By Robert Regan ‘23

It was Halloween night, and I was stuck taking my two eight-year-old neighbors trick-or-treating, an unfortunate result of my mom running into their mom at the grocery store. Tommy and Ryan Murphy were twins, and they looked, as well as acted, like a couple of leprechauns.

When I went to pick the twins up at their house, I was dumbfounded to discover that they were both dressed as Batman. I already couldn’t tell them apart when they weren’t wearing identical costumes.

“What are you supposed to be?” Tommy Murphy smugly asked me.

I looked down at my dirty sweatshirt and ripped sweatpants, “A homeless guy,” I replied.

“Oh,” he said, “Great costume!”

We started trick-or-treating door to door, but I had a unique plan to speed up the process. I brought two extra Halloween masks with me and gave one to each of the twins: “After each house we go to, put on these masks and go back to the same house. That way, you’ll get twice as much candy for half of the work!”

The twins were on board with the idea, but little did they know my ulterior motive: it would also be less walking for me.

After trick or treating for a while, we came across a house that I recognized. It was Mrs. Grosky’s house, my 7th grade math teacher. I escaped her class with a C- and definitely did not want to get caught into a conversation about my ineptitude in geometry.

“We can’t go to this house,” I told the twins.

“Why not?” they groaned.

“It’s haunted,” I said, “Every kid who has knocked at that door ends up with ghosts following them home.” The kids stopped and looked at me. Their expressions revealed that I had only made them want to go to the house even more.

“Me, first!” they shouted as they ran on top of each other to get to the house.

They rang the doorbell, and old Mrs. Grosky answered the door with a big bowl of candy. I tried covering my face, while standing on the sidewalk, but it was no use. “Is that you, Mr. Regan?” she called out to me.

Accepting my defeat, I forced a smile. “Mrs. Grosky! I didn’t know this was your house…”. Cue a 20 minute-long conversation about the value of algebra equations in day-to-day life. That encounter was definitely the scariest thing that had happened that day.

Around dusk, we were on a block that was absolutely crowded with costumed trick-or-treaters. The twins were absorbed into a large group of kids going door-to door. I slowly followed the kids and I kept my eyes on the pointed ears of a Batman costume in the middle of the group. When we had walked the whole block, I saw the Batman kid separate from the group.

“Hey,” I called out and the kid turned to me, revealing that he was in fact neither Tommy nor Ryan Murphy. I had been following the wrong Batman for at least half an hour! I had completely lost the twins!

Frantically, I ran through the street searching for two Batmans, but the closest costumes I could find were two Jokers and a Superman. Just when I was about to call Mrs. Murphy and tell her that at least she didn’t have to worry about paying the twins’ school tuition anymore, I passed a couple of familiar-looking kids. They were throwing the remnants of a smashed pumpkin at each other; a closer look revealed that they were Tommy and Ryan Murphy!

“What have you guys been doing?” I asked. “I have been looking for you everywhere!”

“Oh, sorry,” Tommy apologized. “It got cold so we put on our jackets over our costumes.”

“Then we started throwing pumpkin guts at each other!” Ryan added. I couldn’t believe it. Those kids had given me the scare of my life!

When we finally started to make our way back home, the twins’ pillow cases were overflowing with candy. As they dragged their heavy bags behind them, the twins looked up at me with wide eyes and asked, “Can you carry our bags for us?”

That’s how I got stuck carrying what felt like fifty pounds of candy the entire mile and a half walk home. That Halloween, I realized just how terrifying two eight-year-old boys could be.