I knew something was amiss when I didn't hear Stan crowing to the rising sun. He was rather nervous when he greeted me. He didn't eat his morning snack. And the hens were rather skittish, too. The birds were oddly quiet as I did the morning chores in the bird building. Although Gramps the old timer cockatiel was awake which was unusual. He usually sleeps during all the sweeping and mopping and cleaning of cages only to awaken when I shake the seed cups. Even the noisy Oscar was unusually quiet. And I was worried the gang may be ill. As I worked, I grew warm and hung my jacket on the door knob. I pushed up my long sleeves and began cleaning seed cups. I washed, rinsed, and dried for a few minutes and my skin grew even warmer. I glanced at the tiny box heater and made sure the setting was on low. I straightened my legs and looked around. I felt a cold draft suddenly cool my sweaty face. Thankful yet slightly worried, I glanced around and saw all the windows were secure. Suddenly the parakeets went in a panic and flung themselves to the other side of the cage. Then all the birds went in a panic. Shrieks and screams filled the air. Outside the dog began to bark. Alone and armed with a mop I turned to survey the cages around me. Sudden silence made the hairs on the back of my neck rise. Frigid air lifted my hair. The jacket on the doorknob began to swing slowly at first then rapidly, yet staying place as if someone held the material in place. I wanted to scream and opened my mouth but made no sound. I could not get air in my lungs. The frigid air constricted my airway. I remembered the two graves located near the creek. Large, smooth boulders marked the place where unknown bones rested. A reminder of people who died and were loved. Holding the mop like a weapon I looked around. Slowly I turned. The birds were very quiet. Very still. A soft moan made my skin tingle. I turned my head toward the sound. Then I saw the creature. A most horrifying sight. Smurfette wearing hunter orange. May your Halloween be as scary as mine.