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Campfire Stories Halloween Competition!  

Guardian of Shadows
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The Ghosts of Herak- Part 3

There were no other volunteers, even among the able-bodied men,. We understood how they felt as they wanted to make sure they were with their family if anything happened.
Our young men were away. They had gone to join the soldiers of Rome to fight against invaders and to invade. All that were left in the Village of Herak were older men, women and children.  
We had no choice, so the three of us prepared for the journey. I actually didn’t want to have Pandora with me, but she insisted on coming along, pouting and stamping her feet, so I had to give in.  We dressed up in short tunics, just above our knees; our legs were sheathed in breeches to our ankles. We were given a talisman or a lunula to hang on our necks, a crescent moon pendant filled with sulphur.
We were given a sword each, sheathed in a scabbard tied on the waist. It felt cumbersome, but I liked the freedom of the short tunic as compared to our ankle-length toga.
We then opened the northern door, breathed hard, whispered a prayer to Athena and ran with all our might towards the thick forest. The howling mass of gossamer spirits were milling around in the front yard, so we were lucky to reach the forest before they became aware that there were humans outside.
We ran. The wan ethereal light was enough to show us the small path that led to the north where we should meet Orcus. We trusted our instincts although we were mere girls hardly out of our teens then. We followed Ameria who was the faster one, her long legs pumping as she ran.  
I felt my stomach cramped up but tried to ignore it. Pandora, my lithe little sister who was almost elfin physically was faster than I was.  
The sounds of the spirits diminished as we ran further and further into the forest. The eerie greenish wan lights seemed to end, and the darkness of the forest engulfed us in earnest.  
We didn’t slack off our pace until we felt that we had run as far as we could. We came upon a glade and stopped. Not because we actually stopped, I actually slipped and fell face first on the ground, forcing Ameria and Pandora to stop. They ran back to me and pulled me up. I was gasping for breath, my stomach cramped and my knees could not hold me up.
We sat down together on a rock, holding one another. We were scared but it was too late to turn back. We had to look for Orcus, whoever he was. We looked around and what we saw was so wondrous, we stared mouth agape.
It was the most beautiful glade we have ever seen; flowers of all colours were everywhere, and strange insects flew everywhere. The bushes were lush and fruit trees bore all manner of fruits, most of which we have never seen before.
There was a blue pond with flowers floating on it that seemed to catch the twinkles of the setting sun.  
Suddenly a bright light flashed and we stood up immediately unsheathing our swords. We have never held swords before but we held it out as if we knew how.
To be continued…
Written by Grace (Idryad)
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Thought Provoker
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While the bronze leaves were tumbled by wind
And I hurried by the place
Something ruffled the bumps on my skin
Shadows of fear fell on my face
For only a moment I was so certain
The old house was darkly haunted
But distance increased and lowered that curtain
I thought my imagination just felt what it wanted to
Then I heard of the old man who lived there
Seemingly always home and alone
If true it really doesn't seem fair
Unless he has ghastly sins to atone
Was there ever a significant other
Someone should be to blame
For the lack of a sister a brother
A family sharing his name
If it isn't the house that is haunted
It must be the heart of that man
Written by EdibleWords
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Guardian of Shadows
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The Ghosts of Herak- Part 4

Suddenly in front of us, a huge man materialized, he seemed to emanate white light around him. He had a helmet with wings on the side and body armour like a Roman soldier. He was very tall and muscled bound and yet he didn’t seem to be hostile.
He stared at us, as we did him.

“Who are you?” all of us seemed to ask at once, including the bright stranger.

“I am a watcher of this glen, the guardian of the forest. This is my domain. Pray tell me why you are trespassing into my home,” he asked, rather haughtily I might add.

Ameria stepped forward, holding her head high, she looked regal and for a moment I glimpsed the pride of a tribe from far north, for her mother was a fair headed beauty from that region. Her tribe was conquered and enslaved and one of the women felled my uncle’s heart and he wedded her. The result was fair Ameria who now stood tall against the giant-like man.

“We seek Orcus, for our village, Herak, is being attacked by the minions of Remus. We forgot the black beans. We need the power and wisdom of Orcus to conquer this evil and send them back to netherworld,” she stated, her hand gripping her sword.

The light behind the man seemed to turn red and yellow giving him a sinister frightening look. We gasped and took a step back, our swords poised for attack.

“Aggh! Sheath your puny sword, women! Is Herak without men that they should send women to seek the high priest of Romulus? The high priest is neither man nor spirit, for he has power beyond your understanding. The Grecians call him Hades, did you know that?” he asked. I didn’t really care for the scornful tone of his voice.

We gaped at him, not really taking in what he was talking about. He looked exasperated. He took off his winged helmet and a cascade of long golden hair fell to his shoulder. I saw Ameria flinch, and Pandora scuttled to my side. The man no longer looked human, but a supernatural being.

“Are you without sight, both within and without? Orcus is the god of the underworld, the punisher of broken oaths. And you are running headlong to him to save your village? Or are you seeking destruction?” he boomed.

We staggered with this information. Why were we seeking the god that punish broken oaths and why was he called the high priest of Romulus? Why was he called Hades? We were fearful to say the least and very confused. Should we forge on or should we return to our village.

I decided that we should go on our journey, for returning would end in certain death for all of us.  We had to trust our grandmother’s judgment and carry through with our mission.

“We will go on…we will find Orcus and talk to him,” I said, as firmly as I could.

Ameria and Pandora nodded and we walked forward, across the glen to the other side, where the dark forest was.

The huge man sighed, and put on his helmet.

“I will go with you…” he said, and started walking alongside us.

I did not protest too much as we needed as much support as could garner along the way. We travelled through under the wan moonlight towards something we didn’t understand. We only had our determination…to send back the hordes to the netherworld.

To be continued...
Written by Grace (Idryad)
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Dangerous Mind
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Write on Grace you are killing it lady!

Tyrant of Words
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Camp Fire Story (4)

The heavens opened wide and haloed the sun as it shone into the room.  
Grace had been up for a while, she stirred the tea leaves, took the booklet of proclaimed spells. "Tea leaf tell, awaken the spell, I Grace  Of Ydriad , Ask of you KIndred One protect me"  The steam of the brew was so strong , with nausea she returned to the kitchen.      
The servants had gone to do their duties, left over bread cakes, scones heavy with syrup and Blue berried pancakes met her eyes. She crumbled a bread cake. Her daughters ran into the kitchen stuffing themselves with all the foods. Grace had made her descision, She would travel allone throught the mysts of the Lava Lakes. After the breakfast the Earl accompanied her to the Lakes. THey took the secret paths and on their way had to escape the Mansion Foxes which guarded the place. "By the satyres of flaming tongues!" The earl shouted when yet another pack of Foxes grabbed hold of his long mantle.      
The Lake shone like a mirror, the Magma mysts were thick like curtains of smoke. A young man stood at the edge of the waters. Where a small wooden boat was laying anchored.      
"Trouble LOves Thee" said the young man, smiling at Grace, he adjusted his dark hair , tucked it into the Hood of his dress.  He was called Trouble LOves Me due to him being a halfling,  from the gypsie camps he came. It was said he was an artist and could talk to the stars. He bowed, "Madam Grace" He said, "Allow me to guide you through the mystss, my boat is ready. Grace embraced her husband, then stepped down. "Atentje, Atentje!" Trouble called out "Be ware of slipery stones" He escorted Grace to the boat.      
It sailed as Trouble sang various songs. His voiced echoed over the waters. Grace pulled her woolen coat around her and took her mittens on. She went aboard the tiny cabin of the boat. Storms came, winds, howling hails and ice cold rain.        
"Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau" Trouble sang while the boat hoovered itself across the lakes throuh the mysts. Grace had a broken sleep, she slept, woke but the boat never stopped nor did Trouble stop singing.      
A sudden crash upon what seemed land anounced they were at their destination.      
There in the nearby sight, lay Halloween. The trees shook, in welcoming delight, they breezed towards Grace. The pampas grasses shook, the fruits of papaya and ayaho lay all around. Trouble rushed towards them, gathering them....      
Grace summoned him to stop, she knew they were poisonous.        
Suddenly a man appeared from out of nowhere. He drew a sword at Trouble, His royal clothes indicated he was a knight, one of the Highest in ranks. "Trrrrrouble eedeeeh!"      
He said jestlike, His eyes twinkled with a starnge delight. "David! " Grace said. "David MacCleod!" He and Grace spoke while Trouble attended to the boat which he took ashore and hid behind some huge palm trees.      
David took them to a secret entrance. It was called the KeyA. They had to climb countless stairs where a magical carpet awaited them. They ascended flying through dragon breath, having to avoid huge elephant clouds and sonar lights. David said hed slay the drrrragons before they would "open their effcking mouth"        
The landing spot was right at the Fortress of Azam, where Zazzles lived.      
Zazzles the wytch of the Crowley Clan. It was said She had been taught by Edward Alexander Crowley himself.        
The dark fortess seemed a cold place, Grace shivered, fattigue got a hold of her but she did not let it show. Inside they were lead to a round hall where Zazzles was seated in a huge chair , she held a crystal ball in which colours flew. All kinds of things were set up around her. Crystals, elixers, skulls, parafine lamps, a waterpipe, dried leaches piles of notes, some stufed up animals.        
The book of Lies lay open on the floor, all kinds of alchemical formulas were written on Zazzles's arms and hands.        
" By the chain, the Scrourge, the dagger and the chain" She said hissing almost.      
She scratched the crystal ball, lowered her voice      
"Welcome to Azam"   she said. They talked and Grace was under the impression that she was going to be in good hands. They escorted them to another part of the fortess. A door open with piercing high metal sounds. At that instant Zazzles 's face changed into an old greyhaired woman, David began to laugh like a madman.      
They pushed Both Grace and TRouble into the entrance. Then it closed behind them.      
Grace screamed and banged her hands on the door until they were sore. In the pitch black dark they walked, hearing sounds of scraping iron, a fence was being built around them. Huge wolves were around them grinding their teeth. A dark voice spoke "Choose your predator, split the psyche, deform the was repeated over and over"      
"Una mai, fantoma,proteja noi, proteja noi"      
Trouble Loves Me sang these words, he sang them to the Wolves, he looked them in the eyes, he grinded  his teeth like they did, he fell to the ground, the Wolves tore at his dress.      
He fought them, repeating the words, hissing, quivering they backed off one by one.      
Noadi appeared as a vision, they could walk through him, but feel his pressence as hs strength blended with their own and the place was cleansed of all evils. The chains broke from the fences. As a young girl stood on the other side, she held a plucked dead chicken without its head, it bled in a thick brownish dirt. Grace screemed overwhelmed with motherly love "She is my daughter......"      
Trouble LOves me forced her to stand back as he managed to grasp the chicken. It had a ceremonial ribbon inside, he drew out the ribbon, the vision diappeared.        
"We must face truths in stead of visions" he spoke, his dark hair fell  over his eyes.      
"Night will lead us, " He said calmly " But.....the girl " Grace said with great sentiment "There is no girl here" Said Trouble Loves me "Illusion never breaks a spell,. We might have entered a dreamt reality. Let us get out of DreamTime and allow Halloween to begin to happen" His voiced had such a calming effect that she felt sleepy. Did she dream all of this? Where was she, where were they going to?      
Kindred One came to Her as a LOving embrace. She heard a voice filled with Love calling Her name. Grandmother Of Birth and Endless Time appeared.  A soft blanket was put over her, a satin pillow to rest her head. Kindred One sang a lullaby.      
Sleep opened its kingdom, a kind Light shone, the Light showed her the way, a lighthouse  by the water, she dozed off completely.... The dream worlds opened.      
Rustic brown and golden trees , Grace journeyed the realms seeing through Her third eye. Through the Akasha she entered the ethoscope, the etherical fields .      
Cosmic Crimsin apøeared in a white gown, She looked like a bride, Grace thought. " Grace my Ydriad sibling, what is your queste?" Grace spoke of her experience in Azam. She shivered like a leaf. Cosmic Crimsin read a healing poem. "Do not forget the bones of the forefathers" She said."Do not forget the dawn, you have traveled a lifetime, your Ydriad skin has fallen from you.      
The wilderness is a part of every woman, it will be born again each All souls night. Bemoan your child, the one you were finding. She is in the great Nebula     
Halloween has devoured her. Know that they only will have her body, her soul belongs to you. All that you have been through was a dream.  Now return, Return to your Life, It is Hallow Eve. The dead lull the Living. But only in the flame . Breathe Life into the sterile universe, of fire, in nature, Love in Spirit, Unkenned....      
Cosmic Crimson waded through the spheres , white flowers grew from her hands, the blossom filled Graces awareness. She tried to lift her eyelids      
They were heavy though blurry visions came nearer, she awoke on the field by the mansion gardens, voices doubled then altered.      
She was dizxy when she got up, the Earl reached for her saying " Dear were you stealing the devil's apples? Should i be naming you Jack o lantern on this Hallow Even? Lets join the festivities, mind you its the DEAD of night"      
He laughed, she took his hand, adjusted her skirt and off they went....      
(The End)      
Written by AEMelia564 (Y)
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Dangerous Mind
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Ediblewords, how wonderful of you to join in
Excellent poem you have here!
Good luck!

Guardian of Shadows
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Zazzles said:Write on Grace you are killing it lady!

Thank you, esteemed host. Encouraged.

Dangerous Mind
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AMElia incredible job, yay!!!
Good luck! 👍🍀

Tyrant of Words
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Thanks milady Zazzles!!!!  I had no idea how i would cherish this story. Im very happy you enjoyed the read!!! Greets, Melia

Dangerous Mind
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AEMelia564 said:Thanks milady Zazzles!!!!  I had no idea how i would cherish this story. Im very happy you enjoyed the read!!! Greets, Melia

Guardian of Shadows
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The Ghosts of Herak Part 5

We walked briskly through the forest with me in the lead, followed by Pandora my sister, Ameria and the fiery guardian. We walked in single file as the underbrush was thick.  
Pandora was getting tired and clung to my arm. I encouraged her as much as I could as I wanted to reach Orcus before sun up. I was having a strange sense of being watched, but upon glancing at the guardian and Ameria, I was reassured that it was my imagination as they didn’t seem to notice anything.  
We came upon a break from the closeness of the forests, several hours later. It looked like a wide track of land, without anything growing on it. The land, which seemed like a wide road leading from somewhere to another, was dry soil, well-travelled by vehicles of sorts. There were shallow marks of horse hooves on the dry hard ground. We stood there looking at it for a while, and thought how easy it was to follow the road.
As I step on it, something seemed to move underneath the soil. I recoiled instantly, and stumbled. Pandora fell on the ground near me and Ameria  clutched the guardian’s arm in fright. The soil seemed to move and undulate, and all of us, gasped stepping back, cringing against one another inn fear. Even the guardian looked fazed.  
The soil burst upwards and a dark creature, which looked like a bat burst out. its eyes were blazing red and its mouth was filled with fangs that seemed to look like needles. It hovered for a while and then step on the ground, it stared at us for a while, and then growled at us.
“You are trespassing…who are you…?”
I was getting tired of all the things that were blocking us. I was terrified but I was not about to let the ugly monster stop us from getting to Orcus. We needed to get to him to save our village. We needed to get to him by sunrise and it was far past midnight.
“We are looking for Orcus! Get out of our way…!” I said, glaring at the ugly monster, advancing as menacingly as I could towards it.
It recoiled with shock. Perhaps nobody had ever spoken to it like that before.  Pandora held my arms, pulling me back, as I unsheathed  my sword.
“Grace, no…!”
The beast glared at us.
“Looking for Orcus? All of you? Even you?” it asked, glaring at the guardian.
The guardian shrugged.
The beasts sighed…and slowly it turned misty and then sparkled brilliantly. We gasped, as it turned into a beautiful woman, with long black hair cascading over her shoulder.
I sighed. Will we ever get to Orcus…I thought.  
The woman smiled at me, as if she could read my thoughts.  
“My name is Desire, the Enchanter …I will take you to Orcus. I will demand a prize, but time for that later,” she laughed, her laughter like brittle glass breaking the almost-morning air.
To be continued…
Written by Grace (Idryad)
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Guardian of Shadows
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The Ghosts of Herak Part 6

She stood there staring at us and then with a flick of her finger, the whole scene changed. The road was a sparkling silver stream that seemed to end into an opening that glittered like gold. From inside the cave flickered tongues of fire seeming to lick the opening like a hungry monster.

Desire stood there and bowed.

“Behold Orcus domain!”

“You lie!” Ameria snarled, “We were told that he lived a day walk to the north. It is not a day yet!”

Desire laughed her brittle laughter.

“Orcus is a god. He can be anywhere he wants to. As long as the ground is there, Hades too lives. Underneath the sod…” she said.

We looked at one another, puzzled, angry, frustrated and not trusting the dark woman, with fiery beauty.

The Guardian didn’t seem to react much, and I was glad and respected him for that. Three shivering women sufficed.

Even though we didn’t trust the woman Desire, we followed her as she led us towards the burning cave. We didn’t know what to expect, but we naively believed that we were strong enough to encounter the high priest of Romulus…Orcus, also a god, the punisher of broken oath.

We had expected the cave to be extremely hot, with the fire flickering on its sides. However, it was not as hot as we thought. In fact it was just comfortably warm.
We stood there looking around us curiously.

“What did you bring home this time, Desire?” a gentle voice sounded before us and we stared at a tall figure in a white robe. He was middle aged, very good looking and wore a smile on his handsome face.

“Strays, My Lord,” Desire laughed, caressing Pandora’s shoulder. I pulled my sister away from her, glaring at her at the same time.

“You are Orcus?” I asked as boldly as I could.

He laughed gently.

“Yes, child I am Orcus. Why do you seek me?” he asked.

I told him about our village and how the minions of Remus had descended on it. I told him that we forgot the ceremony of the black beans, as told by our grandmother.
He looked at us contemplatively, his hand caressing his clean shaven chin.

“ I don’t understand, what is so important about the beans? They are hardly worth sending ghosts and monsters for,” Pandora opined, looking at Orcus and then at me.

Orcus stared at her. He no longer looked friendly. His eyes seemed to burn with a strange fire. He pointed at the door.

“That is what the black beans are for,” he said.

We looked towards the door and gasped for we saw that it was a road again and not a silver stream. We saw beans falling on the road and instantly turned into caped men on black horses.

“They are my soldiers, my legions. What is given against Remus, becomes mine, to use them as I see fit. Your village has forgotten, and thus they are paying for it, for they did not contribute and thus I have no nocturnal soldiers to send and defeat the minions before they reach the portal to the offending village,” he said.

“Can you help us?”

“We can but with a price,” he said.

“Price? What is your price? We must save our village from the marauding ghosts and spectres at once. We don’t know if they have already started to attack or destroyed our
village!” I yelled.

“Ahhh…so you agree!” he laughed, a long harsh laughter that grated in our ears. He began to change then, filling us with terror. We cringed together in utmost horror at what transpired before us.

To be continued…..
Written by Grace (Idryad)
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Dangerous Mind
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The Tavvy

In the evening light
Under-toned by darker beats  
insane things happen in    
Australia's October heat  
Dave noticed him being a man  
that needs to notice things  
he didn’t quite fit in, not here, not in this place  
pallid skin, squeaky voice, styled like sin  
he had an infectious nervous energy  
heel up, heel down, foot to foot  
constant fidgeting    
one eye green  
one eye blue  
He did nothing wrong so he was allowed in  
Dave watched him cut through  
the crowd to the back after collecting ice water from the bar  
there, he took a seat  
nodding his head off time to the beat  
tingling buzz running through the crowd  
the music pounds doof doof doof loud  
nervous tensions running high  
the kind that vibrates in the air  
makes your hair stand on end  
your guts clench up  
not long before a fight broke out  
car park, car park now screamed through  
the static hiss of the radio at Dave's belt  
He ran out side and bore witness  

young man sat up off th ground
to meet a steel toed boot,    
crunch of asphalt crack  
his head used as if it were a soccer ball in a penalty shoot out  
during the final seconds of the world cup  
head bounced spraying blood    
radiating spiral fractures  
head split  
a smashed pumpkin,  
spilling its core onto the floor  
fitting, seizures, pissed himself  
Dave checked his pulse  
started resuscitation till ambulance officers    
saved his life  
crazy eyes stalked past shaking his head  
Dave thought quizically
looking around he was the only one who noticed.  
Dave’s shift started  
in the back corner, crazy eyes with his crazy nod  
seeming to torment Dave at his job  
drinking ice water  
eyes mysterious  
Dave didn’t have too much time to contemplate  
two guys playing pool drunk as fuck  
called a young kid a cunt    
started groping women  
the dregs of humanity
resignation set on his face    
Dave raced in to end this affront  
what grown man calls a child a cunt?  
first man puffs up his chest  
hands out wide in a gunslinger stance  
he wants to throw fists  
no talking sense with these fools  
they want to fight  
Dave knows it  
crowd knows it  
these men demand it  
giving no quarter he throws  
himself in starts dragging one out  
tonk, a pool cue  
smacks upside Dave’s head snapping  
blood and berserker rage paint  
his face red  
the first man’s head bounces  
off the wall  
before he has a chance to fall  
Dave turns, slices through the others  
violent pose his elbow collapses the man's eye socket,   
grabs his shirt front tries to race  
out the fire exit  
6mm plate glass  
it's locked.....  
arterial slash    
blood sprays  
need a tourniquet  
He sits staring at the squirting arterial spray  
bleeding out in shock  
Dave ties off his arm  
violence applauded by the gathering crowd  
rewarded with 8 stiches  
a fractured finger
ambulance arrive  
to save lives again  
crazy eyes is there clapping  
shaking his head  
Dave noticed......  
end of week for Dave  
crazy eyes had not been back   
since the Wednesday assault  
Dave relaxed  
Sundays are the best days to work  
elderly people playing pokies  
regular diners and patrons  
mundane pub life with less  
strife fights or stress,  
basic routine patrols  
there he was, ice water in hand  
off kilter nod, rocking his style  
still not quite right
but there was no fight  
Dave got back to his job  
of doing five eights of  
fuck all
end of shift locking up  
Dave's checking the toilets stall    
Men's all clear  
heads over to the ladies,  
the last toilet door is locked  
He bangs on the door  
no answer  
turns the tumbler with his universal key  
can’t open it  
theres a body in the way  
he rips the door off its hinges  
a lady of middle age stone cold lays  
in her deathly hold a bottle of  
pills designed to cure  
Dave starts resuscitation he tries with   
all his might  
but this is not a fight he can win  
ambulance arrive pronounce her DOA  
liver fucked by drugs and alcohol  
Dave watches as she is carted away  
there in the back ground old crazy eyes  
tips a salute, nodding his head  
as if he wanted her dead...
Written by todski28
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Twisted Dreamer
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Hallows Eve

Fixed upon days fading light your mind engulfed by fear
Trembling uncontrollably as darkness draws in nearer
Your shadowed room a dim lit tomb a lair of demise
For on this night a witches flight evokes the undeads cries
Rising from their shallow graves the corpses of the dead
The children that this night enslaved now leave their earth filled beds
Lost souls in pain search for life again for death they can't conceive
So hold yours dearer as they draw nearer on this Hallows Eve
Written by LBV
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Dangerous Mind
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What a nice surprise to see your entry Todski.
Very interesting story you have here!
Good Luck!

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