THE HOUSE part 2

There was something wrong about the house.

It was surrounded by overgrown craggy trees that with lack of tending had crept to the foundation and spread their dark and leafless limbs across the crumbling brick of the old schoolhouse's face.  Older trees loomed protectively over the sides and around the back.  Windows were warbled with age - many of them broken or cracked, some of them boarded. 

It would have been cool-creepy - the perfect setting for a movie.  The perfect house for a Halloween night dare.  Except that there was definitely something about this house - something darker than I had anticipated, and it filled me with a genuine sense of foreboding and fear.   If there were places on earth where the Spirit was always comfortable enough to dwell - couldn't that be true for the other side, too? 

"The legend says that some school teacher went crazy, here," Damian said.  "There were casualties.  They tried to use the old house for other things, but everything failed.  Usually tragically.  Most recently, Satan worshipers have been using it for their headquarters.  Doing all sorts of bizarre rituals and sacrifices.  Police officers have arrested a few, who just laugh as they're being hauled away."

"Psh," said Meggin (one of the gals from the back seat).  "Devil worshipers.  That's a very well told tale."

Damian nodded.  "Yeah.  But these guys made the papers."  Damian's family lived in Blackfoot.  He grew up here.  He was also usually fairly skeptical himself (remember?  Lawyer?).  "I've read all about it."

Steve (one of the guys from the back seat) leaned in closer against the window, staring at the house.  "What if they're in"

There was a blue light filtering through the windows.

"What's that light?" I asked in a barely audible whisper.  Something told me that the less this place was disturbed, the better.  I looked at Mikelle.  "Do you see that blue light?"

"Yes" she said.  She turned from the house and gave me a look that said, we should get out of here.

"What light?" Steve asked.

"It's probably just the light from the horizon coming through the windows," said Meggin.

I shook my head - a gesture barely visible, yet I shook with it.  "There is no light on the horizon," I said.  "And the house would have to be backless for it to glow through the windows like that.  And the trees are too thick behind the house."

We all stared.

"We should go." I said.

Steve grinned at Damian.  "Dare you to touch it."

Damian said, "Dare you first!"

Steve licked his lips.  "Front door.  First one to touch it wins.  Loser has to buy the winner breakfast."

"Dude," said Damian, "You are gonna owe me DONUTS!"

The scrambled to get out of the car.  I shouted something about being stupid and staying in the car - but we all knew it was futile.  The glove had been thrown.

They started to scale the old barbed fence surrounding the house.  Mikelle and I looked at each other.  "Should we turn around?" she asked.  "For a quicker getaway?"

I shook my head.  "Just keep the car running."

The boys tripped through the overgrown weeded lawn and clamored up the broken stairs.  They slammed their fists against the moldy door and turned.  When they turned, I caught a clear glimpse of their faces.  They were both grinning and panting - but there was a wildness in their eyes.  I am sure I would not have wanted to turn my back on the house, either.

They ignored the stairs and launched themselves from the front porch, barreled through the weeds and hurtled the fence.  They dove into the backseat and we were off.  Down the dark, river road - fighting the current.

"You guys are idiots," Mikelle said.

The further we got from the house, the better we felt.  We began to laugh about how creepy that house was, and about how goofy the boys looked as they tried to show off their daring masculinity. 

It was four in the morning when we pulled in for gas.  Everyone went in to use the station's powder room except Steve - who was pumping the gas - and me.  I sat in the front seat bleary eyed, trying to decide if I thought we were brave or just stupid.

Steve finished with the gas and slid in to the front seat to pull the car to a non-pump spot.  He turned the key in the ignition and we were deafened by a loud blast.  Grey smoke surrounded us.  We could hear the distant voices of our friends, yelling. 

We clamored to get out of the car.  The smoke was coming from the hood of the car.  "What the heck?!" said Steve.

Mikelle was first on the scene.  "What did you do to my CAR?!" she cried and punched Steve in the arm.  Siblings can do stuff like that. 

"I didn't do anything!" Steve said.  "I turned it on!"

We popped the hood. 

Turns out the battery had exploded.  It didn't just break, or melt a connection.  No.  The entire battery had EXPLODED.

If Mikelle had stopped the car while we were at that school house, the car battery would have exploded when we had tried to turn it on again - stranding us all there to deal with the BLUE LIGHT!

As it happens - Damian called his parents (who live about an hour away) and they set us all up with beds for a few hours and then an awesome bacon and eggs breakfast.  They never once said anything to us about being foolish or irresponsible - though Damian did look a bit less rested than the rest of us that morning.  So maybe he got the brunt of it.


Lizzie said...


Ro Ro Riot said...

THAT is a great Halloween story. Thank you.

MikkSolo said...

Nice. Gotta admitt though, I would have to had "known" what the blue light was. Probably to my demise!

Carolyn said...

Ooh, great story! I have been to Blackfoot many times (roommate was from there) but I didn't know they had that there!

Grandpa Rusty said...

Loved it!