When I was a little girl we lived in a big old ante-bellum style home on the farm. It had big pillars on the front porch that reached all the way to the balcony upstairs; the porch was huge to a little girls eyes. It was always kind of spooky there. We heard sounds in the night like people talking and music playing, a lot of which I now believe was inspired by my mother’s superstitious nature.
At this time in my life there were my two older brothers and I. Of course I was the ultimate tomboy. No dolls for me! A BB gun, a farm set, a horse, and new jeans were on my Christmas list. I also believed everything my brothers said was the gospel truth.
On this particular Halloween night, my father was out of town buying cattle to supplement his purebred Angus herd. My Mom was a bit of a chicken and every sound she heard was something or someone aimed to get us. We were sitting at the kitchen table counting our candy haul when Mom whispered in that loud way only she could do “be quiet, I hear something.” We all rolled our eyes and kept on with what we were doing. Suddenly Mom threw up the window and with the “unloaded” shotgun in her hand, and yelled, “go away or I’ll shoot.” Still, she could hear someone moving in the yard and by this time we could too. She yelled her warning out once again but they seemed to be getting closer to the house.
She handed the shotgun to my older brother and told him to load it and yell out a warning. Well, his warning wasn’t heeded and my brother yelled, “Shoot ‘em Larry,” and he did. Everything went still. We were all holding our breath, but we heard nothing.
Being the kids we were off to bed we went but Mom kept vigil all night. The next morning just after the fog had cleared my Dad arrived home. “What happened to my bull?” Out the door we all went and there lay my Dad’s prizewinning Angus bull stiff as a board. Believe me we all scattered except Mom who tried to tell Dad about the intruder the night before. My Dad was as mad as a bunch of hornets. He ranted, raved, and cussed some more.
Finally out of all the spew of words, we began to hear him chuckle, not a real laugh mind you, just a chuckle barely audible. We knew it was safe to come out then, but that story was told every Halloween for the past forty years. Dang it! My brother didn’t even get in trouble.