I will write a 300-word story that has to do with Halloween, trying to incorporate the numbers "4" and "300" in it.
Imagine a mysterious bass voice speaking the following:
This. Is a True Story. It happened one cold and dark night in a small town in Colorado.
The people around the fireplace in the house on this December evening look like any other holiday revelers, munching on cheese and crackers, sipping cider. But soon the lamps are turned off, leaving the fire the only light source. Plates and glasses are put away, replaced by sheets of paper. The real reason for the gathering is about to begin. And it's not to discuss how consumerism has killed the holiday spirit. No. These are writers. Writers don't idly complain. They take action.
Tonight, the action is to reenact a tradition that celebrates the season with meaning. Tonight, they gather to share ghost stories.
Charles Dickens would feel right at home as one writer after another reads stories about dark forests and empty graves and mysterious fumes in hushed tones. The temperature drops lower with each story. The computer programmer zips up his jacket. The librarian wraps her cardigan tightly around her. The two golden retrievers, who have been happily licking faces and wagging their tails, are now trying to squeeze in among the people. The shadows thrown by the fire take on more recognizable shapes: a sickle here, a werewolf there.
The fourth writer starts on her story; it's one that her Norwegian grandparents have assured her to be true. She has everyone hanging on every word, breathing with every cadence.
"Janus heads to the wharf, where a light shines intermittently. His heart beats in his ears, drowning out the low moan that emits from the dilapidated boat. This is it. Finally, he gets to face down his darkest fear. Only a few more steps, and then--"
Everyone in the room jumps. A few shriek. The host runs to the kitchen and finds that the glass from the hurricane lamp on the kitchen counter has shattered into a hundred shiny pieces, reflecting the light from the candle.
broken glass by ~zeh235
The lamp has been a gift from her daughter, who bought it in an antique store in Norway the previous summer.