You’ve all heard the story right? The clown statue that hides in the corner of the room and the babysitter calls the parents and says “Yo, that statue in the kid’s room is hella creepy” and then the parents just start screaming down the phone to get the kids and get out because guess what, turns out that they don’t have a clown statue and it’s a serial killer, or kidnapper or even just some random fucking lunatic that likes to stare at kids.
Well, you realise that story’s based on truth, right? Only it wasn’t a clown statue. Not in the slightest.
It was a night a lot like this. Halloween, when the fog was flowing in thick and the trick or treaters were out in their droves, tiny little vampires and monsters scurrying around, bags full of sweets in their hands. With their parents, of course, because on a night like that, with the darkness swarming in and the sodium glow failing at cutting through the fog, who’d let their children out alone?
You see, the best decorated house at Halloween was always the Bastian’s. It was down at the end of the lane, a little bit further on than the last of the terraced houses. Mr Bastian had this huge front garden and he’d fill it with plastic gravestones that sat under the oak tree, green and purple lights to get an ethereal glow to the place. He’d add something every year. There’d be animatronic spiders, or huge rats that would leap at you. One year, he even had a zombie hand that would burst from the ground when you walked up to the door.
So, the Bastian’s were going out for Halloween this year. Some of their friends from university are having a party and as such, they can’t take their children. They ask this kid I know to babysit Jenny and Murphy and the kid wholeheartedly agrees. He’s too old for trick or treating and too young for the parties, so he might as well get some money for it.
He arrives around eight, just as the Bastian’s are headed for their taxi. They’re hurrying, dressed as Gomez and Morticia Addams. He’s always had a crush on Mrs Bastian and teh costume is playing to her slender figure. All he gets is a quick hello, the briefest of rundowns on what time the kids should be going to bed, followed by the actual time they’re supposed to go to bed.
The taxi pulls away with gravel crunching beneath it. This kid, Danny, he watched as the taxi pulled away, then turned to go into the house. The plastic body swinging from the oak tree, Mr Bastian had really outdone himself this year. There was one swinging from the oak tree and another collapsed on the floor looking partially decayed. Danny took a minute to appreciate, then he goes inside.
The kids are there, eating far too much chocolate for kids about to go to bed. So Danny shoos them up to their rooms and tells them that he doesn’t mind how long they actually stay up as long as their lights are off when their parents get back. This goes down like a house on fire and the two of them disappear upstairs, leaving Danny with the fifty inch plasma TV.
Murphy comes downstairs at about half past nine and says that dad’s halloween decorations are at his window. Danny just brushes this off and tells him he’s eaten too much chocolate. Then Jenny comes down and says that the decorations are trying to get in. So Danny heads upstairs to have a look and there’s nothing, just the figure in the tree and the figure on the ground, nowhere near the window and just where they were when he came in.
He went back downstairs. He turned on the TV and he watched the next horror film that came on.
That horror film was still playing when the Bastian’s returned. They walked past the empty boughs of their oak tree, past their plastic gravestones and multicoloured lights. They saw their children’s rooms in darkness and when they went upstairs, both of their beautiful children were sound asleep.
When they came back downstairs, they found the oven at 200 degrees Celsius.
Inside that oven, staring without staring, was the eyeless face of Danny McIntyre.
Were they decorations come to life? Or real people, just waiting for the perfect moment to strike? Perhaps…
At this point, one of my fellow counsellors in Halloween make-up, matching one of the decorations, would sneak up behind the kids and go boo, scaring the pants of them.
The clown statue creepypasta has always freaked me out. Partially because I can absolutely imagine it to be true. I toyed with the idea of making my storyteller one of the “decorations” but it didn’t gel in my head. Oh well, perhaps next time.
Well, happy Halloween everybody!
The Idiot in Tin Foil