I love Halloween. I know lots of people say that, but I really mean it. It’s an awesome time of year, though my reason for loving Halloween is probably not the same as yours. In fact, until last Halloween, I had spent many years dreading the holiday.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. My name is Charlie, short for Charlotte, and I’m an English major in my freshman year at college. I’m not like most of the students in this place. I take my studies very seriously, and I hardly ever go to parties. Actually, those aspects have been two of the three constants in my life for as long as I can remember: being surrounded by books and not going to parties. And the third? That’s Amy, my best friend.
Amy is kind of the direct opposite of me. She is totally outgoing, she is always talking to new people, has loads of acquaintances, friends and contacts. She spends most of her time partying and she always has. Every time she goes to a party, or any kind of social event she always invites me. I always decline and she always shrugs and goes anyway, but then she comes back and hangs out with me, and she tells everyone that I am her best friend.
That is how it has been since kindergarten. I don’t know why she still hangs round with me, but I am so glad that she does. Without her my life would be pretty lonely. I was so happy when she announced that she was applying to the same college as me. I had to work hard with her to make sure she passed, and she only just scraped in, but now we share a room and I have someone to talk to, to share my thoughts with. I really don’t know what I would do without her, and that was the case, even before the events of last Halloween.
Until last year, Halloween had been the cause of some tension between us. It was the one time of year when she had a hard time not accepting that I wouldn’t go to a party with her. She knew how I felt about parties, she knew how self-conscious I was, and she seemed to understand, but at Halloween, for whatever reason, she was less accepting. Last year she seemed determined that I wasn’t going to be allowed to say no.
“You’ve got to go this time, just this one.”
“I can’t Amy, I have this assignment…”
”Oh screw the assignment. I really want you to come.”
“I don’t know. I just don’t feel comfortable…”
“You can’t even make an exception? Just once? For me?”
Her voice had a hard edge to it and I felt sick, as I always did whenever Amy was on the brink of being cross with me, as though my world was about to cave in, so I found myself shrugging and saying that I would on this one occasion, come with her.
I regretted it instantly, and hoped that she might forget or that the party would be cancelled, but she didn’t. As if the prospect of going to the party wasn’t bad enough, it was on the other side of the state, so I would have to drive. Worse still, Amy was going over earlier in the day to help with the preparation, so I would have to drive there alone, though she said she would come out and meet me so I didn’t have to walk in on my own.
The morning of Halloween, Amy came into our room carrying something in a large plastic bag. She laid it on my bed and then handed me a piece of paper.
“What’s this?” I asked.
“That is a map. It’s the quickest way to get there, no more than forty-five minutes.”
”And the bag?”
“Your costume,” she said brightly.
“I’ve already got a costume,” I said.
“I’m going as vampire Abraham Lincoln.”
Amy shook her head.
“Are you kidding? It’s Halloween. You have to wear something sexy. It’s the rules.”
“Oh Amy, you know I…”
“Wear it,” she commanded. “And if you turn up as Abraham Lincoln I will pretend I don’t know you, and leave you on your own the whole night.”
She wouldn’t do that, of course, but I didn’t want to disappoint her so as soon as she left I opened the bag. The costume was some kind of maid’s outfit. It was really, really short, and had a kind of frilly underskirt attached. Curious, I locked the door to our room, and undressed. I’m not particularly proud of my body, at least, not compared to Amy. She is shorter than me, with pale ivory skin, but she looks hot, she has great lips, a cute butt and gorgeous legs. Me? Well I’m kind of gawky. My hair is long and blonde, and I guess I have nice eyes and am quite skinny, but that’s about it.
Of course the maid’s costume looked ridiculously slutty. It was made of a kind of latex and was so tight that I had to take my bra off to lace it up. It came with a silly little white choker and some stockings with frilly laced tops, which came halfway up my bare thighs. Was I really going to wear this in public? As I looked at myself, I ran my hands over my body, over the clingy material, smoothing it over my breasts, my hips and my butt, and I felt a kind of tingling. I guess I did look hot, sort of. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad.
By the time that evening came around, I had changed my mind. I wore my long trench coat to walk to the car. No way was I going to wander across the campus dressed like that!
I’m a very careful, methodical kind of driver so I’d memorized the route, but I also brought along a map and had my phone tracking my progress as I set out across state. It was already dark so I was going extra slow as I hate driving in the dark. Half an hour had gone and I wasn’t even halfway, according to Amy’s directions. I was going to be late, which just served to make me even more nervous.
I didn’t understand why Amy had sent me that way, either. I was driving on what seemed like an endless road through blank, dark forest. A mass of trees loomed in shadow on either side of me as I drove and I began to feel quite eerie. I was the only car on the road.
Suddenly I spotted something up ahead, standing in the middle of the road. At first it looked like it had antlers. I flashed my lights and sounded my horn assuming that the deer would be startled and move. But it didn’t move. And as I got closer, I realized it wasn’t a deer. It was standing upright. It was a human figure, but its head was somehow that of a deer, and it was not moving. I realized, too late that I didn’t have time to brake before I hit it. As my foot slammed down on the brake pedal I span the wheel and lost control of the car. There was a horrific screeching sound and I think I screamed as the car slid across the road and I caught a glimpse of a horrific, deformed human face underneath a pair of cruel antlers. There was a crunch, the sound of tinkling glass and then I blacked out.
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