Samhain at the Lake
Dennis told Tom that he would check with Sherry to see if she could get out of work, besides, he
needed to winterize the boat before cold weather set in. They ate and had a good conversation
about the awesome fall striper bite on Lanier, then each headed back to their respective
offices.Dennis called Sherry, and she put in for time off, and everything was set to go to the lake the
Dennis ran all his routes that week and even managed to finish up ahead of time, Thursday, so he
got everything ready to go so they could leave early when Sherry got off work. The kids were excited
about going to the lake for Halloween, staying up late in the evening the night before they left, telling
each other ghost stories and talking about all the good candy that they would get Trick or Treating at
Even Sherry got excited, as the singer was one of her favorite performers, and given the chance of
meeting him was a huge thrill. The big day finally came, and they left Marietta in the large Ford
Expedition heading for Lanier. Dennis pulled in a retail store, and they bought the kids costumes
and candy,and a few supplies they needed. They made it to the Marina in the early afternoon, and
Dennis winterized the big houseboat while Sherry fixed them a late lunch. The girls played around
the slip and fed the ducks bread. The party was scheduled for midnight after all good little boys, and
girls would be fast asleep in their bunks. Sherry had a bit of a headache after lunch, so she lay down
for a nap. Dennis was busy working on the boat and listening to the football game on the radio.
Elrod Jenkins had not been feeling well. He thought he might be coming down with the flu or a
virus. He fed Zep and unchained him to go potty, and went back to lay in his bunk, as he was
nauseous and feeling queezy.
Zep hobbled off to do his business. Squatting, to do what a dog's got to do, he lifted his grey snout
to the breeze. A strange scent wafted on the breeze. Being a dog, he followed his nose across the
road and through some woods coming upon an ancient cemetery. The tantalizing smell was coming
from somewhere in there, so he wriggled under the fence and headed for it.
Several graves were cracked open, and a strange red mist was flowing up out of the cracks in the
ancient cemetery. Some of these materialized into vaguely human form, and drifted away on the
breeze. One took a distinctive wolfish shape, and drifted toward Zep. He growled menacingly and
turned to run, but he was aged old dog, and not as fast as he used to be. The mist caught him.
Zep howled mournfully as the red vapor entered his nostrils, and into his elderly body. He fell kicking
and thrashing, slobbering and howling, for a few minutes then became still as stone except for his
hind left leg, twitching and slowly proceeding through the motions of a kick. A second later it still,
and Zep lay as if dead. His tired old brown eyes closed.
Minutes later they opened, blazing with the very fire from hell itself! What used to be Zep, rolled over
and got up, shaking himself violently, and raised his slavering muzzle to the sky.
The howl that ensued was something never heard on this earth except by the truly damned. He
trotted slowly back toward the Marina, eyes blazing in the late-afternoon light.
Nancy and Danny were getting into their costumes. Nancy was dressing as a witch and Danny was
a scarecrow. They were cute as buttons, and Sherry made Dennis get the camera and take their
picture, but something was wrong with the camera. It distorted their faces every time. Maybe the
thing set in the sun too long or something.
Dennis made a mental note to buy a new one. Sherry was in the bedroom about to change to go
take the girls, when Dennis walked in. They had been married for a while, but Sherry always looked
good to Dennis. He kissed her and unintentionally, the kiss got a little deeper.
" I think the girls are old enough to go around by themselves this year, besides, we're in a gated
community, and we know everyone well. We haven't had any time alone in a long time." He breathed
Sherry started to say no immediately, but thought about it. They were in a gated community with an
armed guard, and they knew everyone here; plus there were only a few houseboats, and they hadn't
had any time together alone in forever.
"Okay." She said. "Just this once, but let me talk to the girls for a minute." She slipped her terry-
cloth robe on, and called Nancy and Danny. "How would you two like to trick or treat by yourselves
just around here tonight?" They both shook their heads yes, jumping up and down from excitement.
"Nancy, you have to hold Danny's hand the whole time, and you can only go to the houseboats on
our row, okay?" They squealed with joy and promised to be careful. "Stay out of the road, and
Nancy,you can't let go of Danny's hand! Not even for a minute!" Sherry told them.
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