Hallowed Spooks: One Night in the Woods

The view pans down from a large, bright full moon, partially obscured by dark clouds on a black and star-filled sky. A wolf howl goes up from somewhere unseen, and is answered, further off by several more. The tops of trees, forming a forest that stretches for miles over hills and valleys in all directions. For a moment, off to the east, the distant glow of a township is briefly seen. It's lights are an inviting yellow tone, the warmest colour to be found anywhere in the black and silver night... but the view pans away, losing sight of that welcoming view and descending below the trees into a tight-knit wood of moonlight and shadows. Wind groans through the trees.

Moving through the trees you begin to hear sounds. More sounds, anyway. Occasional cracked branches become quiet giggles form somewhere unseen. Further ahead, a short scream, cut off mid-breath, and the view moves faster. The giggles become laughter, the screams of shock turn into cries of panic and dismay. Trees move past quickly, looming from the darkness before veering away to either side. There's a glow about the woods; red and sinister. Something up ahead, between the trees. Mist and smoke rolls out, tinged in a crimson haze.

A shape moves off to your side, then another. A flash of white and red. More laughter amidst the shouting. Someone runs past you, but there isn't time to see them clearly; just dishevelled clothes and a terrified expression, and then they are gone. As the mist rises between the trees more fleeing navis pass by, but the view continues ever forward until at last the trees part to reveal a ruby-lit clearing.

The rush of momentum stills. The clearing is broad and circular and at its centre a bonfire, set with a massive black cauldron. The red mist coils out from the pot, along with pervasive bubbling sounds. The rest of the clearing is empty, save for a single tree growing beside the cauldron, and one low-hanging branch that curves smoothly out over the side of the pot, barely a foot above its rim. A small creature is lounging on the branch, flawless black skin and eyes a dancing sapphire blue. Not more than a few feet tall, she lies along the length of the branch with her head propped on one arm and her feet kicking back and forth in the air. It's hard to tell exactly what sort of fiend this might be; the feet are uncovered, and come to sharp claws rather than human toes, and a pair of large, curved demonic wings rise from the centre of her back, stretching idly while she stirs the cauldron with a long spoon. Her hair grows out white, smooth and straight, but no more than long enough to cover her ears and taper away towards the back. It's kept in line by a curling pair of red ivory horns that begin in the middle of her brow and arch around her head like a well-appointed circlet. The rest of the outfit is harder to see, but a leather skirt, in rich red leather to the thighs, makes up part of it, and a form-fitting corset in matching red seems to be the majority of the rest. She grins and a long set of pointed canine fangs reveal themselves.

“More guests? Come to add something to my little brew, dears? Add something frightful, and you might just get a nice reward...” Despite her small size, the creature practically purrs her greeting, then winks and blows a kiss with her free hand. After a moment of stirring, her eyes close and she inhales deeply, moaning to herself. “Ahh... Looks like we've got the first one already...” A small gesture with her free hand brings some of the mist up from the cauldron, forming it into a scroll.

“From... A. Haltson and his navi GirderGrader...” She pauses, reading the letter to herself first and licking her lips... or rather, running her tongue suggestively over one fang. “Wasn't expecting this broadcast but I ain't complaining. If you want something spooky, try this: I work in an iron shipping relay. Pretty boring job, right? But see, all around the office, there's these little 'pet rocks' that the boss put in. got little googly eyes on them and everything. Says it's to raise morale or something. Anyway, I was last to lock up the other night, but when I got outside, I realised I'd forgotten my jacket. So I go back, climb back up the stairs, disable all the alarms and everything, then when I flip the lights on in the main offer, I see it: every one of those darn pebbles is turned to face the door, and they're all staring right at me. Freakiest—” she pauses again, substituting a word, “stuff... I've seen in ages. That's all I've got for your cook pot, cutie. Don't fall in yourself, even if you're the tastiest thing I've seen tonight!” With a flick of her hand, the scroll drops back into the cauldron, turning to mist again as it falls.

“Why thank you, dearie! Quite the little story that. Very unnerving! Hope you enjoy your treat!” She blows a kiss, releasing a faint pink fog, then stirs the pot a little more.


-=About This Event=-

This little even will run for a couple of weeks to give everyone time to put something in, if they want to.

To participate, just send an email to the event email address below. You can send whatever you'd like in the theme for the evening – a spooky story, a personal anecdote, art, costumes, food, recipes, pictures of costumes, pictures of food, whatever you'd like! Prosopopoeia, your delightfully adorable succubus host, will read it out for you, display it, or maybe even model it for you, if appropriate!*

Responses can be as short as you like; all participants will still receive a small gift for their efforts. We do ask that individual navi/op pairs enter only once. ((OOC, Players can enter once for each of their pairs))

Mail To:


The event host reserves the right not to read out, display or otherwise exhibit messages deemed too rude, abrasive, offensive, indecent or otherwise inappropriate.
After a few more moments of lazily stirring the cauldron, the miniature succubus drew in a sharp breath, letting a fresh smile curl her lips while her tongue toyed with a fang. She shifted, spinning about to sit upright on the branch and kick her feet slowly back and forth. The skirt was very short, revealing much of the dark skin all the way up her thighs. Maybe if she kicked her heels just a little bit more... just a hair... A long, slender tail with a heart tip curled out from behind her as she sat up, waving back and forth slowly.

“Here we are! Our next delicious morsel has arrived...” With a flick of her fingers, she leaned forward and drew more mist from the cauldron, letting it resolve into a series of cards. The first raised an eyebrow, the second lifted it further and the following images made the tiny woman rock back and forth on her branch and hum to herself.

“My my, quite a thought-provoking series of images from this viewer.... Quite unsettling indeed! what do each of you think?” With a smile she gestured, sliding the hand holding the cards to the side so that they fanned out and moved slowly in front of the cauldron one at a time, enlarging to an easily viewable size as they did.


[The first image is of a human, full figured and very obviously female. Her mouth is an upturned (by the direction of her face) crescent, her hair a gravity defying mass of long locks. Random holes are scattered throughout her hair with light from the incendiary slugs used to make them still visible. That is all the detail that is given to the woman beside the outside of her stance: floating, presumably in free-fall, upside down in front of a large circle with a small round globe below and to the left of her.]

[The next image features the same woman, same place, same view of the world out the 'window'. The smile is gone, horror a scream etched in excruciating detail into the metal bulkhead used as canvas. Many of the stars in her hair are dark now, the few that are still alit are clustered closer towards her head, almost as a crown. The ends of her hair and hands and feet end in blocky mimicry of data streaming from a defeated foe.]

[The third image is more detailed than the others and shows a certain alien navi: short, stout, and only mostly humanoid. Her stilloute picked out entirely in the muted half-glow of dying embers. She is standing with her back facing the viewer, her eyestalks obviously craned toward a bank of moniters that are lined with bright white. Various dials and bars and overall detail is picked out in a much dimmer white. There is one moniter - placed off to the bottom right - that is picked out in the dark of cooled incendiary rounds. Within that moniter is a gravity defying spray of hair and an cresecent of a smile, all picked out in dark bullet holes and partially covered by a shadow cast on the bulwark-canvas itself.]

[The last image image is of a minature satellite with outstretched flat rectangles and various antenna and spokes spreading out like rays around a stylized sun. Its tricky to catch but among the straight lines and angles of the satellite there is a now familiar, humanoid face. It's eyes are turned to the left where the image of a PET is burned just beyond the length of the antennas and spires. On the screen is a head stilleoutte picked out in dimming red of a wide oval shape with two smaller orbs extended from it but connected by carefully marked curves. There's more detail in the face here: eyes look straight out from the pods and the lids around them are lined, two slants lie above a longline in the main ovaloid shape that is curved up at the corners.]

“Quite the collection indeed. Chilling, in its way, even! Our thanks to Dropmix67 for the series; you'll have a little treat coming your way soon!” She blew a kiss outwards, exhaling more of the pink mist, then collected the cards into her hands once more, flipping through them again before letting them fall back into the cauldron beneath her feet. It bubbled and sent spits of a strange reddish liquid up into the air on either side.

“Oh, and another, I'm getting all tingly!” The little demon clapped her hands together while she continued to stir the pot with her tail. “Let's see, let's see, I can't wait...” She was biting her lip, as slight hint of moan on her voice as she reached out to pull up another long scroll from the cauldron's mists. She read it briefly, then let the scroll unroll further, dangling down in front of her. After a moment she leaned forward, bringing it closer to her face as she read quickly. The little succubus let her knees slide a long way apart to make room for the extended scroll as she held it close; unfortunately for the viewers, the scroll itself preventing anything entertaining from showing up. Though the mist was making the end of it flap and curl a little in the wind.

“Well well...” At last she purred, looking back out over the cauldron and holding the scroll to her chest with both hands. She seemed to lean back on the branch a little as well, but kept her balance.

“Here we have a frightful story from an aspiring author! The first teasing pieces of a tale of youthful lovers, frightful villains, and a most... interesting... twist on the theme of hallowe'en night frights! Oh but I dare not spoil too much, lest I milk this author of his creative juice before it's fully ready.” She grinned and licked her lips in a slow, suggestive manner. “Keep writing, my dear scare-scribe, who knows what heights you may achieve, and what terrors you might spin for us all in the future! For now, a delightful and frightful treat is heading your way!” With last little clutch at the scroll, she sat up again, pulling her legs back together before letting it re-roll itself. With a dainty gesture she released it back into the cauldron and then blew another pink-misted kiss towards the viewers.
The little demon swings back and forth on her branch for a few moments, then lets herself tumble upside down from it, knees curled around and her long tail lashing back and forth as she stirs the cauldron, head only a few inches from the rim. Unfortunately for opportunistic viewers, her skirt appears to be tight fit enough that it doesn't go anywhere.

“Oh my, a few more tasty morsels have just arrived... let's see what else we have...” One hand reaches down into the mists and swirls them about, before pulling up a new scroll which she continues to read upside down. After a moment, she giggles and swings upright again.

“We have a rather scary ghost story sent in by Mikhail and his navi Pirouette... a story of a young ballerina, beset by tragedy and a haunting that continues to this very night... Let's have a read...” Her fingers curl teasingly at the edges of the scroll as she begins to read the story, glancing up occasionally to lick her lips or flash her fangs at fitting moments.

The story of Anna

Let me tell you a story of a young ballerina, who once understudied at a certain very famous theatre in Netopia. Her name was Anna, and she was young, but gifted. It was said her toes barely seemed to touch the ground at all as she danced, and she seemed almost to glide through their air, as though coming down again was merely an option. She was dedicated, and gave all of her time to dancing. She wanted nothing more than to truly fly as the swans and angels and fairies she depicted in her movements, and to show her art to the world.

Sadly, Anna was only permitted to understudy, for, as prestigious as her theatre was, and as great a testament to her talent and gifts as a placement there could be, the eternal Prima of the theatre was a very famous, well established dancer already, and would permit no young upstart to claim even a portion of her spotlight.

And so a year went by; several productions came and went, and Anna grew more beautiful and more skilled, yet still, she could not convince her managers to surrender any leading role to her.

Then there came a time, shortly before she would turn nineteen, that a billing came for a production that made her heart soar with hope. The lead role required a dancer of exceptional lightness upon her feet, and despite the Prima's own fame and skill, there was no question that Anna was best suited for the role. And so, the two were duly auditioned before their managers; this was to be her chance.

But the older Prima, she was jealous and afraid of Anna, and in secret, she sabotaged the girl's costume. It tore and slipped during her trial, and she fell. There is no forgiveness in the world of ballet; that was the end of her chance and her hopes for a career. She would never be given another chance now, and she wept while the Prima performed and took the role.

Anna spoke to no-one in the days that followed, and none were there to console her, for the production itself was in full energy and everyone was busy with their own work. For weeks, she was nothing but a pale and silent figure in the theatre, wearing a plain white leotard and nothing better as she watched and wept quietly to herself.

The opening night came, and all was in readiness. One of the other dancers, feeling pangs of sadness for the girl, decided to claim illness and offer her position to Anna for the night. It was only a secondary role, part of the line, and she knew that a ballerina as dedicated as Anna was would know all the parts, and be able to perform them, likely better than she could. The Prima was ready and had already made it clear she would have no need of Anna, after all.

When she searched the theatre, however, she could not find her. As the hours counted down, Anna was nowhere to be found, but the other dancer, she kept her worries to herself and kept searching. The performance began without her.

As the Prima took the stage and began, her steps, once so poised and perfect, they faltered. Try as she might, the woman seemed distracted, and her passes and leaps were shaky. Her face had gone pale, drained of blood and expression, and at the climax of the first act, she cried out, stumbling and falling to the stage. An intermission was called.

The Prima was helped back stage to recover, but she took a furious rage upon herself, cursing Anna, and demanding that she be found at once. Amidst her venom, she claimed that the missing girl had sabotaged her, gliding in and out of the high walks in full costume just like hers, deliberately trying to throw her off. She claimed she had jumped down at her at the end, but none of the others had seen such a thing.

A search was conducted. High at the top of the theatre, near the stairs to the attic, they found the girl who had gone to look for her, crying and holding herself, unable to talk. In the attic, where the doves of the theatre lived and roosted, they found Anna at last, dressed in full costume, gliding gently above the floor, her toes just inches from the boards, where she had hung herself by the neck.

Now, it is not uncommon to catch glimpses of Anna, dancing upon the stage when the theatre is silent, moving with grace and poise, and a lightness to her steps that never quite touch the boards. If you see her on a night when you are to perform in that very famous theatre... be sure to mend any bad blood you have with other dancers in your troupe before you go on stage, because Anna will be watching you.

As the tale concludes, the little succubus jumps down, perching poised above the cauldron with her feet and one hand on the rim, grinning as her eyes flash red for a moment and her wings unfurl to their full height. She drops the scroll then blows a kiss outward, exhaling a long trail of pink mist.

“Quite the tale, Pirouette... One to remember. We should all be careful what bridges we burn, lest our choices come back to haunt us... A treat for the scary night is on its way to you...” With a small wink, she pushes herself upright again, standing neatly on the lip of the cauldron while her tail mans the stirring spoon for her.

“Just a few more, and the brew will be done.. Let's see what else I can find...”

This time, the mist coalesces into a folded letter, and she flicks it open, bouncing delicately on her clawed feet. At last she grins.

“My my, this one sends a most daring and frightful costume. I'll be sure to try it on at once... Lyntael writes that this creature is called a Púca, a traditional creature long associated with this night of chills and ritual. It likes to trick people, taking the form of a riding animal, only to dash madly across hill and heath, on a wild and uncontrolled chase through the night, and leave the poor fool in the most uncomfortable and lost way!” She giggles to herself, one hand to her mouth, them lowers her voice to a slightly moaned hum. “Mmm... Such mischief! Let's see what we have...” she jumped down from her position to stand in front of the cauldron before a shift in her form began to ripple over her from the ground up.


This outfit doesn't alter the wearer's height or general dimensions if hey already possess a mostly humanoid form, but otherwise gives them the form of a black-skinned human-like figure. It has hooves for feet, and extended foot and ankle joints to create bestial leg structure, and a shaggy coat of black fur that travels all the way up to groin height, thick enough to preserve modesty regardless of gender.

The fur stops at the hips, dipping a little lower in the centre front and lifting a little higher in the centre back, where a long, thin tail protrudes, also furred, reaching down to the ground. If the wearer is used to controlling a tail, they're capable of doing so; without any such familiarity, or lacking deliberate direction, it weaves and sways back and forth in a sinuous manner.

From the hips up, the skin is pitch black and left bare; females wearing the costume may opt to have their chest covered in a secondary protective band of fur that minimises and obscures detail, or it may be left off, if they're feeling cheeky; the outfit is not designed to be worn with any actual clothing.

The head becomes that of a goat, complete with very long horns which curve up and backwards by equal parts. While wearing this GMO, the wearer's eyes blaze with fire consistently, in a manner that grows or reduces in intensity based on emotive factors.

The sudden change in foot structure didn't seem to perturb the small demon girl too much, and the change from her already dark skin to the ebony black of the costume was subtle, yet striking. The most obvious change, aside the loss of her wings, was the head; now in the shape and form of small goat with long curving horns and eyes ablaze with fire.

For a few moments, clear and flawless black skin do nothing to hide the modest swells of femininity at her chest and she glances down at herself in surprise, before laughing with a sound that borders on animalistic in its hoarse, throaty tones. Her fingers flicker over her chest briefly and the extra fur band fades in swiftly.

“Oh my. My deepest apologies to any young children up long after their bed times. I must have picked the wrong setting. Oops...” Her voice sounds equally hoarse and gravely, though still clearly feminine. “A most interesting costume, though. A hallows treat is headed your way, Lyntael...”

Properly covered now, the night's host blows another pink-misted kiss, then strides around the cauldron a few times, the click of her new hooves surprisingly audible on what should really be soft forest floor. After a could of passes, she rolls her shoulder then jumps to the far side of the cauldron, form shifting in a smooth blend to become a shaggy-haired dog with an eagerly wagging tail. She puts her paws up on the cauldron and bends her head inside, barking at whatever is inside, in a way that echoes through the clearing. The sounds of forest spirits and ghosts chuckling at the behaviour filters through the trees.

After a few more moments of this, the host-turned dog pulls out another pair of folded letters, then crouches and pounces back up to her original perch. As she moves this time, her form shifts again, and it is a sleek black cat that lands on the branch, tail swishing. Her eyes are still blazing fires, but when she speaks this time there is a softer purr to the sound.

“I fear these may be our last two messages for the night, dear guests.... the brew is almost ready, and the midnight hour draws near. Let us see what the final two ingredients shall be...”

The first letter she opens lifts itself as an image, and the cat-host nods her head, before pawing at it to flip it around.


The attachment is that of a single picture, with an assembly of cardboard boxes of varying sizes, haphazardly painted with some orange paint. Each box has an eye, nose and sharp-toothed mouth cut out of them. Through the cutouts, flickering flames can be seen illuminating the boxes from inside, though one of the boxes seem to be lighting up on fire from the ghetto setup. In front of the boxes themselves, a very small pumpkin sits with its side having a tiny bit carved out, as if someone had started to carve it before giving up. To the side of the picture, a blurry hand gives a thumbs up.

“Charles sends us a creative take on the tradition of pumpkin carving. Spooky, but also potentially a fire hazard, which is downright scary. Be safe at home everyone. A evening's treat for you, Charles.” She winks, then exhales another small breath of pink mist – it's harder to blow a kiss when you're a cat.

With a stretch, the cat picks up the final slip of yellowed parchment, then jumps down to the ground again. She lands in a crouch, resuming the more humanoid, goat-headed base form of the GMO, though once again with her chest exposed for several seconds before she fixes it. There's another brief ripple and then the form shimmers back to her leather-clad succubus self.

“Sorry dear, it's a wonderful costume, but hard to read mail with that head, I'm afraid... Now let's see...” The last letter makes her purse her lips for a moment, then shrug and flip the screen outward.

“Here we have a piece of retrieved footage that the sender says bears something very frightening indeed. It was found, they say, by a navi that came across it in the ACDC network, so be careful all you brave virus-busters out there tonight... Now, let's have a look and see what's on the tape...” She licks her lips then sets the screen running with a flick of her fingers.

Found Footage
The scene shows dark caverns with red rock and broken ground. Battle damage marks the terrain in many places, new and old blast marks and other damage is everywhere. The view weaves in a dizzying fashion as the navi whose eyes we see through rolls to one side then rights himself, extending a humanoid-seeming arm of grey metal into view and releasing a barrage watery darts the destroy the remaining two viruses across the way from him. We can hear some rough panting as the navi stands and rights himself.

“Okay, I think I'm done for now, Tray... I'm in pretty deep and I'm feeling pretty tired. We could push on another, but I'm taking too much hurt now, and our healing chips aren't keeping up any more. Next one could go bad if we get unlucky.” As the male voice spoke, the view moved about, collecting whatever viable data he could recover from the destroyed viruses.

“Sure thing. You'll be getting trick'or'treaters coming to the door soon anyway, won't you? I wouldn't want to be down here without you on the other side to back me up. Plus I wanna see all the cool costumes too. Let me just get the rest of this.... Okay, ready to come out.”

The view flickers for a moment, and an electronic screech cuts across the feed. The view wobbles to one side and drops, as though the navi had fallen to one knee. There's the edge of one of his metallic hands clutching near the edge of the view, likely holding his head.

“Damn, Tray, what was that? Tray? Tray, there's some major interference, I can barely get your signal. Yeah, yeah, I'll try and back-track. Might be too deep in the caves or something.” The view stands again and looks around, casting over a few exits from the blasted a cavern space.

“Say again? Yeah, I'll be careful. Oh, damn. Okay, that's not good... you know my SAS isn't set up to fight stand-alone. Hmm? Try again? Right, yeah, that might improve the signal a bit if we're lucky. Not like there's much to see down here.” As the view moves towards one of the exits, a hand rises up and the feed stops.

It comes back after a moment of black screen. The navi is somewhere different, still in a badly blasted cave system, though most of the battle scarring looks like it's quite old. The navi is looking around, casting between several tunnels, seemingly uncertain.

“Lost contact with my operator entirely now. No joke, I'm kind of worried, since the static is still messing with me, but I can't even confirm my PET tether right now. Recording again, just in case it might help act as a beacon or something.” From one corner of the view, a group of viruses begin to emerge from a tunnel and the navi swears. The view turns and begins running hard towards a different tunnel, in amidst slightly breathless mutterings about about not being in a condition to fight. The dash lasts another thirty seconds of uneven terrain and branching corridors, but if anything the ambient light has faded further by the time he stops, breathing hard.

“Damnit all... I've got no idea where I am now. Can't get through to Tray, can't fight viruses that find me. Might not be connected properly if it all goes wrong. How did this happen?” As the view lifts up and looks around, something moves across one of the tunnel branches, but the shape is too quick to see, save only a brief glint of metal. The navi swears again and the view yanks back to the spot, but there's nothing there.

“And now I'm jumping at shadows. Great...”

The view moves on, seeking a way out, though the navi doesn't talk to himself any further. It's not until he looks back at one point that it catches another glimpse of something in the shadows behind. It looks long and this, only very vaguely humanoid, but not like any virus. The navi stumbles backwards, tripping up to flip the view to the ceiling of the cavern for a moment, before scrambling over and beginning to run.

“Still recording? Good. Don't know what in Hades that was, but I don't want to be near it. Cross reference later...” Ahead in the dark shadows of the tunnel, the shape flashes across a fork. Long limbs, metal, maybe, something that might have been a human-like face, but maybe not. There's a static hiss that sounds vaguely like voice, but unintelligible, and a scrape of metal sliding against itself. The view skids to a halt amidst loud panting and swearing. It casts back and forth, before turning back the way it came and braking into a run own a different corridor. The cavern begins to open up into a wider area, with a series of columns. Much of the stone here looks scraped and torn by long, claw-like gouges and the navi looks around, backing away from the tunnel he just came through. His swearing as fallen silent and his breathing is tight and shallow, trying to be quiet.

A moment later, the view arches upwards sharply and a sound of choked off pain and effort cuts off into and excruciating gasp. The view curls back over again, looking down enough to see a long, thin hand, with equally distended fingers punching outward through a point in the navi's chest where his emblem presumably was. Damaged data trails cover the hand as its claws flex and clench. The view sways and static fuzzes across it, breaking up the image, before a second set of steeling black claws whip into sign from one side and stab inwards at the navi's face and eyes, and the feed goes to glitched static, then black.

As the screen goes black, there is a momentary flicker on the little demon's face as her act drops briefly. She blanks a few times then takes a longer breath.

“Sorry, viewers. That took an unexpected turn. I think it's safe to say that this succubus is very much unnerved by what she just saw. I hope you all stay safe out there this hallows eve, and don't go seeking treats in the dark alone. There is no telling what dangers may lurk in the unexplored dark of the net, after all.” She swallows again, then cautiously blows a more delicate kiss, dropping the letter back into the cauldron behind her.

“I think that will have to conclude our evening of scares. Goodnight, my little ghouls and monsters, enjoy your sweets and treats, and perhaps I'll see you in your dreams...” It takes her a few moments to recover her persona properly, but she ends on a fanged smile and winks before the view point slides up past the trees and fixates on the full moon again, fading out slowly to darkness.


-=This Event is Now Closed=-

Prizes for participating in this event will be sent to everyone's email address shortly.

Due to some confusion on rates, prizes will not be graded, but will simply be a flat participation present for everyone who entered.

Thank you again to everyone who sent in an entry.