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Pay the Price in Your Dreams

      

     I just couldn't believe it. I could not fathom that out of all the places that we could have gone
to for our vacation, we had to go to the Schwarzwald (Black Forest for non-German speakers.) I
mean, it's not terrible, and I am kind of an outdoors guy, but why did we have to go this far?
What's so different about this place that we had to fly several hundred miles for a camping
experience that we could have had if we had just driven a few miles north to Wisconsin or even
Minnesota? On top of that, the tickets were expensive, not to mention the fact that I don't speak
much German. Luckily, we weren't exactly lost in the woods (if you'll pardon the pun) as my
dad knew much more than I did, but he wasn't exactly fluent like my cousin Jane was. "I still
think this will be great!" said my Dad. I failed to understand his enthusiasm. "Don't be such a
stick in the mud, enjoy what's around you!"

  After we all had finally gotten settled into our tents, a surprise would be waiting for us. I first
heard a few cars pull up towards us. At first I had hoped that it would be my cousins from New
Jersey, since I had heard that they were staying somewhere in Germany, but boy, was I wrong!
Next thing I remember, the tent started collapsing and then I was wrapped up inside of it and
thrown inside of what felt like the back of a truck. I kept quiet as I was too scared of what might
happen if I screamed. I then sank into darkness when I was suddenly pulled out of my dream by
a familiar sounding voice. "Jason, come down here! You're going to be late for school!" I
groggily woke up from my bizarre dream as I put on some fresh clothes and went down for
breakfast. I saw some pancakes covered in plastic wrap that had recently been microwaved for
me. "You really should start going to bed earlier, Jason," said my Mom.
  "But I like staying up late."
  "You can do that on the weekends, but not during school nights."
  "I'm seventeen; I can do almost anything I want now."
  "Yes, but you're still my boy, so your bedtime will now be 10:30 p.m."
  "But I'm too old to have a bedtime."
  "Not while I'm around you're not."
  "What if I don't want you around, then?"
  "Then if that's the case, you can walk yourself to school." I realized that it was pointless to try
and argue any further with my mother. She could defeat Abe Lincoln in a debate any day of the
week.
  
        I began my long walk to school, which wasn't that bad, as I had done it at least once before.
While I was walking by the familiar stores that had been in this little mall ever since I was little,
something caught my eye. I had noticed that the usual party store was gone. In its place there was
a new shop, one that I had never seen before. It prominently featured the colors of orange and
black: the colors of Halloween. It didn't appear to be open yet, but the door seemed to be
unlocked or at least had a broken hinge, judging by the way it was leaning to the side. I checked
my watch as it read 7:15. I had time to kill, albeit not a lot. My curiosity got the best of me as I
walked in. It was dark; almost every piece of furniture in the room was painted black, or at least
some kind of dark color. It stank of dust as the floor appeared to not have been swept for a long
time. The walls were lined with large cabinets, each containing at least three shelves of creepy
masks, each one more grotesque than the last. "Oh, man," I muttered under my breath. I now
knew that this was a costume shop, but this had some of the creepiest stuff I had ever seen. "Man,
if Marilyn Manson or Alice Cooper owned this place I wouldn't be surprised," I said out loud. I
always had a habit of talking to myself.
  
  
       Shortly after I uttered the comment, a man appeared out of seemingly nowhere. He
appeared to be in his late sixties, with grayish-white hair and a slightly bald head with a beard
that looked to swallow the bottom of his face whole. He had glasses on, but the lenses were
painted black, so I could not see his eyes. I couldn't really tell what else he was wearing because
it was so dark, but judging by the scheme of things, he was wearing black. He then said in a
gravelly voice, "We're not open for another three days." His teeth weren't in the best of shape,
and his mouth seemed to be the black hole in the middle of his white-bearded universe.
  "I...just came in to look at what's inside," I stuttered.
  He replied, "It is rude to come in when you're not yet allowed. However, since it is only ten
days away from Halloween, I will let you stay and look for now."
   I felt a slight tinge of fear grip me as I started to slowly back away closer to the door. "No
thanks, I really have to go to school now." "Nonsense," he replied. "You have plenty of time.
Now I believe that you're here because you need a costume for trick-or-treating." "I'm too old
for trick-or-treating," I told him, "I'm seventeen!"
  "But I'm sure you want to go one last time, to end your final Halloween candy experience in a
blaze of glory!"     
  "Well, it has been a desire of mine..."
  "Splendid! Then go and pick out your costume. I'll be waiting in the back until you've made
your selection. Oh, and don't forget to make it very special."
  "Uh, I will. Thanks, old man."
  "Please, the name's Margolin."
  
       I walked into one of the other rooms of the shop and was looking at almost every costume
that he had. I knew it had to be something special like Drethan said, since this was going to be
my last Halloween. I had to think of something that I had always wanted to be, but never went as
for Halloween. I continued to think while walking until I finally thought of it. "A werewolf!" I
shouted to nobody. I had always wanted to be one for Halloween, but the only werewolf costume
that was available was one that was like the classic "Wolf Man" from the 1940's movie. I wanted
to be a different kind of werewolf, more like the ones depicted in "Van Helsing" with Hugh
Jackman. "There's got to be at least one type of werewolf costume I'm looking for," I said to
myself. Shortly after, almost as if someone (or something) heard me, a werewolf costume
appeared before me in the next aisle. It had a rubber muzzle, with rubber fangs, teeth, grey fur,
and even a rubber tongue! I wasn't sure what material the fur was made from, but I didn't care.
As long as it was the right size, I would be one happy customer! I looked at the costume to find
any tags in side that would tell me its size. There were none, not even a price tag. I brought the
costume to Margolin, who was waiting for me at the cashier's desk.
  "Do you know the size of this and can you tell me the price?" I asked.
   Margolin replied, "Its one size fits all, and as for the price...well, that will be decided later."
   I was surprised by his mysterious answer as I asked, "What do you mean that there's no
price?"
  "Not yet," he said, "There will be one soon. In about ten days."
   I was sort of creeped out by his last answer and instantly bolted for the door. I quickly stuffed
the costume inside of my backpack and began running to school. I then checked my watch to see
what time it was. It read 7:21; I wasn't going to make it in time! By the time I finally reached
Maine North, I was already about ten minutes late! I finally signed in at the attendance office at
7:59, and I was beat! My brain could not take any more stress for the rest of the day, and I still
had seven hours of high school left! Needless to say, after the day ended my brain was fried, and
I needed some sleep. I put my backpack down on the floor and collapsed on the mattress. I soon
dozed off into slumberland, but I could swear that I heard something moving inside of my
backpack. The next few days were pretty normal, except for a strange recurring dream that I had
every night since I bought the costume. I can't remember much of it, but they keep taking place
in the forest. Maybe I should be going to bed earlier than usual.
  
        Finally the day known as Halloween arrived, and I was ready to make the most of it. First
thing I decided to do was to pay Drethan for the costume, since he said that today was payday.
However, the store wasn't its usual self. The door was neatly repaired and wasn't painted black,
but rather a nice shade of hunter green. The door was also locked and had a "do not disturb" sign
on there. "Margolin! It's me, Jason! I've got the money! Open up! Open up, you old fart! OPEN
UP, DAMN YOU!" I had finally given up and began walking home when I got faceful of fists.
Three thugs had found me: one with a backwards beige baseball cap and red flannel jacket, one
with dreadlocks and a black sweatshirt, and one with a brown t-shirt with a beer mug printed on
it. "We heard you got the money," said the red jacket. "Let's see it, shall we?"
  "No, it's for Margolin," was all I could say.
  "Who? Well, we'll have to pay him a visit sometime." The black sweatshirted one said, "Since
it's Halloween, we have a special present for you." The beer mug t-shirt chimed in with, "We
won't give it to you until later tonight at the forest preserves." They then deserted me and I
ended up having to walk home with a bruised face, and newly limping legs. My parents were out
as they had some fancy adult party to go to, so I was alone by myself for that day. I practically
laid in my bed for the rest of the day until nightfall. Then, the crazy dreams began again. I was in
a forest chasing after some kind of prey and seemed to be closing in on it. I'm right about to grab
it (whatever it is) when I heard the phone ring. "Hey, you wanna get your last bagful of candy?"
"Not now, John. I'm not in the mood."
"Come on, you're always such a stick-in-the-mud. Enjoy your last Halloween. You ain't gonna
get any more candy like this after today."
"Fine, meet me outside my house at 7 p.m."
    I then hung up the phone and got my costume out. It almost seemed to growl at me as I opened
the packaging. I put it on and it felt surprisingly cold inside. I did seem to look intimidating as
this was a complete costume, with fake hands, grey fur, and feet. I walked outside to meet up
with John, who came as Frankenstein's Monster. He certainly fit the part, as he was tall, had
black hair, and occasionally walked in a strange way. We complimented each others costumes
and went off to raid all of the houses on our block for their candy.

     After the candy raid ended, I went back home to put away my candy. I saw on the clock that it
was 9 p.m. Perfect time for the thugs to "give me a surprise." I noticed that there was a note
pasted to the outside of my window that I didn't recognize. It read that I had to "meet someone at
the forest preserves." My mind instantly thought it was the thugs from earlier.  Nighttime was
beginning to fall, and the full moon was shining through my kitchen window. I then felt like I
was being suffocated as my costume turned warm on me. I felt my feet stretching out and my
hands losing a finger as my spine began extending out. As the proverbial coup de grace, my face
began pushing out into the muzzle and eyes turned greenish-yellow as I finished merging with
the costume. After realizing what had just happened, I decided to revel in my newfound power. I
soon realized that I could run faster than ever before, stronger than ever before, and all of my
five senses became heightened. I decided to test out my endurance and began running to the
forest preserves. "Man, who needs a car when you run to the forest?" Again, I was talking to
myself. Apparently, someone heard me, as a voice creeped into my head. "Jason, it's time to pay
up." It had a snarling, angry quality to it.
"Margolin? Is that you?"
"No, this is Fenrir, the spirit that inhabits this costume. You've been inhabiting my mind for a
while. It's time for you to pay the rent."
"Wait, I was inside your mind while I was dreaming? Hey, wait!"
"Think of this as a sort of training operation for your new body. Well, it won't be yours
anymore!"
"Wait!" I uttered again. "What are you talking about? What do you mean?"
"Sorry, Jason. Time to go to sleep. Welcome to your nightmare!" I then remember nothing
except tearing flesh, tortured screaming, and the taste of blood.  I woke up the next morning in
my bed. They said on the news that the bodies of the three thugs were found buried inside the
forest preserves. Forensic scientists claimed that they attacked by some wild dog. "I wonder if it
had something to do with that crazy dream I had last night?" I thought out loud "It seemed to be
so realistic." I walked over to the coffee maker in order to kick start my brain for the morning. I
flicked the switch on and prepared for some instant coffee. Nothing came out of the pot! I looked
at the brown cord hooking it up to the wall. It appeared to be severed clean by something! "I
must have cut it with a knife I dropped or something," I yawned. I suddenly felt tired all over
again and sat down in my easy chair. I felt a warm, grey substance beginning to envelop me as I
sank into slumberland once more. I could swear I heard some evil laughter followed by some
howls, but that must have been part of my dream!
I had wrote this for a creative writing class just in time for Halloween. I had a lot of fun with this, although I've never been satisfied with the ending, as I've re-written it four times!
:iconmystic-tir-na-nog:
Mystic-Tir-na-nOg Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2014  Student Writer
Wow that was creepy! It held my interest throughout the whole story tho!
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:iconrocker234:
Rocker234 Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2014
Thanks! I took some inspiration from an R.L. Stine story I read when I was little. I've never been satisfied with the ending of this, though. I must have changed it about two to three times and it never seemed right to me. :/
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:iconmystic-tir-na-nog:
Mystic-Tir-na-nOg Featured By Owner Jan 29, 2014  Student Writer
Lol I do the same. Often I'll rewrite whole chapters cuz I don't like how it first comes out. That's part of the reason why it takes me a long tone to put it up. It's either writer's block or I'm completely redoing the chapter. It's good to play with different endings tho!
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