This is my entry in the 2012 Halloween Story Contest. Votes and comments are greatly appreciated.
Those familiar with my writing will know there will be significant character development before we get to the juicy parts, but we WILL get to the juicy parts. That being said, if you're looking for a quick stroke story, this is probably not the one for you right now.
I'd like to extend a special thanks to my beta readers who offered excellent suggestions on this story, and especially to subinside who came up with a great idea for the ending and then got me drunk. Also, my undying gratitude to aussie_101, editor extraordinaire.
Thanks for reading!
Driving with the windows open, Eve inhaled deeply, the unusually warm late October breeze whirling her auburn hair around her face. The fresh smell of fall country air blowing over drying fields was soothing and refreshing, yet melancholy at the same time. Everything about the town was bittersweet to her.
Eve sighed as she passed the last cornfields demarking the edge of town. A large banner hung across the street reading: 'NHS Reunion. Halloween Night.' Scarecrows, pumpkins, hay bales, corn stalks, and fall planters adorned most houses and businesses. Carved jack-o-lanterns were already displayed on at least half the porches, two full days before Halloween.
It was always the same in Nobleton.
The town took any excuse to celebrate autumn. There was the Labour Day Festival, the Autumn Equinox Celebration, and then Thanksgiving in early October. But for Halloween, this place really went all out. Everyone would dress up; students, teachers, even many adults would go to work in costume. For the adults, it seemed like the one day they had permission to act like kids again.
There were costume contests at both the elementary and the high schools each year, and it was a very big deal to win. People went to great lengths to have the most elaborate or creative costume. And there would always be the Halloween dance at the highschool, on October 31st, regardless of whether it fell on a weeknight.
When she was a kid, Eve loved the fall festivals and the magic of Halloween. She desperately wanted to believe that spirits could rise that night, and more than once, she and her friends had ventured into the graveyard after trick-or-treating. They never found any ghosts, but the thrill and fear of the possibility was intoxicating. One time, some older boys in ghoulish costumes had jumped out from behind the gravestones, scaring Eve and her friends out of their wits, and they had run screaming out of the graveyard. She smiled to herself at the memory.
How appropriate that THIS town's high school reunion would be held on Halloween night, Eve thought. And once again, she had second thoughts about her decision to attend.
To distract herself from thinking about the reunion, Eve allowed her mind to drift back to the last time she'd spent Halloween here. How many times had she relived that night in her mind? Her nipples hardened and she felt a tingle in her groin at the memory.
Eve was distracted from her daydream when her music abruptly turned off, and her handsfree system announced she was receiving an incoming call from her parents' house. Oh God, here we go. I haven't even been in town for 2 minutes, Eve thought to herself as she instructed the hands-free to answer the call.
"Hi Mom," she said with more cheer than she felt.
"Hi honey." Her mother's worried voice quickly peppered her with questions. "How are you? How was the drive? Where are you?"
Eve grinned sardonically; her mother always had a barrage of questions.
"I'm fine mom. The drive was okay. A little heavy traffic leaving the city. I just got into town."
"Oh good, honey. I'm glad to hear that the drive wasn't too bad. I'll never understand why you moved so far, to a big city full of traffic..." Her mother trailed off as she muttered that last part. Eve sighed audibly.
"Mom, I like the city," she responded with considerably less cheer in her voice. "And I have a good job, and a ... a life there."
"Yes, yes, I know, dear," her mother said dismissively. "Listen, honey, could you stop by the grocery store and pick up a few things for me...."
And so it begins. Eve knew it was a ruse. Her mother didn't really need anything from the store. This was Mom's ploy to get Eve out and interacting with the towns' folk. Otherwise, on her infrequent visits, Eve would usually stay at her parents' house for a couple of days and then leave without seeing anyone else.
Eve usually came back for Christmas and her parent's birthdays, and sometimes Easter and Thanksgiving. It wasn't that she didn't love her parents; she did, very much. But coming to the town brought up so many painful memories. She hadn't been here for a Halloween in a long time.
As soon as she finished highschool, she'd left Nobleton for university in the city. She'd always wanted to leave the small town behind. There were very few opportunities except retail jobs and a couple of small factories. In her opinion, the people were so provincial and narrow-minded. Most of them thought her art was a "nice pastime", but not a viable career choice. She couldn't imagine becoming one of those women she saw in town, tied down with three or four babies by age 24. When she watched It's a Wonderful Life with her family every Christmas, they had no idea how much she had always identified with George Bailey's desire to "shake the dust of this crummy little town off my feet, and ... see the world!"
She told herself these were all the reasons for leaving, and not wanting to come back very often. But she knew -- and so did everyone else -- the real reason was Jason.
Eve pulled into the grocery store parking lot and got out of her car, immediately seeing Mrs. Roberts coming out of the store carrying a single paper bag. A rotund woman who had worked with Eve's Dad at the law firm for years, Mrs. Roberts had known her since 'before you were born, dear'. Eve tried to quickly look away and pretend she hadn't seen her, but it was too late; Mrs. Roberts' round form was bearing down upon her.
"Evie! Oh! Hi Evie," Mrs. Roberts called. The large woman looked both surprised and delighted to see her in town, and seemed oblivious to the look on Eve's face at being called "Evie".
"Hi, Mrs. Roberts," Eve said politely.
"It's soooo good to see you. How are you, dear?"
"I'm good, really good," Eve said with more conviction than she felt. "The job is going great, and I have a fantastic apartment right near High Park."
"Oh good. What is it you do again, dearie?"
"I'm an artist. I do graphic art for a magazine, and I also design concert and movie posters, and websites..." Eve trailed off seeing that Mrs. Roberts didn't seem all that interested. She tried not to sound exasperated, but for god's sake the woman should have known this. Everyone here knew everything about her. It was the reason it was so hard coming back. She couldn't hide in anonymity like in the city. Everyone knew her pain.
"Ah, how nice," Mrs. Roberts said as though she were referring to a shit casserole. "Good for you, dearie."
Eve nodded. "How are you doing, Mrs. Roberts?"
"Good, good.... Well Stan has the rheumatism again, especially as it starts getting colder. And I'm doing well with my hip replacement."
"Oh, I didn't know," Eve said, wondering once again why older people often thought small talk was a good time to tell you all about their illnesses.
"Yes, well, it's taken a while to get back my mobility, but it will never be the same," Mrs. Roberts said as she shook her head, sighing dramatically. "Oh well."
Eve smiled sympathetically, not knowing what else to say and desperately wishing this conversation would be over soon.
"So...um..." Mrs. Roberts continued switching into her phony sing-song voice. "Is there a man in the picture? Am I going to hear wedding bells anytime soon?"
"Nah, no one that I'd want to marry right now," Eve deliberately answered ambiguously so as to obscure the fact that she didn't even have a boyfriend at the moment, and hadn't for some time.
Mrs. Roberts raised her eyebrows. But before she had the opportunity to say anything else, Eve quickly added, "I gotta pick up some things Mom asked for and run them over to her house. I'll see you later, Mrs. Roberts." And with that she turned toward the grocery store entrance.
"Okay, bye dearie," Mrs. Roberts called after her.
Inside the grocery store, the same scene played out with three other neighbours. Eve was polite and cordial to all of them but always cut of the conversation before it got too far with her convenient excuse: "Mom needs ingredients for dinner."
After picking up everything on her list, Eve was not too surprised to see one of her former high school classmates working at the checkout. Kelly was clearly into her third trimester. Eve noted the nicotine stains on her fingers and her yellowed teeth. She tried not to judge. She really tried.
"Holy shit! Eve! How the hell are ya?" Kelly greeted warmly. "Are you in town for the reunion?"
"Hi Kelly, I'm good. Yeah, it is the big 'ten year' thing after all. Are you going?"
Kelly looked down at her belly. "Unless I go into labour in the next two days, I'll be there," she chuckled.
"How many do you have now, Kelly?"
"This will be my third. Johnny is 9 now, and Billy is 6."
"Oh nice," Eve said politely as she calculated that Kelly had probably gotten pregnant right around graduation.
As she rang through Eve's purchases, Kelly started her own barrage of questions, though significantly different than the four elderly neighbours Eve had just conversed with.
"So how's life in the big city? Great dance clubs, eh? Lots of hot guys, eh? You gettin' a lot of action?"
Eve stopped herself from rolling her eyes and slyly said, "I do alright."
"I bet you do," Kelly said, letting her eyes roam over Eve. "You still look fucking amazing."
"Thanks," Eve said, genuinely warmed by the compliment, although slightly uncomfortable by Kelly's ogling.
"Well, see you on Saturday!" Kelly said as she handed Eve her bag. Then she added, "Woooo. Parrrrtaaaayyy!!!"
"Yeah, see you," Eve said warmly. As she turned to go, she couldn't help rolling her eyes. At least she had the sense to turn away first.
On the short drive from the grocery store to her mother's house, she saw two more people who recognized and waved at her. Of course she waved back politely.
It wasn't that she disliked the town or the people of Nobleton; it was that look of pity most people had when they saw her, even after all this time. Eve had hoped it would change after some time had passed and she'd been away for a while, but it never did.
It's big news in any town, no matter how large or small, when three highschool students are in a high speed head-on collision, two of them crashing through the windshield.
Rick, Jason and Scott had been inseparable since childhood, and that evening, they'd been out partying. Rick had been far too intoxicated to drive even a tricycle. Yet somehow he ended up in the driver's seat. Sitting in the front passenger seat was Eve's boyfriend, Jason; the boy who looked at her and touched her and kissed her in ways that raised goosebumps all over and made her heart flutter, the boy she was falling in love with. Scott was in the back seat, and while he sustained serious injuries in the accident, he had survived. The survivor's guilt nearly killed him, though.
The whole town had been devastated of course, but none so much as Eve and Scott. Scott was in the hospital for months, and Eve fell into a deep dark depression.
A shiver went through her, as it always did, when she drove over the spot where it had happened in the main intersection of the town.
Eve sighed with relief as she pulled into her parents' driveway. It was as though she'd been transported back in time. Hardly anything ever changed there.
Her mom rushed out to the front porch, wiping her hands on her apron and grinning enthusiastically. Eve had barely made it to the top step of the porch before her mother gathered her up in a huge hug, grocery bag and all, and planted a kiss on her cheek.
"Hi Mom," Eve said, chuckling and attempting to return the hug with a purse over one shoulder and groceries in the other hand.
"Oh here, let me take that, dear," she said as she took the grocery bag from Eve's arms.
"I'll just get my things, Mom."
Eve dropped her overnight bag in the front hall, hung up her coat, and joined her mother in the kitchen. Her mother handed her a glass of red wine.
"Thanks Mom," she sipped. "Ah, delicious."
"You're welcome," Mom said as she sipped her own glass.
"Can I help with anything?"
"No, no," her mother said as she bustled about the kitchen. "You've just had a long drive. So, tell me: who did you see at the store?"
Eve dutifully recounted each neighbour she had seen, and any pertinent gossip she had gleaned, while her mother fluttered gaily about the kitchen preparing dinner. She was clearly very happy to have Eve at home.
Eve's father returned home for dinner, greeting her with as much warmth and love as her mother. He moved over and took Eve's mother in a warm embrace and kissed her firmly. Her mother was a little flushed when he pulled away. Eve smiled to herself, thinking how nice it was to have parents who are still in love -- after more than thirty years.
He turned to Eve and asked how things were going at work. He listened attentively as she recounted the various projects she was working on.
Looking at the dinner proceedings, he raised his eyebrows at Eve's Mom. She responded with a conspiratorial nod, and he turned to Eve, saying, "C'mere."
"Just follow me, lass." Eve giggled as he added a little more Irish to his voice than usual; most of the time she didn't even notice Dad's accent anymore.
Eve followed him to his den. Just before they entered the door, he said, "I've been working on a little project in here."
Tears formed in her eyes as she took in "the project". There were track lights pointing at a rack of her magazines, displayed to best advantage, as well as several framed movie and concert posters she had designed.
"Oh, Dad." She threw her arms around his neck and kissed his cheek, getting his face wet with her tears.
"Now lass, this was supposed to make you happy, not sad," he smirked with his voice.
Eve turned back to the wall and looked around the den. "You didn't have to do all this," she sniffled, trying to quell the stream.
"I wanted to. I'm proud of you. And someday when you're a super famous artiste, all this will be worth a fortune."
Eve laughed out loud.
"This is so nice, Dad. Thank you. I can't tell you how much it means to me that you support what I do."
"Why wouldn't I? You're my daughter."
"Well I bumped into Mrs. Roberts at the grocery store..."
"Oh," he frowned. "Well never mind her. She's stuck in the sixties. Thinks every woman should be home raising babies, she does. Frankly, I think she's jealous of you."
"You're the best, Dad."
"I know." They both laughed at that, then he added, "I just wish you'd visit more often."
"Dad, you know—"
"I know, honey, I know," he cut her off.
Eve regarded her father with a new sense of appreciation. He understood her. She hugged him again, and he wrapped his arms around her and held her protectively for a long moment.
Dinner was delicious and involved a lovely far ranging conversation. Eve felt safe, comfortable, and cared for with them. And they never had that look of pity she saw on so many of the other citizens in this town.
That night, lying in her bed in her teenage room, Eve couldn't fall asleep. It was always easier to not remember when she was in the city -- away from where it all happened. Not that she could ever forget, but sometimes she could keep herself busy enough to not actively remember. That wasn't so easy here. In Nobleton, everything reminded her.
She couldn't help her mind drifting back to that big Halloween party ten years ago, when she was eighteen. How many times she'd wished she could go back and do things differently.
Jason had suggested they go as Adam and Eve as a play on her name, but she'd argued she couldn't go out in public wearing nothing but fig leaves and a snake. He had grinned wickedly and told her she'd look awesome dressed in nothing fig leaves. Ultimately they had gone as an Elizabethan lord and lady; both very attractive, elaborate and flattering costumes, with Eve's long auburn hair up in an elaborate do, a little light makeup accentuating her dark brown eyes, and showing a lot of cleavage in her corset and low cut dress.
While the party was in full swing, Jason had enticed her to follow him into a spare bedroom. She'd already been drinking and dancing with him, having a great time, feeling a little warm and happy from the alcohol. But when he shared a flask of strong liquor with her, she went from happy to tipsy.
Jason had been ravenous for her that evening. He'd kissed her passionately and she'd responded enthusiastically, their tongues swirling around each other in a sensual dance. Her heartbeat sped up as his mouth explored the exposed tops of her breasts, his hands pulling her costume back, out of the way, as he kept kissing towards her nipples. Goosebumps rose on her pale skin.
Her dress slid easily out of the way as his hand glided up her thigh. Breathing heavily in response to his touch, kissing him on his neck and ear in return, her stomach contracted of its own volition as his fingers reached her panties. He paused for a moment and stroked his finger over the damp material, gently tracing the contours of her nether lips. She gasped and melted into him, which he took as a good sign, so he slid his hand up the front of her panties, inside, and then down toward her moistening sex.
Feeling his hardness pressing against her hip, Eve dragged her hand over the bulge in his Elizabethan breeches, eliciting a loud groan from him. He sucked her nipple into his mouth as his hand moved down, his fingers sliding over her mound and between her slick lips. She was so excited, panting and gasping, her skin tingling, that she could barely breathe.
Eve stroked her hand over his hard cock outside his breeches, and his fingers pressed deeper into her in return. She gasped and shuddered, her heart beating madly, heat radiating throughout her body, her nipples and pussy tingling. She fumbled with the complicated drawstring on his breeches, pulled it free and reached into his pants, stroking his hard cock as he pressed his finger deep into her hot wet pussy.
They moaned in unison as his lips relinquished her distended dark pink nipple to seek out her mouth once again. Her tongue passionately searched his mouth to entwine with his, as his fingers continued to plunge into her now sopping pussy. She squeaked and then giggled at the noise she'd just made, but continued to stroke him with her small hand, becoming overwhelmed by the sensations he was causing within her. She'd been tentative at first, but as her own excitement grew she stroked his hard cock with a firmer grasp, squeezing as she moved up over the bulbous head. Jason moaned his encouragement.
"Oh baby, that feels so good. Oh... Please... Don't stop," he murmured as he continued finger fucking her.
Jason kept thrusting his fingers in and out of her squelching pussy while she stroked him. She pressed forward, grinding her mound against his hand, and then shuddered. He stopped kissing her and smiled wickedly.
They were both panting as he watched her intently. He pressed the heel of his hand against her clit, eliciting a gasp. He slid his fingers out of her wet tunnel and rubbed his slippery digits over her clit, causing her to shudder violently and moan. He did it again, and again, watching her twitch and pant with rapt attention.