Visitors enter a spirit medium's parlor. Lots of old, dusty, creepy things on shelves and tables. A glowing picture on the wall shows Madame Sarita's grandmother.
Welcome back, my little friends. I am Madame Sarita, spirit medium and ghost talker, and I've invited you all here to help me rescue Sarah Beaumont, one of the spirits trapped in the Carnival of Souls. This year, I have finally made it to Spirit Medium Second Class, and I think we can rescue her once and for all. Do you remember the story of Sarah Beaumont?
(She waits for the audience response.)
Let me see if we can find someone to tell you the story.
Ghosts and specters of the Carnival of Souls Come out of your graves, come out of your holes Skeletons and zombies, please give us a fright And join in the story of this Halloween night Spirits from the dark, I now summon you To tells us a story so sad and so true Appear before us in your spectral shroud I give the dead voice, now speak ye, aloud!
Ssssss... Who disturbs the eternal slumber of the dead?
Know ye that a deadly curse falls upon all who call forth the shades of the afterworld!
Yes... By summoning us, you have forfeited your very soul!
Stop it, stop it, stop it. It didn't scare them last year, and it won't scare them this year.
I don't know, that one there looked like he was going to pass out! Hee hee!
Madame Sarita, why have you summoned us here? We're missing the undead party in the cemetery! The pirate skulls were about to sing the 'Monster Mash' for us!
I was wondering if you could tell the children the story of Sarah Beaumont again?
Sarah... *sob* Her story always makes me cry. At least it would if I still had tears.
Well, you've summoned the right Skull Spirits, because we can tell you all about it, because we were there when it all happened. Before the Carnival of Souls became what it is today, it was a travelling carnival back in the Wild West days. I was the lion tamer, and Gunther here was the strong man.
The carnival was run by a cruel, twisted man by the name of Marius Blackwood. And he coveted the star of our show, the beautiful and graceful high-wire walker Sarah Beaumont. But she spurned his advances, disgusted by his evil nature.
Now, Marius Blackwood came from a long line of witches and warlocks who dabbled in dark, forbidden arts. Marius knew that he could bend her body to his will with his powerful magic, but what good would it be to control her body if her heart were free to despise him? His obsession was so deep that he wanted to control her heart, as well.
So Marius Blackwood waited for Halloween night, when he could summon up the Dark Powers of the Earth. The nightmare spirits rose like mist out of the ground, and he made a pact with them. If he could force Sarah Beaumont to marry him by the stroke of midnight, the Dark Powers would wither her heart until it was as hard and black as his. Marius and Sarah would spread fear and sorrow across the badlands together as man and wife. But, they warned him, should he fail in this task, he would pay a terrible price indeed.
Cackling, Marius Blackwood rushed back to the carnival and caught Sarah Beaumont just as she was climbing the ladder to do her high-wire act. Gloating, he told her what he had planned for her, and he grinned evilly as he saw tears welling in her eyes. Sarah knew full well that Marius could make good on his threat.
As she walked out onto the high wire, Sarah's tears came faster and harder, and her heart became heavy with sorrow. So very heavy, in fact, that it snapped the high wire, and she fell down, down, down, down to her death.
Marius screamed with rage! His prize had been taken from him! And then, to his horror, he realized that he had failed to fulfill his end of the pact with the Dark Powers of the Earth. A mystical cloak of shadow fell over the carnival, sucking it down into the spirit world. Marius's terrified screams were the last anyone ever heard of him...alive.
Now, the carnival is damned to travel the nether regions beyond the veil, crossing into the mortal world only once a year - on Halloween night. Sarah, who died in such misery, haunts these darkened grounds as a specter of anguish, and Marius, damned to eternal agony, still seeks to possess her, for if he can force her to marry him on Halloween night, even as a pair of ghosts, his dark pact will be fulfilled, and he will be free to spread misery across the mortal world.
*sob* That story always makes me cry. *sniff* I bet these nice people would like to meet Sarah. I'll go get her...
Gunther makes for the exit, but Durgan floats in front of him.)
NO!!! Don't you remember last year? As soon as Sarah is visible to the living, Marius can find her.
Let him come.
I said, let him come. I think I know a spell that will banish Marius forever, and leave Sarah free to rest in peace. But I'm going to need some help. Kids, can you help me?
(Wait for kids to respond)
Okay, here's the plan. Durgan and Gunther, you go find Sarah and bring her here. Marius will soon follow, and fall right into our trap. I'll cast my spells and banish him to good. Then, Sarah will be free.
Madame Sarita, this sounds pretty dangerous. I hope you know what you are doing. He is still a powerful warlock.
She can do it, Durgan! I believe in her. Let's go get Sarah!
(Durgan and Gunther exit, and Madame Sarita prepares for the coming battle.)
As the kids are agreeing, Sarah appears on stage as if she were pushed.
But Gunther, Durgan! I can't come out! Marius will find me again. Don't you remember last year?
Hello Sarah. Don't be afraid. We're here to help you get rid of Marius once and for all.
What? No, this is a mistake! Marius is too powerful!
Ah, I have found you again, my sweet! After last year, I didn't think this Spirit Medium would actually summon you again. But it appears that I have forgotten how foolish mortals can be.
And you're as beautiful as ever, Sarah. I can finally claim you as my own and bring you into the underworld with me. Ha ha ha!
Not so fast, Marius! I'm not the same spirit medium you met last year. I'm not a spirit medium second class, and I've been studying up on how to beat you. Hocus Pocus!
A bolt of magic flies from Madame Sarita's fingers and engulfs Marius. He is shaken by the magic, but remains standing.
Oh, no, it didn't work! I'll try my backup spell! Abra Cadabra!
Another bolt of magic flies from Madame Sarita's fingers and engulfs Marius. He is shaken by the magic, but remains standing.
Foolish gypsy! You've studied for a year, but I've been studying for a century! Ala Kazam!
A terrifying sound brings a red and yellow bolt that strikes Sarita. She drops to her knees, stunned. Marius cackles triumphantly.
You appear to be out of surprises, gypsy! Well now it's my turn. This year, I brought some FRIENDS! Klaatu Verata Nekto!
Two ghostly skull-headed spectres fly into view and begin swooping around making gibbering noises. As Marius gloats, they swoop at Sarah, making her cower and tremble.
Allow me to introduce Jehosaphat, a dark skull-spectre from the underworld who hungers to devour the souls of the living. And his brother, Bob. They have been helping me gain strength so that I may return to life and leave the underworld forever. But they need someone to take my place in the underworld, and I can think of no one better than YOU, Sarah. Muah hah hah haa!
The skull spectres pounce on Sarah, and she staggers down under their attack.
No! Please... stop...
I'm too weak to save her, kids! I need your help! On the count of three, yell "BEGONE" three times. Ready? One... two... three!
Sarita and the kids yell BEGONE three times. On the first BEGONE, Bob staggers and flies off of Sarah. On the second BEGONE, Jehosaphat is blasted away. On the final BEGONE, Marius is dragged back into the spirit world as he curses them, the two skull-spectures swirling around him.
You can't banish Marius Blackwood that easily! I'll be back next Halloween, mark my words! Ha ha haaaa...(trails off)
Sarita slumps into her chair, and Sarah composes looks around, wondering if the spell has worked.
Whoo, that was close.
Did it work? Is he gone?
Yes, he's gone, but my spell wasn't powerful enough to banish him for good. (Turns to audience.) But thanks to you, we won't be seeing Marius for another year.
(To Sarita) Madame Sarita, I appreciate your efforts trying to free me from the clutches of that evil Marius Blackwood. (To audience) Good friends, I thank you for saving me yet again from a fate worse than the limbo I suffer in now. Marius's evil remains, but at least I will be free of him for another year. Thank you, and Happy Halloween!
Well, that took more out of me than I expected. I guess I'm just going to have to study harder for next year. Thanks for all your help! Have a safe and scary Halloween!