The bloodied syringe filled with the clear and odorless liquid. She glanced at me furtively from the corner of her sunken emerald eyes. Her malicious grin revealed perfectly aligned teeth enveloped in perfectly formed, if slightly cracked, red lips. Her soft, satiny, manicured hands carefully injected the evil serum into sweet, tempting, practically sinful chocolates. Careful not to disturb the aluminum wrapping, she held and caressed each precious piece as if it were an ailing child in desperate need of her fatal medicine. Lovingly, sickeningly, she placed each and every poisoned delight in a cheap plastic pumpkin.
Our eyes met for an instant. She looked away again, busy in her sordid task.
How I love her, how I long for her embrace, how I wish…
Satisfied, she squeezed the final drop into the last chocolate piece and carefully placed the candy with its bittersweet companions. She spent the final half hour before the first costumed child rang our sullen doorbell rummaging through the colorful candies, arranging and rearranging them, her nimble hands quickly slipping into her tattered apron pocket then out again.
“Trick or treat!” screamed the voracious Sleeping Beauty, donned in the latest department store polyester princess paraphernalia.
“Trick, of course,” said she malevolently, handing the princess several candies.
The greedy child took each piece and eagerly stuffed them in her treat bag, pausing only to quickly unwrap and devour three candies before quickly mumbling a chocolate-filled, “Thank you”.
The doorbell rang again, and again, and again. Each and every costumed child eagerly accepting the candies. Action heroes, vampires, ghosts, and movie stars all visited our stained door. All ignored me and attempted to ignore her, except to accept her treats. Parents accompanying their little monsters eyed her with a combination of hatred and pity, if the two could be combined.
A year ago she had been one of them, joined by a sweet boy dressed as a Greek hero of old. A night at the fall carnival, a malicious prank, and a broken ferris wheel stole normalcy from her forever in a nightmarish blur, leaving behind this broken carcass – this shroud of a livelier, former hauntingly beautiful self.
The evening coming to its horrific end, she firmly closed the door.
For the first time this evening she spoke to me, gently caressing my greasy, soiled hair. Her hand disappeared into her torn pocket, revealing a hidden treasure.
“Happy anniversary, my sweet,” she said, as the blissful chocolate melted to the final depths of my soul.