This is (not) a true story. Just like with everything around Halloween, you wonder what is real and what is not. That's that trick about this autumnal celebration: to scare the witts out of you and you end up laughing... you hope... This is a story of how calla plants saved me from my Halloween nightmare.
A Halloween Horror Story
Autumnal mists gently invade the valleys and slide along the mountain foothills like vile serpents. Nestling in the mossy crevices of the rocks. A damp, dead leaf scent fills every dark corner. The ravens deposit eerie musical notes in the sky. They've seen you, they perch like gargoyles on gloomy mossy branches. Their round eyes never let you go.
A strong gust of cold wind sends a handful of dead leaves flying, startling them. They suddenly take off with a cacophony of cries and wing flaps, disappearing into the mists. Continue your journey through this mysterious forest; the only interruption to the ambient silence is twigs crackling underfoot, and from time to time, a haunting sound freezes your blood and forces you to turn around. It seems to come from afar, from the depths of this fiery landscape. Are they footsteps or the cry of an evil creature? Someone watches you from a distance, hidden behind a thorny bush, concealing their shapeless silhouette. Your breath quickens, as do your steps.
A loud, beastly scream tears through the dark fog. It's a monster!! You start running, branches whip your face, but you don't slow down. The landscape flashes by. You don't even pay attention to the mushrooms you crush in your frantic run or to the owl with saucer-like eyes curiously watching you. There's no time to look at the landscape and its gruesome details. Your entire being depends on your ability to leap over the rotting trees on the ground covered in a mossy shroud. RUN, RUN!
The mysterious noise is catching up with you. It, too, doesn't take the time to admire the scenery; it just wants to bite your butt. This valley is growing darker as you cross it. You avoid smoking crevices and rocks blocking your path. When you come face to face with a large, rotting wooden gate with rusty metal posts, it stands at the top of a half-overgrown flight of stairs, and large, rough stone walls frame it.
Thin, turreted towers soar into the heights, vanishing into the fog. There are the black ravens again, lined up side by side on a broken cornice. They create an odd rhythm: three ravens, one gargoyle; three ravens, one gargoyle; three ravens, one headless gargoyle. They're in the front row to witness your hesitation. What to do in this hellish place? Enter and hide or stay and get chewed up? Are you really hesitating? But pushing this rotten door, for heaven's sake. Your trembling hands grab the door knockers so violently that you barely notice the sinister creaking they make to welcome you.
You slam them shut so hard that one of the knockers breaks off and falls loudly onto the steps. Your back against the doors, breathing heavily, you slowly slide along the doors until your buttocks rest on the rough stone tiles, forming a crude mosaic on the floor. Darn, it's wet! You quickly get up.
Suddenly, something slams violently against the door, and you jump two meters forward. Now what? You gather your wits, and your eyes refocus.
You find yourself facing two dark wooden doors leading to a strangely lit kitchen.
The Table Filled With Calla Plants
The candles are extinguished and cold. A battered cauldron bubbles in the fireplace, and the central wooden table is covered with pots, gourds, and mysterious plants. No one is in sight, only the smell of soup accompanies you in exploring this grim feast. Some pots are abandoned and covered in moss and cobwebs spun by some unknown arachnid...
What are these plants? They are quite... different, aren't they? It seems that their vibrant colors provide a certain light, curiously reminiscent of the outside. Curves and scrolls for foliage. You lean in a little closer to examine these curious flowers. Suddenly you hear a voice say in a very dry manner: "What peculiar plants, wouldn't you agree? These dear plants are called callas." Where did that voice come from? Your blood runs cold, and you cry out in terror, stumble, and take refuge behind the shaky table. You utter the equally stupid phrase "'I'm not alone, am I?"
This elicits an equally silly response: "NO!!! Of course not. Otherwise, who would have made the soup?", to which you reply "I am so sorry for barging in, but I was being chased by some kind of monster". Your mysterious host then responds: "Well, there is no monster in this forest..."
The mysterious interlocutor slowly advances into the doorway, and the light gradually reveals this chimera. The clattering of hooves and a farmyard smell fill the kitchen. You discover a white goat with socks in Gryffindor colors and lace-trimmed socks, wearing a Houston Astros baseball cap with holes for its horns and a Hello Kitty backpack!
Uh, don't you think this is a bit chaotic here? You should wake up; it's just a dream!
The noises you heard were just your cat demanding food, and the dull sound of the door was your cat knocking over a beautiful set of calla lilies, which you made with forest moss and wool.
But what about the soup smell? Oops, you left it on the stove!
Now, the real nightmare begins; you have to clean everything. Soil and pumpkin soup splatter everywhere in the kitchen. Thanks a lot, cat!
Plus, your cat is no longer hungry; now it wants to sleep peacefully.
You see, in every nightmare, there's a touch of beauty. And certainly, in mine, calla lilies have managed to brighten up the scene. Simply Calla's lilies will always be there to make any space flourish. Always loaded with flowers and with a long lifespan, they turn dark places into havens of peace and beauty.
Even if you never had a cat...