Sunday, December 30, 2012


By Zo'Tomana:

Change It

Warnie slowly crept downstairs. He couldn’t believe what this guy had dared do at this time of year, the traitor, dictator, ‘cool dude’. If he had his way, there would be a different tune being sung right now among his friends, but this guy just couldn’t let the song change. Warnie slid a long, thin knife from out his sleeve as he crouched over his target.
            “Wake up!” he shouted, bringing a hard fist across his target’s face. Warnie shoved the waking writer at the computer on the desk. “Change it!”
            “Change what?” the writer dabbed blood from his nose with his hand, his eyes still unfocused from waking up.
            “Change the theme! We do NOT want to write about Christmas AGAIN!”


By Alex Humva:

It was with small steps she walked across the snow. She placed every foot in front of her with simple, cautious, grace. The twilight lit sky had vanished by now, replaced with the crisp clean light of a moon and the stars. The tranquility of the moment defied description, instead choosing to simply exist, rather than confine itself to simple human understanding. She truly knew peace, out here where no one ever looked. Knew peace from the rest of the corrupt world around her.
She laid down, her soft velvet lined coat sinking into the snow. She hardly noticed the cold that was starting to come through her boots. She stared up at the stars with wonder and envy, imagining what it must be like to be one, to always be a beacon of light. Perhaps they were angels, sent from heaven to shine in the night. If only she could know one. She closed her eyes, wishing.

Instead of an angel though, she was greeted with memories. Memories of a cozy room, of her and her friend. They had always been the best of friends, and that night, she went to his house. It was Christmas Eve, and she might of drank some of the more potent egg nog before going over. She truly felt at home with him, but his parents didn't see it that way. They had come in, and... she cringed at the memory. So much screaming. She went to her parents, and they had little more to say. So she left her house, to the place where she truly knew peace. Came here and reflected on what exactly the holidays meant. Reflected on what exactly her life meant.

Her coughing broke her train of thought. She stood, still coughing, wondering why she truly came here. She slipped her hand into her coat, feeling the cold metal of a gun barrel. Silently, she took off her scarf, her hat, her coat, her boots. Soon she was dressed lightly, modestly but certainly not suitable for this sort of weather. She closed her eyes once more, feeling the cold metal in her hands. Finally, she let a breath out, firing into the ice beneath her.

Her ears were too numb at this point to hurt as the sound went off. She instantly fell through, sinking rapidly into the icy water. With no air in her lungs she sank quickly, the water rapidly sapping all heat out of her uninsulated body. She smiled, though, even as death began its gentle embrace. She didn't panic, didn't shake as her body reflexively gulped in the lake water. She just smiled, knowing that she was going somewhere else. Somewhere where she'd be joyous. Somewhere where she could celebrate Christmas.


by Peach 00:

The smell of a fresh pine tree made her smile. The dazzling red and green ornaments hung on every branch, the stockings hung on every window in the house, and the presents underneath the tree. The dancing firelight in the fireplace warmed her while she gazed at the flickering lights intertwined around branches on the Christmas tree. There were the delicate glass snowflake-shaped ornaments hanging at the top of the tree, while surrounding them were simplistic scarlet-red and emerald-green ornaments.

It was 3 A.M., and Brenda Hamilton couldn't sleep. She was surprising herself as it was – she was eighteen years old, and she was excited about Christmas for the first time in years. She chuckled to herself, remembering the previous year or two when she was your typical Christmas scrooge. But this year, something was different. She couldn’t quite put her finger on it, but it made her enjoy the holiday spirit more than ever.

She walked around her house for a moment. In the living room, the seven foot tall pine stood in the living room, with a small amount of presents positioned underneath it. Special ornaments hung on the tree, specifically a few slightly strange but still wonderful ones. One of the first ones she noted was the Tinker Bell ornament at the top of the tree – she remembered her family buying it on a trip to Disney World. Tinker Bell was one of her favorite Disney characters, and she practically begged her parents to buy it for her. She smiled to think it had really be eight years ago that she had last went to the amusement park.

She had outgrown all those childhood things…Barbie dolls, crayons, and everything being pink. She was grown-up, and had gone straight to perfume and make-up and finally driving and owning her own car. Next year she was prepared to go to college – it was such a strange thing to think that she had really grown up that fast.

She took a sip of her hot chocolate and savored the beverage temporarily. She continued to gaze at the Tinker Bell ornament; the short dress sparkled emerald green for a moment when the firelight hit it just right. She took another long sip of her hot chocolate as she gazed at the scarlet and gold embroidered stockings on the walls.

Brenda began to smile more when she realized that there were some things you never outgrow, specifically Christmas, and perhaps for her even Tinker Bell. With that last thought in mind, she went back to bed, turned on her favorite television show, and waited for Christmas day to arrive.


By Nick/Zarayna:

     “I thought you would not come,” I say stonily, my eyes fixed on the man walking in the door. He pauses and snorts.
     “To your mass? I would never.”
     I raise my eyebrows slightly, but say nothing, turning away. One in the morning is not a time for arguments over religion.
     “Where are you sleeping?” I say over my shoulder. This man, a cousin of mine, is a rather renowned couch-surfer.
     “I thought I’d see how a rectory bed feels.”
     “Very well. There are ten bedroom, and I think a few are still usable. Good night.”
     Not very charitable of me, I know as I stalk up a flight of stairs to my room, calling over my shoulder, “guest rooms are on the third floor,” but I really don’t have the patience for much else. 1 Am on Christmas morning, my fifth Christmas as a priest, and this man has to show up. Some things are hatred, others are paranoia, but others are quite sensible.
     Do I feel angry with my cousin? Yes. His reputation has been smeared in the mud more than once; few people are willing to take him in for the night, as he has a history of thievery especially from benefactors. Some say he likes to get violent, others that he owns at least one gun. He detests religion in general, but my Church in particular. Still, I guess he figured that blood runs thicker than water and that as a priest I’m bound to be charitable. He was right, unfortunately. I can’t refuse a person like that. Hopefully I’ll wake up in the morning with little or nothing missing. I sigh as I reach my room; already the morning hours and I have to still say Compline. I open my breviary to the right page, already murmuring the opening words before my eyes land on the page. Always a temptation to rush through it and go to bed, but now for once I have something to pray for.
     Christmas is on a Wednesday. Technically I should say Sunday’s night prayer, but I don’t feel like it. God will forgive my irregularity, I figure as I begin to murmur the 30th Psalm. My legs feel tired, and I sit down on my bed. By the end of the first Glory Be I’m on my back, trying to keep my eyes open.
     “Into your hand, Lord, I commend my spirit,” I murmur, the last thing I’m aware of.


     The man slipped up the rectory stairs, silently. His face under the grey hoodie was blank, but his eyes flitted around, and he winced at every creak. The stairs in this old structure were warped, and looked like something out of the 19th century. His hand slipped to the knife in his pocket, and he looked resolutely at the doorway at the top.
     His car was in the driveway outside, old, uncomfortable, and cold. It would have been safer for his cousin if he had stayed in it. It had been a year since anyone had let him sleep in a bed, even moe since most of his family had deigned to speak to him. The priest was the flower of their family. He had taken him in. The hospitality did not serve to conflict the man about what he was going to do, it only served to spur him on.
     He pause in the hallway, looking up and down. At first the line of doors was intimidating, but only one was open, and out of it came the soft glow of a lamp. Was the priest still awake? He moved forwards, pausing at the door. Peering in, he saw, lying across the unmade bed the form of the priest, opened breviary still in his hand. He was snoring gently.
     “Someone couldn’t stay up through prayer time,” the man murmured, stepping forward and drawing his knife.
    Perhaps it was the loose board his foot trod on more heavily than usual. Perhaps it was God or His angel, but the eyes of the priest snapped open, and he gazed calmly at the intruder, and at his knife. There was a pause as the man froze, gazing at the now woken priest. Then he leaped forwards with a snarl.
    Something hit his square in the face, and he staggered back a step as the breviary landed on the floor. One hand clasped to his face he stepped forwards, only to have a pillow hit him. Then a black form slammed into him, and he gasped as the impact knocked the wind out of him. The priest pressed his advantage, weak from sleep through he was, grabbing the man by the front of his shirt and throwing him with all his strength. He felt something catch his fall, only to collapse. Something prickly. There was a crunch of a glass ball, and he rolled away from the fallen Christmas tree. The priest advanced, something in his hand from the bedside table. The man got to his feet to find his cousin, armed with a long, thick candlestick facing him warily. Neither said a thing; combatants are not want to talk. His guest advanced suddenly, stabbing with his knife in an attempt to gain distance. The priest stepped to one side and swung, releasing his two hand grip to hold the candlestick only with his bottom hand. The extra few inches told all, and the weapon connected squarely with his foe’s head. A second blow followed, sending the would be assassin to the ground. No sooner had his cousin hit the floor than he was seized and dragged out of the room. The priest marched him down the stairs, until they came at length to the door, opening it and thrusting his prisoner out it, the priest viewed him coldly. Then he stuck the knife that he had taken back into his cousin’s belt.
     “Get out of here. It is a present that I am not reporting this. Merry Christmas.”
     The door slammed, leaving the man standing groggily in the early Christmas morning.


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