It was a braw, bricht, moonlicht nicht when Bruce set off on his final trip of the year. The nights were drawing in fast and he wanted to visit all his woodland pals before they hibernated like Shona Squirrel, or stayed at home feeling a bit grumpy, which was always the case with Balfour Badger.
Things were going well but, as we all know, when you are chatting with friends, you can lose track of time. Emerging from his last call, at Michael and Jay Fox’s pad, Bruce was shocked to find a thick fog had descended and the moon had disappeared.
Undeterred Bruce headed for home but soon realised he was lost. What a relief it was to see lights in the distance and the sound of voices. As he drew nearer, Bruce, who had at first thought he was heading for one of those nighttime parties where humans burnt all the food, realised he had made a terrible mistake. Suddenly, he was surrounded by ghouls and ghosties. Monstrous figures were draped around the cavernous tents from which knives and axes swung in and out of the fog.
Small demons ran giggling everywhere brandishing eyeballs and weirdly glowing sticks of light. Bruce stumbled through the swinging cobwebs into a tent where to his horror he saw tiny Bruces being squeezed onto the tops of cakes. The Bruces had vampire fangs and enormous eyes and were being eaten by the giggling demons. Back outside Bruce realised he was wearing a black cape and a strange pointy hat.
Fearing he would never see his cosy lodge ever again Bruce was distracted by a ghostly fluttering. What a relief! It was Bertrand Pipistrelle. “Am I glad to see you” exclaimed Bruce, “What are you doing in this terrible place Bertrand?”
“Just the usual Bruce, I always do a piece for ‘The Long Ear’ about the Forestry Commission’s Halloween do”. “We have quite a ‘specialised’ readership and these local stories help pad out the ads pages for detached coffins, old bandages, brooms and the like.”
“Halloween do? You mean, but, the demons?”
“Kids dressed up, Bruce.”
“Silver foil and red ink Bruce.”
“And the tiny vampire Bruces?”
“Cupcakes old bean.”
“How did I end up in this outfit?”
“Ah well, that was Balfour’s idea. He’s not that grumpy. When you fell asleep in his sett earlier he thought it would be fun to dress you up as a witch!”
Happily Bruce saw the funny side and cheered up even more when he was offered a lift home in a Forestry Commission van. On the way back he was looking forward to all the stories he would be able to tell the kitts during the long winter nights when they were tucked up snug in the lodge.