Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Guest Post: Beth Fantaskey

Today, for the 5th day of the 10 days of Halloween we welcome young adult author Beth Fantaskey! She wrote the book Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side. I am honored to have her on my blog. Here is her guest post:

Happy Halloween, everybody! I love handing out treats, so I’ve prepared this little “snack” for fans of Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side who are waiting for the sequel, Jessica Rules the Dark Side, to come out fall 2011. This “bonus chapter” – written from Mindy Stankowicz’s point of view – takes place between Jess and Lucius’s summer wedding (read the story at and the beginning of full sequel, which starts in December of that same year.
Have a fun, safe holiday – hopefully filled with vampires, ghosts and other good stuff!

October 31, 2010 – Lebanon County, Pennsylvania
“Mindy Sue, get the door now! If we get egg on our windows, you’ll be scraping it off tomorrow!”

“I’m going already,” I hollered up to my mom, who had dumped the whole “trick or treat” thing off on me while she took a nice shower. I mean, I understood that she’d worked late and deserved a bath, but I had stuff to do, too. I was already bombing Foundations of Renaissance Culture at Lebanon Valley Community College, and I had a quiz the next day on Botticelli, who might have been a painter or some kind of pasta, for all I knew.

The doorbell rang again.

“Mindy Sue...”

“I got it! I swear!” I slammed my textbook about Italian art shut and got up off the couch, grabbing the bowl of miniature Three Musketeers and Snickers – which I’d eaten half of already – while I schlepped to the door.
How had I ever liked this holiday?
It sucked.
It had sucked ever since my best friend, Jess Packwood – now Princess Antanasia Dragomir Vladescu – had gone to the Woodrow Wilson High School fall carnival with Jake Zinn, leaving me a million miles behind, socially. Jess got kissed that night, and totally made Lucius Vladescu jealous, too, while I’d sat home – like I was still doing, a whole year later.
What’s Halloween like in a Romanian castle?
Vampires HAD to celebrate.
Is Jess dancing at some big party with her hot prince?

I hauled open the door a little harder than I meant to, and a bunch of kids in costumes screamed, “Trick or treat!” so loud I almost dropped the candy all over the porch.
“Jeez, have some manners already,” I told them, ‘cause they pounced on the bowl the second I held it low enough for their little hands to reach inside. It was like a riot for that chocolate, and I started worrying they wouldn’t leave any for me. “One each, okay?”

Then I felt kinda bad when the world’s cutest werewolf looked up at me, his paw full of candy, and said, “Thanks, lady. Snickers is my favorite.”
I mean, I didn’t like being called “lady,” but who can resist a six-year-old in a furry wig?
“Yeah, I like ‘em, too,” I said. “You’re welcome.”

When they hopped off the porch, I saw there was hardly anything left to give out, so I turned off the light, even though it wasn’t even eight o’clock. And I turned off the lights inside, too, so it would look like nobody was home downstairs, at least, ‘cause I did not want to be scraping egg off windows the next day.

Then I sat down on the couch in the dark, put the bowl on my lap, and unwrapped the last Snickers, popping it in my mouth. I chewed real slow, trying to make it last, and even though I didn’t want to, I wondered, What do surf bum vampires who live on beaches do on Halloween? How do THEY celebrate...?

All of a sudden, the doorbell rang again, and I kinda froze up, ‘cause it should of been pretty clear that the Stankowicz house was closed for business. For a second, I didn’t even chew. I guess I figured if I didn’t move, the kids would go away and I could eat the last Musketeers, too.
But nope, the bell rang again – twice in a row, fast.

“Probably a VAMPIRE,” I mumbled. “They NEVER give up.” And I almost choked on a peanut when I suddenly thought, What if it’s a BEATNIK bloodsucker? ‘Cause it could be. Not that I want that...

Not even waiting for mom to yell at me, I popped off the couch, calling, “Coming!”
And when I hauled open the door, there was a vampire on my doorstep, and I wasn’t sure if I felt relieved or maybe a teeny bit... disappointed that it was just a kid in a costume. I should’ve felt totally treated, but it also kinda felt like I’d been hit by a big, raw egg.

I dropped the last of the candy into the mini-Dracula’s plastic pumpkin and watched him skip off into the night.

Would I ever stop feeling that way?

Thanks for the post! I appreciate it! Check back later for a great giveaway of Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side!

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