Treat or Trick: New Year


Jayce Henson

Treat or trick! Original graphic by Jayce Henson.

A rewrite of Treat-or-Trick – from the little brothers perspective.


Here I am, back on my porch, again. 

Personally, I’m not a fan of Halloween. The popularity fades as children grow up and start proclaiming that they’re “too big for Halloween” and that “Halloween is for babies.” Passing out candy is fun, except for the loads of entitled parents, sticky toddlers, and bratty teens that come around expecting more and whining when they don’t get it. 

As always, I waited for trick or treaters boredly. The sun dimmed as it set below the horizon and that marked the main batch. I picked around the bowl I was holding for anything actually good, finding a strange gummy eyeball candy and snickering. Gummy eyeballs, a corny holiday classic. 

I unwrapped it from the decorated paper, popping it into my mouth as a little boy dressed in a pumpkin costume ran towards me. He babbled the typical trick or treat, as I dismissively tossed candy into his bucket, pushing a smile. I know I don’t have to do this, I’m not forced to pass out candy but if I don’t pass out candy I’ll still have loads of greedy kids and teens knocking my door down. 

The creaking of this old wooden rocking chair was driving me mad. If I had the option I’d throw the thing out and buy something better but it’s not mine, so I just have to deal with it. I readjusted myself and stretched. This holiday runs at a ridiculous hour, so I’m absolutely exhausted. 

A family of four runs up to me and before they even speak, I grab a few pieces of candy and place them in each bowl. The kids promptly walked away, having got their sugary needs. As I look around, I sigh. Entitlement is only one of the many reasons I don’t like this holiday. Don’t even get me started on the ugly costumes.

I closed my eyes tiredly, prying them open just to see how much longer I’d have to be out. Not much longer, I thought. 

I’m not even allowed to think, I guess. A loud optimistic voice called out to me, ripping me away from my thoughts of not being here. I glanced up, huffing upon recognizing the group. “My lord, you Debbie downer! You could at least force a smile.”

“Why are you here,” I muttered. My older brother and his dumb friend were supposed to be trick or treating with the young ones, which shouldn’t end for another long while. 

My brother smiled, “I got you some blood tea. Some nice wolf lady was handing it out for all the vampires today.”

“Blood tea?” I stared. “I’m not that cliche.”

He waved the cup in front of me and I pulled away. Admittedly it did smell good but I don’t want to take anything from him. 

“You’ll love it, little bro, best blood tea a vampire could have.”

I gave in, taking the cup, and sipping the tea. It was delicious but obviously, I’m not going to admit that.  

“Disgusting,” I murmured.

He smirked. “I’ll drink it, then.”

Instinctively I gripped it tighter. He smiled victoriously. 

“Lighten up, you lil’ pessimist,” he smiled. He reached over me grabbing a handful of candies and throwing them into Frank’s child’s candy basket. 

“We’re vampires. Lighten up is bad terminology for it,” I rolled my eyes. 

He grabbed my younger brother’s hand, preparing to walk away before he stopped and glanced at me. “Oh, right, I forgot…Treat or trick!”

I stared. “It’s trick or treat you—”

I was then hit in the forehead with a wrapped piece of candy, so I got what he meant.

The sun was gone, out of sight, and the prickling in my skin had begun to calm. I watched, looking all around as the monsters dressed like human creatures went from door to door getting fun little cheap treats. 

I watched the group of four walk away, leaning back in my chair, knowing that this was going to be a long night.

Maybe I should “lighten up.”