Friday, December 20, 2013

Contents May Settle During Shipment

This is my entry in Loren Eaton's Advent Ghosts scary yuletide story exchange. I am almost a whole day late, but I have finally written something. "Advent Ghosts" is an annual affair hosted by Mr Eaton on his blog I Saw Lightning Fall, and the idea is to write a 100-word tale of fright having something to do with Christmas. So here's mine. Delicate types might want to skip it.

Contents May Settle During Shipment

“What is it?”
“It’s a present, of course. Open it.”
“That’s a pretty bow.”
“I take no credit for that. This is how it came from the store.”
“You’re so sweet. Look how big this is.”
“Merry Christmas, babe. Well, open it up.”
“The wrapping goes all around it. How do I…?”
“Just rip it open. Use your nails.”
“I may have to bite the end off. Don’t look.”
“There’s a lot of packing material.”
“No, that’s okay. Where’s the…Oh.”
“Pretty, huh?”
“What is it?”
“It’s a baby. Just pull it right out of there.”
“Oh, delicious!”
“Merry Christmas, babe.”

14 comments:

  1. That's great! The tone is perfect. The rhythm is perfect too.

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  2. Suddenly I'm craving bread. No idea why.

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  3. King's Cake has a little baby in it.

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  4. I don't remember that. Is that in the version of Rooster I read?

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  5. Christmas and cannibalism -- how can you go wrong? :^D Wait! Are the gift givers human?

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  6. It's such a nice, mannerly story up until that second-to-last line. Brrr ...

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  7. Mwhahaha! This is great! I'm sure Davin smiled with delight.

    I'm sad that I didn't do this ... again. Next year. Next year.

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  8. That was fun Scott. Great voice and tension. Ah, I forgot about this event.

    Seasons Greetings.

    .......dhole

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  9. I particularly like the opaque irony. A reader could easily read something quite different from what you may have intended. That is not a weakness. That is a marvelous strength in the piece.

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  10. Thanks, all. This was really just a dashed-off piece that relies heavily on horror story cliches. I don't like the use of both "baby" and "babe," but that's how I wrote it.

    Michelle, you should really get in on it next year. You too, Donna.

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  11. Christmas story. Body of a baby. And now you're hungry for bread. Interesting.

    Yes, there are a number of peculiar ways to read that one!

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  12. "Bread" is a reference to a novella my friend Davin Malasarn wrote a couple of years ago, a story which climaxes in a scene of cannibalism.

    The original story impulse for this was a goofy idea of the Wise Men being space aliens who came to Bethlehem to kidnap the Child but were thwarted. I realized I couldn't do that in 100 words (and I didn't really want to write that story) and so I wrote this cheesy thing instead.

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  13. Well, the cannibalism comes right across!

    Oh, then you need to read Margo Lanagan's Christmas story... She let me read and make comments, so that was interesting... I'll see if I can find a link because I think it's up somewhere.

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  14. It's not up yet, but she said I could send a copy. Look in the hotmail account...

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