The Spider At The End Of The World

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The Spider left her web to cross the ceiling, as she does when nightfalls.

With six of her eyes scanning her path and her two side eyes ever watchful for anything that might try to sneak up on her, she carefully made her way silently, carefully across the ceiling.

There was a lot for her to be concerned about, her home after all was in the Ancient Civilizations wing- and unlike her many children who stilled remained in the museum and had nice safe homes in the  or the Natural History wing ( where they blended right in and their Mother felt they were the safest) The Spider had to keep all of her eyes peeled.

Because at night, as it did every night,  the world ended.

Below her, as they did every night, the mummies in their glass coffins turned and rose up and their shades disappeared into the shadows cast by the high museum ceiling.

The waking mummies small clay servants fell from their shelves like pebbles rolling down from the top of crumbling pyramid and as they struck the floor their small forms shivered . They stood , lifted their chins up and hearing familiar voices from beyond the museum walls they walked single fall towards the doors- not the fake ones,  but the doors that the  guests use  and one by one the little stone servants  disappear as they crossed the threshold.

The Spider turned her eyes to the floor and she watched  as men with the heads of dogs stepped down from their stone pedestals and women with the heads of lions followed them. They moved slowly as if they had all the time in the world to go to where it was they were headed ,  and the Spider supposed they did.


Someone whispered, ” they’re coming back.  And tonight they will be more powerful then ever.”

” Tonight? All of them? ” a woman’s voice did not ask as much as she expected and demanded an answer.

Each voice answered yes.

The Spider would have said yes too, if she had a tongue.

” Then we have to hurry. Now. Hurry!”

The Caravan of the Dead took their places in line and they moved towards the doorway as relentlessly as a cold autumn wind blowing across a treeless field.

As they did every night,  as the world was ending, they fought to bring the daylight back to the world and every night they won.

Which is good for the Spider, her children and us.

But on Halloween when the  veil between the world of the living and the world of the dead is not just thin-  is completely gone  the Caravan of the Dead find themselves at war with Death itself and on this night it is more powerful then ever.

On this night  you might see a member of the Caravan stalking a Grandmother in her best Sunday dress caked with mold through the museum parking lot,  a man in a suit with a long stitch running up the back of his jacket is headed toward the apartment building across the street, a young woman with a face  carved out of wax walking down the middle of the street- all them with one thought –

They were all trying to outpace the Ancient Dead whose job it is to save the world from eternal darkness.

But  the ghastly and ghostly figures dressed in black, or wrapped in shrouds  get caught every single time,  and for those of us who breathe and sweat and lie and cheat and love and get mad when our phones loose their signals, for those of us who do not have wax heads or smell like embalming fluid,  we better hope it stays that way-

Like Spider  hopes from her web on the ceiling and as she will always hope, especially on Halloween.


Halloween 2018 Writing Challenge Prompt:

#2 A Spider’s Travel Through an Exhibition

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