The Monster of Harmony Acres
By Jeff Cappis
“It’s Halloween, Grandpa. Tell me a scary story.” said Kane as he sat up in bed.
Now, I’ve been known to tell a story or two, but it’s always a little harder coming up with a good one on the spot. I decided to try. I didn’t want to get too scary because he was only four.
I told him about the ogres living in his sock drawer. When nobody is around, they blow their noses in your socks. That’s why you get holes in them. It’s best to make sure your feet aren’t in them or they’ll nibble on your toes. (I tried to say that part with a scary voice).
“No, it’s Halloween, Grandpa. Tell me a really scary story.”
Hmmm. Well, all right. I tried again and stepped it up a notch. I told him about how all the toys in his room are always watching. They’re waiting for the time when they can get even for all the other toys that little boys have broken in the past. Then I tried the scary voice again. “Just watching and waiting…”
He wasn’t buying it. He yawned and gave me the look. “No, a scarrrrrrry story!”
This kid wouldn’t be easily satisfied. I rolled up my sleeves and turned the lights down. The wind outside gave my story a sinister backdrop. Then I started with a whispery deep voice. “Some say that on stormy Halloween nights, a creature emerges from the beaver pond just across the road from our house. It has long fangs and fingernails. Its beady red eyes glow in the dark. It is said that coyotes howl to warn the rest of the forest that it’s out. Drooling, it wanders through the trees and looks in windows for little boys and girls to scare who are up past their bedtimes.” (I tried to add a moral to the story).
“Its breath is horrible! Its fur is matted and covered with ick.” I added a dramatic rise to my voice. “Growling and clawing, it will come at you slowly until you’re too scared to even scream! But it can’t scare you if you’re asleep. Well, Goodnight,” and I left.
“That wasn’t scary,” said Kane to himself. He lay down and pulled the covers up to his chest. Outside, the wind really began to kick up. A storm was brewing. Off in the distance, a group of coyotes began to howl.
Kane knew that what I told him was just a story, but his curiosity got the better of him so he got out of bed and looked out his window. A neighbor happened to be driving down the road, but to Kane the taillights looked like two glowing red eyes traveling through the blowing mist and trees. He jumped into bed and pulled the blankets up to his nose. The coyotes continued to howl. Could the story be true?
He hadn’t really noticed it before, but a cloudy moon was casting a strange shadow from a tree just outside his window onto the wall above his bed. Passing clouds made it shimmer. It moved up and sown with the wind. To Kane it looked like the shadow of a hideous creature with fangs and long nails. He tried frantically to pretend he was asleep, but every time he peeked at the shadow, it appeared to be getting closer! By this time, Kane could swear he smelled its breath.
“I’m not ascared. I’m not ascared,” said Kane, trying to convince himself. “There are no such things as monsters!” Then there was a flash of lightning and thunder shook the house.
There were three of us sleeping in our bed that night. Kane’s bed was empty. Serves me right for telling scary stories. One of us slept comfortably (sideways), snoring, with his feet in my face. Maybe monsters are real, but at least they can’t get you in Gramma and Grampa’s room
Copyright by Jeff Cappis / Email: firstname.lastname@example.org