ALL HALLOW'S EVE
Skeleton hands scratched at the window, trying to claw their way in. Tommy pulled the blankets up closer around his neck, willing himself not to roll over in bed and face the ghastly ghoul that was trying to get into his room. He swallowed hard, and squeezed his eyes shut tight, then tried to take a few deep breaths to calm down. He focused on the nightlight, the superhero that radiated a soft yellow glow designed especially to dispel all things that went bump in the night. With vengeance. It wasn’t working.
The sound came again, a sinister scritch, scritch, scritch, at the window. Tommy gulped and reminded himself that he was practically twelve now, too old to be scared by the creatures in the night. He slowly rolled over, turning towards the window, as a wave of reluctant dread washed over him. He knew that the Boogeyman was out there about to crash the window and drag his body out into the night.
Through the window, the moon grinned brightly from behind a veil of wispy black clouds; a gleaming white crescent that filled the upper right hand corner by the gently fluttering curtains. There was nothing else out there but the moon, and the clouds, and the silhouetted shadow of the big maple tree in the front yard. A flickering shadow drew Tommy’s wide-eyed and he almost leapt right out of his skin as his room filled with the familiar sound: scritch, scritch, scritch.
Tommy dropped his head back onto his pillow, a sigh of relief rushing from his tensely clenched chest. It was just the tree branch rubbing up against his bedroom window in the light October breeze. Not a skeleton, or a witch, or a vampire. Just a tree.
He always got antsy at this time of the year, no surprise really, but it was understandable. It was Halloween, All Hallow's Eve. It was the one night of the year where monsters crossed over from the realm of the unreal and into the real world.
It was the best time of the year, and even though Tommy was scared, he wouldn't trade the feeling for anything. It was a good feeling knowing that anything was possible. Even the most horrible and ghoulish aspects of a twelve-year-old's imagination.
Halloween really was the best day of the year. He would trade a sleepless night for a bit of terror any day of the year. It made him feel alive.
He cast a quick glance at the glowing visage projected onto his bedroom wall by the grimacing jack-o-lantern that he had placed on his desk and smiled. There really was no better day than Halloween.