The Spirit Tree
The Spirit Tree2 mins 389 2 mins 389
In a small town, embraced by a thick sylvan belt, Halloween was celebrated to seek blessings from spirits, according to Mom, that is.
I was visiting my last house for the day, that of Ms. Carter. A tall woman with skin the shade of dried apricot and just as wrinkled and a heavy cane that gave everyone nightmares, she was disliked by many. Resigned to my fate, I entered her fenced yard.
The late Mr. Carter had a large tree in his backyard, said to blessed by the spirits, and upon the passing away of a dear one, the family would pray for the soul’s peace at the tree. Ms. Carter, however, had the tree cut when she inherited the house.
Shaking the thoughts out of my head, I knocked on her door and called out, ”Ms. Carter, trick or treat!”
Two minutes later she screeched, “Miscreant! Two whacks with the cane will sort you, just you wait!”
I spun on my heels, bolting towards the fence and jumping over it as the devilish woman hobbled behind with alarming dexterity. Losing her in the woods, I was glad I was dressed as a zombie, it was easier to run in. I turned to walk back home.
Reaching in five minutes, a sudden shriek made me halt. Another one drew Mom and Dad downstairs and we rushed out. Suddenly the wind picked up, sending a chill down my spine. The trees started to tremble, leaves raining down by the dozen. The third shriek brought everyone out and we sprinted towards its direction.
We found Ms. Carter trembling on the road as fire danced around her house, the wind helping it advance. Huge flames licked at the wood, but there was no smoke. The malicious wind coaxed the fire into various unearthly shapes, I could not draw my eyes away from the paranormal spectacle.
Minutes later the fire died down, leaving a perfect square of blacked dirt. The entire house and the fence were burnt to ash, but not a blade of grass beyond the plot was harmed as if some supernatural force was protecting it. The wind howled one last time before subsiding, making Ms. Carter’s sobs audible. A couple took her away, consoling her as they offered her a place to stay.
The next day, Ms. Carter left town, and a single sapling rose out of the barren land where her house once stood. It grew at a startling rate. By the end of one month, it was tall as a one-year-old tree. Once more, families prayed for the departed souls, ribbons of good luck adorning its branches.
The Spirit Tree was back.