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written by a Witch Who Knows

It was Halloween night, and it was almost dark. I knew that the trick-or-treaters would be here soon.    
Since I was almost twelve, I decided to stay home this year and give out candy, while Mom and Dad took my little brother and sister out to trick-or-treat.     
I liked to see the young kids in their costumes and try to guess who they were supposed to be.      

My friends next door wore the same costumes every year, so I knew that I would quickly recognize them.     
Ten year old Jessie was always a ghost, and his twin brother, Joey, was always a vampire. Their little sister, Ava, who was eight, always dressed like a witch with a long, craggy nose.     
As the evening went by, I saw lots of kids I knew, but I was about to give up on seeing my friends.     
Oh well, it was late, and I was almost out of candy. Mom and Dad had come home over an hour ago.   


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They had put my brother and sister to bed, and then had gone into the den to watch TV. I went to the front door to turn off the front porch light.     
When I flicked off the light switch, it was very dark outside, and the streets looked deserted. Suddenly, as if by magic, my friends from next door were standing on the porch. There were Jessie the ghost, Joey the vampire, and Ava the witch.      

I started to turn on the porch light again, but something told me not to. I felt kind of worried, but I didn’t know why.     

“This is silly,” I told myself. “These are my best friends.” I said “Hi,” to them and, “Happy Halloween,” but they said nothing in return. Not even, “Trick-or-Treat.”     
Was it my imagination, or did they all look kind of different tonight, as they stood on the dark porch? Kind of bigger and scarier…     

I couldn’t see Jessie’s feet under his ghost outfit. He really seemed to be floating above the ground. “Awesome trick,” I told him. Jessie said nothing. Joey just stared at me.     
His fake vampire teeth looked awfully real, very long and white, and pointed. His normally blue eyes looked red, like bat’s eyes. And his long cape fluttered around him, even though there was no breeze.     
There was even blood on the collar of his shirt. “Great fake blood,” I said, with a nervous laugh. “Nice touch.” Joey didn’t say a single word, but he took a step closer to me, staring at my neck. He seemed awfully tall, all of a sudden.     

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Ava the witch seemed to be laughing at me, with a strange expression on her normally sweet face. She held a big, black, and mean looking cat with yellow eyes, who was watching me as closely as Joey was.     

The cat looked as if it wanted to jump out of Ava’s arms, and attack me. This was really weird, because I knew that Ava was allergic to cats.      

I was starting to get really jumpy! What was going on here? Suddenly, Mom and Dad came up behind me. “Time to turn out the lights and shut the door. It’s late, and there don’t seem to be any more trick-or-treaters.”     
“But…,” I said, turning to look at them. Didn’t they see the three kids on the front porch? As I turned back, I saw that the porch was empty, and there was no one in sight.     
How could all three of them have disappeared so quickly? As I looked out, I saw a bat fluttering around the streetlamp.     
A white cloud then appeared to float down the street. And as a full moon appeared from behind the dark clouds, I could clearly see the outline of a witch, flying on a broom, with her cat.     
I quickly slammed the front door shut, and I locked it. I went to bed, but I didn’t get much sleep that night. There must be some explanation for what had happened on the front porch.     
The next day, after I got home from school, I saw Jessie, Joey, and Ava, all playing catch in their front yard.  I went over to say hi, but before I could open my mouth, Jessie said, “Sorry we couldn’t come by last night.  We had to go to a Halloween party.” Wait a minute!  My friends had not even been home last night!  Then who, or what, had been standing on my front porch?     
1. Why did the boy in the story stay home on Halloween?  
   a) he was scared of the dark
   b) he was allergic to candy
   c) he wanted to stay home and pass out candy to trick- or-treaters

2. How did the boy know he would recognize his friends from next door?  
   a) they wore the same costumes every year
   b) they didn’t wear costumes
   c) they all dressed alike

3. Who did the boy think was on his front porch went he went to turn out the lights?  
   a) his friends from next door
   b) some new kids in the neighborhood
   c) his brother and sister

4. What was unusual about ‘Jessie’ in his ghost costume?  
   a) the sheet was orange
   b) he did not have a head
   c) he seemed to float above the ground

5. What was strange about ‘Ava’ holding a cat?  
   a) there were no cats in the neighborhood
   b) Ava only had a dog
   c) Ava was allergic to cats

6. As they stood on the porch, ‘Joey’s’ eyes looked: 
   a) red
   b) brown
   c) blue

7. Why did Mom and Dad come to the door? 
   a) they knew the boy was afraid
   b) they wanted to see the trick-or-treaters
   c) they said it was time to turn out the lights since there were no more trick-or-treaters

8. What was odd about this?   
   a) the 3 ‘trick-or-treaters’ seemed to disappear from the porch
   b) Mom and Dad just didn’t want to give out any more candy
   c) the boy had eaten all the Candy

9. When the boy looked down the street, what did he see?  
   a) more trick-or-treaters
   b) his next door neighbors
   c) a bat fluttering around the streetlamp

10. When the boy saw his neighbors the next day, they said: 
   a) that they had been sick on Halloween
   b) that they were disappointed the boy had not given them any treats when they came over
   c) they had not been home because they had to go to a Halloween party