Disclaimer: Skip Beat is not mine….yet… I shall take over the anime if they dare make Ogata's hair brown.

Are You Afraid?

Kyoko sighed. She had just finished delivering several heavy packages to the Singing Department at LME and now was preparing to sign out for the day. It was one of those rare days where she was not busy playing Bo or Mio, and was given Love Me errands. She was happy now that it was done, as the owners of the Daruma had given her the night off. Kyoko planned to sew a new Ren doll based off a spread in a magazine she had seen at the convenience store the other night. The air was chilled perfectly for a sunny autumn evening, the leaves falling in a brilliant array of colors from the President's imported maple trees. In her sweater the temperature was perfect, so she decided to sit outside, enjoying the weather while she could. She took out her sewing kit, and began to stitch a little pair of slacks. This went on for a few minutes before she began to feel eyes on her back. Kyoko looked over her shoulder to regard a wide shojo eyed Maria staring at her.

"Nee-san is that a –a new Ren doll?" Maria was practically drooling. Kyoko sweat dropped.

"Um…Yes, it is…Is there something you want Maria?"

"Hmm?" Maria hummed still in a trance, before she shook her head and shyly looked up at Kyoko. She blushed a bit, and glanced at the ground.

"I- I was wondering if Nee-san was doing anything for- for the Dark Celebration?" Maria blurted out quickly, looking at Kyoko pleadingly.

Kyoko blinked a couple of times not understanding. The Dark Celebration? What could that be? She pondered it for a few moments, while Maria begin to look dejected. Kyoko knew she should know this. Maria gave up on a response disappointed. Wait could she mean?...

"Oh, do you mean Halloween? Isn't that only celebrated in America?"

Maria appeared aghast. Her mouth wide open with her hands clenched in front of her.

"Nee-san! How could you not know?! You are a fellow practitioner of the Dark Ways! All Hallows Eve…The Day of the Dead, is our day. The day when all our spells are at their most powerful!"

Kyoko sweat dropped. She thought she could recall this from one of her books… The fall equinox when the veil between worlds was at its thinnest. Curses were especially effective during these times. Kyoko stared at her doll basket, a slow feral grin reaching her lips. Oh, was she going to get him…Wait, why did Maria want to know if she was free?

"Silly me, I guess it accidently slipped my mind with all the works I've been doing lately. I apologize, but was there something you wanted Maria?"

Kyoko smiled softly as Maria looked up again hopeful . She could see the excitement Maria was feeling.

"Well, I, um, I wanted to know if maybe Nee-san would like to celebrate it with me if she wasn't too busy…."

Maria looked at the ground again. Kyoko's smile widened. She loved spending time with Maria, it was always so much fun. Plus, she didn't think the eight year old asked for enough. Kyoko could relate, she had missed a lot in her childhood to afraid to ask for anything.

"No, I'm not busy that day. What did you have in mind?"

Maria adoringly gazed at Kyoko, ready to burst with excitement. Her Nee-san was the best. She started to blush again when she realized she hadn't thought of anything. She hadn't wanted to get her hopes up in case Nee-san was busy.

"I thought we could- um, make some human shaped candles and make wishes, or create voodoo dolls…."

Kyoko pondered this, looking at a hopeful Maria. That didn't seem…interesting enough.

"I don't know. What do people usually do on Halloween?" Kyoko asked dubbing it by its more popular name. She tried to recall what people did on Halloween from her English class. Maria seemed to know from the way she was shaking her head.

"No, only kids dress up in costumes and ask for candy! How about a séance?"

Oh, that's right. Kids dressed up in silly costumes and went around to people's houses asking for candy. If they didn't get any they would plays tricks on the houses, like toilet paper in the trees. Wait… a holiday where people wear costumes….sweat dropping, Kyoko made a nervous smile.

"Maria…the President isn't throwing some outlandish party for this, is he?"

Maria's face immediately became sour. She nodded gravely.

"Yes, but he's making it a Mexican Day of the Dead celebration where you honor your dead family instead. I don't want to go….I'd rather celebrate the horror part of it."

Kyoko frowned. She understood why Maria had asked to celebrate with her; she didn't want to think about her mother. It was the same reason Maria acted overly mature to wear costumes and go trick-or-treating. What could they do? Maria was looking depressed again. The horror aspects, so Maria wanted to do something scary….


Maria was startled by her Nee-san's outburst. Kyoko was now standing up excited.

"Maria. Let's tell scary stories! We could hold it in a separate room from the President's party, and whatever guests wanted to could come and listen to the horror stories."

Maria stared wide eyed at her Nee-san. Kyoko was right, that would be a lot of fun.

"I like that, but what about Grandfather? If he knows about this he will just interfere and make a big deal out of it."

Kyoko just shook her head at the skeptical little girl.

"No, don't you see we could use that to our advantage."

"What do you mean?"

"Well, if President gets involved we'll just tell him we want to host that part, so he won't interfere with our stories, but he will mess with the setting, which means we'll have a really scary place to tell the stories. Won't that be great?!"

Maria still was not sure about it, but she couldn't spoil the older girl's enthusiasm. Maybe it would be alright.

"Okay, who should we invite?"

"What stories do we tell?"

The two girls looked at each other and smiled, ready to plan the event in front of them. They would only have a week before their party commenced.

Thanks For Reading!

I hope you enjoyed this chapter it is in honor of Halloween. It starts to take a Tales of the Crypt crossover after this chapter. I'm hoping to update everyday finishing on Halloween.

Thanks to all those that reviewed Connections, you helped me convince myself to write this! And Miyabitayozora for agreeing to edit!

Please Review!


False Sourires