Something Wicked This Way Comes
by Ray Bradbury
Jim Nightshade Timeline and Summary
- We learn that Jim was born one minute after midnight, on Halloween.
- One October day, while Jim is lying on his lawn with Will, a lightning rod salesman approaches.
- Jim doesn't want to put the rod up on his house, but Will cajoles him into doing it.
- The boys jog to the library; they say hello to Will's father.
- That night, the boys see the handbills advertising the carnival.
- At three in the morning, the boys are woken up by the sounds of the carnival arriving. They sneak out and watch the carnival set up. Jim is intrigued.
- The next morning, everything seems normal. The boys greet Mrs. Foley at the carnival and warn her not to go into the mirror maze.
- Jim reluctantly allows Will to drag him home. On the way, they find the bag that used to belong to the lighting rod salesman.
- That night the boys investigate the carnival again. They watch Mr. Cooger grow young. Jim is fascinated by the carousel. He wants to use it to grow older.
- The boys follow Mr. Cooger to Miss Foley's house where they are framed as thieves.
- Back at the carnival again, Will has to stop Jim from trying to ride the carousel. They tussle and break the controls, which means that Mr. Cooger is stuck as a really old man.
- The boys call the police, and together everyone watches the performance of Mr. Electrico. The boys go home.
- Jim wakes up later that night; he and Will battle the witch and her silver slime.
- The next morning, Jim is skeptical when Will claims that the little girl running around is Miss Foley. They eventually try to rescue her, but fail.
- Both boys are terrified when the carnival marches into town. They hide in the grille and listen to Will's father try to stave off Mr. Dark.
- That night in the library, both boys get a history lesson from Charles about the carnival. When Mr. Dark shows up, they run into hiding and are eventually captured.
- The boys are taken to the wax museum. Jim is left in there while Will goes to help his father shoot the witch.
- Jim ends up riding the carousel, but Will pulls him off.
- After the carnival has been defeated, everyone returns home.