AUDIO STORY 7
Welcome to the TAMFEST Halloween Audio Trail
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“When, glimmering thro' the groaning trees,
Kirk-Alloway seem'd in a bleeze:
Thro' ilka bore the beams were glancing,
And loud resounded mirth and dancing.”
You’ve made it all the way to the haunted Alloway Kirk and the second last stop on The Haunted Adventures of Maggie and Meg. You might be familiar with the Alloway Kirk from Tam O’Shanter’s story. This place is full of dark secrets and devilish stories.
Legend has it that if you are in the kirk on Halloween night when the clock strikes midnight, you will be transported to a supernatural realm and join the spirits and creatures as they carry out their biggest night of spells, curses and rituals.
Would you be brave enough to watch? Let me set the scene.
The night is a tapestry of mist and moonlight and an eerie glow hangs around the kirk. From outside, flashes of shadows and movement can be seen through the windows. Already the sound from inside has reached you. It sounds busy and lively with music that is both enchanting and unsettling. It sounds like a ceilidh, of sorts. The air feels heavy with anticipation, as you walk towards the doors.
You reach out and pull with both hands on the heavy black handles, as the doors creak open. Are you prepared for what you are about to see?
The kirk is bursting with spirits and creatures of all kinds, all up to some mischief or other. You scan round the room, daring to take in the scene in front of you.
Witches with their faces hidden beneath hooded cloaks, stirring cauldrons filled with bubbling, luminous brews and muttering ancient incantations. Nannie at the heart of their coven, leading the others in sinister spell after spell. Goblins and warlocks bickering over who should be in charge and picking their teeth with the leftover bones of their feast. Spirits of long-departed souls chasing each other through the air, swooping high and low and whispering their sad stories to anyone who will listen. A group of skeletal musicians playing haunting melodies on ancient instruments carved from bones, teeth and hair. In the centre of the floor, a mismatch group whirling and swaying to the music, made up of ghost like figures, all looking pale with dark eyes that seem to look but not see. Amongst them is a bride in a dirty, tattered wedding dress and as you watch their dancing becomes more and more manic. In the corner, you spot a huge black beast with a salivating mouth full of sharp teeth and the blackest beadiest eyes watching.
You start to think perhaps you shouldn’t be there. Perhaps you should close the door and quietly slip away. But your feet are frozen to the ground - mesmerized by the sounds and sights.
“As Tammie glowr'd, amaz'd and curious,
The mirth and fun grew fast and furious:
The piper loud and louder blew,
The dancers quick and quicker flew.”
You notice the beast in the corner sniffing and snarling. It’s caught a scent. Your scent. It’s eyes lock on to you. Something tells you it’s time to go! You turn and run just in time. The beast lets out a terrible howl and the whole horrifying gathering is after you. The chase is on!
You don’t dare look behind you and just keep moving as fast as you can. Faster than you ever have before! If you can just make it to the river…they won’t dare to cross the water. It is their one and only weakness.
You try to ignore the ignore the building roar of enraged and unhinged cries from behind you and just focus on the river.
The water gets nearer and nearer. You are almost at the river, when...
(Meg barks) - MEG!!!! Meg!! Come back! Meg, stop!!
Quickly - we need to catch Meg!