Farewell Festivities is a series of short stories that revolve around well known festive characters, as their lives entwine within the world of our own.
A dark and modern twist to the merry stories of old, the characters take a path of violence and revenge to occupy their lives, during the 364 days a year they are not relevant.
A Krampus Kristmas
The front door of the house opened inwards, as two figures walked in from the cold. Krampus stepped in first, shortly followed by the sturdy Santa Claus. Krampus pointed ahead into the living room where the familiar sight of christmas fairy lights could be seen dancing in the stillness. They entered and looked around, milk and biscuits have been set out on the side, Krampus takes one and turns to Santa. "So, this kid one of mine or yours?" He asks.
Santa shirks and pulls a list from his pocket, scans it and replies, "He's not on mine".
Krampus finishes his biscuit and brushes his hands against his sides, before pulling a list of his own from his pocket. "Aah...here he is..." He states "...but his sister must be on yours"
"I'll be back in five" mumbles Krampus.
The jolly father grabs a biscuit for himself as Krampus moves silently upstairs, hidden amongst the shadows. Finishing his biscuit, he opens his red hessian sack and pulls out a small frame containing a picture of the young girls recently deceased father. "Sorry i couldnt bring you the real thing as you wished"
Krampus returns from upstairs holding his black hessian sack over his shoulder behind him. The bag now contained the snoring young boy who had been naughty this year.
Santa looks to Krampus "All sorted?" Krampus nods his head as he steps forward to open the door for Santa, before departing the house himself. The door closes behind them, as the house returns to silence. The lights dance brightly in a room filled with darkness.
1. Jack Frost
A car sits humming quietly in the shadows beside the road. The lights are off as the snow falls all around, blanketing the streets in a sheet of white in the otherwise blackness of night. Behind the wheel sat Santa Claus looking out in the distance as he inhaled on a cigarette.
Across the road a woman walks out of a house and begins heading down the street away from the vehicle. In the passenger side sits Jack Frost, a mystical man wearing a tarnished brown suit below the eerie snowman’s face.
Whilst looking at the woman walking, he states to Santa that she is the person they have been waiting for. Santa leans to open the door as Frost puts a hand on his shoulder.
“Remember...” Says Jack “...he wants it quick and clean”. Santa nods in acknowledgement, and they both exit. The snow is falling heavy and they soon disappear.
The car continues to hum in the darkness amongst the otherwise silence around them. Soon after, the pair returns and drives off into the night, snow hiding their tracks as they drive away.
2. The Easter Bunny
Under a tree heavy in snow waits the Easter bunny, wearing a cotton formal suit under his rabbits mask. He is smoking a cigarette as he watches a car quietly idling in the distance.
The bunny looks upwards at the falling snow. ‘Fucking hate snow’ he thinks to himself as he inhales on his cigarette and returns his gaze to the car. Two silhouettes soon leave and disappear into the darkness.
The Easter bunny discards his cigarette on the ground before walking over to the back of the car. He removes a small remotely detonated explosive from his satchel and attaches it to the vehicles wheel arch. He returns to the tree and lights up a fresh cigarette as he waits until the pair return. They soon arrive and drive away. The Easter bunny removes a cell phone from his satchel.
“I’ve got you now cunts” the bunny whispers “Payback's a bitch”.
“I don’t get why it has to be us that does this!” shouts Santa, as he walks back and forth in front of a large oak desk.
Jack Frost is standing against the wall, looking displeased but less reactive to the task handed to them than Santa. Cupid stands up from behind the oak desk and walks between the pair.
“A mistake was made and now someone needs to clean it up before the Easter Bunny finds out what’s been done” explains Cupid as he looks Santa in the eye “We all know you are not the magical Santa that you once were, capitalism has changed that. You couldn’t keep up with the times, and here with us is where you have landed”
“I can’t do it” replies Santa “It’s not who I am”
“It’s not who you are at Christmas, It’s not Christmas anymore” Cupid walks back behind his desk, sits at his chair, and pats down his purple suit before grabbing a television remote. Santa and Frost both notice and turn to watch the large television screen flicker on, at the opposite side of the room.
“Maybe this will help you decide” states Cupid as the screen clears. The television shows an empty room except for Rudolph, a human character in a suede brown suit wearing a mask, being constrained to a chair by chains. “What is this?” asks Frost in disgust.
“It was delivered earlier today by one of Jack O’lanterns men” answers Cupid before nodding at the screen “you need to watch this”
On the screen a shadowed figure holding an axe walks up to Rudolph and suddenly chops a finger from his right hand. “You must kill the girl” demands the figure “or Rudolph will disappear into the realm of All Hallows”
The screen switches off. “It’s either the girl or Rudolph boys” states Cupid “and if I were you, I wouldn’t be looking forward to All Hallows eve if you make the wrong choice”
4. Santa Claus
“Cupid was right, things aren’t the same as they once were. We’re not in a position to go against the Jack O’Lantern” Says Frost as he pulls a small box from his pocket “Here take a couple of these, they’ll calm you down”
“What are they?” asks Santa.
“Tramadol, they’re legal”
Santa took the two pills and swallowed them down with a bottle of water from the glove compartment. “How are you so calm?” asks Santa.
“I wasn’t always on the good side” replies Frost.
There was silence as the pair sat waiting in the car.
“I wonder who she is?” ponders Santa.
“It’s best to keep those questions out of your mind”
“...and how is the Easter Bunny involved?” continues Santa.
“I don’t know, but Cupid wouldn’t allow us to hurt the bunny” states Frost “Cupid’s just the messenger, he gets people together”
“Yeah” mumbles Santa “Let’s get Rudolph home”
Frost looks at the clock display in the car “...She’ll be leaving the house soon”
The car speeds away, Santa is driving as Frost wipes any fingerprints from the pistol used in the assassination. Santa sweats as he looks frantically from one mirror to the next, before arriving a few minutes later at a garage they had planned to change vehicles in.
“It’s done now” says Frost “We’ll get Rudolph and just move on from this” Santa turns and looks towards Frost without saying anything.
Frost gets out of the car and lights up a cigarette. As he inhales and the garage goes silent, he hears a small beeping sound coming from the back of the car. Bending over to look within the wheel arch, he sees a red light flashing rapidly. He jumps back in shock and attempts to shout as a large explosion rips through the rear of the vehicle, throwing Frost into the nearby wall.
The garage begins to burn brightly in the night, as the snow falls silently in the world around them.
Santa and Frost leave the office and close the door behind them.
Cupid behind his desk picks up the phone and dials a number before holding the phone to his ear.
"Yeah, it's me" he starts "they're on board like you said"
"Good. You did well Cupid" says the low voice on the opposite end of the phone "it won't be forgotten. Now onto the final task, we have the girl"
The person on the opposite end of the phone hangs up, leaving Cupid alone to dial a second number. The phone continues to dial, seeming to ring endlessly before a voicemail answer machine is heard.
"You've reached the Easter bunny, please. . ."
Cupid hangs up and pours himself a large bourbon, consumes it in one go and redials the number. The phone rings, this time an answer.
"Easter bunny, i have some bad news i'm afraid" replies Cupid "are we able to meet today?"
"What's this about?" asks the bunny
"It's about your daughter"
"Our two groups have kept the peace for generations. Why would they attack my family now?" asks the Easter bunny.
"The Jack O'Lantern sends his sincerest apologies" continues Cupid "he felt you deserved the truth, but does not know of any reason for the attack i'm afraid"
The Easter bunny looks down as anger wells up within him. "Those jolly mother fuckers will pay for this! If it's blood they want, the tide of seasons greetings will be red"
Cupid opens a desk draw and retrieves a small device with a cellphone, before placing it on the desk.
"What's that?" asks the bunny
"It's a remote explosive device" answers Cupid "It has one number on there. They'll be together to pick up their coke fix tomorrow night. leave no trace" The Easter bunny, blinded by rage, retrieves the device and secures it in his satchel.
"Here is the address" Cupid hands over a small piece of paper to the bunny "they'll be there at 8 exactly. We've made sure of it."
A young woman, the daughter of the Easter bunny, walks down the road alone in the diming light of dusk. A black van suddenly pulls up beside her, as three shadowed figures kidnap her into the back of the vehicle, before driving away.
Jack O'Lantern's men return her to an empty house, and keep her hostage with no contact to the outside world. The outside world where her father was being told by Cupid that she had been killed by Santa and Frost.
The night is long, her captors are hard on her. The following day is cold and numbing. The clock on the wall strikes 8pm
"It's time" says one of the captors "get her up and out the door"
A second captor turns from looking out through the window, and informs the group "everything is in place".
"Right" says the first captor holding the daughter "It's time for your bit. Remember, turn left and down the next alleyway. Your father is here for you".
The Easter bunnys daughter exits the house and turns left, as a car sits idling quietly in the darkness further down the street behind her. Further behind the car still, waits the woman's father in the shadows, as he prepares to act out the revenge of her impending death.
The Jack O'Lantern sits at home as the Wicker Man, the Lantern's friend and business partner, walks over beside him to deliver some news.
"Wicker Man" welcomes Jack, as he turns to the ghoulish figure in grey. "Your game played out as you planned" reported the Wicker man "the Easter bunny has taken care of Santa and Frost, and has fallen apart in mourning, as expected"
"Quiet" replies the Wicker man.
"I'll make sure it stays that way" says Jack "now sit down and have a drink with me"
The Wicker man sits in a chair near to Jack's, as he is poured a bourbon. Jack finishes pouring, and raises his glass to toast.
"There is no one who can stop us now my friend. Together we achieved what has never been done. We have destroyed something truly beautiful" The pair tap their glasses and take a sip of their bourbon.
"Here's to us controling the realms" continued the Wicker man.
"To us...No, no my friend" interrupted Jack "...To me" With that, Jack pulled out a pistol from down the side of his chair.
"Sorry old friend"
The Wicker man was dead...
‘I’ve called this meeting of the realm in response to the recent attack that was directed at our brothers” says the Jack O’Lantern as he stands behind a large table, flanked either side and in front by the remaining festivity members “As many of you have already heard, two nights ago, our realm was viciously attacked in one foul act that claimed the lives of many of our friends. We believe the culprit of this unprovoked attack to be the spirit realm, but we have yet to receive any official word”
A flutter of chatter spreads amongst the tables as some of the members hear about the events for the first time.
“I have been discussing the plan of action with Cupid, the messenger of our realm, and we have decided that no action is to be taken against the spirit realm until our suspicions can be confirmed” continues Jack standing confidently in front of an otherwise ill-informed audience “Until then, I implore you to stay vigilant, and if anyone has any information or suspicions then you can approach Cupid or myself in private” Jack’s grin seemed menacing as he played his private game, calculating his next move. The members in attendance felt uneasy as he scanned them with increased intention.
As the Jack O’Lantern stands and discusses the events with the naive characters in attendance, one character stands at the back of the room, unseen by those in front of him.
He knew that what Jack was saying was all lies. He knew the characters of ‘All Hallows Eve’ were some of the most unpleasant in the festivity realm, but no one would believe that anyone was capable of doing what Jack had done two nights earlier. The only way he knew the truth, was because he had spoken to the victims themselves.
The ‘Ghost of Christmas past’ needed to inform someone who he could trust, and he knew there was only one character that could intervene at this stage.
The Ghost of Christmas past mused to himself for most of the night. He searched his mind for an alternative to the suggestion he had proposed to himself. He knew the whole truth, a story of viciousness and betrayal.
Now with Santa Claus and the Easter bunny gone, there was only one other character who could thwart Jack O’lantern’s plan from reaching its finale. It was decided, there was no other option.
The Ghost of Christmas past would travel to the North Pole alone, and without detection, discover the whereabouts of the one who could save what is left of the realm. The one they say lives only in the shadows.
As Jack O’Lantern sat behind a table at his home, he shuddered as a shiver came over him. “Somebody must have walked over my grave”
The journey was long and bitterly cold, even a ghost felt the Arctic chill cut inside of him. The valley of shadows is where he was heading, to a dwelling that was home to a long forgotten festive character named Krampus. Knocking on the large wooden door of the snow covered abode, the ghost of Christmas past waited nervously for an answer.
Footsteps were heard, followed by the sliding of an iron bold and then the door was open.
Krampus stood looming over the much smaller ghost. “Hmm little ghost, I wasn’t expecting company. What brings you this close to the edge of our realm?”
“I have searched for you, to ask for help and advice” began the ghost “...Many of the festive characters have been killed at the hands of Jack O’Lantern, even Santa is no more”
Krampus smiled “But little ghost, I already know”
There is a room found deep under the arctic ice, resting upon the ancient grounds of Lapland, built long ago when the ice was not so thick and the snow not so heavy. In the building today, forever hidden from the world, waits the Ghost of Christmas past. Unable to die, yet unable to escape, the little ghost shall forever remain a prisoner of Krampus.
“Trust me little ghost” starts Krampus “I don’t want you taking up space in my home as much as you don't want to be here, but we cannot have you escaping, and since you can’t die there is no other choice”
“...But Krampus, you betrayed us, you betrayed Santa” “I did not betray Santa!” roared Krampus in reply “Santa betrayed me, he betrayed us all. He had long forgotten the meaning of Christmas and gave into his sinful delusions. He destroyed the Christmas spirit himself...”
The building fell silent
“...I am simply putting an end to the atrocity of capitalist festivities”
15. Stupid parents and annoying Children
Despite Krampus’ plans, the world continued celebrating Christmas. They continued celebrating Easter too, and all the other festival days. The people of the world simply replaced their characters, and soon the magic of Christmas was lost forever.
Enjoy your presents.
Sweet Animosity is the home for all projects and writings undertaken by Dhalia.