When I was growing up, anybody who was anybody in my grade went to Jody Bennett’s Halloween parties.
I was not an anybody, but luckily, Jody’s mom was in the same round robin tennis group as my mom.
There was a certain air of “Oh Jeez, that guy’s here?” but I didn’t care. I was in and the popularity momentum from attending that party lasted me for months. I usually didn’t end up eating lunch alone until mid-February at the earliest.
Unfortunately, my mom and Jody’s mom got into a tiff at the beginning of seventh grade. Something about carpool. I think. Anyway, me and my mom were on the outs
As luck would have it, Jody’s seventh grade Halloween party was poised to be the biggest ever. In addition to the usual bounce house, free cotton candy vendor and portable Dance Dance Revolution arcade machine, Jody’s parents had announced there would be a costume contest with a first prize of $300.
In seventh grade, three hundred dollars is more like a couple grand, but to me it may as well have been a million, because I wasn’t getting a piece of it.
I heard Jody talking about how he had put me on the “Not Invited” list in the hallway before third period. I’m pretty sure he saw me over in the corner and just wanted to be a jerk. He was also loudly proclaiming how he was sure that 300 bucks was gonna be his, because he had the most awesome costume ever.
I know what you’re thinking, but apparently Jody’s parents didn’t agree that it was a conflict of interest for their son to be entered in their own costume contest. Whatever. They’re a bunch of pricks.
Jody was in for a big surprise though, because, unbeknownst to him, Chip Stevens, the big man on campus, had something else planned.
As I sat under the bleachers eating my lunch, Chip and his girlfriend, Abraxis, snuck into the gym to make out. They sat down right above me, kind of like that scene in Animal House. Anyway, I listened to Chip bragging about his super cool costume and silently ate my bologna sandwich.
It turns out that Chip had spent 250 dollars to rent a full-size replica of Darth Vader’s suit from Star Wars. By his reasoning, winning 50 dollars was better than nothing at all, so Chip had jumped at the chance to show up Jody, whom he felt was “getting too cocky”.
Abraxis had some sort of weird Star Wars fetish and she demanded that he allow her to give him oral sex at the party. To which he agreed. They worked out some scenario where she would dress as Princess Leia and they would meet at the party, as strangers.
It dawned on me that if I had a costume like that, nobody would know it wasn’t Chip in there and I could gain entrance to the party and maybe even get a BJ from Abraxis.
I didn’t have 250 bucks, so I did the next best thing: I waited for Chip to arrive at the party, jumped out from behind some bushes with a baseball bat and knocked him on his ass. He never knew what hit him. I then proceeded to remove his helmet and chloroform him for good measure.
I pulled his seemingly-lifeless body behind the bushes and began to take his costume off. Within a few minutes, I had transferred it onto myself and I was ready to spring into action!
As I approached the house, I couldn’t believe how hot it had gotten under that plastic suit. It was also really difficult to see anything.
I could barely make out his face when the security guy approached me and asked to see some ID so he could make sure I was on the guest list.
You see, my initial euphoria about attending the party had been dampened once I realized this would probably be the case, so I came up with Plan B.
“Ow, my eyes!” yelled the security guard as I threw gasoline in his face. I hit him in the head with the can and he went down like a sack of bricks.
I then proceeded to douse the entire house with gas, making sure to use extra around any of the exits.
Well, I guess I used too much, because when I dropped that match, the whole place went up in a huge fireball.
As I ran back to the bushes, I heard someone scream, “It’s Chip in his Darth Vader costume! We’re burning alive!” Perfect.
I quickly changed the still-unconscious Chip back into his costume and got into my own clothes. I poured a bottle of cheap gin on him, for good measure. I figured this would make people believe he had been drinking and that’s why he had no recollection of murdering 50 of the most popular seventh graders in the whole school, as well as Jody’s family.
What I didn’t count on was the fire spreading so quickly. Soon the bushes we were hiding behind caught flame when a spark from the nearly-incinerated house landed on some dry grass.
Poor Chip didn’t have a chance. He came-to just as his costume started melting onto his skin.
I’ll never forget his screams. He wasn’t supposed to die.
He was supposed to spend his life in prison.
Well, I high-tailed it back home and nobody ever suspected a thing. Witnesses saw someone in a Darth Vader costume start the fire and there was poor Chip’s body, just 50 feet from the scene of the crime. Abraxis, who hadn’t yet arrived at the party, told the police that Chip had been looking to “stick it” to Jody, so all the pieces came together, though I didn’t win that 300 dollars.
The silver lining to the whole story is that with all the actual cool kids dead, I became much more popular. So never give up on your dreams.