October 31st – The Haunting Of Harold Hemmings
Harold Hemmings hated Halloween.
To be fair, he hated a lot of things, but Halloween always seemed the worst. American, he used to say, whenever the subject came up. ‘American nonsense’, or something stronger, depending on who he was taking to. Harold Hemmings didn’t talk to too many people, and even fewer wanted to talk to him.
If he had anywhere to go, Harold Hemmings would have gone out, but he didn’t have anywhere to go, and he wasn’t going to walk the streets, so he was in, alone, sitting in his armchair in front to the television, on Halloween. The only light was the light in the back room. The rest of the house was in darkness. Harold Hemmings wasn’t going to open the door.
As the night drew on, he remained untroubled. No one knocked on his already darkened door. ‘Trick or Treat’ was unheard. Harold Hemmings relaxed a little into his chair.
One thump on the door. Slow, and heavy, and hard: a large hand.
Harold Hemmings ignored it.
Another. Slow, and heavy, and hard. And then another.
Harold Hemmings ignored them both.
Another. And another. And another, louder, growing in intensity.
Harold Hemmings had had enough. He got out of his chair and stormed to the front door, fully intending to give whoever was disturbing him a piece of his mind.
In front of a flickering fire, Harold Hemmings’s armchair grew slowly colder. The front door swung loosely on its hinges. The street was quiet, and dark, and cold.
And the street was empty.