I have become very anti-Christmas over the years. I can explain why now but that will take too long. I will save that for another time. But I wish to share with you a short, short story about Christmas. A story that isn’t about the happiness and the joy of the holidays. This is a story about the dark side of it. Or really, just a story I wanted to write a twist on the holiday people love dearly.
Billy laid in his bed. He is too excited to sleep. Each time he closes his eyes, he sees Santa. He sees the bundle of presents he’ll get and hope that there are more than just his little mind can think of. Billy looks at his alarm clock. It is just past two in the morning. “Surely Santa should be arriving by now.” He thinks to himself. By some strange coincidence, that was the exact time Santa arrived at his house. Billy can hear the reindeer on the roof and listened as Santa walked from his sleigh to the chimney.
Billy shut his eyes tight. He didn’t want Santa to know he was awake and was waiting for him. He wasn’t going to be punished with a lump of coal in his stocking. His mom and dad told him Santa will punish the kids who tried to sneak a peek at him. Billy kept his eyes shut, squeezing tightly to not let the slightest bit of light in. Billy hears Santa inside the chimney. He can hear him making his way inside the house. He hears him pass through the living room. He’ll have to stop in dining room before he reaches the tree. The dining room has cookies and milk. Billy knows that is Santa’s favorites. Before he went to bed, he made sure that everything was right. He wanted Santa to be treated like a king. Billy couldn’t handle it anymore. He leaped from his bed and took the quietest steps that he’s ever taken. He slowing opened his door. The door was barely ajar but he could still see a slight but of Santa. Billy felt like he was the first kid to ever see Santa. Billy just kept his eye pressed against the door crack, watching Santa lay out the gifts till he vanished from view.
“Is that all the gifts I get!?” Billy shouted out. Santa wasn’t there very long. He stood by the door, his eyes still peering outside at the tree below. He listened as Santa got back into his sleigh and heard his take off, heading toward the next house. Billy wasn’t having that. He wasn’t going to have Santa leave him with just a small amount of gifts. Billy rushed to the tree. Sure enough, there were but only a few gifts. Billy was upset. He knows he’s been a good but all year long. He’s listened to his parents and was nice to the kids at school.
Billy looked around. There was no need to. He was checking for his parents who were still upstairs. “I can open one gift and they’ll never know…” Billy still took a glance around the room. No one was around. He tore into the presents, throwing the wrapping paper every which way. The box was heavy, which when something is heavy, it means good things to a kid.
Billy opened the gift and screamed in terror. It was the severed head of his mother and father. Billy dropped the presents. The decapitated heads of his parents rolled out, smearing blood across the floor. Billy ran upstairs to his parent’s room, hoping that it is just a dream. But no, it wasn’t. His parents were dead and Santa is the culprit. Billy sat on his parent’s bed, cry and screaming, trying to find some reason as to why this happened.
Billy felt a tap on his shoulder. It was warm and comforting. Billy turned around. Standing in front of him was Santa. He was drenched in blood. He smiled. The death of Billy’s parents was a joyful thing for him. But also with the death of his parents, it meant much worse for Billy. For when Santa catches a child spying on him, it isn’t just the parents that meet an untimely end, it’s also the child. Santa snatches Billy up, tossing him into his empty sack.
Billy is brought back to the North Pole. He is tossed into a room, a cold room with nothing inside. Billy is informed that he is now a slave to Santa. That the story of happy elves is garbage. There are no elves. The elves are defenseless children, children who were taken by Santa to work in his factory. Once a child becomes a member of his workshop, their memories from before fade away, only leaving them with the idea that they are and always have been elves at Santa’s workshop.