Image by Ashleigh L.

We all knew it was going to end up as a dare from the moment the ghosts started terrorizing the neighborhood. They were all over, flying through bedroom walls, jumping out of the drain when people were taking showers, making farting noises from chimneys, even exploding toilets!

It had to be stopped.

What we didn’t know was that we would end up daring each other to do it. It had all started two weeks ago, and it was insane, but there were only 9 of us, and who knows how many of the ghosts.

So, we were pretty much at a loss on this one. All we could do was guess, and even our best guess wasn’t likely to help. Now we were all standing outside the Gryglesky’s house, pushing the others to go first. All the ghosts were in there, doing god knows what, and we were outside, bickering about it.

“You do it, Nathan” Tyler said. “You’re the oldest.”

Nathan frowned, then hissed, “No I’m not! Justin is older by forty-two seconds!”

“Oh, Yeah, that’s nice. Put it on me just because I’m less than a minute older.”

“Come on, do it!” LJ cried.

“You’re the oldest! And closer!”

“Eldest,” Liam said. “Not oldest, eldest. Use proper english, dude.”

“Oh shut up” Delano said.

Just then, we heard footsteps pounding down the street.

It was that nerd kid from New York, Herbert or Hondon or whatever. He was running by when Brody grabbed him and said, “Dare you to go into that house.”

The nerd said, “No, all the ghosts are in there! How stupid do you think I am?”

“Three broken bones stupid, is what I think.” Evan said, pinning the nerd’s arm behind his back.
“I heard you fell out of a tree, and broke your arm, nerd.”

“My name is Howard, not nerd, and my arm is fine.”

“I heard you fell out a tree, How-nerd,” Evan replied, twisting his arm harder. “And if I say you fell out of a tree, you fell out of a tree, nerd!”

“OKOKOKOK!” Howard cried. “I’ll go into the house!”

“And when you come back out, screaming your nerdy little butt off, you’re going to tell us exactly what the ghosts are doing.”

“Ok, I’ll do it!” he cried. He tentatively tiptoed toward the house, wobbling all over.

Image by Cameron H.

“Faster, nerd.” Evan grunted. He hurried the rest of the way up the driveway and into the house. He opened the door, and it opened with a horrible crack. Howard stepped inside and the door slammed shut behind him. We waited 5 minutes then 10, then 20.

“Think he’s still alive?” Delano asked.

“I think he’s just too chicken to go where the ghosts are.”

“He’s probably hiding in some closet somewhere, trying not to pee his pants.” Justin speculated.

“Let’s go in there and make ‘im go to the ghosts.” Evan said. We headed up the driveway and opened the door. Strange. It opened without a sound. We stepped inside, nervous.

The door suddenly slammed behind us, locking. Ten ghosts came flying down the stairs.

“We were expecting you,” one of them said, grinning.

“He told us you would come,” another commented, cackling.

“Who?” I asked, sweating. “Who told you?”

“The nerd?”

“Oh, yes, the boy with common sense. He was going to have his soul devoured, but he made a deal. He promised us nine, if we let him go. He left out the back while you buffoons were goggling at the front door. It’s been such a long time since we had a feast.”

“No!” I cried “No, no, you can’t do this!”

“It seems we already did,” said the first one, moving in. It opened it’s mouth, and everything began to fade. The last thing I heard, through the screams of my friends, was one of the ghosts saying, “Sometimes it pays to have a brain.”

-Story by Kaleb G. for Mrs. Riley’s Freshman English class.
-Images by students from Mr. Emmert’s Photo 1 and Photo AP classes.

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