and death and disgust. The wails caught in their throats, choking on pain and horror.
Carved skulls plastered the pavement, housing soft remainders of fire chipping away at the dried-out orange flesh. The ashy lanterns provided sparse light in the endless darkness.
The hollow wind carries with it echoed screams, both chilling and distant. Screams that have been trapped in time, seared into the air, a smog of empty suffering.
Ruin had embraced the buildings. Brick, stone and glass decorated the landscape. A shadow of their former selves, the structures took on a persona of abandonment, painting the backdrop of Halloween image.
Death was woven throughout the world on that night. The trees had become brittle skeletal sculptures. Bones and makeshift graves scattered about, instilling an aura of fear throughout the air.
John reached down to feel the snow. It was warm, chalky. Off-white and gray streaks tattooed his fingers. Ash.
The powdery remains of life clogged his breath. The horror around him was real. They were not playful attempts at escape. Fire and death had ripped through the world.
The new winter was beyond natural; it was the result of fear and hatred. The fear and hatred of humans.
A Broken Down Bus on the Abandoned Highway
In the 1960s, there was a North Dakota State Leadership team that went on a retreat to the Boundary Waters in northern Minnesota. They only had a limited amount of time for the trip, so they decided they must drive through the night. After three hours of driving, most of the team fell asleep.
On the fourth hour, however, the bus came to a screeching halt. The team went out to explore the situation, and it looked as though the tires had all been punctured. Fearing the worst, the team rushed back into the bus and took turns sleeping until the morning.
Over the course of a day, their food ran out and no cars passed them on the road. The team had to make the difficult decision to explore the area outside of the bus …
After walking into the woods, they quickly came across an abandoned campground. There were various run-down cabins and a mess hall located directly in the middle of the camp. The team explored the mess hall, finding only a freezer full of ground meat, hamburger buns and a container of ketchup.
Logically, the only thing that they could make was hamburgers — so that’s what they did, clearing out the remainder of the meat and other ingredients.
When they made it back to the bus, three of the students were missing. The remaining five students stayed on the bus, only leaving the bus for short periods of time to use the bathroom with the bus driver on watch. They did this until one of the students and the driver screamed as blood splattered against the wall of the vehicle.
The next morning the remainder of the students ran away, scattering in every direction. The three that ran away from the camp let out bloodcurdling screams as their voices slowly gurgled out with the last amount of blood they had left.
The last student alive was Cam.
Cam ran back to the camp to the only familiar building on the grounds — the mess hall. When he arrived, there were blood trails across the floor, all leading to one place — the freezer.
Cam’s hands trembled as he lifted the lid to the freezer and found that it was stocked full of ground meat once again.
Cam ran from the building, past the cabins, and into the woods. He ran until he came to an opening. An opening with one lone dead oak tree in the middle. And there hanging from the limb of the tree, with the guts pouring from its body … was … a deer.
It turns out that they stumbled upon a deer hunting camp. But how does that explain all of the missing people you ask?
Well, it turns out Cam was a pain to everyone that he encountered, so the other students decided to play a prank on him by screaming, disappearing and splattering ketchup on the side of the bus. This was the plan all along.
If you read this entire story and you were not impressed by the level of fright, go to your room, get on your computer and look at Blackboard. That should leave you frightened, terrified and wondering the meaning of your existence. And if THAT doesn’t work, try your student loans. Happy Halloween.