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Guest comic by Diana Nock

Panel 1.

A large panel taking up the space of a normal comic. The style is more realistic than the usual Broodhollow style, but still cartoony. A group of children in costume are walking barefoot through the dark street. They are chanting "Make my house from twigs and sticks, father father. I have no clay I have no bricks father sings." The words are written in yellow, in an uneven font that appears to have been handwritten quickly, giving a somewhat unsettling effect. There is no punctuation, which also adds to the strange feeling. The child in the front is wearing a simple white gown and a pillowcase over the head, tied in two knots on each side of the head. There's a crude, toothy mouth drawn on the pillowcase, and there are two dark, sunken eye holes ringed with dark circles. The child is carrying a branch with small yellow leaves on it, from which hangs a lit white candle in a mason jar. The second child in line is dressed like a scarecrow, with straw poking out of the bottom of its tunic, sleeves and neck hole. It wears a slumpy black hat with straw underneath it and wears a burlap sack over its head with dark eye holes and x-shaped stitches over its mouth. A third child wears a simple brown outfit and a paper bag over its head with two large, dark eye holes cut out messily. It is also carrying a leafy branch. A fourth child appears to be wearing a head covering made of small bricks, a fifth one is mostly covered by the text but appears to be wearing a red hood and a sixth one seems to be wearing a white sheet over its head and body with a noose around its neck.

Panel 2.

This panel is inset into the bottom right part of the first panel, as if the previous panel is framing it. The children continue walking in a line through the middle of the street, singing "Build my house and make it strong, mother mother. It will keep you winter long. Mother sings. In the evening tend the fire, careful not to let it higher." There are a handful of adults on the sidewalks. They stand with their backs or sides to the children, covering their faces with both hands. The candle in the jar shines brightly in the dark street. The antique shop's square windows are lit from inside, and there's a silhouetted figure inside looking outside.

Panel 3.

A third panel within the first panel, tucked in the bottom right corner and overlapping the second panel. The children sing "Good child sings." The hands of the first child carrying the branch and the jar with the candle are visible. Inside the lit antiques shop, Zane turns his head to watch the procession and looks curiously at the candle, one eyebrow raised.

Panel 4.

The costumed children are shown in silhouette passing in single file outside the street near the antiques shop. Zane, putting one hand to the back of his head, continues watching as he says "This town sure does put a unique twist on *Hallowe'en*..." A voice from offscreen says "What's that?" Mercy is clinging to Zane's shoulder, looking out the window with one wing wrapped partially around his neck.

Panel 5.

Zane looks to his right side. His expression is startled as he sees Iris standing with her back to the wall, both hands covering her face.

Panel 6.

Zane looks anxious and evasive, gritting his teeth and looking away from Iris. He says "N-nothing? I just made it up!" Iris doesn't change her position.

Panel 7.

The branch lies on the ground among other fallen brown, red and yellow leaves. The jar is also lying on its side, the wax from the candle covering the base in a large white splotch. The song continues, "In the morning early morning ashes ashes mother cries and father warning, bad child gone."

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