Zach the Scream King

Zach was an opinionated, mischievous, and adventurous little 11-year-old boy. He had curly brown hair and great big brown eyes. Zach’s absolute favorite thing to do was scare and pull mean tricks on people, even though his victims weren’t very happy in return. This meant that his most loved holiday was Halloween. Zach’s whole sixth grade class knew him as the “Scream King”. He was ill-famed for being the one to scare his frightened classmates every year.

One cold, October morning during recess, Zach was debating what to do for his next big Halloween scare with his friend, Monique. Monique was the shortest sixth grader in the whole school, but the oldest. She was tough and loved to laugh, so together they were the perfect partners in crime. Monique suggested that he pull his trick this year in the ancient graveyard on Black Street. Zach was known for scaring people, but the one thing he truly was scared of himself was the graveyard. His oldest brother had, since he was young, warned him of the haunting animal that lurked inside that haunted place.
“No that is way too babyish for me!” Zach could never tell her the truth, it would destroy his reputation.
“Sounds more to me like the ‘Scream King’ is scared,” taunted Monique with a high-pitched laugh.
Zach replied quickly without really thinking clearly, “Huh, you wish. I guess I could do it. Just get some wimpy sixth grader there and I will do the rest.”

Zach had done it. He had made a deal with Monique to go to the one place he never thought he would have to, the graveyard. There was no way he could back out now, not without revealing his big secret. Monique made him shake on it. He did reluctantly and hoped that nobody noticed the sick look on his face as he did.
Over the next couple of days that followed, Zach carefully planned his evil scheme to ensure that he could be in and out of the graveyard as soon as possible. He had decided to try to forget all the dumb stories about the graveyard monster, but still, he didn’t want to take any risks.
When Halloween night finally came around, Zach made his way to the graveyard not feeling like his normal confident self. The friendly neighborhood slowly quieted as all the satisfied trick-or-treaters started heading back home. The smell of pumpkin pie and caramel apples was no longer existent and porch lights were dimmed. The giggles of happy children slowly faded to silence and an occasional sound of wind blowing the through the trees. It seemed that the later it got, the colder the atmosphere felt.

As Zach approached the graveyard on Black Street, his legs were trembling and his heart was pounding in his chest as fast as a hummingbirds wings. He uneasily waited for some sign of his friends, but they never came. The longer he waited, the harder it was to control his emotions. It took all his strength not to run away and never return. He regretted ever making that deal with Monique and wondered if there some way he could get out of it.
Suddenly, he heard something crackling in the underbrush. He froze. The rustling continued and he could see something in the distance. Was it just his friends, or were all the dreadful legends about the graveyard creature true?
He had no idea what to do, he could not think clearly. He felt as if he was paralyzed from the neck down. He looked down to see if his head was still attached to his body when he heard a growl…

A burst of adrenaline split through his body as he looked up and saw a monstrous wolf-like animal standing above him. He screamed so loud that it shook his entire body and he turned around and sprinted to the nearest exit. He had no bigger wish than to escape at that very moment.

Zach had not gotten far before he saw a light illuminate in the darkness and the strange sound of laughter. However this laughter was not the kind of laughter that you hear on horror films that sends chills down your spine. It was happy, like a kindergartener on the playground. The laughter was lighthearted and familiar. He managed to stop himself from running and turned around. When he did, he could not believe what he saw!

There standing casually as if they had not seen that monster was Monique and some of his other sixth grade friends! Standing next to the group was Hannah, another classmate, in a wolf costume! Zach was both stunned and humiliated. His friends laughed hysterically. They all came to him and, in between giggles, explained to him how this had happened without him finding out.

Hannah spoke with a triumphant voice, “I heard you and Monique talking about your lame plan to scare at the graveyard, and since my dad works here, I decided that this year you would be the one to be scared.”

Everyone nodded and stood behind Hannah, and it was obvious that they all agreed with her. For the first time, Zach began to see how his tricks felt from their perspective.
“I’m sorry Zach,” said Monique sincerely, “I had to help her. If anyone was going to scare you, it had to be me.”

Zach had learned a valuable lesson that night, one that he would never forget. No longer did he scare the kids in his sixth grade class. Instead he scared the kids in other grades.





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