the late evening, everyone at the university heard a “swoosh” at their
mail slots. They found a very fancy envelope bearing a red wax seal
that was instantly recognized. Upon opening the envelopes and reading
the invitations, silver embossed on black, they realized that the event
was going to begin in exactly one hour. Some were giddy; some were
anxious; some were just curious. Whatever their reactions, the
bottom-heavy hourglass on the front made the message clear: Time’s up.|
At the appointed hour, well after the sun had gone down, the students
gathered outside where the blood-red “X” on the invitation’s map had
indicated they should wait. In the chill of the evening, they huddled
together; mostly for warmth, but a little bit for security. There was a
vast, wide open space, far more than was needed to fit all the students
and staff. Their anticipation hung in the air as they watched and
waited, although nobody knew exactly what they were looking for.
Finally the wind picked up and howled in their ears. There was a brief
cheer, a few squeals, a few nervous giggles. There was a burst of
light—or rather a burst of dark. It was a sensual paradox, like a
silence that threatens to pop your eardrums. The absence of light
nearly blinded them. When the blue-black spots cleared from their eyes,
they saw the Harbinger of Death.
He stood before them on a platform, a bundle of letters in his hands.
He stepped forward, and the Debs listened intently. “Good evening and
welcome to October,” he said. “Let’s get right down to business. I have
here some correspondence relating to our holiday activities. Some of
you wrote to say how much you enjoyed the last few years of our
arrangement. I thank you for your support.” He bowed his head slightly.
“Some of you have said you wish you had more control over your destiny
at this time of year. Many of you have asked for special provisions
and/or exceptions. A few have asked to revisit some themes from years
gone by. Some of you have offered your services as assistants or other
supplementary staff. Other suggestions and ideas abound.” He held up
the letters, and began to stride back and forth across the platform.
“Your feedback is appreciated. I therefore have devised a new process,
for this year only, in which you shall become masters---" There were a
few very loud “a-HEM”s and staff-thumpings. “and mistresses— of your fate.” With the wave of a skeletal hand, the group was surrounded by a score of stations that shimmered into view.
As the Debs surveyed their surroundings, they saw that each station
represented a different method of death. The attendants all looked at
the crowd, eager to help someone draw their last breath. They rubbed
their hands together eagerly, or bounced up and down on their toes;
some chipper folks waved at the Debs with a wide smile.
Then they heard the Harbinger say, in a booming voice so loud and deep that it reverberated through their insides, “CHOOSE YOUR END.”
And then, in his normal voice, he said, “And after, we’ll have snacks,
and movies from past years in the party house.” With a swoosh of his
cloak, he was gone.
I believe you folks would like to have a hand at doing my job, so to
speak, so that’s why I’ve set up a DeathFest out here. Here’s how it
works: You get to choose the method of your death, and then write it.
Respond under the post that fits the death you want.
Need help choosing the method that’s right for you?
Will You Die??
In addition to writing your own death, I invite you to share your farewell note and/or last will and testament with us.
And here, you can write your epitaph to share with us, on a variety of tombstone designs.
www.tombstonegenerator.com / (note from ed. invalid url)
Image Generator 2006
Here are some quizzes that should tickle your fancy.
What Horrible Edward Gorey Death Will Be Yours?
How Much of a Murderer Are You?
--After you’re dead, come on over to the FFW forum, and I’ll have a
little film festival showing some scenes from bygone seasons. I’ve
selected a few choice segments, and soon a votelet will be set up so
you can vote for your favorite. Have fun, and Happy Halloween.