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“Is it done yet, Vi?”  

Viriathus sighed as she turned to look at the small voice's source.  Despite being dirt poor orphans, the kids under Grunn's care were determined to make the most of the harvest festival.  It was the only night of the year that most were willing to just give them something for free.  To this end Vi had set up a workroom separate from the bunks to keep the small children out of her sewing supplies while she worked on their costumes.  Sadly it had failed its one intended purpose on several occasions now.  

Perhaps when the season ended she could get some peace in her workroom.  Heck, maybe she would just move in, she was practically living in there now anyway.  But for now, Vi failed to be surrounded by privacy.  “Almost Mace, just a few more stitches.”

Mace had come up with his costume idea himself, And Vi had to admit, the little tyke's creativity was impressive.  Mace's costume was simple: a big, white shirt with the sleeves and bottom brought in to fit him, but the collar staying way over his large ears.  Said collar was dyed red to imply Mace had his head lopped off.  His small friend Whip would clime into a carved pumpkin and float along side him (he had gotten very good at that recently, sometimes not coming down for hours).  Vi was a little concerned that people wouldn't give Whip candy as well, but there was little she could do to amend the costume at this stage.  

With one last pull of the needle she finished off the modifications, cutting and tying the thread to prevent it from coming loose.  “Alright, lets try it on.”  She pulled the shirt around Mace, fastening the buttons and popping the collar.  Thankfully between the popped collar and the dried bander blood she had used for the dye job, it stayed pretty stiff.  

“Do you think I'll scare anyone Vi?”

“Oh defiantly,”  Vi played up.  “This is going to be the scariest harvest festival many have ever experienced.  Now hold still, I need to cut the eye holes, and I'd rather not cut your eyes too.”

…..................................................................................................................................................................

The air on the deck of Grunn's boat turned orphanage was cool and salty.  The orphans had all gathered to get in costume, and listen to instructions from Bobby.  With Grunn already gone, likely to chase fermentae and tail, it fell to Bobby and Vi to lead the children on their Trick-or-Treating escapades.

Vi couldn't help but marvel at her work.  Despite the poor quality of fabric and limited supplies, she had managed to turn out several decent costumes.  A pirate, a couple monsters, a super hero, his side-kick and a decapitation victim with his floating pumpkin head.  Looking over her work, Vi was sure she could be a fashion designer one day.

Bobby's costume probably looked the worst.   He was meant to be a prince, but the only thing that gave that away was the cheep plastic crown Vi had managed to get a hold of.  The rest of his outfit looked like a really poor kids live action role-play outfit.  Still, it was technically a costume, and that was good enough for the both of them.

Vi also took a moment to marvel at her own costume, best that she could while wearing it at least.  Wanting to keep it simple, she had decided to go as a character from an old children's fable, the blue hooded girl.  It was a mostly simple costume, but Vi had needed to sew the hood to the cape by hand, a process that had taken far longer than she would have liked.

She mentally noted with some chagrin that she still easily passed as a child, even as she was beginning to grow taller.  But she was only twelve, she reminded herself.  She would be mature soon.

“And remember”  Bobby began rapping up his speech (which Vi should probably have been paying attention to), “Everyone stay together, and in the sight of either me or Vi.  We don't need anyone getting lost out there.  Alright guys, let's go get some candy.”  The orphans let out a cheer at that as they all began marching off towards town and the promise of sugary goodness.

…..................................................................................................................................................................

The orphans pillow-cases all bulged with candy.  While the Margate district wasn't the richest district in Anduruna, they had hit enough houses to have a pretty decent amount to their hull, even if it was mostly the smaller, cheaper candy.  And to Vi's surprise, most had given candy to Whip as well, and complemented the two on their clever teamwork for their costume, (though sadly for Mace, he didn't seem to scare anyone).  Rather than filling a pillowcase, Whip had filled his pumpkin costume with the sugary treats.  Or perhaps wrappers and remains of sugary treats, as food did seem to disappear surprising quickly around Whip.  

His fast squeaking and squawking seemed to confirm this, and Vi was fairly certain there was enough sugar in the small five year old to keep him going all night.  And if Mace couldn't sleep as a result, he would likely eat some of his own candy, resulting in him undergoing similar effects.  Vi decided she was definitely sleeping in her studio that night.

The kids all chatted away at what the best house was, what the best candy was, and what the best costume they had seen was.  Meanwhile Vi and bobby stood back, content to just watch their young charges, and feel the joy of having brought a little happiness into their lives.  

That happiness was short lived however, as the reason for much of there misery came staggering up to the deck, once again drunk off his ass.  

“Was goin' un here?”  Grunn drunkenly stammered.  “why yuh all drethed like that.”

“Trick-or-Treating Grunn.  You know, the Harvest Festival and all.  We just got back”  Bobby chimed in.

“uh so, uh...candy.” Grunn's drunk brain managed to piece together, slower than it should have.  “well, uh...is my ship, so is my candy.”  Grunn began approaching Mace, with a clear intent to take his hard earned candy away.

“Grunn!”  Vi stepped between the orphanage owner and Mace.  “You can't just take the kids candy.”

“yush I cans” the drunk shark slurred.  “Is muh ship.”

“No you can't!” Vi nearly shouted back.  This wasn't the first shouting match on the ship between an orphan and the orphan-master, and they usually didn't end well for the orphan involved.

“shut up yuh bhish.” With the failed expletive, Grunn grabbed Vi by the shoulder and pushed her down, her pillow-case spilling its contents all across the deck. Grunn began reaching for the candy, but Vi hardly noticed.  Her eyes were on her cape and hood, now torn at the stitches do to the forceful grab on Grunn's part.

Time seemed to slow down.  Vi saw her torn seam.  She saw her spilled candy.  And then she saw the man who had caused it all, the man who though he could push her around all her life.  She saw Grunn.

The next few actions were a blur.  Vi jumped up, balled her fist, and dashed towards Grunn faster than she had ever moved before.  The next thing she knew was her fist in something soft, and then the sound of something large hitting the water.  

Vi breathed in the cold night air.  Her heart was racing and the others were all staring at her with bewilderment in there eyes.  After a few more breaths, she realized Grunn was nowhere on the deck, and the splash she had heard had multiplied into several more.  She looked over the side of the dock, only to see Grunn splashing and flailing around, still shocked by what had just happened.

A new sense of power overcame Vi.  A new feeling that she didn't have to just let someone beat her down anytime they wanted.  Vi stood tall over the edge, as she made her first deceleration of newfound power.  “And don't you ever wreck my sewing again, or try to take my candy.”

As Vi turned back, the children all cheered, though Bobby was still just a bit bewildered to say anything.  Vi began sweeping up her candy as she addressed her newfound fans.  “alright guys, time for bed.”  At this, her fans were a bit less enthusiastic.  

“And if anyone needs me”  Vi flung her bag over her shoulder, making sure not to aggravate her hoods stitching any further, “I'll be in my room.  Knock first.”  

Accounts of that night would change over the years, ether by the wild imagination of children exaggerating the story, or by a drunken mind struggling to accurately remember it.  But one thing was clear to everyone.  That truly was the scariest harvest festival that had ever been experienced.

By Grunn, that is.
My entry for the 2017 :icondreamkeepers: Dreamkeepers Halloween fan contest 2017. 

This piece is mostly about Vi, and takes place a few years before prelude.  The kids of Grunns orphanage are heading out for a little Harvest Festival Trick or Treating. 

Dreamkeepers and its characters are (C) Dreamkeepers 
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:iconpapertop:
Papertop Featured By Owner Nov 15, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Wow, I thoroughly enjoyed this writing Entry!! My only nitpick, if even at all, would probably be just one or two grammatical errors regarding "Defiantly" and "Decelerated". But otherwise, It's a very nice, light-hearted, and humourous tale that provides a nicely empowering moment for a much younger Vi ;) Job well done! :star: :pumpkin:
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:icondavidshadow275:
davidshadow275 Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2017  Hobbyist Artist
Nice story, so in this time period she use her power on Grunn, nice....
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:icontruthquset:
TruthQuset Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2017  Student General Artist
Your a good writer.
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:iconcheesebread222:
Cheesebread222 Featured By Owner Oct 25, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you.  :D (Big Grin) 
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