Halloween Memories: Silver Bullet
I was a scamp growing up. Not a bad kid, but mischievous. I was always up to something.
My love of reading horror stories started in my teens but my introduction to horror came earlier. One of my friends had a 'cool' older brother who used to let us watch horror films on the VHS in his bedroom. We were about eight years old.
Mercifully, we avoided the eighties video nasty scene but I remember having the wits scared out of me in watching films like Creepshow, "It's father's day, Bedelia!" and Poltergeist. I still hate clowns.
My Mum and Dad found out when they heard my friend and I gushing about the latest film we had watched. It was "Silver Bullet." And that was the end of that, well, for a while anyway. Curious young minds always seem to find a way of breaking the rules. Now that I'm a father myself, I'm sure this is something I have to look forward to as my little girl grows up.
At the time, my parents seemed more interested in knowing exactly what films I'd watched and what I thought of them rather than punishing me. Was I scared? How did I feel after watching them?
Luckily for them they'd brought up a tough guy. A werewolf wouldn't scare me. If I'd have been the kid in "Silver Bullet" I wouldn't have stopped at one firework. I'd have shot out the beast's other eye and then its private parts.
And so followed a sustained period of braggadocio where I had an open forum to share with my Mum and Dad exactly what the horrors lurking in the night would receive if they ever messed with me. I was a cocky kid and as you can imagine, this went on for a couple of weeks.
Unfortunately for me, my parents, my father in particular, had a wicked sense of humour. The young werewolf hunter was about to meet his match.
It was Halloween and unbeknown to me, Dad had bought a werewolf mask in the run up. We went Trick or Treatin', I forget my costume, probably some plastic mask from the local newsagent. Dad came with me, watching quietly from the end of every drive, making sure I was safe. Not that he needed to. Not even a werewolf could mess with me.
Or so I'd thought.
When we got back it was dark. We lived in a three storey house at the time and on the second floor was the living room. Dad stayed downstairs preparing dinner while Mum fed my baby brother with a bottle on the couch. I watched television, overdosing myself on my spoils – Cola Cubes and Black Jacks and Fruit Salad chews. The lights were dimmed. Crucially, I was sitting opposite the window overlooking the rear of our house and the darkness beyond.
My Mum started to laugh, chuckling to herself for no apparent reason. I recall staring at her, thinking her strange. It was then I heard the first tap, maybe catching on to the noise slightly later than her. The tap became a thud. I looked at the window – and screamed, and screamed, and screamed some more.
I could see fur, and a snout, and hideous teeth. It was trying to get in! We were on the second floor, twenty feet up. I screamed again, the fearless werewolf hunter overcome with terror.
Mum was hysterical with laughter by now. The wolf was gone suddenly and my Dad was sprinting up the stairs, tears of mirth on his cheeks. He'd attached the mask to a broom and banged it on the window from the garden. I was still frozen on the chair, gripping the arms with white fingertips when he burst into the room. He had the rubber mask, my tormentor, in his hand.
Every now and again that story still sneaks out at a family occasion. It is one of my brother's favourites even though he was just a wee baby when the scarring episode took place.
Little did I know when I settled down with my friend to watch "Silver Bullet" that night that the film would end up haunting me forever.
Find out more about Lee and his writing at www.leemather.org.uk
Or follow Lee on Twitter, where he regales all with his werewolf hunting exploits.
"First Kiss, Last Breath" is available from October 8th from Lyrical Press.
"Bloody Parchment", featuring Lee's story, "Masks", is available now from Amazon.
"Fading Light", featuring Lee's story, "Wrath", is available now from Angelic Knight Press.
Lee Mather is a 34 year old writer from
His short, "The Green Man" was published as a standalone in December
2010 by Damnation Books, and he has stories featuring in the Bram Stoker Award reading
list anthologies, "Corrupts Absolutely?" and "Fading
Light", as well as "Bloody Parchment: Hidden Things, Lost
Things". Lee is a member of the
Horror Writer's Association. Manchester, England