For Reid Taylor Halloween is more than just a night of glowing jack-o'-lanterns, bobbing for apples, tricks or treats, and unoriginal, shabby costumes. It is All Hallows Eve, a holiday; a celebration for him and his fellow practicing witches. Although most of his brethren still practice Wicca, Reid has moved on from that onto the darker side of magic; a self proclaimed warlock. The celebration had begun at sundown and would continue into the following day; All Hallows Day.
The party was held at his good friend Ryan's house at the outskirts of a rural community in an unused, run down barn that sat at the edge of the back yard of a midsized farm house. There were many more people at the party than the previous year. Reid noticed that most were just average people this year; non-practicing witches. In the back of the barn was a band that consisted of a few local kids dressed as characters from the classic horror films attempting to play heavy metal music.
There were two long tables joined side by side on the left hand side of the barn full of homemade food, salty snacks, punch, sugar loaded candies, and lots of booze. Underneath the table sat two full kegs of beer. On the opposite side of the barn were two more tables full of many different books on the Occult, trinkets, jewelry, apparel, and many other novelties that some were trying to sell for a few measly dollars, unaware of the importance of some of the items.
Reid had a strong will when it came to practicing magic, but a very weak will when it came to alcohol use. He had begun drinking as soon as he arrived and had no intention of slowing down. Many of the females at the party were dressed in skimpy costumes revealing much skin and cleavage, which was another weakness for Reid. Some men like cars, some are obsessed with sports, others are married to their jobs, Reid was different; magic, booze, and hot women, are all he sought after.
Reid spent a good part of the night mingling mostly with those he considered friends, and tried to get lucky quite a few times with many of the females there, but failed miserably. As the hours passed, the more Reid became discouraged and more and more he drank. A beer followed by a shot followed by another beer, an almost endless cycle and endless barrage on his senses. His friends could see how the alcohol was taking its toll on Reid; they tried several times in vain to cut him off, but he always found a way to get more. He tried desperately several more times to get laid, but was rejected every time.
Frustrated, he decided he had enough of this party and chose to go home. Ryan ran to his side as he staggered toward his car. "Whoa champ, where do ya think you're goin'?'" He demanded. Reid shoved him angrily away "I'm fine, piss off!" Ryan became angry and tried once more to stop him from getting into the vehicle, but Reid being the much bigger of the two forced him back once more allowing him enough time to get into the driver's seat, slam the door and speed off in a drunken rage.
Intoxicated and half asleep at the wheel Reid sped erratically through the cool night. Swerving violently into the opposing lane then back again; he tried repeatedly to keep control of the vehicle, but could not. He slowed down dramatically thinking it would help, but it did not. The pavement bounced up and down in his vision, the straight yellow lines became warped and tangled together, and it was all a blur. He saw what appeared to be a silhouette of a man standing in the road ahead of him.
Reid's eyes widened with fear, his knuckles turned white as his grip tightened on the steering wheel, at the same time he hammered his foot down on the brake pedal with all his might. The tires screeched loudly on the pavement as the car struggled to come to a stop. Suddenly everything became clear for Reid, his vision was straight and he was wide awake, the car skidded closer and closer to the man in the road and it felt to Reid that it was happening in slow motion. Reid closed his eyes and let out a ferocious scream as the car finally came to an abrupt halt, which very well could have forced him sailing into the windshield if not for the seat belt he couldn't even remember putting on when he first entered the car. There was a loud thump from the front of the car, and Reid was afraid to open his eyes, he didn't want to see what he had done.
Reid heard another thump and apprehensively opened his eyes. There was a man in a black trench coat standing there pounding his fist on the hood of the car. Reid could see from the light of the headlights that the front bumper was only a few millimeters from the man's legs. Reid let out a sigh of relief and released his death grip from the steering wheel and put the car into park. He cupped his hand over his face in disbelief then peered out at the Man who was now standing with his arms folded. Reid thought it was strange that the Man showed no emotion on his face, no shock or anger or even a flinch, as if the whole thing had never happened.
Reid stepped out of the car and walked over to the man.
"Are you okay, sir?" The Man stood there and stared at Reid and did not answer him. Reid found him to be a little creepy. Reid took a breath and continued.
"Listen, I am so sorry bro, I don't know what to say, I mean it was dark and I didn't see you till I-" Suddenly the man interrupted, he spoke quietly with a raspy voice and a surprisingly soft tone.
"No worries, I'm okay. It was a close call, but all can be forgiven." He spoke as if he was hinting at something. Reid could still not believe how calm the Man was being about all of it.
"What can I do for you?" Reid inquired, his voice sounding desperate.
"Anything you want, anywhere you want to go, I can pay you something, I don't have a lot, but I can give you something." The Man grinned slightly as he was fighting to laugh.
"You can take me up the road a ways, I have business there, if you can do that, I can forget this ever happened." Reid looked into the Man's eyes and they seemed a bit sinister to him, which sent a chilling shiver up his spine, but he could not refuse, he felt obligated to help the man now, especially after almost killing him. Not only that, but Reid was drunk and he knew that if the cops found out he would go to jail and most likely lose his license.
"Of course, anywhere you want to go, please get in." Reid approached the man to help him, but the man gave Reid a look that said don't touch me. Reid turned away without another word and got into the car, the man soon followed through the passenger side door.
Reid drove cautiously and drove about five miles under the speed limit from then on. The man did not speak, or make a sound of any kind; he just sat there and stared straight ahead. This made Reid feel very uneasy, and his under arms began to sweat a bit, as they always do whenever he gets nervous.
"So-"Reid paused to clear his throat before continuing. "What's your name?" He turned and looked at the Man.
"Never mind that, keep your eyes on the road." He answered quietly. Reid took a hard swallow, and did what he was told. Reid was almost afraid to speak again, but his curiosity had gotten the best of him.
"So, where are you heading?" He asked without taking his eyes off the road.
"Just up the road a ways." the Man answered bluntly. "I'll let you know when and where, just keep driving." He scorned. Reid decided not to ask another question, or speak at all for that matter, he just kept driving.
Another five miles had passed and there was a sign illuminating in the dark up ahead. A sign Reid knew well, it was the gas station that he had stopped by to fill up and buy liquor from many times on his way to and from Ryan's house.
"You can stop up ahead here." The Man ordered, while pointing a finger at the sign. Reid nodded in agreement and pulled into the parking lot of the gas station. There was no one else there; being that it was so late into the night. Reid began to pull into a space closest to the door and the man spoke suddenly.
"You wait here, I will be back, do not leave." The Man snarled. "Understand?"
"Yes." Reid answered without hesitation.
The Man made his way quickly out of the car and into the small convenience store; the windows of the car had become foggy from the cool air outside, hindering Reid's vision. Reid's eye lids were beginning to feel a bit heavy as he waited patiently, he thought he felt himself began to doze off, but wasn't sure. Suddenly there was a ghastly scream which echoed out from within the store, and then there were two loud bangs… gunshots.
Reid knew the sound well from his early years in life when his dad forced him to go on hunting escapades with him. It didn't give off the same tone as the rifle his dad used while hunting deer, no it was more akin to the sound of his dad's twelve gauge shot gun he used while shooting at raccoons and other small woodland critters, a sound, which back then shook Reid's adolescent bones.
Reid was bemused, maybe he was hearing things, maybe it was some teenager blasting away plastic action figures with M-80's as he once did at that age. Or maybe it was just some dumb asses playing a Halloween prank. His mind raced uncontrollably trying to create an explanation, other than the obvious. Reid began to panic as sweat began to bead upon his forehead, he reached for the handle of his door and started to open it, then all of a sudden the passenger side door opened forcefully, startling the hell out of Reid, and the ominous looking man hurried back into the seat.
"Going somewhere?" he bantered. Reid quickly sunk back into his seat.
"Um, no I was just-" He paused for a moment to catch his breath. "I'm a bit thirsty, just thought I would go buy a soda or something." The Man turned to him and gazed at him with a menacing glare.
"It's best you just drive." Reid said not another word and quickly closed his door and put the car in reverse, gave the store a quick glance and drove away reluctantly into the night.
They continued northbound down the same dark road for another few miles. The Man said nothing, made not a single sound. Reid had become very nervous and the car had swerved a bit from time to time. He wanted to stop, contemplated about it, but also thought about the gunshots he heard. If they were indeed gunshots and the Man did indeed have a gun, what would stop him from using it on Reid? He peered over at the Man as discreetly as possible trying to see if there was a gun hiding underneath the long trench coat, unfortunately for Reid, it was much too dark to tell.
Reid took a glance at the review mirror and saw a pair of headlights approaching quickly. Then flashing blue and red lights appeared as a siren began to wail. Reid gave a quick, nervous look to the Man next to him, but there was no reaction. Reid slowed down and pulled over off to the side of the road, but the police car roared past him sending piles of fallen leaves violently up into the air. Reid watched as the police car disappeared into the distance, and looked at the man once more.
"Keep driving." The Man said.
Reid reluctantly did what he was told, and he continued down the long, dark road. It wasn't long before he could see flashing lights in the distance, the same flashing lights that were behind him only minutes before. Only this time there was more than one set. As he approached he had began to slow the car down and could see that there were now two police cars, they were parked bumper to bumper across both lanes of the road, blocking any way through. There was no shoulder to try and pass on, only a narrow strip of grass and a dense forest preserve blanketing each side.
"Stop here, right here." Demanded the Man. Reid pulled over slightly and parked the car, and the Man hastily jumped out of the car and disappeared into the thick woodland. Reid let out a sigh of relief, and told himself how glad he was that the Man was finally gone. Reid looked long and hard into the dark tree line to see if he could see any sign the Man, but he could not. Again he let out a sigh of relief and was suddenly startled by a knock on the driver's side window. He turned quickly around expecting it to be the Man, but it was a deputy from the local sheriff's station, and he was motioning Reid to roll his window down.
"Is everything okay?" asked the deputy.
"Um-" Reid hesitated momentarily, he wanted to tell him all about the Man, and the possible gunshots he heard, but at the same time he knew that he had way too much to drink earlier, and didn't want to draw any unnecessary attention to himself and end up with a D.U.I. charge.
"No, everything is fine officer." He answered politely. The deputy shone his flashlight beam around inside the car as if he were in search of something. "What's the problem?" Reid asked, the beam was now pointing at his face making him squint.
"Well, we received a report of an escapee from the Ginger Hills Psychiatric Ward a few miles down the road back there, and we have set up this road block here to check all vehicles that pass here. You haven't seen anything unusual tonight have you?" Again Reid wanted to tell him everything, but couldn't risk being busted.
"Could you put the car in park and step out please, as I said we must check every vehicle?" Reid complied, but kept his distance from the deputy as much as possible as he exited the car and afterwards.
Reid walked to the front of the car and leaned against the hood, he could see another deputy standing guard at the road block facing the opposite way. After a moment of unusual silence Reid turned back around to face the car and could see the deputy's feet sticking out from the rear door of the car, as if he were in a kneeling position and scouring the back section of the car. He couldn't believe it was taking the deputy so long and walked over to see what he was doing. He was kneeling alright, but didn't seem to be moving.
"Sir?" There was no response "Officer?" Again no response, Reid stepped a bit closer and the deputy still did not move. Reid grabbed the deputy's foot and shook it back and forth slightly, and there was still no response. Reid turned around quickly and yelled while waving his arms frantically.
"Officer down! Officer down!" The other deputy turned around quickly and began to make his way toward Reid. Then Reid saw the Man charge out from the edge of the woods at the deputy's back side with a large knife.
"Whoa, hey watch out!" Reid cried out as he tried to point the Man out to the deputy. Before the deputy could react the knife plunged into his back with such force that the tip of the blade tore through his lung and out of his chest. The Man pulled the knife out vigorously and stuck it straight through the deputy once more ripping through the other lung. The deputy fell to his knees grabbing the tip of the blade that was once again protruding from his chest. Seconds later he fell face first onto the asphalt and did not move again. The Man loomed over the slain deputy for a moment as if to make sure he was not getting back up, then knelt down and ripped the knife out of his limp body.
Reid was horrified and crippled with fear. All he could do is watch as the Man walked leisurely towards him. He closed his eyes and waited fearfully for the knife to be plunged into him next, he heard the Man's footsteps get closer and he tensed up. Reid felt the Man's warm breath against his cool flesh as he stood in front of him, and still he waited, expecting to be the next victim. The Man stood there momentarily; his breath reeked of that of a rotting carcass. Reid opened his eyes with apprehension; the man gave Reid a sinister grin showing his rotten, decaying teeth and stepped gingerly around Reid toward the rear of the car. The man walked up to the deputy in the car, grabbed him from around the ankles and yanked him out of the car onto the asphalt road. Reid could clearly see the large gash across the deputy's throat, which severed his jugular.
Terrified, Reid jumped into the driver seat of his car and fumbled the keys around a bit before finally getting it started. The Man entered the passenger side before Reid could get the car in gear.
"Let's drive." He commanded. Reid drove around the road block and continued onward. He realized that he wasn't far from home now, only a few miles away. There was a police station that was even closer and that is where he planning on going. No matter what the Man wanted or demanded did not matter to Reid anymore, he was wading in deep shit now and knew it. He told himself over and over that he had to end it before anyone else got killed, even if it would cost him his own life in the process. He studied dark magic's and demons for a while, he knew there were evil souls abound, perhaps this was one of those demons he read so much about in his books.
Reid began to press harder on the accelerator pedal and had begun to sweat profusely. The Man didn't seem to notice, if he had he didn't show he cared. Reid saw a mile marker on the side of the road he only had two miles to go until the turn off for the police station. He sped a little more up to almost seventy miles per hour anxiously awaiting the exit. Reid was determined, and when he was determined there was no stopping him. He didn't even look over at the Man, he did not even realize that he was there; he was totally focused on just reaching his destination.
Another sign, one and a quarter miles away, Reid's determination began to turn into excitement and a feeling of great relief starting rushing over him. Reid slowed down as he began to turn onto the exit so he could keep control of the car around the hard turn. Once off the ramp he could see the sign up ahead for the police station. He sped up once again and maintained the speed until he reached the station.
"We are not finished here yet." The Man stated.
"Yes we are." Reid snapped back. "You are finished. I will not allow you to hurt anyone else." Reid threw a fierce punch at the Man's head with his right hand, but when it connected it seemed to have little or no affect on him. A split second later Reid's head was thrust down onto the steering wheel, putting him into a dizzying daze. The car turned sharply to the right, jumped the curb and spun into a light pole in the parking lot of the station caving in the passenger side of the car. An officer that was just exiting the station reacted quickly and ran briskly up to Reid's wrecked car. Reid was still in a daze and jolted to the bones. His neck ached and his whole body felt numb.
"Are you okay? Try not to move too much, I will assist you." Said the officer through the shattered window as he forced opened Reid's door. Reid could hear, but his vision was still blurry and distorted.
"Can you move your legs?" the officer inquired. Reid still somewhat out of it didn't respond. The officer grabbed Reid's arm and gently moved it. Reid came to enough to finally respond.
"I don't know everything is numb." Reid's vision was coming into focus again, he could see the shattered pieces of glass from his window lying in his lap, and he looked up at the severely cracked windshield, and then looked to his right.
"It's a good thing nobody was sitting there." stated the officer. Then Reid realized that something was not right.
"No." Reid said quietly. "That's not right." He turned to the officer, and the officer was bewildered.
"What's not right?" he asked.
"There was a man with me, he was sitting right there in that seat. He did terrible things; he killed people, sheriff's deputies. A store clerk, he killed them all. He must have gotten away. You must find him." The officer looked even more confused than before.
"Sir, there isn't now nor was there anyone else in the car. I saw the whole wreck happen; you were driving erratically lost control on the road, jumped the curb, and spun directly into this pole here. Nobody got out of this car." Reid looked again at the passenger seat, which was pushed slightly closer towards him from the hard impact. There was no man, only a bloody knife in the seat, he looked into the backseat and there was a small paper bag stuffed with bills on it, a large blood stain and a shotgun lying on the floor. The officer looked on as well as he began to pull Reid out of the car slowly.
"He was there, you have to believe me!" Reid shouted hysterically. Meanwhile two more officers had come out to see what all the commotion was about. They helped Reid into the police station as the first officer on the scene searched the wrecked car. He saw a small book with a black cover sticking out from underneath the driver seat. It was Reid's journal, the officer flipped the pages to the last entry and began to read.
He says I am still not ready yet.
He says I must prove myself.
I have done all that He has asked of me.
He says now he wants a sacrifice.
I will give him what he desires, I will give him
My dark savior, My lord I will give you blood.