In the canon of mainstream American holidays, Halloween stands out as more than a little odd. Whereas Christmas, Thanksgiving, and even Valentine’s Day or the Fourth of July are all happy celebrations, Halloween is a holiday devoted to something most people would rather forget: fear. Around this time of year, though, it’s all about scaring and being scared. When else is it acceptable to terrorize little kids who come to your door looking for candy? When else would people shell out their hard-earned cash to be terrified in a haunted house? To the outside observer, it might seem like we all lose our minds on Halloween–which would fit right in with the frightening theme of this strange holiday.
Don’t get me wrong, though: I love Halloween. I think it’s good to get the stuffing scared out of you every once in a while. It’s a reminder that no, we’re not the masters of the universe, and there are still forces out there that are beyond our control. Although we might not be able to explain the spooky things that creep us out, they definitely scare us in very real ways. Creaking floorboards, fleeting visions of deceased ancestors, the feeling of goosebumps on your skin–fear is associated with an endless variety of concrete forms.
For today’s prompt, imagine a situation in which you or your character are confronted with something very frightening, but he/she experiences it through only one of his/her five senses. Describe the cause of the fear using only one sense, and show how you or your character reacts to it.