Halloween Ghost Story Contest -- 2018
Elementary School Winners

Third Place

Our third place Elementary School winner is homeschooled Fiona Gehrke, a ten year old resident of Austin, Texas who just recently moved there from Anchorage, Alaska. We're told that not only does Fiona love to read and write, she also loves music. She started composing piano pieces when she was six, and is currently working on her fourth which she plans to make into a symphony.

The Haunted Symphony

Fiona Gehrke

Zylinia (pronounced Zy-lin-eea) Lemon Ferretly is ten years old. She has long, pitch black hair, as dark as the feathers of a raven. Her eyes are a deep forest green, like the magical sheen of a glimmering emerald. Zylinia loves animals, her favorites being skunks, condors and wild boars. She is a well trained pianist and harpist. She goes to Marshwillow Academy, who’s mascot is the state tree, the Marshwillow, hence its name.

The Marshwillow is not a tall tree. Like the willow tree, its branches sag low over the ground. In spring and summer, beautiful navy blue and indigo flowers shaped like chalices bloom. The Marshwillow’s smooth tan colored bark is quite amazing because it will never catch fire. However, during the winter, it looks like a completely different tree. The branches look like age old stone with gnarled ends reaching down like long twisted fingers, hauntingly spooky.

It was Halloween and Zylinia entered the Halloween talent show at her school. She had signed up without giving any thought to what she was going to do even though she could play instruments. You see, she was afraid to play by herself in front of her entire school! What if she messed up? This thought was interrupted by a rough voice, “Hey, weaseley!” Tylor and his gang of school pests had found her. There were three of them, unfortunately.

It’s not weaseley, it’s Ferretly and they are two different animals,” she replied through gritted teeth, “thank you very much!”

She began to walk away, but she heard their clomping footsteps following. So, she quickened her pace hoping for them to lose interest in trailing her. She made her way to the library, thinking she could lose them through the rows of shelves, hiding behind one. She must have triggered something for the shelf opened to reveal a secret passage. Zylinia quickly peeked around the corner and saw that they were almost upon her. She was left with no choice but to duck into the passage.

The passageway was dim and was somehow lit by a strange light source that she couldn’t see. Cobwebs lined the walls and ceilings, and she could swear she saw rats! The walls looked like rough gray stones. A damp and musty smell hit her nose, “Ugh, what is that smell?” Then her hair began to wave in the air even though there was not any wind! All of a sudden a strange and haunting tune rose from the hallway before her. It sounded like a flute playing in an eerie G minor. Hooo laaa-dee daa….Hoooo deedee daa dee hoo…Hoo la dee daaa dee hooo dee daaa….hooo deee daaa… Rather than being frightened off, Zylinia continued towards the sound, captivated.

She saw a light at the end and raced towards it eager to see what it was. Then she came upon an old ballroom, filled with majestic instruments covered in dust! A glorious sight indeed! A Steinway grand piano, glimmering ebony, sat in the middle, surrounded by violins, flutes and cellos. A grandeur golden harp engraved with twisting vines stood at the front right corner. She looked over to the left, and saw a silver flute floating in midair; this was the source of the melody she heard in the tunnel.

What is that?”, she gasped. As she took a closer look, a shimmering figure was holding the flute to its lips! Then all of a sudden the pianos keys started playing, the harps strings began to pluck and the rest of the instruments sang along.

Plink plonk dinkydonk twitter-inky plinky plonk… Went the piano.

Sooooo lee doo da hooo la dee doo da, laaa… Sang the harp.

Hooo heee daaa-deee-duum…laaa teee haaa hooo… The flute continued its hollow tune.

Countless ghosts began to manifest from the instruments and began to play. Enthralled, she waited until they finished playing.

Um, hello?”

They all stopped and looked at her, curiously. “That is the question we should be asking you,” said the piano ghost.

Hi, huhuh, I’m Zylinia Lemon Ferretly. That was wonderful!! I’ve never heard such music before!”

The ghosts murmured amongst themselves, “Why thank you young miss,” said the harp ghost nodding her head.

Three of the ghosts approached her. “We are obliged to meet you, Zylinia. My name is Dusky and I play the harp.”

I am Levias, please to meet you. I play the flute.”

And I play the black and white keys, young lady. I am Lilly.”

Wow, it’s so nice to meet you all! As much I would like to stay and listen to your beautiful music, I must go back to school so I could figure out what to do for the talent show. I play piano and harp but I can’t seem to play in front of everyone.”

You have a talent show, hmm?” Dusky said, “well maybe we can help you young miss.”


The Halloween talent show had started. It was Zylinia’s turn. “Good evening everyone! My name is Zylinia Lemon Ferretly, and today I will be performing the Haunted Symphony.” When the curtain opened, gasps of surprise filled the room.

Ohh my! “

Are those real ghosts?”

What are those?”

How is she doing that?!”

Tylor and his gang of pests, seemed petrified but were unable to move when the music began.

It was a hauntingly beautiful performance, one never to be forgotten!!!


Continue to the 2nd place story

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