Halloween has always been a thrilling time, even now as an adult. Being fond of spooky monsters and horror stories from my childhood, I’d wait anxiously for this time of the year. I’d start all of the preparations a month earlier; as soon as September 30 arrived, I’d start planning! Halloween was a time for spooky adventures as I enjoyed shopping for costumes and putting up scary decorations. While my friends dressed up as boring old witches, fairies, and cartoon characters, I strived for the most unique and scariest costume.

Of course, the most anticipated activity on Halloween night was trick or treating. In addition to grabbing heaps of candy from the neighbourhood, this night provided endless opportunities to explore the horrifying sights. Each year my friends and I would head out on a special Halloween adventure to visit abandoned places, like old houses, dark parks, and closed-down stores. I had a “ghost club” with my friends where we’d share haunted stories and plan our Halloween trips.

I clearly remember one particular Halloween night in great detail, when we headed out to explore an abandoned house up on a hill. It was one of those sites that captivated our interest mostly due to its age and mystery surrounding it. We wanted to discover the secrets of that old house and explore a place where no one had stepped foot in decades.

We made a plan to hike up to the house after collecting all of our neighbourhood’s delicious candy. It took us a while to climb that hill, but my friends and I made it up the muddy, moonlit slope around 10 pm. The squeak of the rusty gate is burned into my memory, not to mention the heavy scent of moss and dirt. As we crossed the threshold of the foyer, we heard the scuttle of rats, which unsettled our already fraying nerves. But what kind of Halloween adventurers would we be if we hadn’t pressed on? We passed the old living room furnishings as we made our way to the dining room, crossing dirty threadbare carpets and faded paintings.

My friends and I looked through the room’s trinkets. I found a dust-covered box of candy, seemingly undisturbed for years. It was pink in colour with the most ornate gold embellishments on each side of the box. I slowly removed the lid and found several small compartments within; some were empty, but some contained candy wrappers and a sweet fruity scent filled the air. I loved the candy box, and I decided to take it as we hurried out of the old house. I wasn’t the only one that came away from that adventure with a prize; my friend Maria found an old tea set, and another friend Tyler brought home a toy train, carved out of wood. We brought our loot down the hill and before parting ways, we promised never to tell anyone where we found these items. I still keep all of my candy in the pink and gold candy box from that dark, abandoned mansion. Each Halloween, once the trick-or-treaters have ended their nights, I sort through the leftover candy and place it into the compartments of the candy box. A continuing epilogue to a story started long ago: my very own Halloween candy adventure.

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