Boo Year's Eve

Boo Year's Eve

"Boo Year's Eve" (1998) is the twenty-second in the "Graveyard School" series of novellas written by Tom B. Stone.

Plot summary

Jordie Flanders is being forced to go to puke-perfect Polly Hannah's formal New Year's Eve party. At first, Jordie assures Polly that she isn't going, until Polly gets her mother to call Mrs. Flanders, Jordie's mother, and tell her that Jordie is invited. When Jordie refuses to go, Mrs. Flanders threatens to take away her computer. Jordie gives in, and her mother tells her that they'll go dress shopping the next day. However, Jordie is determined to find a way out of going to the party.

The next day, Jordie and Mrs. Flanders go to nearly a dozen stories empty handed, until they find a secondhand clothing store. Inside, Jordie finds a really old dress, one made of blue velvet, inside a wardrobe. She gets the dress because Mrs. Flanders hates it, but Jordie notices the scent of honeysuckle seemed to follow her out of the store, but forgets about it.

A week later, after spending most of their Christmas vacation with their grandparents, Jordie and her teenage sister, Jessica, are on their way home on New Year's Eve. Jordie is trying her best to stall their return trip, if not for the efforts of Jessica (whom Jordie suspects was bribed by their mother to bring her home in time for Polly's party). When they do get on the bus home, it crashes in the middle of nowhere, and Jordie, Jessica, and the rest of the passengers are forced to walk the rest of the way on the dark and rainy winter road.

Jordie gets lost and stumbles upon a large mansion where a couple are having a New Year's party. She asks for shelter and follows the housekeeper, Martha, inside, when she notices Martha disappear before her eyes! Of course logical Jordie assumes she's merely delusional and tired after wandering around on a dark road and imagined it. She then finds Jessica asleep in the one of the rooms and cannot wake her up. After drying off, Jordie learns that the only pair of clothing that didn't get wet was the blue velvet dress. With nothing else to wear or do, Jordie changes into the dress and heads for the party, when she meets a mysterious girl who runs off before Jordie can learn her name.

Down at the party, Jordie sees that everyone is dressed in old-fashioned clothing and assumes it is a costume party. As she tries to make her way through the party guests, the only people who notice her seem more afraid then annoyed when she bumps into them, but practically no one is even aware of her existence. She then meets the girl from before, who introduces herself as Dolores. Dolores' aunt and uncle are the ones holding the party, but she wasn't allowed to come down, so she convinces Jordie to help her play some tricks.

Dolores knocks a woman's glass out of her hand, and she tells Jordie to blow out some candles on a table. When she does so, a man turns the table over as if he saw a ghost. Dolores is then dragged away by her governess, Margaret, and listening to Dolores scream and argue, Jordie learns that Dolores' parents had died. Margaret then locks Dolores in her room, and she askes Jordie to unlock it for her. When she does, Jordie sees the exact same wardrobe from the clothing store inside the room, and notices that Dolores is putting on honeysuckle perfume. Dolores then notices Jordie's dress and says she wants it. When she refuses, Dolores locks her in the wardrobe and won't let her out until she does. Jordie tricks her, and then locks her inside the wardrobe as well, and even when Dolores gives the dress back, Jordie won't let her out. That's when the hands come out of the walls and try to grab Jordie and she realizes that Dolores is a ghost.

Jordie runs down the hallway and gets attacked by a skeleton and snakes coming out of the carpet. She tries to wake up her sister but has to drag her out of the room. When they make it to the staircase, Jordie screams and cries to get the partygoers attention, but nothing. Then Dolores runs down the hallway, followed by Margaret, and all four of them fall of the balcony and that's when Jordie realizes that the partygoers and Margaret are ghosts as well.

The next morning, Jordie and Jessica awake in the mansion, now abandoned and empty, when she hears Dolores ask "did you have fun at my party?". Jordie looks up and sees a portrait of Dolores and Margaret, with Dolores wearing Jordie's dress. Jordie and Jessica leave the mansion, and they learn the bus they were supposed to be on never left the station. The regular bus never takes that route because of the old Perdido mansion, where a young girl and her governess died at a party.

Meanwhile, the partygoers are having their breakfast and discussing the ghostly girl they saw at the party last night, when the scent of honeysuckle fills the air for a minute...

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