Taylor wandered slowly around the tombstones, gazing into shadows. Wondering where Ike had gotten to. Freddie had finally… wandered? Oozed? Misted? Away to talk to someone else, and he’d managed to hobnob with just about every one there. He was tired now, something again seemed to be draining the strength out of him. He wanted to find Ike, and maybe see about calling a halt to this little shindig. It was a blast… but he was tired.
“Aw Tay, man, that’s not fair, all the cool stuff happens to you.” Zac pouted, not meaning it, as his brother told the story of the ghostly John Lennon. “Did he really look that much like him, Tay?”
“Yeah…” Taylor’s nod was enthusiastic. “And his hand was all cold and clammy…” His eyes took on an evil glint, and he winked at Isaac. “Who knows Zac, maybe it was him. After all, it is the night of the dead, and we are in Salem…”
“Cut it out, Tay!” Zac crossed his arms and stomped off to sit on a stone wall, separating the current ghostly house, from the Dunkin Donuts. He wasn’t sure why the ghost stuff was bugging him. After all, it was Halloween, he was on a ghostly tour, and it was all supposed to be this way… but something was just sending chills up and down his spine, and not pleasant ones either.
Taylor stared back at the young man, too confused to look away. What was he looking at? What on earth… he jumped back suddenly, heart in his mouth, as the young man’s hand came up, brushing lightly against a fading bruise on his face, and his voice whispered urgently. “The mark of the witch, you bear the mark of the witch, are you recently attacked?”
Taylor backed up another step, shaking his head… not sure if this was part of a show or some escaped lunatic. “No, no nobody attacked me…”
The young man nodded, and grasped Taylor’s arm firmly, pointing down at him. “The mark of the witch! The lad bears the mark of the witch, he is recently attacked!” He turned back to Taylor, who was trying desperately to quiet him down. “The witch Bridget Bishop is this moment taken to the jury, come you must give testimony!”
Confused, Taylor pulled his arm away, taking in Starr’s laughing face, and his mother’s grin. She waved a Cry Innocent brochure in his face, and laughed as she turned to Zac. “Well honey, here’s your fun, let’s go watch your brother give testimony.”
Taylor shook his head, frantic to get away. “No, no…”
The young man reached for his elbow again. “The witch must hang! Come this way…” Sighing, knowing there was no choice, he shrugged and followed, wishing with each step that the ground would open up and swallow him. He looked back once, at the grinning Starr, and shrugged guiltily. Starr nodded, and waved, calling out in a friendly voice. “Ah… enjoy Salem!”