Let’s dance beneath the lights


Let’s dance beneath the lights.

Beneath the sparkling colors.

Between the lifelike statues.

Figures entombed in glass.

The dance floor grows bigger.

The music picks up its beat.

Couples twirl in circles.

Round and round they go.

Until the clock strikes midnight.

And the games finally begin.










Glass figures adorn the house.

Quiet as a sleeping mouse.

Do they wake with the sun

To have some bit of fun?

This one is on a bed

With a hat on her head.

Were her eyes once brown?

Do they haunt the town?

I must get of this place.

I can still see her sad face.

She will haunt my nights.

So will the dead sights.







A house of ice.

Sounds too nice?

It might be.

It’s next to the sea.

Ice statues populate the place.

Just don’t look into their face.

Tales of horror fall from their lips.

Better run away from all this.







Come to the party.

There will be dancing

and plenty of champagne.

A glass house

with perfect guests

in ballgowns and tuxedos,

circling the dance floor

under sparkling chandeliers.

Frozen statues sprinkled about.

A mermaid fountain waiting

in the rose garden.

Nothing could be better

or more perfect.

That is, until the clock

strikes midnight.

All freeze to the sound.

Many ascend the clear

staircase to the rooms above.

Where have they gone?

And why?

We are left to wonder

with the dwindling number

of guests.

Will our fate be sealed

on this night?

Come and help us.








The guests are dancing

between frozen statues.

Statues of ice.

Sad expressions for eternity.

Why do they appear alive?

Tears flowing down

their frosty cheeks.

Tears that appear wet.

This glass house holds terrors.

Beneath the music and gaiety

lies an undercurrent of evil.

Time to leave this fake paradise.

To leave the perfect guests.

To escape if one can.

Escape this deadly game

of The Dead.












As they climbed the stairs, they peered through the clear glass to watch the diminishing party below. Where is everyone?

The second floor was half the size of the main level. The back half was sectioned off behind a protective glass railing, with the railing running down the center of the house, dividing the floor into two equal halves. The front half was left wide open to the high ceiling, where the huge glass dome sparkled and glistened as it provided a green tinted window to the night sky.

After Linda turned from the banister, she was faced with three closed doors, standing side by side. She’d heard about the three doors in the basement of End House and prayed that elaborate traps didn’t also await them here.

She swung open the first door. The room turned out to be a large bedroom with a massive canopied bed. The dresser and end tables appeared colorless. At first glance, all the furniture seemed to be carved from glass, but upon closer inspection, she realized that the pieces were constructed from ice. She touched the bed to make sure and found it freezing cold to the touch. It was strange that the furniture was frozen solid while the room remained warm; she couldn’t understand why the furniture wasn’t melting.

“I hope the other rooms don’t hold hidden surprises like the revolving rooms at End House. I don’t want to live through that frightening experience again.” Linda backed away from the ice furniture. The room reminded her too much of the frozen pool—the one filled with blood at End House.

“‘Live’ is the operative word,” said Shana. “We lived

through that experience, and we’ll live through this one now. None of us want to repeat that again, but this time we’ll stick closer together and handle the situation more calmly than we did at End House—with much more backup for each other.”

Mike looked over at David and said, “Some of us left the others on their own to fend for themselves. We must promise to watch out more carefully for each other.”

“I’m really sorry, Mike. I was so terrified that night that

I ran ahead without thinking. I’ll keep a level head this time.”




Linda enjoyed dancing with Todd. She tried to ignore the strange guests dancing around her.

“Come, let’s dance again,” he whispered, pulling her slowly to her feet. He led her back to the dance floor and held her close.
Happy and content that he was finally being attentive to her, she rested her head against his shoulder. Earlier she had tried to escape from his arms, but now all she wanted was to remain safe and warm inside them.
They danced every dance until midnight. She loved being held by Todd, his arms holding her securely. She felt his rippling muscles beneath his suit. She hoped that he was strong enough to protect her from the evil intent on destroying their small town. And when the dust settled and the bad guys were taken care of, they could have a future together.

At precisely twelve o’clock, a sequence of twelve loud bongs vibrated through the large room. The music stopped playing. Everyone stood still, listening to the chimes of the huge grandfather clock. After the last bong, the music resumed playing and the sounds of voices and laughter could be heard once again.
Todd politely excused himself, promising to return in a few minutes. Linda was left all alone in the middle of the dance floor. She was surprised to find that most of the other residents had already left the party. The chimes seemed to have cleared out the room: very few people were left dancing among the statues.
As she strolled through the sculptures, she felt as if they were watching her. She passed one and peered into its glass face. It portrayed a young woman crying with tears, which appeared wet and shiny as they flowed down her glossy cheeks. She quickly moved away, hoping that the statues didn’t come to life at night and become the haunting shadows that roamed the town.



The party in Diane’s glass house was becoming stranger and stranger. Linda didn’t want to make friends with the guests. They were too friendly.

Caroline von Strobe seized the opportunity to speak with Linda alone. She smiled as she spoke. “We would love to have you as a guest at our castle. It isn’t cold and drafty like the way castles are usually depicted in books. It has been modernized with all the luxuries of a hotel. We have fox hunting, tennis, swimming, and any sport you could think of…I get lonely in the large place all by myself. John is away a lot on business and I would love to have a companion at those times.”
“That sounds very tempting, but I’ve been very busy with my new store. However, when I have some free time, I’d love to visit your country. I’ve never been outside the United States.”
“Then most definitely you must visit. I’ll have John arrange something with Todd. In a few months, there will be fox hunting. It is a very popular sport in our country.”
Linda said, “I’m sorry, but I’ll have to skip the hunting. I adore animals and couldn’t imagine allowing one to be chased to be killed.”
“We don’t kill the fox; we let him go. The chase is the whole fun.”
“But the chase is cruel. The poor animal is running for his life—not knowing if he’ll live or not or if he’ll ever see his family again.”
Caroline hung her head in shame. “You’re right! Now I can never go hunting again.”
“I’m so sorry; I feel bad that I’ve ruined the whole experience for you. I’ve ruined many Disney movies for my friends. I could still visit and we could do anything else.”
“Sure! We’ll find something that we both enjoy.”
John walked over, excusing himself and his wife for the next dance. “The dance is a waltz. It is the most romantic dance, and we never miss it. We’ll see you again soon.” He bowed and left with his wife for the dance floor.
She turned and found the Russian couple standing right behind her. Oh no! What could she say to them without putting her foot into her big mouth?
Posted by Susanne Leist at 10:04 PM



The party was full of strangers. Each one more beautiful than the next.

Todd brought Linda over to a group of people standing by the tall windows overlooking the garden. She was first introduced to a blond-haired couple, both dressed in white: the man in a white tuxedo and the woman in a long white gown.
“Linda, these are my close friends from England, Duke
Alan Rutherford and his wife, Duchess Amy Rutherford. They came in for Diane’s party—as did everyone else in this room.”
The duke bowed to Linda while the duchess bowed her head in greeting. They held themselves stiff and erect like proper English nobility. The duchess displayed ruby jewelry around her elegant neck and wrists. Linda even noticed sparkling rubies nestled among the blonde strands of her long wavy hair.
“You old fox, you finally found a woman that you could introduce to us,” the duke said as he nudged Todd with his elbow. The duke was tall and handsome with blond hair and dark-green eyes. He kept a watchful eye on all the guests: he was laughing with Todd, but his eyes never left the dance floor.
While Todd grimaced in reply, the duchess walked over to Linda and whispered, “They are very old friends who love to tease each other…. Just ignore them.”
Linda smiled at her in response. The duchess seemed to be very pleasant and cheerful.
Next Todd led her to a dark-haired couple, who were standing off to the side, listening to their conversation.
“Come meet Count Vladimir and Countess Leona Stravinsky. They are from Russia.”
This remark brought a dark scowl to Vladimir’s face. At first Linda had found him scary, but now with the scowl he seemed positively terrifying. Vladimir and his wife had perfectly chiseled features, tall lean bodies, and luscious dark hair; but all their beauty didn’t at all improve upon their icy cold demeanors. Linda nodded hello and then moved back to the duchess.
The last couple walked over to introduce themselves. The tall, broad-shouldered man spoke with a heavy accent. “We are happy to meet you. I am John von Strobe and this is my wife, Caroline. We have come from Romania.”
The woman spoke with the same accent. “We are happy to meet a friend of Todd’s. We have known him for many years and have never before met any of his friends.”
Linda said, “Thank you…I love your accents. Were you both born in Romania?”
The woman smiled. “Yes…however, I was born to a farmer and John was born to nobility.”
Linda was impressed. “Should I be bowing?”
“Oh no!” said Caroline. “We are very down to earth people and expect no special treatment from our friends. No one ever calls us Baron or Baroness.”
Linda hoped that she hadn’t insulted them. But they were still smiling at her. John had such a beautiful face, with blue eyes that sparkled mischievously, while his wife had gorgeous black hair and dark-blue eyes. What a beautiful couple.



The party at Diane’s house was underway. Linda was in awe of the glass ball of a house with its sparkling glass interior. The whole evening felt unreal, as if she was having a dream.

Couples were swirling around the immense dance floor. They were actually dancing in a large studio between Diane’s life-sized statues. Each sculpture was carved from clear glass: each one revealing a full-sized person. Linda found them to be too lifelike. She stood next to one and stared into it frozen face. She was startled by a fleeting expression of horror that seemed to cross over its features—as if a real person was trapped inside, staring out at her from within his glass tomb. Then the look was gone and the statue appeared lifeless once again.
Her morbid thoughts made her shiver, prompting Todd to grasp her even tighter against his body. She smiled up at him and wondered how she could have been afraid of him. She was slowly brought back to reality by the quick tapping of someone’s high heels, approaching them.
A beautiful blonde woman with huge green eyes, wearing a diaphanous white dress, came over to greet them. “Hi! Welcome to my party! I am Diane, your hostess,” she said as she glided over to greet them.
Linda admired the tall blonde’s ageless beauty, while Todd made the introductions. Diane responded that she was thrilled that they’d come to her party, and then floated off to welcome other people who were arriving.
Linda gazed around the exquisite room, immediately recognizing two familiar faces: Minnie and Frank, who appeared to be almost floating across the dance floor. Frank was formal in his tuxedo, while Minnie was cute and perky in her short white baby-doll dress. As soon as they spotted Linda’s group, they danced over. Over the loud music, Minnie explained that they’d gotten a babysitter for this evening.
All of a sudden Minnie lost her happy glow, appearing both nervous and unhappy. She mouthed to Linda that they’d never missed one of Diane’s parties—no matter what. Frank, who was monitoring their hushed conversation, abruptly took Minnie’s arm and led her back to the dance floor.
Linda knew that there had to be some hidden meaning behind Minnie’s whispered words. She was beginning to believe that everyone in town had their own little secrets. She wasn’t so sure anymore whether she wanted to unbury all of them: Who knew what would come up when these unearthed secrets were finally brought to light?