December 15, 1896

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The Father Christmas spoke in lies.

A few houses in Cross now have telephones, the damned thing having been introduced from Boston Towne some years past.

Well, it seems some bright and foul Father Christmas has managed to thread a line from the Hollow into Cross, and he’s been making some calls.

On the first of the month, he told Harold Iverson that his boy was dead. Iverson, in a panic, shouted the news to his wife, raced outside and fell down the stairs, smashing open his head and dying there with his wife and the supposedly dead boy by his side. The following evening, the Father Christmas called Maybelle Duggins, introduced himself, and informed her his gift was the knowledge of her husband’s affair.

Maybelle’s in jail, and her husband is recovering from her attempted castration of him.

This has gone on for two weeks, and I’ve had more than enough.

I traveled to the Hollow, and I found the bastard’s house.

I wasn’t surprised to find the door unlocked or to smell cheap whiskey and old sweat when I went in. Half-made toys were scattered about, and old Christmas trees littered the rooms. A long strand of telephone wire ran along the wall and disappeared into a room at the hall’s far end. I followed it, and when I stepped into the doorway, I saw him.

This room, unlike the others, was immaculate. A picture-perfect image of Christmas spirit.

And there the old man was, leaning in and making a call.

He didn’t notice me, so focused he was on whispering into the telephone.

That was fine.

I took out my knife and hacked out a length of telephone wire, ending the conversation.

The Father Christmas stared at the telephone, confused, and I put my knife away. He turned and saw me for the first time as I wrapped the wire around first one set of knuckles and then the other.

“I just wanted some fun, Blood,” he smiled.

He tried to get past me, but I knocked him down, put my knee in the center of his back and looped the wire around his neck.

“Aye,” I whispered. “Fun.”

I pushed down with my knee, and pulled up with my arms, and showed him what I thought of his fun.

#Christmas #horrorstories

Published by

Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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