Challenge #02143-E314: 'Tis the Season
The Harvest moon fills the sky
A wicked witch goes flying by
Ghosts and goblins..skeletons too.
Moaning and groaning, waiting for you
Black cats prowl the graveyard plots
Witches cook in cauldron pots
Cemetery ghouls roam the ground
Not one unopened grave is found
Tombstones are an eerie sight
Shadows dance in full moon light
The haunted house on the hill
Walk in there and you get a chill
Jack-o-lanterns eyes so bright
Trick or Treaters scream in fright
It’s a time like you’ve never seen
Tonight’s the night of Halloween. -- Anon Guest
[AN: Apologies for the catastrophe(s) that occurred to mess with the timing of this post]
The office of the Ambassador for 1986 had broken out in bats, gourds, candles, and fake cobwebs. The waiting lounge's entertainment screen was apparently running through a playlist that had dredged through every non-offensive, 'spooky', or 'creepy' 2-D non-interactive entertainment that Shayde had caught up with since her incredibly peculiar exile from Earth.
Her desk had a bowl of assorted sugar items on it, all individually wrapped in deference to Station anti-contamination laws. The bowl was a ludicrously fake plastic skull with googly eyes instead of sockets.
Rael took a deep breath. Centred himself. Filched a sugar object in the shape of a spider. "Shayde," he said eventually... "What the actual flakk?"
She had a big, cheesy grin that showed off her fangs and was showing all the signs of being on a sugar high. "It's almost Halloween, innit?"
Rael ran the mental math necessary to sync up with the current Terran calendar. "It's August on Earth."
"Aye, end of August's practic'ly September ye ken," she said, "and after tha', October's on. Perfectly good time tae put yer plastic skeletons on t' lawn."
Slow realisation dawned. "You're one of those people who are way into a holiday that only occurs during one evening. Aren't you?"
"I'm thinkin' o' bein' Ren from The Adventure Zone for me costume. Who are you plannin'?"
Rael had no idea who that was and, at this point, was too afraid to ask. "You're one of those cosplayers who are way too enthusiastic..." he realised in horror.
"Worse. I'm ace, so tha' makes me queer. That, and I played dee an' dee, and hung aroun' wi' theatre kids. I'm a triple threat, me."
Which neatly explained why she was so very, very overboard. That type were still around, but there were so many opportunities for their unique brand of fun that they often exhausted themselves in the enjoyment of them. "I don't celebrate."
In three words, he instantly became a strange being beyond Shayde's capacity for comprehension. "What the heck is wrong wi' goin' aboot an' snaggin' free candy tae ye?"
"The fact that there aren't entire communities who know what's going on? You need neighbourhoods who celebrate to make your treat-or-tricking worthwhile."
"Trick or treat," Shayde corrected. "Threat before goal. Okay?"
"And there's the other reason. I have priorities that make that difference sink in."
"I'm still celebratin'," Shayde insisted. "I'm celebratin' me flakkin' socks off. All day in me costume, handin' out treats tae any as is allowed. And then an all-night marathon wi' you an' enough caramel popcorn tae kill a horse."
What had the horses done to make them the yardstick for toxicity? Rael shook his head and took another candy.
 All arguments to the contrary are going to be ignored. Aces belong in the LGBT community more than "allies".
[Image (c) Can Stock Photo / sparkia]
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