This story is called The Witch, written and recorded by LibraryCall. In a colorful neighborhood, there was a group of friends that spent almost all their time together. They loved spending their days at the park, gathering and telling stories on the playground. Some of them would skateboard, others would swing on the swing set. It was October, the most exciting month of the year. Their school had fall and halloween themed parties and the night before Halloween, they went out for “Mischief Night.” One night, a week before Halloween, the air was chilly and the moon hung bright in the sky. Bats surrounded the glistening clouds, dancing in the sky. The group of friends gathered to explore on this spooky night, seeking an adventure. Ty met in the park and sat in a circle on the playground as usual, but this time, Jeremy grabbed the flashlight and shined it in front of his face. “Do you want to hear a scary story?” “Yes!” the kids exclaimed. “Okay so… You know the house on Myrtle Street? With the overgrown grass?” The kids nodded with a mix of eagerness and fear. “...So the lady who lives there is a witch! She has lived there since our town was founded in 1819, but she makes a potion that lets her live forever. I hear she takes little children into her house and hangs their bones and uses their blood to drink! There have been kids who entered her house and… never came back!” Amanda laughed at how silly the story is. “Jeremy, I dare you to go to her house and knock on the door.” Jeremy nervously shrugged, trying to hide his fear. “I’ll do it. You think I'm scared?” The kids laughed, imagining how scared Jeremy is going to be. Alyssa said, “Okay let's go there! We’ll wait outside.” The kids ventured out from the park into the chilly fall night, heading toward the witch’s house, where the orange leaves fell to the sidewalk and crunched under their feet. They finally reached the spooky house. It was just as Jeremy had described: overgrown with plants and cluttered with windchimes and other old trinkets scattered around. Jeremy gulped discreetly and walked up the stairs to the house, but tried to seem confident to his friends. Jeremy reached his hand toward the door. Knock Knock. For a couple of minutes, no one answered. As Jeremy started to walk away, he heard footsteps approaching. He turned around and faced a woman dressed all in black. Her hair was long and as dark as a raven. She had piercing eyes and wore a long black dress. He could hear her strange, piercing, and creepy piano music. “Can I help you, child?” She asked, raising one eyebrow. Jeremy tried to mask his fear with confidence. He smugly smiled and asked, “Is it true that you eat children?” The witch cackled. “Ha ha ha! Maybe just the misbehaved ones like you.” The kids on the sidewalk mocked Jeremy as he ran away, screaming in fear. They knew his confidence was just an act. He then ordered the rest of his friends to run and they followed him. As the Witch watched them leave, she frowned. Alyssa looked back at her sullen face and they held eye contact for a few seconds. The Witch looked tired of everyone fearing her or mocking her. When they were back at the park, the kids teased Jeremy. “She’s gonna get you!” Nick said as he pointed at Jeremy. Alyssa did not laugh. She remembered the look on the witch's face as she saw the kids running. She seemed kind and maybe a little bit sad. Maybe she wasn’t a scary witch. The next day, Alyssa could not stop thinking of the witch. After school, her friends asked if she wanted to go to the park, but she said no. She had to do something. Alyssa walked from school to the witch’s house and saw the wind chimes blowing in the breeze. In the daytime, the chimes no longer seemed creepy. They actually made a lovely sound. Alyssa felt butterflies fluttering in her stomach as she approached the house and knocked on the door. She heard ghostly footsteps and the Witch answered the door. “Hi there, can I help you?” the witch asked. “Um.. hi Miss. I just want to say sorry for how my friends acted yesterday.” The Witch smiled as she heard Alyssa’s apology. She wanted to show her that she was not evil and cruel. “Why don’t you come in?” The Witch asked. Alyssa walked into the house with caution, but once she looked around she didn’t feel scared. All around her she saw colorful pumpkins, flowing curtains, wide bookshelves, and plants. “Can I make you some tea?” the witch asked. Though Alyssa was hesitant, The witch made Alyssa and herself a cup of tea. Alyssa was very clever and watched The Witch make her the tea and waited until the Witch took a sip to drink it. Alyssa finally felt unafraid to ask, “Is it true you are a witch?” The witch smirked. “Yes I am a witch, but I am a nice witch. My name is Rosemary.” “That's a pretty name,” Alyssa commented. “Why thank you, sweetheart. You shouldn’t believe everything your friends say. Just because I live alone and I am different, doesn’t mean I hurt kind children like you. As a matter of fact,” she smiled, “I don’t hurt mean ones either!” Though Alyssa was not intimidated by the beautiful decorations, she noticed the bones and felt a chill down her spine. Maybe the Witch was lying. “What are the bones then?” Alyssa bravely asked. “They are animal bones, dear. I find them in the woods. In my religion, bones are also used for protection against evil spirits” Alyssa laughed at how silly her friends were for making up these stories. She had a pleasant afternoon with Rosemary. They drank tea and Rosemary even showed her some simple spells and potions! At school the next day, the kids kept teasing Jeremy about how he would get eaten up by the witch. Alyssa finally stepped in and said, “She's actually very nice! I met her! ” Nick said, “You’re lying. You’re too scared.” “I’m not lying. I stopped by her house. She is a nice witch! Those bones you are so afraid of? They are just animal bones that she finds in the wood. It may be weird, but she is not a killer.” Nick said, “Fine! On Halloween, we will knock on her door when we go trick or treating.” Halloween finally came and the kids excitedly put on their costumes before school for the Halloween party. The Halloween party included a march around the school. They ate candy corn and other special Halloween treats. They couldn’t wait to go trick or treating and collect more candy! Though, they were a bit nervous to finally meet the Witch. The night was perfectly chilly. They did not get too cold in their costumes and they could see all the stars in the sky.They walked from house to house collecting candy, until at last they arrived at the Witch’s house. Everyone, but Alyssa was scared. The kids stood at the door for a few minutes, deciding on who would be brave enough to knock on the door. Alyssa rolled her eyes and knocked on the door once again. The door opened immediately and they were greeted with the Witch in a black cloak. She had a friendly smile on her face and Jeremy looked very surprised. “Happy Halloween, children! Why don’t you come in for a piece of pumpkin pie?” Alyssa started walking into the house, but she didn’t hear her friends follow her. She rolled her eyes and shouted to them as she turned her head, “Come on!” The kids walked into the Witch’s house and it smelled of fragrant pumpkin pie. There were colorful Halloween decorations. The kids finally saw the bones and felt a little afraid. The Witch noticed the children getting scared when they saw the bones so she said, “Don’t worry. I told your friend Alyssa, “They are just animal bones.” “My religion may be different from yours, but we never would hurt anyone. I hope you will learn that not everyone is the same, and that doesn’t make us bad or evil.” The kids started to feel silly for judging the Witch because of her differences. The pumpkin pie she made was delicious. They asked her to tell some stories about her spells and they were so excited to listen to her. Their Halloween turned out to be the best Halloween they ever had. They promised each other they would never judge anyone again. The End This story is called The Witch, written and recorded by LibraryCall.