Footfalls on Creaking Floorboards – Part 1 #webserial #Halloween

The floorboards creaked while Angela tiptoed through the abandoned house. There were decayed shelving units built into the walls casting shadows that danced on the edge of her vision. She didn’t use her cell phone to light her way for fear of drawing too much attention to herself, so she made her way towards the kitchen with only the glow of the moonlight to guide her through the house. Each footfall was accompanied by the moan of the floorboards and the dust floating into her nose.

Her face crinkled as she almost coughed. She stopped, collected herself, pinched her nose, and resisted the oncoming sneeze. After she was sure that there would be no errant evacuation of dust particles from her nostrils, she continued through the house towards the kitchen. A tingle went up her arm as she brushed up against a spider web. She could feel the strands on her arm like tiny bugs crawling on her skin.

Creepy HouseThere was an abandoned oak table in the dining room adjacent to the living room. Its chairs had disappeared in ages past leaving the table to stay abandoned and forgotten. It had an ornate pattern on the trim that was faded and scratched with age. The remnants of a chandelier hovered over the table like shards locked in a fall from a crumbling tower. She carefully made her way around the table towards the kitchen.

Angela was in the science club at Roosevelt High school. Since she dressed like a pseudo punk pop star with platinum wavy blonde hair, every guy in the science club sputtered like cretins around her. However, she didn’t care about boys, at least not in the way they cared about her. People thought that she cared more about science and school then everyone else. Which was true in some context. She’d rather dive into the source code of a robot that she had been constructing than talk with some drooling boy any day. When she had a goal in mind, she was singularly focused and didn’t stop until she achieved that goal.

That’s why when she crossed the threshold of the dining room to the kitchen, she didn’t let what she saw stop her. The kitchen was old with appliances that looked like they hadn’t been used since the fifties. The decrepit popcorn painted ceiling had a large black grease spot directly over the ancient stove. It had coil burners and big clunky knobs. A dusty pack of matches stood as reminder that igniters didn’t always come with the stove.

There were bones on the floor. Most were gnawed T-bones that looked like the previous owner left each bone to rot after giving it to their dog. A fridge with a round top stood in the corner with a smell emanating from it that made Angela cringe. The kitchen was filthy with stains from who knows what marking the counter tops. Angela quickly made her way through the mess to the door at the other end, the door to the basement.

She opened the door. The hinges cried from neglect. The stairs disappeared into an abyss. She wanted desperately to use her phone to light the way, but she knew that she couldn’t. Angela sucked in her breath and looked back towards the dining room. The shadows danced around the table seeming to warn her “go back.” She turned to the darkness awaiting below.

Angela breathed out a long slow sigh and stepped into the basement, one footfall at a time.

Desert during the Day of the Dead

Desert during the Day of the Dead

The amazing cover art of my story.

The next morning Maria woke with a gasp. Her head pounded from drinking a bottle of wine all by herself. She scrambled off the couch and knocked her wine glass to the floor. She was lucky it didn’t shatter. It must have been sleeping on the couch with her. She must have finished the wine because there was nothing but a red stain in the bottom of the glass. She didn’t quite remember falling asleep. She remembered staring out the window waiting for the spirits to come and eat the feast. Her nerves threatened to constrict her throat. Last night was Day of the Dead. She slowly turned her head to confirm her worst fear. It was true. She had fallen asleep with makeup on her face! Now the cheap Halloween sludge was smudged all over her grandmother’s couch! She was such an idiot. She stumbled out of the living room into the kitchen. “Crap. Crap!” she cursed.

She caught a glance of her face in the mirror. The once beautiful makeup job was now a complete mess on her face. She looked less like a Day of the Dead celebrant and more like a drunken Halloween date. But there was no time to fix her face. Her family would murder her if they found out she ruined the couch. Everything in this house was precious or at least so she thought. In reality, her uncle would probably sell as much as he could on Craigslist after the family picked through the belongings. It was sad really, her grandmother’s last belongings picked away by estate sale shoppers.

She grabbed a mess of Kirkland Signature paper towels. As a child, she always thought Kirkland products were from Kirtland Air Force base in Albuquerque. Her mom laughed and told her about the “t” in Kirtland and about far-off city of Kirkland, Washington, home of Costco. Her uncle bought her a giant Costco-sized package of paper towels when she first decided to stay in her grandmother’s ramshackle house. Not that she would use that many during her sojourn in the desert. Her uncle was kind of lazy unlike his sister, Maria’s mom, who was so driven and passionate to the point of being a little too intense sometimes. Maria definitely inherited some of her father’s ability to be okay with doing nothing whereas Mom couldn’t sit still. Maria gathered a giant wad of paper towels. She doused them with cold water following her mother’s advice about getting rid of stains.

She brought the still dripping pile of paper towels into the living room when she screamed and dropped the slopping mess. The food on the porch was gone. There was an empty wine glass and a tipped over wine bottle. The burrito, the green chile, and everything else was gone! She carefully made her way to the front door. Even though the morning sun was bright in the sky, she walked like she was in a horror movie discovering a dead body. She wanted desperately to see her grandmother last night. She knew her grandmother was dead. She knew there was no magic in the desert. It was just a fantasy.

She pushed open the front door. If she had been in an actual horror movie, she should have a gun or a frying pan but Maria wasn’t thinking. In fact, her eyes welled up as she surveyed the feast. It was really gone. Every last morsel had been eaten. There was no food left on the table. Maria up righted the empty wine bottle. There was a red stain in the bottom of the glass. Maria’s knees buckled. She slumped to the ground and began to cry.

To read the whole story download the free kindle version here.

10 Uses for Halloween Makeup

This is what happens when you walk into a spider web.

I’m here about the job for Spider Queen. What do you mean it’s already filled?

Ever notice how those Halloween makeup kits give you enough makeup for the entire cast of Cats the musical? You are only going to use it for one night. So here are some post-Halloween makeup uses:

1. Rob a bank – Who doesn’t need extra holiday cash? And why do we have super villain teams who spend more time on their coordinated makeup than planning the robbery? Either way, you won’t have to tell Timmy he doesn’t get Christmas presents because you spent it all on Halloween candy this year.

2. Smear on face and take revenge – Every person who is out for revenge always seems to smear stuff on their face. Rumpelstiltskin smeared black claw marks. Rambo caked stuff on his face. Braveheart is a blue-faced killing machine. If you are going to go on some epic revenge quest, don’t forget the face paint.

3. Teach class – All you teacher’s out there who are bored, you have options that don’t involve cooking Meth. You can paint your face and take on a wacky personality. If the students reject the ploy, then pull out a gun and start acting really disturbed. That will get their attention and a learning student is one who is paying attention.

4. Wear black face – I know this is completely racist and offensive. But what if you really were black underneath the black face? That will get them thinking! Because obscure performance art always gets people thinking.

5. Wicked Witch of Savings and Loans – Let’s face it. Bankers really can’t have any fun. People take money way too seriously. What if you cackled loudly like a witch every time you denied a loan? That would add some spice to the workplace.

6. Data from Star Trek – Everyone will completely understand why you are socially awkward and lonely when you are dressed like Data. Most androids have trouble fitting into society norms, especially at Taco Bell. When you twitch your head and ask if the Baja Blast will cause problems with your circuitry, the clerk will totally know what you are going through because who hasn’t wanted to be an android traveling on a star ship in the distant future?

7. Tourist Information Guy – Who needs Siri or Google when Tourist Information Guy is on the job? Looking for a place to eat? Tourist Information Guy will save the day. Wondering when the museum will close? Tourist Information Guy has brochures! Smuggling a balloon of heroin in your butt? Tourist Information Guy isn’t really comfortable with this.

8. Hospital Creepy Guy – Walk around as the Grimm Reaper and point to random patients. Throw in a deep guttural “you!” for good measure. Insist you are only doing it to help patients come to terms with their own mortality. When they tell you the patient only had a skinned knee, tell them you never know when something will become infected.

9. Bowling Alley Goth – True Story: I was playing a Goth kid with face paint during a stage play. The cast decided to go bowling. The only bowling alley that was opened late night was the musty, old, wood-paneled, redneck singles club where a gun rack in the pickup would be a requirement for membership. I forgot to wash the makeup off and arrived about 15 minutes before the rest of the cast did.

10. Cultist Prankster – Join a cult. Then during the ritual sacrifice make farting noises. Insist to fellow cult members you are more of a self sexual abuser. Make punching and crying noises at night. Replace all doctrine documents with copies of The Secret. Tip off the FBI and plan a stand-off at Chuck E. Cheese.

Halloween and the Knights of the Round Table

            With Halloween around the corner, you should be scared and shit. If you aren’t scared, then here is a tale to chill your boner and your bones too!

Narrator: It was a dark and stormy knight named Josh. He was the long lost cousin of Lancelot. Most people thought he was a cheese dick but there was some mild depression and sarcasm in him as well. So King Arthur came unto Josh and Lancelot and said:

Satan is word scramble for Santa!

Medieval painting titled: Bitch rollin’ up on my Bling

King Arthur: Yo! Yo! Arthur in da house! Let’s get some fly bitches in this hizzy. We need to drink from pimpin’ goblets n’ shit. You drink malt liquor from the holy grail! Ain’t no way you go home alone. Know what I mean?

Lancelot: I don’t know what you mean. I understood probably only 1/3 of what you said. You see I fight for truth, justice, the ability for old ladies to walk their dogs safely at night, children having the same educational opportunities, pancake Sundays-

Josh: Dude, he wants us to find the holy grail.

King Arthur: Yo, this dawg knows the what what.

Lancelot: I shall perform your task with honor, dignity, a head held high looking towards the rising sun to symbolize a new day…

Josh: Fuck… I hate my family.

Narrator: Meanwhile Dracula, the Wolf Man, the Mummy, and Edward from the Twilight series were making plans of their own in Dracula’s living room. He has one of those 3D TVs. I’m personally waiting for holodecks. You probably won’t ever see me leave. Unless they don’t have a self cleaning cycle.

Edward: Yo! Yo! Edward in da house! Let’s get some fly bitches-

The Wolf Man beheads Edward.

Dracula: We are not scary anymore.

The mummy is smoking weed.

Mummy: Bro… I want some Doritos.

Dracula: I’m serious. We used to scare the shit out of little kids. Now they sell cheap knock-offs of us at Spencer’s.

Wolf Man: You’re right. People say I look all fake especially when you compare me to those young werewolf studs. But it hurts man. Do I tell a chick with eyeliner that makes her look like she has an eye infection that she looks fake?

Mummy: If I make a joint with my wrappings, would I get even higher than a normal joint?

Dracula: We need to do something about this.

Wolf Man: We can murder children!

Dracula: That’s good but then we’d have to let Hitler over.

Hitler is knocking on the door to Dracula’s castle.

Hitler: Hello? I brought Apples to Apples! I took out the dead Jew child cards so it’s fair this time.

Back in Dracula’s living room:

Mummy: Dude… bro… let’s pee in the holy grail.

Dracula: Shut up!

Wolf Man: Wait!  I think he has something.

Dracula: This is the stupidest idea-

Wolf Man: It’s brilliant. Christians get butt hurt when you make fun of their religion.

Mummy: Yeah man! They like make their kids afraid of Harry Potter and gay people and shit. They’ll make their kids afraid of us!

Dracula: Isn’t Harry Potter gay?

Wolf Man: He married a woman.

Dracula: So do plenty of people in the closet. You think he was so broken up over Cedric because Cedric was a solid competitor?

Mummy: I always thought he gave up Cho too easily…

Wolf Man: Shut up! He’s not gay. Let’s go pee in the grail.

Hi, I'm Satan. How are you enjoying the sketch so far?

Medieval painting titled: Harry Potter’s Homoerotic Dream

Narrator: So what if I’ve been drinking! Ummm… welcome back to our tale… of shit and stuff… you know I was second to play Obi Won Kenobi? But that asshole Sir Alec Guinness took the part. He didn’t even like playing Kenobi! I would have appreciated it. Instead, I play crap parts… in community theatre…

Dracula: Sorry folks… Our story continues when the knights find the grail….

Josh and Lancelot stumble in, covered in blood and muck. 

Lancelot: Traveling the four corners of the earth is a knight’s task. If you are too much of a squire, then you may…

Josh: Squire?

Lancelot: An unknightly title.

Josh: Why not pussy or bitch?

Lancelot: And heed the words of the patriarchy! I am a feminist.

Josh: You are a dude with a broadsword and armour that is covered in blood most of the time.

Lancelot: But my heart hath a feminine side. I hath feelings.

Josh: Really?

Lancelot: I’ve adopted a puppy.

Josh: To fight along-side you?

Lancelot: Mr. HowlingFluff will never see combat.

Josh: Ok… ok…

The neatly dressed Galahad walks in with the holy grail.

Lancelot: Galahad! Mighty knight of honor and value!

Josh: You found it!

Galahad: Yep.

Josh: Dude, we have being questing for years, how did you find it?

Galahad: Spencer’s.

Josh: Spencer’s. You mean we’ve been traveling the globe fighting bandits, evil warlords, and mythical beasts. And you fucking buy it at Spencer’s?

Galahad: Yeah bro, it’s near the pornographic greeting cards.

Lancelot: The card with the perfect man…hehe… because he’s cardboard…hoho… makes me laugh…haha… every time…haha…hehe…

Wolf Man jumps out, kills Galahad, and takes the grail! Josh and Lancelot pull out their swords.

Wolf Man: I got it!

Josh: Dude, whoa! Who are you?

Wolf Man: I am the Wolf Man.

Josh: Is that a mask? It looks fake.

Wolf Man: Hey, fuck you.

Dracula: Good! We pee in the grail now?

Lancelot: You pee in the cup of god! Have at thee!

Satan wants you to listen to Sublime or is that subliminal messages?

Medieval painting titled: Best Joint Ever

Josh: Whoa! Whoa! Wait… You are here to pee in the cup?

Wolf Man: Yeah… what’s it to you?

Josh: I think I can purpose a mutually beneficial solution…

A long stick pokes the narrator awake.

Narrator: Huh? What? So that’s how Josh became known as the cheese dick Knight. Arthur never could get the taste of urine washed from his mouth so he created a round table. That way he could sit at a different part of the table each time. Lancelot and Josh went to work for Spencer’s so they could get a discount on quest items. The Wolf Man married Dracula after Wolfie got over his homophobia. And the mummy smoked himself.

Ray Harryhausen and Spiral

I am speechless. Ray Harryhausen (the animator behind the 1981 classic film Clash of the Titans) agreed to let us use footage from a Little Red Riding Hood short to accompany a music video! Please enjoy the video and support the foundation to keep his works preserved.