The year was 1827, it was the 24th of December. The weather was harsh, and it was dreadfully cold.
A young boy named Arthur was residing at a cottage west from normal civilization. The sun has set and it was time for the family to sleep. Arthur, still awake, was always fascinated with the stars in the night. They reminded him of those mythical creatures from fairy tales his parents used to tell him before he went to sleep. He grew drowsy with every minute, but tried his best to stay up.
"I can't sleep, I don't want to." Arthur rubbed his eyes, trying to remain awake noticed a little moving speck in the sky.
"I-Is that a star?" he pressed his face against the window, amazed at the moving speck. "Daddy always did say that when he was little he always made wishes when a moving star was in the sky." Arthur anticipated for a moment and then looked back at the sky. "I wish that everyone could experience my imagination."
The next morning Arthur woke up feeling joyful. He usually didn't feel this way, due to the struggles his family goes through everyday. Arthur ran out of his room and approached his mother, "Mum, I had the best time last night, I saw a moving star!"
His mother turned and looked at him with a smile. "A star? Wonderful, did you wish for anything?" Arthur nodded. "Wonderful deary. Now, go outside to your father, he needs help with the firewood."
Arthur ran outside to his father, who was extremely fatigued from holding a large amount of logs. "Oh good morning, son! Did you have a nice sleep last night?" Arthur smiled and told his father about everything that happened. "Wonderful! I hope your wish comes true!" Arthur carried one log and bought it inside the house.
"Psst, Arthur..." Arthur was shocked from the sound he turned around and noticed a small boy, about his age standing outside his house. This boy had barely any clothing, just rags.
"H-Hello?" Arthur was dormant while trying to greet this passerby.
"Hello, Arthur! I noticed that you're going through some trouble with your pop. Is everything going swell?" Arthur was puzzled as to where this boy came from and how he knows his name.
"Sorry, but who are you?" stated Arthur.
"Oh, I apologize. My name is William B. Fareingworth." Arthur was even more confused as to why this boy had such a regal name, yet wore very torn and dirty clothing.
"Why is it that you have such an elegant name, yet you show up out of nowhere in dirty clothing?" asked Arthur.
The boy simply replied, "It shows my personality, my traits actually." Arthur told the boy to stay outside for a little, while he brought his parents outside. As his parents came outside they saw nothing.
"Boy what did you call us out for?" shouted the mother. "It's freezing and there's nothing here."
Arthur stammered, "But... but.. he's right there!" William stood outside as if nothing was happening, smiling like usual.
"Let's go back in Daniel, I'm feeling a little worried about Arthur."
He saw William approach him and said, "Well... at least you got 'em to come outside."
Arthur was very confused. "Is this some cruel trickery?" he shouted. William waved goodbye to Arthur as he disappeared into the woods. Arthur continued his day as usual.
"Who was that William character, where is his family? This has got me baffled to say the least." Hours passed and Arthur continued to do his usual activities. Nightfall approached and he was getting ready to sleep. Arthur peered outside the window in hopes of finding more stars, as he was looking he heard voices from nowhere.
"Hey, Arthur...Boo!" He jumped back, petrified from the surprise. It was William inside his bedroom.
"How'd you get in here?" William sat by Arthur.
"So, I see that you adore the stars above." The night sky was filled with these glowing dots and it was clear as glass.
"Instead of staring at these specks, what about becoming one yourself?" said William. Arthur liked the idea, but he took one more glance at William and noticed that he was bruised all over, no extreme signs of injuries though.
"Oh, these? I just fell down in the woods it's nothing." Arthur was still shocked as to what happened. "Well, I'll best be leaving, have a good night's sleep, star..."
It was a fresh new morning. The sun seemed more radiant than usual, but what do you expect from a "Stars" morning. Arthur went outside and noticed that his parents were shocked to see that a new town was being built near them. Even though they received this news, they were unhappy at the same time. "Why so unhappy mum?" The Mother looked at Arthur and held him in her arms.
"Oh Arthur... During the building of the new town, a young boy your age has died. He was burnt to death due to an accident."
Arthur was shocked. "Could that have been William?" He pouted at the thought, but then he noticed something, he had oil all over his hands.
"What?!" He looked around then noticed that William had appeared out of nowhere, and was standing near the water mill. He sighed at the relief that his "friend" was still alive. He ran to his friend and saw that not only did he seem more injured, but he looks as if he's been badly burned.
"Y-Your skin?" Arthur stated.
"What? I don't see anything wrong with my skin," William stated.
"You're burned, all over!" William paused, and said "Did you get any sleep last night?"
Arthur looked at his hands again and said, "Why are my hands smothered in oil?"
William stated, "I don't know, rather have you heard about the burning incident?" Arthur nodded.
"Well, let's just say he went out like a star..." Arthur was confused; day after day he's been having headaches and his parents grew angry at him for doing some past mistakes, as well as imagining a friend. Arthur had tried explaining that he is real, but it's hopeless.
One day, Arthur and his family took a trip to the town. Arthur hadn't seen William in three months. He noticed that there was a circus opening. "Mum, can we go to the circus?" The mom looked at him with an angry expression, but allowed it since it was a special day. As they went inside the circus, Arthur heard another voice in his head,
"Hello Arthur." He was shocked to hear this voice.
"William?!" Arthur closed his mouth and heard what the voice was going to say.
"Yes, it's me," Arthur was filled with joy, yet also confused as to how he was communicating with him through his mind.
"How are you doing this?"
It fell silent for one moment. "I guess you can say that I'm special." Arthur just decided to go along with it. He sat through the circus introduction and saw that this clown, otherwise known as "The Star" was starting to perform tricks.
"Look at this clown, thinking he's a star, why don't you show him who the real star is." Arthur smiled mischievously. As he got up out of his seat and snuck around the rows until he got close enough to the clown.
"I'm the star." Arthur picked up a container of oil that the clown had been planning to use for a later act. Arthur's grin grew wider into a giant scary looking smile. While the audience was distracted by the clown's hidden fireworks and air tricks, he poured some oil around the middle of the circus, and prepared a rope trap, circling it around the clowns feet, only to then pull out a match and toss it on the floor.
"Burn, you false star... Burn..." the oil caught on fire and the clown became scared, stopping his act.
"Fire! Put it out!" The clown was being burnt alive. While he tried to run for a bucket of water, the rope grabbed his legs and sent him upward, only to look like a burning monkey hanging upside down... Arthur ran out of the circus as well as the entire audience. He saw his parents run out of the circus, looking for him. Daniel and Margaret spotted him and were relieved to see that their little boy was still alive.
"Oh my! Your hands..." Arthur's hands were burnt at a third degree, but it didn't bother him.
"All stars have to burn out sometimes mum." His parents were worried for his well being. The next night when Arthur laid in bed accomplished about what he's done. He woke up to seeing William, instead shivering in fear when looking at him. He was burnt even more to the point where a human being shouldn't even be alive anymore, and he had rope marks around his ankles, and his eye sockets were hollow, making his eyes barely noticeable.
"Well, go tell your accomplishment boy, go tell the whole world, because I'm proud." Arthur was puzzled yet again.
"What's wrong with me? How did this all start?" There was knocking present.
"You seem to have a visitor, Arthur..." William climbed out of his window disappearing in the woods. Arthur's parents walked into his room along with a couple of soldiers.
"Is this the boy?" said the soldier. Arthur's mother nodded.
"Mum?! Why are you sending me to prison?" Arthur shouted as he was being dragged out.
"Oh, not prison, we need to get rid of corrupted bastards like you." Arthur was then thrown in a carriage and traveled back to the town. By the looks of angry expressions of crowds, and a large man wearing a black hood. It was a public execution.
Arthur began to regret what he had done, "Why, why William, I wanted to be a star, but not this way..." Arthur was placed on a stake, and torches were being lit.
"Now before you burn, just like the young boy and clown did, I have a question, why did you murder these two innocent people?" Arthur looked confused, he mouthed the word two. "ANSWER US!" said the executioner. Arthur noticed William in the crowd, except he looked back to normal as if they first met,
"You did swell, wonderful, but now you get to go out as a star..."
Arthur now realized, "The voices told me to, I told me to."
The executioner heard enough, "First imaginary friends, voices, and now hallucinations. What's next boy, Dragons?" The executioner lit up the wood, and Arthur began to shriek as he was burned. After ten minutes Arthur was confirmed as dead, his body looked exactly like William's last time, horribly burnt.
"Daniel, you were right, he was a nuisance..." The book was then closed, "And that was the tale of Arthur!" stated the old man. The children all got up and left except for one. This boy looked depressed, he went up to the old man,
"Why did the boy do all of those horrible things?"
The elder replied, "The voices told him to, and that voice's name was Schizophrenia..."
Moral Don't make assumptions based on one's innocent nature, because that innocent nature could fall into the wrong hands and become corrupted Happy Halloween :) -S7331