I welcome you, this Christmas Eve, to the opening of my Christmas one-shot.
There may be some intentional tense switching, it's intentional because in certain scenes I switch tense mid scene to show what's happening from another point of view rather than the speakers. Gives it a more edgy actiony feel.
This is Rated R for scenes of intense violence, disturbing scenes and someone saying mean things to a Chansey.
I'm Dreaming Of A Red Christmas
I stepped out of my cabin, silently cursing the white blanket asphyxiating the forest, denying the trees light they so surely deserve.
I grumbled audibly at the snowy scene presented to me. Winter is the worst time of year because temperatures get so low that you can no longer function properly. People become unnaturally cheerful towards anyone they so happen to meet and children become so hyperactive, it's a wonder they don't fall into sugar-induced comas.
Despite all this I make it my routine to go into town each morning because one needs to eat and cabin air becomes awfully stale if you stay there for too long. Especially in winter when the snow and rain soak the wood, giving it a horrible smell. So I pull up the collar of my trench coat, perhaps the only time of year I can do this and not look overly suspicious.
I set off, leaving footsteps in the snow, much to my annoyance. I am someone not used to leaving tracks. My road, obscured as it was by snow, was littered by trash blown out to the forest in the storm that hit a few days ago. Small items like books and pillows and most oddly, a calendar. I bent down to look at it, 'The twenty-fourth of December' I read. "Well doesn't time fly!" I said aloud, "It's the day before Christmas. I do believe I should spread some Christmas 'cheer'." I felt... gladdened by this news, the chance to spread chaos and discord into the hearts of the Azalea Township was one I never passed up. And a family discovered; presents unopened and blood spilt would do just fine.
I got back up and kept on walking, formulating a plan as I went.
Perhaps the most important part of the plan is the way you carry it out. How you enter and leave the house, how you cover your tracks after you've finished. If you're careless there, you get caught, it's as simple as that. The execution is all in fun and can be improvised if needs be, although thinking about the various methods of capture, torture and murder can be great fun. Always remember the six p's 'Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance' and when you do what I do, it helps when you can tie up all the loose ends. Loose ends equal problems, and problems equal police interference, and police interference leads to life imprisonment...
But first, I need a target and without a target, I can't work out the exactities of the plan; is it a couple or is it a family with three or four children? I need to know each of their own specific problems so I'll know the certain ways of dealing with them.
And before I knew it, I had reached the town gates, the cold, stalwart guardians. One quick nod to Ernie, the diminutive Raichu gate guard, and they parted allowing me entry.
"Good morning sir," Ernie said, pulling off his cap as he spoke, only to replace it after I gave another short nod.
I wandered the familiar streets of Azalea, the two storey houses of stone and wood on either side. The cobbled pavement under my feet felt oddly calming, the many times I had walked these streets, thinking, stealing and sneaking into buildings in the dead of night, murdering the occupants, it felt as if I was made for life in the hustle bustle of the townships. I also liked solitude however, I do believe I couldn't live with hundreds of people in close proximity to me with neighbours forcing their company and greetings upon me. No no. That wouldn't do.
When I reached the building, with it's glowing Christmas lights and open sign on the door, I took a deep breath through my nose; first of all to help me relax slightly and secondly to take in the wonderful smell of bread I had come to enjoy. Not wanting the cold to bite at my green hands, I pushed the door open with one of my long white legs and joined the queue already formed.
'Come on. Hurry up. You're only ordering bread, it's not like they haven't already prepared it and your waiting for it to bake. Or are you buying the entire stock?'
I leaned right and sighed, a rotund, pink Chansey headed the queue. 'Fat cow, why don't you fill your voluminous stomach somewhere else. The pie shop up the road should be more your place.'
After the gluttonous monster, hands laden with goods, had left, the line moved a lot quicker.
"Welcome back sir, the usual I presume?" asked the Golduck employee.
"Yes, that will do..." I answered.
Her royal blue webbed hands passed me a bread roll and I passed back the exact price as to forgo the necessity of handing over change. I made the transaction as quick as possible, as if to show the fellow patrons that that is how you properly and efficiently buy things.
Leaving the shop with my hands wrapped around the warm bread roll, I began eating, feeling the warmth spread from my stomach and fill me with a great urge. That insatiable urge of malice and spite, the hunger for death. I now only needed a conduit in which to exude this malevolence.
My search lead me to the high street. Shoppers rushing back and forth between shops, trying to get some last minute bargains. One shopper in particular caught my eye, a fellow Gallade with so many bags in hand that it almost looked comical. It appears that he has now only started to buy all his Christmas gifts. I sighed and shook my head. Such disorganisation cannot be tolerated, more so by an individual in my own species pool. Let us see if his skills can match my own.
I hung around the high street waiting for him to finish up and go home, and when he finally did, I followed and noted the house number and street name. It was far too early to start, instead I felt for any more minds inside the home, the amount of presents bought suggests a larger family, and I'm pretty sure I saw children's toys in one of the bags, indicating one very spoilt child or a few children. A few seconds passed by in silence as I stood concentrating. My instincts were correct; my sweep found two adult minds and three juvenile minds. Perfect. My plan was already unfolding..
I looked upwards to seek the sun's location in the sky, it was nearing the horizon, soon.
* * *
The sun was safely hidden beyond the horizon and darkness had settled all throughout the house. Nothing was stirring, not even a mouse.
I crept from my hiding place in the targets garden and approached the back door silently. Extending the dark green blade on my right arm I slid it roughly into the lock and twisted hard breaking the entire mechanism. I opened the door and stayed stock still for one minute, listening and feeling for movement. When I had believed that my entry was satisfactory, I crept on through the kitchen and into the living room, which was stuffed with various decorations hanging from the roof and leaning off the walls; all glinting in the sparse moonlight sweeping in through the window.
'Christmas time...' I sighed, I didn't celebrate the holiday myself, there's something about good will and generosity that doesn't appeal to a soul like mine, that and there's no one that would want to extend good will to me. '...What is that I smell? Mistletoe and wine?' Laid out the mantelpiece was a glass of red wine and next to it a plate of sugar cookies. 'This family really is wasteful, a whole plate of cookies AND a full glass of wine. They're supposed to put themselves away are they...'
I snapped out of my train of thought and felt for the source of the noise. The two adults were making their way downstairs. 'But for what purpose? It hasn't passed midnight yet.' I had to think quickly, making my footsteps light I placed two chairs in the centre of the room and got back into the kitchen, leaving the door open, staying hidden.
"Oh, I can't wait for the kids to see what I bought them. I really have outdone myself this year," came a feminine voice in a hushed whisper.
"Me too, their little faces will light up." This voice was lower and more masculine.
"I couldn't wait, I had to go out and buy all my presents as early as I could, whilst still being sensible. I'm not a crazy person who leaves their Christmas lights up all year round."
This earned a chuckle from the masculine voice. "Er... yeah, me too, Last minute shopping, like you said, only crazy people do that."
The couple rounded the corner of the stairs and entered the living room, the feminine voice said, "Let's have a bit of light in here." And she switched the light on.
The Gallade from earlier, dressed in some rather fetching cowboy pyjamas, let out a yawn and opened a cupboard on the back wall near the kitchen door and got out the presents he had bought earlier, having taken the time to wrap them when his family weren't in, and started placing them under the tree. His wife, a shapely Gardevoir dressed in a pink silk gown, did similar, placing the presents she had bought around the tree also.
"Er, hunny, did you move these chairs here before you went to bed?" asked the Gallade.
The Gardevoir looked up and brushed her dark green hair out of her face. "Chairs? No, I assumed you put them there."
"No I went upstairs before you did." You could almost hear the cogs ticking in his mind, slowly he was piecing something together. "Hunny, get upstairs and get the kids. NOW."
The sound of an unsheathing blade rang out in the living room. "I wouldn't do that if I were you," I said in a deep rumbling voice. I stepped out from the kitchen and slammed the door to the hall shut with telekinesis. "Why don't you sit down, sir? You must be tired after all that last minute shopping you've been doing." I smiled malevolently, red eyes piercing my target.
His wife took her eyes off me and stared instead at her husband. "Last minute shopping? You mean you only bought these gifts today?" she asked, feeling somewhat hurt, then in a mock masculine voice she said, "Oh, this'll do, the wife won't care what I buy her and as long as I buy the kids some toys it'll be all right." She went silent for a moment, her husband opened his mouth to speak but she continued. "Do we mean that little to you? That you'll go out and buy anything you think 'will do' and leave it to see if we like it or not."
'Typical women,' I thought. 'Death is staring her in the face and all she can think about is shopping and gifts.'
"You're actually listening to this mad man!? He, he's insane! Clearly raving. You know me, why would I leave something like this to the last minute? Answer me that." He was almost shouting, waving his arms about in extravagant gestures. They had forgotten all about the home invader, the one who brought about this spat.
I focused my mind on the female and thought, 'I have been watching your husband. I saw him leave a house that wasn't your own, a house I later found out belongs to a twenty something woman. Who knows what he was getting up to in there. Then I see him enter the high street and buy your presents, and not the good part of the high street, the back end where all the cheap shops are. He comes out with bags bursting with cheap crap and he smiles to himself. Then I see him come back home and wrap his cheap gifts and wash his perfume soaked clothes, I saw him burn a lipstick stained shirt in the garden. I wouldn't trust that man, is he really the same man you married all those years ago?'
The obvious lie about her husband cheating brought her anger levels up, she was biting on her fingernails trying to contain her rage. While all this time her husband had been ranting about how he loved this family and the kids and would never do anything to hurt the family in any way. His wife wasn't listening, she was listening to the lies I was spinning in her mind. I was twisting her around my little finger, and if I was lucky, she would do a part of the job for me.
The couple argued, and I yawned loudly, they stopped mid rants and turned to me. "Sorry, did I disturb you? Oh yes right, I broke into your home, and now I think it best that you two should sit down on the chairs I laid out."
The two adults stared at me still, not moving. The Gallade spoke up, "We're two people, and your only one, you don't stand a chance against us in a square fight, so why are you making the demands?"
This one certainly is foolish. "I'm making demands because I can, you will follow them because I want you to."
"That doesn't answer any questions! Right then, I'll take you myself." The Gallade unsheathed both blades and lunged into the kitchen doorway, only to hit air, righting himself, he quickly found me again and struck with his right blade. I blocked easily, as I did with each subsequent blow he threw at me. "Come on, your making this too easy. Actually try to hit me," I goaded. The Gallade attempted a double blow but I parried them both and span him around, a quick knock to the nerve cluster at the base of the neck and he was out cold on the kitchen floor. I walked into the living room to find the Gardevoir hiding behind a sofa.
"It seems my sweat is well and truly intact, I've had more challenging fights from old men."
Peeking above the arm rest, the Gardevoir plucked up the courage to ask me a question, "Is he... dead?"
"Heavens no. I merely knocked him out, he'll be fine until he comes around. Now would you like to seat yourself upon the chair, or would you like me to do the same to you, as you can see, I have no qualms with that."
She slowly rose from behind the sofa and made her way to the chair, she looked... symmetrical, I suppose that was the only way I could put it, it was after all the only thing I noted about her which was remotely interesting. She sat on the chair and I guided her hands behind her back and tied them with a rope I had brought with me. "Now stay there like a good girl, and maybe I'll leave you until last."
I left the room and appeared a few moment later dragging the body of the Gallade and tying his hands to the back of his chair, the sight of her unconscious husband brought a few tears to the Gardevoir's eyes.
I looked at the bound couple and smiled, I leant down so I was face to face with the wife. "Do you have any spare rope? I seem to have ran out..."
She merely grumbled.
"Do you want me beat it out of you? Now I ask you again, do you have any spare rope?"
Begrudgingly she answered, 'In the bottom drawer in the kitchen.'
"Thank you. Do you now see how this relationship works, you tell me what I want to hear, you don't get hurt." I turned away and left the room; locating the rope, I placed it on the table in the kitchen and walked back into the living room..
"You don't happen to have any other chairs do you... about three will do." As her eyes widened as I said this, I couldn't help but laugh.
"Don't you dare touch them! I'll kill you if touch a single hair on..."
"Dear girl you bore me, so predictable. From now on, you don't speak." And this wasn't a demand, this was a statement, I was literally keeping her mouth shut. "I'll find them myself, shall I?"
I took my leave from her presence and entered the hall, pictures of a happy family littered the walls and the bannister was decorated with tinsel wrapped in between the support beams. "You really do have a lovely home!" I shouted. "These pictures look great; professionally done?"
"Oh, come on. Are you going to sulk all night?"
I took a step onto the stairs, the carpet feeling soft on my feet, and walked the short distance upstairs, straight across from the stairs was the bathroom and to the left, three doors all lead off into different rooms. The one closest to the bathroom was opened and a large unoccupied double bed was visible, clearly not that room. The second closest was closed, I opened the door a crack and saw a colourful blue and green bed with a sleeping Ralts beneath polka dot covers. The furthest away from the bathroom contained a bunk bed in which twin Kirlia lay dormant in wait for the morning sun.
I crept back downstairs and entered the kitchen, pulling three chairs from the table, I placed them all opposite where the mother and father sat; bound.
"I'll just go and wake them up shall I?" I asked the mother, laughing. She attempted to shout her objections but that's quite hard with your lips stuck together. "I'll take that as a yes then."
I retraced my steps back upstairs and entered the smallest child's room. Upon a closer inspection of the room I concocted a new plan. The Ralts had a Santa hat and beard on his desk, donning them, I awoke the child.
Bleary eyed and visibly tired, the child looked at my form "S-Santa?" it spoke inquisitively.
"Why yes young one. It is I, Santa. I came round a little earlier than usual to ask you something special, an errand if you will. Santa would like you to go downstairs and close your eyes before you enter the living room, you will find a chair in the middle of the room, sit on the chair and don't move or say anything. Do this and Santa will give you a special prize." Smiling at my brilliant improvisation, I watched the little one scurry out of the room.
I removed the hat and beard, the twin Kirlia no doubt know that such a being like Santa Claus couldn't possibly exist. I do believe the only way I could make them do what I wanted was with some 'subtle persuasion'.
Kicking the door in, thus waking and disorientating the occupants in one fell swoop I kept my eyes on the Kirlia in the bottom bunk and my mind on the Kirlia in the top bunk.
"You two, listen to me as I will not repeat myself!"
The twins scurried back so they were pressed against the wall, "W-what do y-you want?" one asked fearfully.
"I want you two; to go downstairs, keep your mouths shut, and to sit on the chairs I've set out making no attempt to talk to anyone else that may or may not be sat with you. If you break these rules I will kill you." I took a step back and beckoned for them to get going, as they got to the door I unsheathed a blade, the sound garnering a whimper from the pair.
Laughing, I followed suit and made my way back downstairs.
* * *
The sight before me gladdened my very soul (regardless of how blackened and tarnished it was). A distressed family; a concerned and sweaty mother, an unconscious, unmoving father, and oblivious young Ralts and the scared, helpless twin Kirlia. Each one of them tied by rope to their respective chair and each one of them with looks horror on their faces (with the exception of the smiling Ralts and the unconscious Gallade).
Looking down upon them all, Husband and wife sat next to each other, the kids sat opposite, I decided that I would start with the children.
Youngest to oldest, it's only fair.
The Ralts, who had taken to humming during his brief stay on the chair, suddenly stopped when I looked at him.
"Your not Santa, you don't have a beard," the child said, looking at my chin.
"I shaved. Now it's time for your surprise, I want you to close your eyes and lift your head so it looks like your looking at the ceiling." The child, not wanting to disappoint Santa, did as he was told and lifted his head, making his neck protrude invitingly towards me.
"Look at your son, mother, look how he obeys. Isn't he a good boy, he's being a good boy for Santa. And good boy's get special prizes, don't they mother."
"You're insane, I'm not your mother! Stay away from my baby"
"I thought I told you to be QUIET! Bad boy's get lumps of coal in their stocking, don't they mother, you liked giving me coal didn't you mother, you liked breaking my spirit by breaking my heart. All I wanted was a glimmer, a RAY, of hope. But wouldya give it to me, no, you had to take it away from me, now I take it all away from you. Starting with your precious baby."
The Ralts suddenly stopped looking up and instead grasped his throat. The Ralts' thin arms grabbing at his neck as if something was in there, or something wasn't. That was because I was clutching it, stealing it's oxygen.
"Oh, it seems your 'precious little baby' can't breathe, do you think I should help. Maybe another air hole will do huh?"
The sound of cutting air, the joyous squelch of blood spatter and the silence of a scream lost in death. Music to my ears.
The body of the Ralts sat still on the chair it was roped to. The head wasn't so lucky, it fell backwards hitting the back of the chair which pushed it forwards. The head lay silently still hanging on the chest of the boy, with only half a centimetre of flesh still connecting it to the neck, flesh that strained to hold the weight and eventually gave in. The mother, forced to watch, looked on in shock as the head of her child rolled onto the floor and stopped at her feet, dead eyes staring into her own as if saying 'I'm sorry mummy.'
"Oohh, my head"
I swiftly turned around to see a groaning, conscious Gallade shaking his head and realising his situation. He tries to move his arms, to no avail, the ropes too tight for him too make any use of them. Then he looks sideways and sees his wife, bound, he looks worried and tries to speak, but no words come out. He starts to panic, his eyes rest on his children, the twins roped to two chairs and a headless Ralts sat on the third. He tries to scream, but again no words come out.
"Welcome to the land of the living. We hope you enjoyed your stay and wish you a happy return journey."
Charging a blade with dark energy, I punch it straight through his heart, pulling it out of his chest still beating. The Gallade stares, but all is futile, he slowly stops breathing and his head rolls back onto his shoulders. Defeated.
The twins stared opened eyed at the blooded torso of their father and to the headless body of their younger brother. Then they looked directly into each others eyes, both thinking which one of them was next.
I stood over the Gallade's body, the heart still attached to my blade. Lifting my arm, I found it irresistible, the smell of blood overwhelmed my senses. Like a spit roast, I ripped off some muscle from the heart, savouring the taste. Finding my senses again, I saw the three living souls staring at me.
I coughed, then cleaned my blade on the curtains. "You don't mind do you?" I turned back round and started again.
"Twins. Not identical, but twins none the less. I propose a game, I let one of you live. The only problem is, you have to kill the other one. You up to that?"
I seriously was making this up as I went along, going where the feeling took me. And I thought some competition between twins would be fun to watch, if they decided to fight that is.
I could hear thoughts running through the minds of each twin, oddly they were near identical.
'What!? I won't kill my sister, will I?'
'No way!? He expects me to kill my brother. I couldn't do that, could I?'
'But it means I would live."
'If I did, I could walk away and live the rest of my life.'
'But how could I do it? Could I kill my sister whilst staring her in the face?'
'I really need to think about this, but what if he's thinking this to, I need to act.'
'NO! I can't.... I won't do it, and I know for a fact my sister wouldn't eith...'
Mid thought, a blast of psychic energy flew through the mind of the male Kirlia twin, rendering all thought moot, the male twin collapsed into unconsciousness.
I thought it time to act also, I loosened the ropes holding the female Kirlia in place. For a slight second, she strayed near the thought of attacking me, I 'forcefully' reminded the female of her folly and she got back to what I had tasked her with.
The Kirlia looked about her person for some item she could use, whilst her mother looked on in disgusted horror. Spying the rope in which she was previously held captive, she levitated it to her eye-level and floated it over to the neck of her brother.
This was priceless, the girl was actually doing it! And quite imaginatively as well. She lifted the rope and wrapped it carefully around the boys neck and...
...squeezed it as tight as she could. A single tear ran down her face as she spoke her last words to the brother she was murdering before her mother, "I'm so sorry, brother."
A single loud crack signified the end of the male Kirlia, his limp head falling forwards, rope bunched around his shoulders. The remaining Kirlia then broke down into tears, along with the mother watching on. Watching ones entire family killed was quite the thing, but watching as a family member kills one of your own must be worse.
'I'll make sure to ask,' I thought.
As I watched the sobbing form on the heavily blooded carpet, I couldn't help but think how terribly I had damaged the girl psychologically and emotionally, it seems almost humane to put her out of her misery. I know, I never thought I'd say that either. Still, I promised her freedom and leaving her alone with her guilt is almost as fun as killing her.
"Well done, I applaud your ingenuity. Nice use of telekinesis by the way, you have very good control over your abilities. I knew a young Kirlia like yourself who had extraordinary abilities; and that young Kirlia grew up to be a great man. Me..." I felt the positive reinforcement a necessary twist of the blade "...I am, although it may not seem to be the case, a man of my word. You are free to go, or you can stay and watch me kill your mother, unless you want to do it? I wouldn't deny any person that great privilege. No? Suit yourself, more fun for me."
The girl stayed huddled on the floor, the blood of her father and younger brother staining her white 'skirt' a deep crimson, one matching her eyes and the emotion sensitive 'horns' on her head. There she wept, her wails a requiem to the ones she loved now gone.
"It's been a bumpy road hasn't it, mother? Revenge is a dish so sweet, one has to savour it, else it all goes to waste." I stared the vile Gardevoir deep into her vivid red eyes. "Am I not wrong?"
The Gardevoir looked up into my eyes, tears streaming down her face. "Why? Why me, why my family."
"You know perfectly well why, mother. Don't forget, it is Christmas eve, don't I deserve what I want for Christmas? And if that thing is you dead, why should I be denied the honour of doing it myself? Your family were merely a tasty side dish, especially your new husband. Juicy." I couldn't help licking my lips at this point. "They say Christmas is a time for love don't they? I'm doing what I love, why should that be denied me? Are you so hypocritical, that you would accept what you want but scorn what I want, just because it's different? I thought times had moved on since then, I thought people were a lot more open minded to the possibilities that difference brings. Variety is the spice of life, they say. It'd do you well to follow that. Oh wait, you aren't going to be living long enough to do a thing about it, oh shoot, and here's me thinking I could change your view of the world."
"What you're doing isn't love! It's sick, it's vile. It's Evil!" she spat.
"Yet your the one tied to a chair unable to do anything about it. Figures, eh?"
"What figures? Nothing about this figures! You come into my house and kill my family and make my children fight amongst themselves. You keep saying that I'm your mother, you spout backwards philosophy and threaten to kill me! You aren't right."
"What I'm about to do isn't a threat..."
I placed a palm on the head of the Gardevoir, using it as leverage as I plunged a blade deep into her stomach, relishing the sight of the blood seeping from the wound.
With her hands tied, it was impossible for her to staunch the blood. I probed her dying mind as the minutes passed, feeling as the thoughts slowed, as the instincts fought, as her light dimmed and was finally extinguished.
My work done, I cleaned myself up and went to leave, but as I reached the door to the hall, I couldn't help but look back at what I had just done. The carpet was barely visible from the abundance of blood pooled in the middle of the room, the five chairs were stained red and the Kirlia was now cradling the body of her brother in her arms.
"You owe me your life. Pay me back well," I said. The girl looked up, her face smothered with blood and she just stared at me blankly, but there was a fire behind the eyes... a burning passion that refused to be suppressed.
And with that I left.
* * *
It had been an hour since the Gallade had broken into the house and murdered all but one of the occupants. That hour had passed and still the Kirlia refused to let go of the brother she had in fact murdered. A fact that would live with her conscience as long as she should live...
The girl, panic stricken and distraught, had no idea how she would get over this. Would she one day be able to forget the horror of this night? But what if she didn't live that long? What if she joined her family? She had nowhere to go, no one to look after her, she wouldn't be missed. All she'd have to do is slip a noose around her neck and she'd be gone.
The Kirlia looked at her brother, and the rope around his neck. 'One little thing, then I'd be gone' She grabbed it with both hands and turned her bloodstained face towards the chandelier on the ceiling.
'One little thing...'