Gas lamps illuminated the stone pathway that led behind the house. The glow cast a creepy tone over the gray stone but Erica Healy, the actress, was skipping along and giggling like a child without paying any mind to the aesthetic. Her nonchalance was appropriate because she was decked out head to peep-toe in a Little Red Riding Hood costume. Fierce and fearless.
Beneath a red satin hood, Erica’s long brown hair was separated neatly in to two braids and tied at the ends with ribbon. In her left hand she held a small wicker basket, a bottle of Screaming Eagle Cabernet Sauvignon inside. Her lipstick was the same color as the wine, giving her costume an edge, not innocence.
Erica’s costume could be described as Little Red Riding Hood meets Steampunk. She wore a short cape with a hood, of course, a midnight blue bodice over a white-chemise and an even shorter red pleated skirt. Her decolletage sparkled in the yellow light. Jared thought she must be wearing glitter and blamed it on Halloween. Clearly the only acceptable day of the calendar year for glitter, unless of course you’re part unicorn.
Erica smiled wide and playfully teased Jared as she traversed the stone walk way swiftly in her six-inch platform pumps.
“This way … if you dare!”
Jared followed behind Erica. A lightness in his step. Feeling frisky and playful himself, he kept tickling Erica’s sides as she walked a step in front of him.
A warm California breeze blew Erica red-pleated miniskirt upwards revealing her black garter belt and matching lace panties. Jared nearly dropped to his knees. The garters were a nice touch, every boy’s fantasy. He licked his lips.
“Was that you or the wind?!” she cried out.
Jared swore it was “The wind!”
A bashful Erica, smoothed her skirt down immediately and put her hand to her mouth to stifle a gasp. Quick with the observation, Jared noticed that the curves of her backside were also dusted with the same light glitter. It must be from her lotion, she must have glitter everywhere. Jared closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Erica was painfully sexy tonight.
Jared was wearing old sneakers on his feet, torn blue jeans, a flannel shirt and a wolf eared animal hoodie on his head. His hands were inside gloves covered in faux fur, fake claws at the fingertips. He slipped a hand out of one of the gloves to pinch Eric’s exposed right butt-cheek.
“You devil !” she remarked as she playfully slapped his hand away.
“Big bad wolf.” he corrected in a deep sexy whisper.
“Yeah, you’re bad” she winked “And big too.”
Jared asked “Are you sure we really need to go to this party?”
“Yeah but I’ve got a treat for you at home.”
“You mean a trick.”
“I can’t honestly be expected to behave all night with you in that costume.” he slid his hand around her waist and kissed her neck softly as he pulled her in to his arms.
“One hour. We only have to stay for one hour Jared.”
“One whole hour? Sixty entire minutes?”
“Yes. One hour.”
“The things I do for you…” he teased.
“You’ll survive. Just think about the things I’ll do to you an hour from now…” she teased back.
Jared adjusted his manhood right in front of Erica so she could see exactly what she and that costume she was wearing were doing to him before they turned the corner and joined the party, already in progress, beside the pool in the flat portion of the backyard.
There were paper lanterns floating on the water. Pumpkins, hay bales and flying witches. Orange tinted lights wrapped around the branches of the trees. The Monster Mash was coming through the speakers.
A signature drink that either had eyeballs or olives floating inside, was being passed around by waiters and waitresses dressed like Mummies. Lettuce wraps with dagger skewers, to keep the theme going, floated by Erica and Jared on blood-red platters.
Erica raised her left eyebrow and Jared smiled. They both love kitsch. The party had an admirable vibe going and it wasn’t even 9pm. It was probably at a Halloween party just like this that the term kitsch was first coined.
Laughter spilled out across the lawn as Erica and Jared said hello to their friends. Erica took the bottle of Screaming Eagle out of her wicker basket and presented it to Kim, the hostess. Kim hooted when she read the label. “You brought the good shit.” she teased.
Kim was dressed like a mermaid, a sexy mermaid. Zander like a candy corn. Nothing sexy about that. Shannon might have been a construction worker, couldn’t quite tell. And Payam, who was dressed like a cereal box but carrying a bloody sword, told the couple he was a serial killer and waited for their response with baited breath.
Erica tilted her head, Payam repeated the bad joke, and Jared said “Oh I get it.” before unleashing the fakest of laughs. “Good one Pay.” and he slapped his friend on the back. “Serial not cereal…..that’s funny.”
Kim rolled her eyes and Erica shared the expression. “Payam’s been reading old Martha Stewart magazines again.” she teased.
Jared excused himself, threw his arm over Shannon’s shoulder and the two made their way to another circle of people and Erica stayed behind to tease Payam some more and catch up with Kim, an old shared friend, the one who introduced Erica to Jared.
“So…?” Kim questioned when Payam and Zander wandered off to test the serial killer joke on another new arrival. “How is it going with you two? You look adorable by the way…”
“I have no idea what to do with this basket now…”
Kim laughed, shrugged her shoulders, took a sip of her drink and motioned for one of the Mummies with a tray of drinks to come her way. “Girl, I cannot believe Jared agreed to wear that costume!”
“Me either. To be honest.”
Kim took a big sip and chewed on a piece of ice before adding “He’s smitten.”
Erica bumped Kim with her elbow “Me too!” Erica confessed “He’s so great. I mean you know that but he’s like just so great. So so …. great!”
“And talented …and he’s so kind and he walks my dog for me! And well….” Erica gushed.
“Look at how you’re blushing! Oh my god you got it bad girl…bad!”
“Stop…don’t say another word. You’re going to jinx it!”
“Shh…” Kim said and she widened her eyes a second before Erica felt Jared’s hands slip around her waist
As Jared hugged Erica from behind, he rocked their bodies back and forth slowly “I should have known you two would still be here gossiping about me.” he said, his head resting on Erica’s exposed shoulder.
“We weren’t!” Kim lied.
Jared nodded his head and playfully bit Erica’s neck. “Thirty-seven minutes” he said before backing away and retreating across the pool deck to the bar.
Kim swallowed another big gulp of her drink before asking “What happens in thirty-seven minutes?”
“I turn in to a pumpkin.” Erica snickered mischievously, grabbed a goblet from the nearest Mummies’ tray, drained it, then sighed.
Kim laughed a knowing laugh. “Get it girl!” she said.