Number 1609 – Shay Leigh

ShayThe families living on Wicker Road had an ongoing tradition every Halloween which included best yard decorations, best themed costumes, as well as the best tricks or treats served up to their ghosts and ghouls.

And every year Mrs. Samson at number 1609 won the best yard decorations.

Jealous neighbors whispered that she only won votes because people felt bad for her ever since her husband disappeared five years before, leaving her with two boys to raise on her own.

But in all honesty, she won votes because people were awed by the gory splendor she served up every year, which was followed by a huge bonfire the next evening in which she and her sons burned all of that years decorations.

Each year her yard was filled with a story. Be it a witch trial, Egyptian mummies discovered by an unsuspecting archaeology team, a zombie horde devouring survivors, a vampire ball with a huge human “feast”, or even a cloaked Death raising the dead in a foggy cemetery.

Everyone was curious as to not only what she and her boys would build this year, but also as to how her sons could create such realistic characters and creatures in their dad’s old workshop in the backyard. Her sons worked tirelessly in that shop, all through the year, and their efforts always paid off.

A few days before the voting would begin, huge black sheets were set up around the yard of 1609, sufficiently blocking the view of the curious neighbor’s eyes. They could hear the banging of construction in the daytime hours and catch brief glimpses of lighting checks in the darkness of the night. Having learned the process of the family living at 1609, the neighbors knew that the sheets would remain until the day of voting. But they were always curious as to what horrible delight was being brought to life behind the midnight screen.

The neighbors gathered in the chilly morning light on the day of the voting, impatiently waiting for the family living at 1609 Wicker Road to emerge from behind the sheets. Within a few minutes a diminutive blonde and two tall blond teenage boys stepped into the crowds view. Without flourish the boys pulled the cords that held the sheets aloft, and with barely a whisper, the black sheets puddled on the ground into pools of inky fabric.

A few gasps were heard in the icy air, but all eyes were enthralled with the scene before them. Mrs. Samson had a truly gruesome story taking place on her lawn! Body parts littered the ground, a chopped up arm here, a pile of glistening torsos there. In the center stood a mostly naked woman in a crimson cloak, holding a blood-soaked sword. In front of her was a glittering blood-coated table, which held a chained but writhing victim in obvious terror. The white cotton of her dress dripped over the edges of the table, showing streaks of dirt and blood at its edges. Kneeling in a semi-circle behind the sacrificial table were more cloaked members.

The victim turned and looked at the crowd that watched on from behind the pools of the black sheets. Immediately she began begging for help, beseeching the crowd to unchain her, to call the police, while screaming that they were going to kill her. The crowd stood and watched, and then a clap could be heard, which was followed by more. The victim grew still and silent as the voyeuristic crowd applauded her.

Mrs. Samson and her growing boys had truly outdone themselves this year. Not only was her yard a sacrificial story, replete with blood and gory remains, but they had even gone so far as to hire an actress to help bring the gruesome story to life!

There was no doubt, in any of their minds, that number 1609 would win yet again.

The crowd began dispersing, going home to finish their preparations for the evenings fun. Throughout the day they would hear the actress scream for help, or beg a passerby to untie her. But she would quiet down eventually. Even actresses would need a break here and there.

The sun set, the moon rose, and the street filled with princesses, animals, scary creatures looking for brains or blood, and all manner of ghouls and ghosts. Bags were filled with treats, tricks were played, and haunting music littered the air with screams, growls and any number of menacing sounds. As the revelers passed by number 1609, the victim would beg, plead, cry, or scream for help.

Everyone loved it. And were excited for what this family would cook up for the next year. Voting slips filled the box in front of 1609, leaving no doubt as to what the various viewers loved the most.

Eventually the street quieted down, and lights extinguished here and there. The family at 1609 began collecting their decorations to pile in their backyard for the bonfire they’d hold the following night.

The next evening the neighbors of Wicker Road gathered in front of the soon-to-be-lit bonfire. Snacks and drinks cluttered a banquet table, and everyone milled about, sharing stories of their favorite moments from the previous night. Mrs. Samson stood before the pile of decorations, a lit torch held aloft in her small hand. She thanked the neighbors for their votes, and promised an even better show for the next year. Leaning down, she lit the edge of a bloodied and dirty white dress, and with a smile, watched as the flames devoured the evidence of her family’s many murder victims.

Next year, they would have to “hire” more “actors”.


Shay Leigh is the author of Sins Within and Sinless Within, which can be found on She writes Poetry, Paranormal, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Mystery and Thriller.

Shay’s stalker pages:

Twitter: @gothhicgoddess

Goodreads Page:


27 thoughts on “Number 1609 – Shay Leigh

  1. Pingback: Number 1609 – Shay Leigh | Random Rantings of Jordan Drew

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