Something Wickid This Way Comes Essay Research

Something Wickid This Way Comes Essay, Research Paper

Alex Kaznica

Monday, July 30, 2000

Before Reading

Process of selecting this book

I use processes that are most common among my peers to select my books. I usually have one of my parental units, usually my mom, to go out and look for books. This is the way it happens because up until now I had no mode of transportation. I have faith in my mother to make a good choice; she usually does, for she knows most of my likes and most of my dislikes. This is how it?s been for a long time, but at least she can pick some pretty interesting books.

During Reading

Three unfamiliar words/unfamiliar usages

? Alighieri ? meaning hell or some hellish place

? Ironmongery ? heavily tooled, worked, and strangely shaped iron

? Drolls ? cliffs and mountebanks


The seller of the lightning rods arrived just ahead of the storm in a green town in Illinois, in late October. The lightning rod salesman calls to the boys and asks if their folks are home, they say no. He asks if they have any money, the boys shook their heads. He then asks them their names. William Halloway and Jim Nightshade the boys reply. The boys begin to tell their story on how they were born only minutes apart around Halloween. The lightning rod salesman decides to give the boys a rod for free because, he feels a storm is coming and it?s going to hit Jim?s house. The contraption was covered in ancient dialects, the language of the storms. He goes on about the storm that is going to hit. ?It?s going to be no ordinary storm,? the lightning rod salesman says. He says his name is Tom Furry and for the boys to hammer it high on the roof. Tom totes his bag of contraptions and walks on as the boys nail the rod up.

The boys head down to the library for their weekly run. They get to the library and Jim heard some strange music off in the distance. Will?s dad meets the boys there; he works as a janitor and is quite old. The boys looked at some dinosaur books, they all discuss the books that they have picked and they head for home. They are upset that the storm is not coming because; they wanted to see the house get hit by lightning.

Charles Halloway wants to run home with the boys, but he stops himself. He thought, ?Will runs because running is its own excuse. Jim runs because there is something up ahead. Yet they run together.? He wonders why the boys are together because they are complete opposites. He tries to place it, but can?t. He heads to the bar for a drink, talks to some people about things, and what was a long time ago.

The boys get down town and take their time. The shop lights are on and people are scurrying about. Will comments, ?Folks run like they thought the storm was here!? ?It is.? Jim shouted, ?Us.? Then the city became dead as they rounded the cigar shop. They saw Mr. Tetley and said, ?Hi.? They heard something far away on the wind, but couldn?t say what it was. They see Mr. Crosetti crying, as they run by. Jim and Will sell Licorice and cotton candy, they stop to talk to Mr. Crosetti about the smells, they can?t agree on where it comes from.

Charles heads for home whistling Christmas songs. He passes a store with two sawhorses with a block of ice on them and a man leaving the shop waved to him, he had hairy palms on his hands. Charles reads a sign for a carnival inside, and it?s written in bold, ?THE MOST BEAUTIFUL WOMAN IN THE WORLD.? He did not believe it, it was nothing but frozen river water to him yet he stared long and hard at the block.

Jim stopped at the corner of Hickory Street where he saw Will. This is the street where they used to steal apples, plums, and apricots, but the ?thing? happened, it changed the houses, the taste of the fruit, the air. The street changed from houses, trees, plums, apples, and apricots, to one house with a window, than a stage with actors. The boys looked in through the window, they don?t know what?s going on, and everything is changing around them. They jump down from the window, Jim suddenly had two library books in his hands, but the boys had not been to the library. Will got a head of Jim and Jim yelled at Will to slow down. Then Jim disappeared, Will just kept running for home, telling himself not to look back.

Halfway to home Jim caught up to Will and said no one was home. Then a piece of paper came blowing towards them. They let it go fluttering in the wind, but it came back to them. The paper read, ?COMING OCTOBER TWENTY-FOURTH!!???COOGER AND DARK?S CARNIVAL!!? Which was tomorrow. The boys read all the names of all the acts, the made-up names of the carnies, and freaks. Then the wind whipped the paper from their hands. They don?t believe the paper. They hear a strange music, smell cotton candy, and licorice, but carnivals don?t start at night, only at sunrise. The boys get home and say good night.

Will sees his parents in the house doing their usual things, cooking, and knitting. Then it hit him, how small and insignificant they all were in such a huge world, and they were at the mercy of it. His mother is happy, he doesn?t know why. He sees his father, all that is there is a blur of a man, nothing more of him. His dad makes insignificant jokes, but all Will can think about is the carnival. He goes up stairs to his room and puts his ear to the wall to listen to his parents. A man with posters comes up and informs Will?s parents about the carnival. They were surprised, as they read over the names. Will thought to himself, ?There is something going on.? He saw the same paper that they had earlier in his tree and it read, ?THE MOST BEAUTIFUL WOMAN IN THE WORLD.? He hides under his covers and just remembers he has Jim?s books. He keeps saying to himself that there cannot be a carnival because they do not come this late in the year.

Jim lay in his bed noticing he still had his library books in his hand. Thinking about what his mother once said, that he almost died when he was three. A boy who talked less and smiled less as the years increased. The trouble with Jim was, he looked at the world and could not look away, and when you never look away all your life, by the time you are thirteen, you have done twenty years taking in the laundry of the world. He sits there and talks to his mother about things. Jim looks out his window for the storm; he feels it and decides to take down the rod to see what will happen.

Just after midnight the lightening rod salesman looks through a store window where he saw a block of ice. Inside of it was the most beautiful woman in the world just sleeping, trapped in the ice, forever young. The lightening rod salesman remembered to breath. White moths are tapping against the storm windows. Long ago traveling in Rome and Florence, he had seen women like this, kept in stone instead of ice and in Louver, he found women like this kept in paintings rather than ice. He wonders the color of her hair, how tall is she and what color are her eyes. But he new the color of her eyes even if she did not open them. He enters the cold store, moths tapping at the window.

Midnight, Will heard something. He sat up in bed. Across the way, Jim sat up also. Simultaneously they both lean toward their windows. They thought they heard a calliope. A train appeared, the engine, coal-car, and numerous cars that followed. ?The engine?? The boys were puzzled. Simultaneously both boys vanished coming back with binoculars. ?The engine??? ?No other train like that since 1900?? ?The rest of the train is all odd, it?s the carnival train.? The boys listened; it sounds like church music. The boys think, ?Why would a carnival train have church music?? Jim shouted out his window, ?Lets go watch them set up!? Will hollered back. The boys described the train as a funeral train while they slide down the drainpipes after it.

Will cried, ?Jim wait!? Jim was a kite with the string cut, running after that train. Will catches up as they are yelling at each other. Jim said, ?There is no one playing the music.? Watching closely as the train crosses the bridge. Will said, ?No jokes.? But they both looked at the calliope pipes and heard the music but no one was playing it. They continue to chase after the train. Jim and Will had heard train whistles before. They had heard none like this before. The protests of a million people dying, their moans and groans before death. The train stops in a meadow, it was silent like it was dead, no movement, no life. A man came out and made a gesture and the train came to life. Workers popped out of nowhere with animals. Once everything was all put up, all the workers and all the sounds, the life disappeared. Everything was black and white.

Charles Halloway stood in the open library window, he saw the boys and said their names, as was puzzled why they were out at three AM. The boys think about how dead the carnival was. Charles saw the moonlight glimmer off the mirror maze in the far distance.

He thought he would go there, and then he thought, he won?t go. He said, ?I like it.? ?I don?t like it,? he said. He left for home; he passed the empty store window. Inside stood two abandoned saw horses, between lay a pool of water. In the water was ice and in between the ice floated strands of hair. It was like the carnival was built by shadows and was one itself. White moth wings lay on the inside windowsill of the store.

Will?s dad was puzzled and questioned Will about three AM and wondering why the train had come at that time. They both thought it was a special hour. Women never wake then but men in middle age know that time well. Charles is yelling at Will. Regardless, Will should have never been out. Charles questions why things are the way they are trying to understand everything about men and women correlating to three AM.

The sun was up; both boys peered from their windows then raced to see if the carnival was there. They questioned if last night was a dream. The carnival was there. It was like any other carnival alive and colorful with people about but this does not answer what they saw last night. It was nowhere near the horrors they had seen the night before. Jim and Will met their seventh grade school teacher, Miss Foley. They asked her if she had heard anything last night.

She said, ?No.? The boys were reluctant to let her in the mirror maze. All the hair stood up on the back of the boy?s necks as they entered the mirror maze to search for Miss Foley. She was walking blind: the boys called for her but they only found cold glass. They eventually find her.

She is all shaken up because she saw someone in the maze that looked like a younger her that got trapped in the ice and couldn?t get out and disappeared.

It was now sunset at the carnival and Jim had vanished. They had spent all afternoon on rides and playing games, and then Jim just vanished. Will found him in the mirror maze. Jim was just standing there not moving. Will grabbed him and hauled him out of the maze. Jim was freaking out, acting like a nut, and talking of some unseen wonder. Once he was in the cold air of the outside, he snapped out of his trance. He said he saw the same as Miss Foley but wouldn?t say exactly what. They head for home agreeing to come back tonight and agreeing that they will always watch out for each other. Together they tripped over a leather bag.

Will looked around and kicked the bag. It clanked. It had dawned on them that it had belonged to the lightening rod salesman. Jim reaches in and pulls out the strangest lightening instruments. They both look to themselves and Jim says, ?The storm never came.? But he went.

They both question where and why did he leave. ?People,? said Jim ?don?t leave their whole life laying around, this is everything that old man owned.? They question that it must be something important. They decide to go look for him at the carnival and they hurry back to it, thinking of people with hot food and bright rooms.

The boys come across a merry-go-round with a sign that says it is broken, but the boys don?t believe in signs, and it does not look like it is broken to them. They hop on, since it is the only ride that they have not been on. A man from the machinery picked them up and said the ride was out of order, then a voice said, ?Put them down.? The boys proclaimed themselves to be just curious. The man said his name was Dark. The other man?s name was Cooger. Dark handed Jim a card that changed colors and the words moved on it. It now read, ?OUR SPECIALTY: TO EXAMINE, OIL, POLISH, AND REPAIR DEATH ? WATCH BEETLES.? Then the card turned into a dead brown beetle. The boys played to the two men, making them do magic. Jim was in awe; Mr. Dark was producing pictures and illustrations. When the two men said that the show was over and the carnival was closed until seven, then Dark gave Jim a card to ride the merry-go-round for free when it was fixed. They ran and hid in a tree. Jim wanted to go home but Will persuaded him otherwise. They watched as the merry-go-round started, it was running backwards and playing the terrible calliope. Mr. Cooger, who was on it, started to melt away, he got younger and younger. He was now twelve. The boys were scared.

It was now completely dark, the boys were running, Jim said the merry-go-round went around twenty times. They see someone up ahead; they duck behind a tree, the person moved on. They tried to understand what had happened and tried to make it sound believable to themselves. They continue running up to Miss Foley?s house. They see someone staring out the window. Her nephew. They believe he is Mr. Cooger because of his eyes; they are Mr. Cooger?s. They believe there is some evil hiding in her house. The boys argue whether to go in. Will says, ?Let?s not, just call her to warn her.? They want to see the boy. Miss Foley answers the door and invites the boys in. Will is a little shaken but Jim drives on to confront the boy. Will confronts Miss Foley as if he is going to tell her about the merry-go-round, but he said, ?Mr. Crosetti, the barber, was dead. That some people told them and there was a sign in the window.? She introduces her nephew to the boys. Jim extends his hand and says to the boy, ?You look familiar.? The boy does not know what to do. They all just stare at each other. The boys decide to go home and meet at the carnival later. They agree it was Mr. Cooger and Will had figured out the awful calliope that was constantly played. It was the funeral march played backwards.

Two suppers were waiting in two houses. One parent yelled at Jim, two parents yelled at Will. The boys run in their mind how they are going to explain to Miss Foley that her nephew is no nephew. Will?s dad went to confront him, but all he said was, ?Be careful.? Will wondered if his dad smelled the panic and heard the music. Will tried to raise Jim but he would not get out of bed. Will feared for Miss Foley.

Will thinks of his father. Also all the things that boys like him and Jim would do to contact each other and to have fun. Will is waiting to receive some signal from Jim meaning the carnival, Miss Foley, Mr. Cooger, and or the evil nephew. Will is getting worried, no signal came: he wondered what Jim was thinking about. The mirror maze, what had he seen and what did he plan? Will stirred restlessly. Will thought he had heard something at 10:35 PM. He saw Jim climbing down his drainpipe. Will hurried down after him, Will caught up to him at Miss Foley?s house.

They worry about Miss Foley. Jim felt the thing in the window above, which had suddenly vanished, was pulling him. He could bear it no longer. Jim leaped forth, Will grabbed his arm and stopped him. Will scared the crap out of Jim, he tells Will to go home. They argue a bit and fight beating each other up. They noticed Robert on the porch and he ran inside. Then he ran back outside, leaped the porch rail, and landed feather soft on the grass. He threw gold and jewelry at Jim and Will. Robert screamed for the Police. He threw more jewels at them and kicked over two trashcans to make a ruckus. Jim and Will bolted but that is just what Robert wanted, now no one will believe the boys about carnivals, or carousels, not about mirrors or evil nephews, not about anything. The boys were afraid of what Robert might do. They kept running.

The boys run to the carnival grounds chasing the nephew. They have to stop him, not to let him get near the merry-go-round. They can?t let him get older and bigger. By the time Will got there, the merry-go-round was spinning to life. It was going forward. When the boys got up to it the nephew was one year older then they. The boys got to the control box. They fought over it and the controls. Will got electrocuted and hit the switch handle. Lightening jumped into the sky. Will and Jim were launched backward by the blast. They watched as the evil boy wrestled with the merry-go-round as it ran wild out of control. He climbed to the outer edge of poles when the control box exploded knocking the carousel back and the boy hit his head, blood came forth. The carousel went around fifty plus times. Will and Jim were freaking out, all the explosions, the lightening storm, but no one came. The switch box finally blew itself out, the carnival lights went out and the carousel wound down. The boys approach it. They saw a mummified body, which was about 130 in the burning wreckage, all old and shriveled in its clothes.

They call the Police and take them to the body of Mr. Cooger but he was not there. They go searching through the tents. They all go into a tent. It was the freak tent. They were all there playing cards, just sitting around. The door looked familiar to the boys. They see Mr. Cooger strapped into an electric chair. The Police and the Medics go over while the midget jumps up. It was the lightening rod salesman. They had turned him into a midget. The Freaks were doing their acts, trying to frighten them. The Police were ready for anything. Mr. Dark shows up, he invites and welcomes them. Putting the Police and Medics in a trance with his magical illustrations. They all jumped forth as Mr. Dark put 100,000 volts through Mr. Cooger. Everyone watched as the old corpse sat there burning as Mr. Dark willed it to come alive. The old man came to life in flame and spark. The boys were yelling but no one heard them. Even the Freaks ran off. The fried corpse said to the Police that it was a trick he played on the boys acting like he had fallen and died, that this misunderstanding was an accident. The boys wanted to go home.

Miss Foley fears the mirror is in her house. She does not even consider the nephew to be hers, she felt ever since he came to her that he did not belong. She had figured out that the nephew had thrown the jewelry onto the lawn to get rid of the boys that would accompany her to the carnival. The nephew had pushed the carnival on her with the carousel admit one ticket still on the mantle. She calls Mr. Halloway and asks to meet him in the Police Station.

The medics could have sworn that Mr. Cooger was dead when they first got there. Jim and Will gave the Police false names and had them drop them off at different houses. The boys head for home, thinking of how they can explain this to the Police or anyone. But for everything that has happened relating to the carnival, there was a logical excuse, except for the illogical, which had happened, and no one would believe it. The boys get into another argument over each other?s actions at the merry-go-round. They saw Miss Foley and Will?s dad in the Police Station talking to the Police. Miss Foley was talking about how she was robbed, and if the boys were innocent, where are they. Will popped up and said, ?Right here.?

Mr. Halloway walked the boys home. They agreed to go back to Miss Foley?s tomorrow to look for some more of the stolen property, and the boys agree not to sneak out for the next month. The boys had confessed to robbing Miss Foley?s place. That way by confessing, the Police would go easy on them and besides no one would believe their story anyway. Will?s dad did not believe the boys were guilty and said he would believe their story. Will agreed to tell him in a couple of days.

Will asks his father if he is a good person. His father said, ?Yes,? and asked if that would help him when times get worse. ?It will help,? Will said. They get into a discussion of thought and beliefs, and philosophical ideas. His father asks him since when he thought being good meant being happy ? Will said, ?Since always.? ?Since I learn to know otherwise,? he said. They talk of growing up and growing old. They talk about the man with the biggest smile an act the happiest is carrying the biggest load of sin. ?And men do love sin,? he tells Will.

Don?t look at the things you missed out on or the things that went bad, you?ll go crazy, just think of the good times, happiness and so on, because thinking of bad things won?t bring you good ones, he later added. They talk of the good and the bad times, fears, and death; it makes everything else scared. But death itself only scares. If there were no death, all the other things would get tainted. They tell each other not to go near the carnival. Will welcomes his dad to climb up to his window for fun, as his father did when he was a kid in the good old days.

Will slept for exactly one hour, he remembered something; he looks out his window at Jim?s roof. He yelped, ?The lightening rod is gone.? Will was afraid. No, fear was a new electric power suit Jim must try to size. Will fears the carnival will send someone to find Jim, they would represent the storm. Jim was up in his house; the boys felt something and simultaneously popped their heads out their windows. At the same time to their amazement a hot air balloon was floating over. They looked at each other and agreed it was the witch. She would float over grasping the souls and life from the people beneath their roofs. She left a silver slime ribbon mark across Jim?s roof, so the carnies could find him. The boys get the garden hose and wash it off. Jim?s mom thinks it?s raining and shuts some windows but she does not see the boys.

The boys go back inside and Will brakes out his Boy Scout archery set, prepared to shoot down the balloon if it comes back. Knowing the witch could feel excitement, he felt proud of himself that he had washed her mark away, laughing, and doing a sort of victory dance.

The balloon turned and came back, he lured the witch after him as he ran to a deserted house with all his weapons. He climbed to the roof of the old house, thinking to himself, ?This is my house,? and he took aim. But a massive cold dark shadow overtook him, knocking him back clutching to the chimney. The wind blew the balloon back as she came back for another pass at him. He taunts her with his fear, pain, and scheme. He knows the witch could not resist, he took aim, ?Closer!? he demanded. The balloon came back and hit the roof, Will stretched to fire, and the bow broke. Will being attacked by the witch threw the arrowhead and punctured the balloon. The balloon deflated and spun, zipping around in the sky taking the witch away from all of them. Will fell off the roof and into a tree badly injuring him. ?Nothing much else happened, all the rest of that night.?

It was now Sunday and it rained and at the carnival grounds the carousel suddenly spasmed to life. At nine-fifteen, Jim shuffled out into the Sunday weather, in raincoat and all. They head for miss Foley?s house; they both had the same dream last night of a parade with a forty-foot coffin with the balloon inside, and everyone in black. They hear a little girl crying, Will goes over to Jim?s disappointment. The boys walk up to her, they don?t know her but she says their names. The boys get scared and frightened and leave the girl. The boys talk, they go back and Will confronts her. He says she is lost, he told her he will get help and that he knows whom she is, but he has to check first. She said, ?Who?ll believe?? The boys went to Miss Foley?s house like instructed. They look for her but can?t find her. They hear the marry-go-round music and put two and two together, that the little girl is Miss Foley. They have to help her. They think about the dream, the carnival is going to parade through town, but it?s not a parade, it?s a search for the boys and Miss Foley. They could not find the little girl anywhere.

Will called his dad to tell him that they won?t be home. They have to go hide from them, he did not specify any more.

Jim and Will hid under the sidewalk grill of the cigar store as the parade went past. The boys stayed there because it?s the most obvious place the carnies would not look, directly under them. The parade stopped right in the middle where they were and a small boy noticed them under the grate. The freaks were going threw the crowd handing out pamphlets and flyers, surly looking for the boys and Miss Foley.

Mr. Halloway is in a coffee shop when one of the freaks enters. The little boy is trying to get his mother to look down at the grate. As the freaks are milling about, the dwarf is right above them and sees the boy looking down, the dwarf looks down at the grate as the mother halls the little boy off. Jim and Will press themselves against the concrete not to bee seen. The dwarf was definitely the lightning rod salesman. The dwarf skipped off with some running children. Mr. Dark confronted Mr. Halloway who sad he was looking for two boys. Mr. Halloway said, ?Who is not.? He walked to the cigar the shop to get a smoke. The boys see him but don?t call him. Mr. Dark confronts Mr. Halloway and asks the boys names and presents a picture. Dark catches Mr. Halloway in a lie, Halloway catches Dark in a lie, and they depart each other. The witch is milling about while Will?s dad distracts the witch?s concentration by talking loudly and smoking a cigar. The carnies leave and Will?s dad realizes the boys were under the grate; he talks to them but does not look.

The dwarf went over to the illustrated man, ?Mr. Dark.? Then Mr. Dark moves swiftly over to the great looking down at it. Mr. Tetley the cigar shop owner came over to him and asked how much money he lost down the drain.

Its seven o?clock, Charles Halloway is in the library reading away. Mental illness is setting in on him, the pages, the dust of the old, are speaking to him. He recalls that this has been the longest day of his life, recalling all the events he has taken part in. he is looking up Occult Iconography into the history of circuses, carnivals, shadow shows, puppet menagerie, to minstrel stiff-walking sorcerers and their Fantoccini. At nine he read Demons possessed, torment of the damned to the spell of mirrors, to witches Sabbath, and pacts with daemons. He questions all he has seen and read and refers to Shakespeare, ?By the pricking of my thumbs something wicked this way comes.?

At the library at 7:45 will and Jim lay sprawled in the grass behind some bushes. The boys want to go inside the library, because Will?s dad is in there. They question weather the carnies have changed him. Before they knew it they were frantically bounding toward the library door. Dad opened the door and they hurried threw the corridors of the library. They boys had hid in all sorts of places, garages, and churches? Will?s dad asks them to tell him everything from the beginning. The boys tell him everything from the lighting rod salesman to miss Foley and her Mr. Cooger nephew. Will?s dad pointed to some old newspapers from October 1888-1846-1860-1910, all with J.C. Cooger and G.M. Dark presenting their carnival. He said they come once every 20-30-40 years so that people forget them. Will?s dad believes everything the boys tell him.

Will feels that fighting the carnival is hopeless. His father said, ?NO.? There was fear within Mr. Dark; Charles saw that when they had talked. They must use fear to their advantage and not let evil win over them. They believe in their research the carnival feeds on them, moves in on them when they are ripe. Mr. Halloway says they?ll prevail because they have common cause on their side. He makes comparisons to life to explain all this to the boys, he says you can?t get something for nothing, but you can get something for something. The boys asked where all this started. Will?s dad sad probably with one man walking across Europe jingling his ankle bells stuffing himself with other peoples pain and unhappiness. Hopping on the marry-go-round and living forever. Will?s dad know this, he feels it right down to his bone, he can taste the evil, blowing the dust off old books, and watching white moth wings float to the table below.

They believe the creatures at the carnival live off the souls of others, a live and raving soul, and one that can sleep at night. The souls that are eager and young, they feed off their soul fires and eternal damnation. Jim questions is the carnival death, Mr. Halloway said, ?No, it only uses it.? They turn people younger and cut them off from there former lives, because no one listens to them, and the carnival gives you what you want, a change of life and scenery, for one thing, guilt. They carnival gets at people using greed and the lust for things. They start to work on a plan, and then someone opens the library door.

It?s Mr. Dark he has come looking for the two boys, he has been to their houses and no one was there so he came to the library to look for Mr. Halloway and the boys. Mr. Halloway and Mr. Dark exchange voiced opinions on one another and Dark threatens Halloway. As the boys slip away into the dark. Mr. Dark mocks the bible, He tries to temp Halloway to a deal, but he declines. Dark walks away out of the room; he calls for the boys, walking through the library hunting for them.

The boys had burred themselves deep in the library, while dark had brought some of his friends searching for the boys. His friends the tattoos and illustrations covering him, giving off shapes and making him appear inhuman in form. Moving through isles of books he goes searching for the boys. Dark gets closer as he taunts and entices the boys, hearing their thoughts, he knocks over books and tells Will that he put his mother on the carousel and aged her one hundred years, and verbally attacking him to make him sob, therefore revealing where he is. Dark continues to knock over books off the shelves. He begins to climb atop the bookshelves, at the top he found Will and Jim sprawled out amongst the books on the shelves.

Dark pulls the boys off the shelves in a falling kicking heap, Will?s dad appears and hits Dark, and then Dark crushes Mr. Halloway?s hand and knocks him to the floor. Knocking more books off the shelves, Dark drops the boys and grabs them by the hair. Then they see the boy?s mothers are not old, just the same as they had left them. The boys call to them but the do not hear them, even Dark is surprised that they do not see them all standing in a window. Dark decides to get the boy?s mothers. They get outside where the rest of the carnies are. The witch casts a spell preventing the boys from speaking, she does the same to their ears and eyes. The boys are walked down the stairs by the carnies with Dark in fallow.

Charles Halloway lying in a heap of pain, right as he had heard the carnies leave, he had heard a woman?s voice call for him, ?Old man, old man.? Charles thought 54 years is not old. Charles starts to crawl and climb as the voice calls, ?I hear your breathing, old man I feel your hurt.? Charles hollers, ?Oh, get on with it.? The witch starts to slow his heart down, slower and slower. Charles is like, oh, ok, why not, come on, slower. He looked up and saw the witch over him. He laughed and giggled. The witch jumped back, but continuing to slow his heart. Charles bolted out laughing, countering the witch by doing the unexpected. He was yelling and laughing at her. The witch was so shaken and distracted her spell began to counter on her. Charles laughed at everything the witch did and took it as all a joke to strengthen the effects. The witch ran away from Charles. He stopped to think what he had just done to beat the witch.

The boys are now being escorted into the street, the boys can see but can?t see, they can speak and hear, but yet they can?t speak and hear, as they go pass Mr. Tetley?s. Dark talks about making Jim a partner if they can?t save Cooger. They all walk passed a police man Mr. Kolb. Machines, they are now at the mercy of Dark.

Will?s dad follows them, staying back as they maneuver through the crowds. They all sit in front of the mirror mazes. While Dark continues to conduct the shows and the witch limps in the back entrance. Dark suggests the bullet trick where the witch is supposed to catch the bullet. She is not too happy about this and lets Dark have a peace of her mind while Dark is taking volunteers. Since there were no volunteers Dark was about to call the last act off, when Charles Halloway stepped forth.

The crowd parted toward the stage. They shouted in Charles?s favor as he gets up on stage. The witch was terrified, Dark was apprehensive, he made it a point to Charles about his left hand, he said it was fine and the crowed cheered him on. Dark threw the gun at him, he ducked and he caught it, to everyone?s surprise. The crowed roared. Charles called for a boy to help hold the gun; he called for Will, his son. Dark spun around as if he had been shot. The crowed assisted in Charles?s call for his son, Will appeared and climbed up on stage. The witch was freaking, Dark had no idea what was going on and Will?s dad asked for the bullet. He carved a crescent moon into the bullet, it was the usual wax bullet that would dissolve in a puff of smoke, but he thought to the witch and he made sure she heard him, I did not put a crescent on the bullet, I put my own smile, and its coming for you. He Fired.

Every one inhaled, and exhaled. The crowd was screaming and milling about, ?she?s fainted,? ?-no she slipped,? ?-she?s?shot!? She was dead, but there was no wound. ?Shock do you think.? Charles thought it was the other bullet, that she had inhaled it. Dark is trying to say its all an act, shows over, calling for the lights. The boys snapped from their trance. Will and his father went to the maze to get Jim. Charles sees himself much older than he was standing there afraid.

Wills pockets were full of stuff and he brought forth 4 kitchen matches in the dark of the maze. Will?s dad is entranced by the maze and uses up all the matches. When Will yelled at him, Charles snapped out of it. He let out the most god awful cry of freedom, if the witch were alive, she would have known that sound and died again.

Jim at the back of the maze stopped, Mr. Dark stopped, the dwarf froze, the skeleton turned, all had herd not the sound that Charles had made, but the sounds that followed. All the mirrors shattered. Charles Halloway in a sub-daemon church shook the images out of the mirrors. The last light went out in the carnival and the hope of finding Jim went with it. The carousel started up ant they decide to head in that direction while the moon rises, giving them some light.

Will and his dad ran and ran toward the carrousel thinking about which way the music is playing. They see sparks and look for Jim. The freaks dare not stop them, for they fear for their lives. The calliope was going forwards and backwards, they don?t know what Dark is up to. Will and his dad watch as they bring Mr. Electro to the carousel, as they continue searching for Jim. All they find is an empty electric chair. There is a fine dust blowing in the wind, which is believed to be the remains of Mr. Cooger. The freaks flee into the shadows, and then Will and his dad see Jim. Will goes after Jim, as he sleepwalks onto the carousel and it starts up. Will tries to grab him, Dark is nowhere in sight, Will attempts several times to get Jim down, his dad heads for the control box as Will is pulled onto the machine. Will pulls both of them off the carousel in a falling heap; Jim hits the ground motionless as Will?s dad turns off the machine.

They look over Jim when a boy comes running calling for help, saying Mr. Dark is after him. Will?s dad says, ?Take me to him,? the boy and Will?s dad run off. Will?s dad asked the boy some questions and when he failed to answer them, Will?s dad grabs the boy. He sees the tattoos and illustrations on the boy, its Mr. Dark. They get in a scuffle but Charles still has him in his grasp. The boy threatens him with his power. Charles says, ?Evil only has the power we give it, starve, starve, starve.? The candles in Mr. Dark?s eyes blew out, hitting the ground he dropped to dust. For he would not help Jim.

Charles stood over the bones of Mr. Dark, watching as the illustrations and tattoos slowly faded away. The freaks did not know what to do. They all just stood around dumb struck at the sight. They went running about knocking off tent poles now free of Dark. Marauding freaks were dismantling the carnival. Now it was all over, But Miss Foley, Mr. Crosetti, the lightning rod salesman, why don?t they come back? Jim was cold as spaded earth.

Will thought Jim was dead. Wills dad yelled at him not to cry because, that?s what makes the night people stronger. They have to make some noise, hoot and holler. After some time Charles was able to get Will to loosen up. They went wild, they made an awesome ruckus, singing songs, laughing at everything, and mocking death. They were hooting and going all out, laughing all the way. They sang and danced around Jim?s body. Being as illogical about situations as anyone can, denying and undermining the people of the night?s strength. Jim awoke stripped from the powers of the people of the night, he was laughing and dancing with Will and his dad. They eventually wound down and looked around, the carnival was completely dead, and barren of anything that once was. They head for home. Talking of future battles with evil. They decide to destroy the carousel, if they get back on, they would only come back later. Then they all simultaneously ran off toward the horizon, and strolled into town.

After Reading

A single paragraph summarizing the novel.

This story is about the adventures of two boys growing up in an ever-changing environment. The boys are neighbors and are best of friends; their names are Jim and Will. They are put through the many tests of trust, friendship and loyalty, when they are pushed through the adventures and intrigue and mystery of the carnival. They discover the true purpose of the carnival and what its doing to people. It is a soul hunting carnival and it has come to town to feed. When the boys attempt to defeat the carnival and learn as much as possible about it fail, Will?s father steps in to help. Then the story turns into a father/son epic struggle against evil, meanwhile, confronting their differences, in the name of the good and the righteous. They inevitably come out on top and defeat the evil that walked amongst them, completely disregarding all the causalities to the carnival prior to their intervention.

Passage from the book

?Evil only has the power we give it.? Charles Halloway

This is indicative of the context in which Charles Halloway speaks. Will?s dad would always have good catch phrases that would seize the moment. Well that?s indicative of an over the hill deranged person who lives in the local library, instead of going home like normal people. A person that has nothing else better to do than think of good metaphoric passages at times, strong phrases that would stop you dead. A person who is completely detached from the world around them as Will?s dad was, until he joined in the epic quest to defeat evil. Where he became an attached deranged person, attached to his family, his son, the world around him, full of joy and victory, and happy go lucky liberal hoo ha.

Chosen Following

*Refer to attached*

Personal Responses

? What generalizations do the novel make about life?

No matter what you think, there is always something more to a situation than you believe.

? Do they agree with your personal philosophy?


? Does your personal experience show them to be true or false?


? Specifically, what personal criticisms do you have about the author?s work?

The author is another liberal; we already got enough of them. The story started out good then it just got cheesy.

? Is the plot credible?

Yes, in places, especially in the beginning.

? Are there enough suspense, excitement, and interest to keep you reading?

Yes, I enjoyed it.

? Are you concerned with the outcome of the story?

No, I?m not concerned about something I know is not real.

? Do you identify with the characters?

Yes. I battle evil on computer games and war RPG?s, roll playing games. I do not identify with them personally though.

? Are you personally involved with their problems?

No, because it is a little too much fantasy.

? Does the outcome fit your predictions?

Yes, all liberal outcomes are predicable. Father and son come together to defeat evil side by side. Nothing can defeat family bonding.

? Do you want to know what happens to the characters in the future?


? Is the outcome of the story logical?

It?s logical in an illogical state of mind. It is logical in a fictional book.

? Does the nature of the characters determine the outcome, or has the author relied on out side influences to determine the ending?

The author has relied on outside influences to determine the ending by using his beliefs to react upon the characters.

? Is the point of view consistent with the development of the novel?


? Would you have chosen another person through whom to tell this story?


? Does the point of view shift too often?


? Are you able to tell who is the narrator?

Yes, always, it is the author, it never changes.


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