15 Dec Old Man Winter
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"Old Man Winter"Written by Jeffrey Ebright
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Estimated reading time — 18 minutes
Thank you for coming, doctor. I honestly didn’t think the renowned psychoanalyst, Jeffrey Gilland, would see me. Then again, it isn’t every day you are handed the opportunity to interview an insane colleague. And I am your golden ticket to a more profound reputation, aren’t I?
Please, you don’t need that arched brow to impress me. I’ve spent years trading theory and thesis with you, Jeffrey. Until you published your paper on paranoid delusionals, I thought I was the only one making any progress in schizophrenia research. But I see my banter is falling under speculative regard.
Very well. Let’s begin with the reaffirmation of patient ID.
My name is Professor Randall H. Courtney. I maintain doctorates in the fields of psychology, psychiatry, psycho-biology, para-psychology, criminology, and religious mythology; the latter a particular passion of mine. Until recent events, I was the head of Westerin University’s psychology department and special consultant to both Westerin Community Hospital and the state-funded Pleasant Glenn Home for the criminally insane, specializing in sociopathic and schizophrenic cases. I am 57 years of age, moderately healthy, and unfortunately close to the precipice of insanity.
Of course, you wouldn’t be here if I were not.
To the heart of the matter, as you would tell me when I began a long-winded diatribe. Here, then, are the circumstances which led you here:
It all began two weeks ago. I had read the case study of the Holiday Hacker, William James Morton, by Doctor Lansing in Athens. His paper discussed the complete personality and symptomatic juxtaposition of Morton. By all accounts, William James Morton was a classic case of a violent sociopath: he murdered a documented 156 women and children from 1993 to 2013. Undeniably, Morton was the most prolific serial killer ever substantiated in his claims. Unlike our tail-chasing study of Henry Lee Lucas, eh?
As the typical profile of a serial murderer, Morton was a white male in his late 30’s, middle-income class, with a “social magnetism” that allowed him to make friends easily. Coupled with an unusually high IQ, Morton was well-liked by colleagues and friends who, of course, never suspected his nocturnal activities.
Morton worked for the Indiana Public Utilities Commission as a meter reader; this gave him unlimited accessibility into his victims’ homes, to which he would cleverly observe several potential targets for 2-3 weeks prior to making his move. All of Morton’s victims were killed during holidays, most notably Christmas and Easter.
As you know, Doctor Lansing asserts Morton killed on holidays because his parents did not celebrate any of the accepted Christian holidays, and that either the indifference or non-participation of social interactions with friends and family created Morton’s behavior. Unfortunately, Lansing never appropriately explored the aspect of his ritual abuse by his father or the sexual recriminations his mother heaped upon him. And let us not forget his classic disassociation with morality and accepted social behavior. I see you have no taste for debate tonight. Very well.
Morton ritualistically entered the household of families wherein the father worked a third or graveyard shift between the hours of 1-4 AM, and proceeded to slit the throats of his victims, from oldest to youngest. His “signature” was the destruction of a major holiday tradition: stripping a Christmas tree of ornaments, tearing up Easter baskets, shredding Valentine’s Day cards, vandalizing the Thanksgiving centerpiece, etc.
But you’ve already read Dr. Lansing’s case study, eh, Jeffrey? Of course you have.
You know on the night of December 24th, 2013, the Jeffersonville police responded to a 9-1-1 call from a half-dead Iris Dennison. By the time they reported on scene, all three children – aged three to seven – were found dead in their bedrooms, as was Mrs. Dennison, still clutching the bedroom phone. Amongst the carnage and destruction, they found the 5′ 10” meter reader balled up in the corner of the living room, covered in his own bodily fluids and the blood of his victims. The police report concluded with Morton’s overwhelming confession and sorrow. What followed was to be the largest admission of serial murder ever told. As a matter of fact, when they found Morton’s infamous Tome of The Season – the grisly journal of his slayings – I wager Morton told them where to find that damnable book.
For some unknown reason, this brutal, remorseless killing machine was now raving like a paranoid schizophrenic in a highly manic-delusional state. Morton was now begging to be locked away for his crimes. This complete change portends an emotional 180-degree spin on all our known beliefs of mental illness. Curious, don’t you agree, Dr. Gilland?
I see you are still not impressed. Very well, let us move to the meat of the meal – the night of March 15th – the night Lansing and Morton died before my eyes.
I must, however, warn you in good conscience: this tale will, no doubt, test the limits of your psyche. So, I must ask you to suspend your disbelief until the tale is told. I cannot guarantee you will ever sleep soundly again, but, you will know the unbelievable truth which has stolen my sanity and placed me here under guarded supervision.
Before that fateful day, I had thoroughly studied Morton’s Tome with avid interest. As a long-range researcher, Morton’s Tome of the Season provided an invaluable resource the likes of which had never been seen before nor, I must suppose, will ever be seen again. Can you imagine a reference book for homicidal sociopaths written by a homicidal sociopath? This was no notebook of ranting against the machine of society, nor was it an incoherent catalog of instability. With an above-average IQ, Morton meticulously entered all thoughts, actions, and variables of each murder, down to any minute smell, taste, and touch he experienced. His view was frighteningly clinical; even his penmanship looked antiseptic, not obsessive. Words cannot express the terror of his analysis or the sheer horror of Morton’s accurate observations on the death of his victims. Honestly, Morton’s brilliance in notation and observation would shame the efforts of our most esteemed research colleagues.
This was also the opinion expressed by Dr. Lansing. That is why he allowed me to study the Tome as a precursor to meeting Morton. I believe the sheer immensity of the task at hand brought me into the fray. Perhaps it was the simple fact that Lansing needed an intellectual equal to back up his claims and save his reputation from the assertions he was about to make. Whatever the case, I should have politely denied him and continued my life in the blessed ignorance which will never again be mine.
Here, then, are the events of March 15th.
* * * * * *
Dr. Lansing and I arrived at Pleasant Glenn just before 6 PM. We were both in good spirits, anxious about our first in-depth interview with the man the media had dubbed the “Holiday Hacker.” We had discussed the Tome during the two-hour ride from the airport, and had formulated a strategy for interrogation of William James Morton. However, the strategy disintegrated once we occupied the room with this killer.
Morton was escorted into a room no bigger than the average living room, bound in a formidable straitjacket. His eyes were glassy, wide, darting; the epitome of a paranoid schizophrenic. He moved with shaky uncertainty, and, if not for the armed guard, would have certainly fallen into the table instead of being seated at it.
Lansing put on his psychiatrist’s hat and went to work.
“Good evening, William. My name is Dr. Lansing and this is Dr. Courtney. We’ve come to ask you a few questions. Would you mind?”
To this, Morton giggled and spat, “Your dime. Fire away.”
“We read your book, William,” Lansing continued. “Why did you write it?”
“For posterity, headshrinker. It don’t make no difference. Nothin’ does.” He began giggling like a schoolboy with a secret.
“What do you mean by that?” I piped in.
“I feel sorry for you assholes, I really do,” Morton said, rocking gently in his chair. “I’m gonna pay for what I did, but you, you don’t have a clue what’s gonna happen.”
“Maybe if you explained it to myself and Dr. Courtney we might be able to…”
“Save me?” Morton cut in. “I don’t think so, headshrinker. Can’t you smell the doom? Taste the fear?”
“Is it because of all the people you’ve murdered?” I asked.
A sneer of righteousness crossed his lips. “No, not cuz of all the people I killed.”
“Would you mind explaining what you mean?” said Lansing.
“You won’t believe a word of it, but that don’t matter. It’s gonna happen whether you believe me or not. But, I ain’t sayin’ nothin’ till you turn off those recorders. Agreed?”
We heeded his request and turned off our recorders. He simply smiled at the two of us and his eyes seemed to clear and his demeanor altered. The armed guard behind Morton leaned against the wall as if holding it up, oblivious to the conversation.
“It was the last expedition I underwent,” said Morton, “the Dennison family experiment. I am still sorry I did not have the time to record my observations.”
I found myself utterly without words as I listened to this madman speak without the previous trace of his drawl. His “new” verbal diction was measured, reflective; almost nonplussed. It was then an answer dawned on me for his abrupt and distinctive attitude alteration. The mystery of his 180-degree turn could be logically (and anti-climatically) explained. I jotted D.I.D. into my notebook and sighed in profound disappointment to such an obvious solution which the psychiatric community used to call multiple personality disorder.
“So it was one of the Dennisons you regret killing?” asked Lansing, as if he didn’t notice the change.
“Not for a moment.” Morton’s eyes sparkled. “Apparently, you forgot to read your paper on my aberrant behavior.”
Lansing shuffled uncomfortably in his chair without response. I quickly jumped into the fray. “What caused your radical behavioral change?”
“Any idiot with half the imagination can fake paranoia, get more attention and stricter supervision by his captors.” His voice was almost clinical in its approach. “A sociopath is simply locked into a cell, fed and watered as required by law, and forgotten. I cannot – will not – be casually erased from existence.”
“So you are perpetrating this ruse for attention?” scowled Dr. Lansing.
“Why would you need witnesses?” I interjected.
“’Cause Santa Claus’s coming to town,” Morton sang, in a sickly sweet child’s voice.
“I don’t understand,” I said.
“I killed the Jolly Fat Man,” he said flatly.
“What?” Lansing and I gasped in chorus.
“I butchered Kris Kringle, Old Man Winter, Saint Nick, whatever you choose to call It.”
“What do you mean by It?” I asked.
“Let me put it this way,” Morton began. I could see his calm, controlled demeanor begin to crumble like a glass house from a stone’s throw. “I have killed a lot of people. I know what dead is. In all of my research, I have never seen anything like It. I might be a sociopath, but I am not insane. I know the direct effect of all my actions and am totally aware of every child and mother I put in the ground. But, I will not be stalked by a figment of ceremonial imagination. When It comes for me, I want others to tell the tale. I will not be dismissed as some raving lunatic and have my observations shelved as another madman’s delusion.”
“Enlighten us,” Lansing asked, with a certain smugness.
Morton leaned forward on the table which caused the guard to lazily mutter, “Watch yerself, Morton. I’m only a step away from bustin’ yer ass.”
“I’m sure you are,” Morton dismissed the man. “It was Christmas Eve and I had just finished my experimentation on the children. By the way, did you know you can open a child’s jugular vein when they are sleeping, and they will continue sleeping into death, cradled in the warmth of their pooling blood? That is, unless you make noise or your instrument is not sharp enough.”
“Interesting,” Lansing said, clearly uninterested.
“Thank you, doctor.” Morton’s voice was less than gracious. I believe that was the moment he began to lose interest in Lansing’s presence and spoke directly to me.
“As I was saying, I had just completed my study and was busy leaving my calling card…”
“Defacing the Christmas decorations,” I supplied.
“Yes,” he nodded to me. “It was during my ceremonial defacing of the tree when I heard a large thump, like a pot roast hitting the counter from thirty feet.”
“Yes; kind of a meaty plop.” He looked directly in my eyes. I could tell the story was an attempt to reaffirm his tentative grip on what he considered reality. “I turned around, expecting to find one of my victims in the survival category of willpower over wounding. Only ten percent do, you know.”
“Interesting theory,” Lansing offered, trying to re-establish his role in the conversation, “Could you offer more on this aspect?”
“No.” Morton dismissed Lansing and continued. “I turned to find a fat man in a red and white suit. Yes, he was covered in ashes and soot. Yes, he had a big, round belly, shaking like a bowl full of jelly. All the stereotypes were accurate.”
“Santa Claus?” the name escaped my mouth in reserved disbelief.
“In all his wonder.” Morton’s eyes began shifting to the barred window and back to me. “The fat abomination started to laugh like life was all hearts and flowers, and all the holidays I never had were in the past and meant to be forgotten. He had the audacity to glorify a celebration that the Christians stole from the Pagans, and capitalists stole from God Himself. So, I planted my scalpel in his chubby throat.”
“What?” My shock could not be contained.
“I knifed him,” he said, with a cool, triumphant smile, “and he had the nerve to spit out through the blood: ‘You’re being naughty’. He pulled the scalpel out and picked me up off my feet and said: ‘Santa doesn’t like naughty little boys and girls’. That tub of lard tossed me across the room like a rag doll.”
I remained silent; I had nothing to say to his unbelievable tale.
“You probably guessed that – irritated me.” He tried to shrug off the rest of the story, but it flowed from his lips like bitter wine. “The first thing that came to hand was the Christmas tree stand, which lay discarded among the remnants of light strands and broken bulbs. I used the stand to split Its head open like an overripe melon. By the time I was finished, Its head was a bloody bowl of red oatmeal. But, It tried to get up. Can you imagine my surprise and frustration?”
“No, I can’t,” I responded.
“Well, this was no experience a clinical man like myself was prepared to anticipate. I improvised, knocked It to the floor, severed Its head from Its body and got myself together to leave. Unfortunately, Santa had wasted valuable escape time. I was trapped. My mind tried to figure out what to do next. That’s when I heard a bloody gurgle behind me. Santa was on his feet, wagging a finger at me.” He stopped for a moment to regain his composure. “And, do you know what that bloated corpse said?”
“What?” droned Lansing.
“‘I’ll be back, you bad little boy,’ It said and then popped up the chimney and jingled off into the night.”
“And this is your explanation for your abrupt change in behavior?” Lansing scoffed. “I can smell fish stories from miles away. Do you truly think I will report this hogwash?”
“I don’t care what you do, you academic leech,” Morton growled.
“Why didn’t the police see Santa fleeing the scene? Wouldn’t they have been tipped off by Rudolph’s nose lighting the way?” Lansing taunted.
Morton turned to me, his eyes intense and focused. “I just needed a fellow colleague to listen and to know. I am surprised I have not been assassinated by now. I have spent too many nights wondering when my end will come. Now, it doesn’t matter if It comes for me; the story has been told. That is all.”
“Indeed,” sniffed Lansing, “I have never heard such…” Lansing trailed off, cocking his head like a collie to a dog whistle. “Do you hear bells?”
At this point, Jeffrey, reality crumbled. It was almost as if the terror was waiting for its cue to take the stage. The sweet sound of bells grew louder and louder as a red light from outside the window drew closer.
“Oh, shit! It found me!” It seemed Morton’s persona switched again and struggled within his bonds. “Let me out of this jacket, Goddammit!”
The outer wall of the interview room exploded noiselessly into the dark night, collapsing as if hit with a great, silent force from inside the room. The dust swirled about the gaping maw as three of the four of us stood frozen in place.
“It found me!” Morton shrieked as he pushed off his chair and tried to make himself small behind the interview table.
The guard broke from deep lethargy and pulled his gun. “Freeze, you sunnuva bitch!” He pointed the shaking weapon toward the hole in the wall.
From a sleek, red, levitating sleigh, two smallish men, roughly three feet tall, with pointed shoes and ears to match, grinned maniacally and quickly disembarked. The obscene jingling of their droopy, conical hats mocked the viciousness of their body language. They stood like doormen at the sides of the missing wall, leering wildly at the bewildered foursome.
“Which one?” called one of the little men in a shrill soprano.
We all held fast in pure horror as It stepped through the hole. It wore the suit of Santa and bounded from the sleigh with a jolly stride. All the myths were true except for Santa’s head. It was more an assembly of leftover parts from a slaughterhouse than a head with a pristine red hat. It looked like roadkill which had boiled on the unforgiving black asphalt for days. Jagged bone protruded from shredded, pulpy muscle, as a dark-stained beard revealed a ruptured orifice which could only be the mouth. It rasped in a voice of sandpaper and pain which pierced my very soul.
“Naughty!” It pointed a gloved finger at the hiding serial killer.
The men in green, elves I would presume, advanced on Morton, glaring.
“Am I invisible?” The guard barked, drawing back the hammer of his .40 caliber pistol, “Now back the fuck up! I won’t say it again!”
Faster than the mind could comprehend, one of the elves was upon him. Eyes wide with disbelief, the guard watched as the little man tore into his flesh like a rabid wolverine. The guard, I believe Carl was his name, found himself caught in the middle of an eruption of blood. His blood. Carl had the horrifying honor of watching himself being autopsied while still alive; his last memory was of his entrails sliding from his chest cavity and slapping the floor. He quickly collapsed to the gray-flecked institutional tile, cocked gun still in hand.
Finally, Lansing reacted: he vomited, spewing God’s name between each hasty exit of the day’s meal.
The two elves pounced on Morton, hauling him to his feet amidst his tearful protests. The elves clamped around his bound arms like a metal vice grip. This only increased Morton’s shrieking.
And what, you may ask, was I doing during all this? Nothing. No, that is not true; I was trying to escape to the part of the mind we psychologists claim comatose patients go when severely traumatized by life. My little place must have been closed for repairs, for I was forced to witness the hideous events that continued before my previously agnostic eyes.
Morton continued sobbing and rocked in his straitjacket, Lansing continued vomiting and taking the Lord’s name in vain, and I became a statue as the corrupted thing in the red suit advanced upon his elf-bookended victim. The thing’s head contorted in an expression which most likely was a smile amongst the shredded muscles of Its face. It lifted Morton’s tear-stained face with a gloved finger as if examining a slave soon to be auctioned.
“No, please, no, I’ll be a good boy,” Morton pleaded to mutilated ears. The elves giggled knowingly.
As if it were not surrealistic enough, Lansing came under control and tried asserting himself as the voice of reason. Can you imagine, Jeffrey? The old fool tried to rationalize with mythical characters in our unfathomable situation. I could smell death upon him even before he managed to spew his initial salvo of psycho-babble.
The elves released the whimpering Morton and focused on Dr. Lansing. Their movements would have shamed the best bodyguard or Secret Service agent as they swarmed Lansing.
“This situation has not become unsalvageable,” Lansing said, smiling at the three-foot gremlins. “Perhaps we can avoid any further unpleasantness if we can allow ourselves a moment of reflection?”
One of the elves came face to face with Lansing, listening to his words with a contemplative face. The first elf nodded agreeably and said in that squeaky soprano: “No.”
With the stealth of shadows, the second elf neatly penetrated Lansing’s back with a petite, clawed hand. The intrusion must have granted Lansing a form of anesthetic shock, for his face was less comprised of pain than of surprise. Whatever the case, Lansing fell to his knees immediately as I watched the demonic second elf playing tug-o-war with Lansing’s spinal column while the first elf continued to lock his gaze onto Lansing as if milking the suffering from the psychologist’s eyes. The tug-o-war was being lost, until the second elf put a foot on the doctor’s back and wrapped its fist around the exposed section of his spine. Effort redoubled, Lansing’s spine popped loudly then slid from his body with a wet, sucking sound. The little monsters briefly considered Lansing’s wide-eyed death mask, cackled gleefully and went back to their original target, ignoring my useless presence.
Maybe it was the dismissal of me as a harmless entity that awakened me. Vanity has always been a great motivator in our profession. It was as if the magical inner button had been switched off, for my senses returned. I was wrapped in raging anger for the first time in my life and it was my assertion that these abominations of nature needed to be brought to justice. At least, I prefer to think my motives were purely altruistic instead of triggered through selfish preservation.
My first thought was of my need for a weapon. I then remembered the guard’s unfired gun. I mustered my courage and walked slowly toward Carl’s mutilated body and my only salvation. They continued to ignore me, preferring to get the pleading Morton under control. I retrieved the heavy weapon without incident. Until that day, the thought of firing a weapon repulsed me; yet I was beyond the point of moral justification. My clinical world was at an end and I was determined to survive the brave new world into which I had been so unceremoniously thrust.
The unreality that was the three interlopers blanketed the sobbing Morton. “Naughty!” repeated the abhorrent Santa, as his mitten-clothed hands reached for the pristine red hat on its mutilated head.
“Naughty,” I quietly mumbled. Actually, I believe I giggled as I said it.
It was that giggle which alerted the elves. Both of the little green monsters spun on their heels and faced me like a western showdown. I did not mix hyperbole, I simply pulled the trigger. The gun roared, catching one of the elves in its slender neck. In fact, the .40 bullet nearly severed the elf’s head. It sputtered some ancient gibberish and fell to the ground, twitching.
Unfortunately, the remaining elf was quickly upon me; rather, upon my leg. It lashed out with its savage claws, removing my patella with near-surgical precision, as if it were an old-fashioned bottle cap. Pain exploded across my being, yet this was not the time to recognize my shortcomings. I fell backwards and struck the unforgiving institution floor. I scarcely had the opportunity to blink before the little creature was upon my chest, set to strike the killing blow.
“Dead!” it shrieked, raising a gore-soaked talon.
“Yes,” I smiled.
I almost experienced a moment of pity for the little elf as it felt the gun barrel dig into its crotch. Almost. At close range, the bullet shredded through the elf, throwing its lithe body across the room.
Believe me when I say this, Jeffrey; If I were you, I would be wearing the same disbelieving expression. Sometimes, in the silence of night, I, myself, have cause to doubt all that occurred in that antiseptic room at Pleasant Glenn. Yet I cannot escape the conclusion. In the immortal words of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: “When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth”.
Here, then, is the most improbable fate of William James Morton.
I struggled to my feet, the table a proper crutch to my shattered leg. Though it seemed like an eternity, I had dispatched Santa’s helpers in a matter of seconds. I, unfortunately, did not miss the horror unfolding between Morton and the shredded Santa.
Excluding the appearance of Its head, the scene played out innocently: the obese dead thing removed the hat. To this, the straitjacketed Morton bellowed and squirmed like a worm on a hook. Santa calmly placed the hat upon Morton’s head and chuckled, “Ho, ho, ho!”
Never had I heard a cry of such torment and terror as I heard that day, nor do I ever wish to hear it again. My blood ran cold as the Holiday Hacker, bound and helpless, called to a God he never believed in while the abhorrent creature offered a grotesque, gurgling chuckle.
I raised my weapon, not knowing what I could do against his terrified screams.
“Kill me!” Morton’s eyes locked to mine. “Kill me before it’s too late!”
I leveled the gun at his head; the corpse Santa made no motion to stop me.
“Please, please, please!” Morton cried. “I can feel it! Hurry!”
I swallowed hard and squeezed the trigger. To this day, I do not know if I was too late or if the bullet would have had any effect had I delivered it sooner. Needless to say, I placed a bullet hole neatly in the middle of Morton’s forehead. The bullet hole puckered, diminished and sealed the flesh of his forehead as the manic terror in Morton’s eyes swelled.
The metamorphosis had begun.
Before my eyes, the smallish frame of William James Morton expanded. Along with growing girth, his facial features softened, losing the terrified sociopath in puffy cheeks. His face erupted in white tufts hair, with the hair upon his head lengthening in a shocking snowy white. His restraints melted into a thick red blouse with matching pants as bare feet became shod in shiny black boots.
During this transformation, the thing that was Santa deflated like a balloon slowly losing air. When It hit the cold floor, Morton rose to his feet. No, it was no longer William James Morton.
“Ho, ho, ho!” it roared, jelly-belly and all.
As if on cue to this battle cry, the dead elves exploded, showering the room in large, cottony snowflakes.
It was at this point my mind decided it had truly seen enough. I fell to the floor and began laughing as I tried to catch a snowflake or two upon my proffered tongue. I wondered to myself how many I could catch before I bled to death.
The new Santa looked at me for a moment and patted me on the head. “Now you be a good little boy.” He offered a wink, thumbed his nose and through the blasted portal he rose.
Once through the hole in the wall, the crumbled bricks reformed and jumped backed into place, resealing the room as if the intrusion never happened.
My memories pick up in the hospital as an attending doctor told me I would most likely never walk again. I remember my comment being slightly sarcastic, but I cannot remember what I said. It really does not matter at this point.
* * * * * *
So, Jeffrey, am I insane? Oh, don’t look at me that way. I know, only an insane person could create such a fantastic world to play a scenario such as this. If only the evidence did not exist to the contrary, eh? The psychiatric community will play it off as an extreme psychotic episode from a man who has worked too closely to his subjects. The local law enforcement, unwilling to advertise multiple grisly homicides, will be more than happy to agree and quietly close the case.
However, before I am escorted back to my padded room, consider this: We, as a society, look to insane explanations to rationalize those topics which we personally do not wish to breach. Babies come from a benevolent stork, weather balloons cross the globe as UFOs, the son of God relieves the weight of personal sin by ritualistic torture and eventual death.
In this pantheon, my greatest fear is reserved for a creature that keeps track of our morals, rewarding or punishing us for being nice or naughty. A beast that prays only upon the most innocent of our culture: children. A being which, despite the security alarms and fences, is allowed to enter our house and is given unrestricted access to our inner sanctum. We do not question his valor or mission, we simply expect this modern icon to perform in a righteous manner. But, I must ask, what if this creature is not here for our mythical amusement? What if, like the old wives’ tales of cats who steal childrens’ sleeping breath, Old Saint Nick has an ulterior, sinister motive?
You know, Jeffrey, the suicide rate for Christmas is staggeringly higher than any other time of the year. Coincidence? Have we, in fact, unleashed a terror into our normal lives that sustains itself with supernatural malfeasance? Now, more than ever, I remain skeptical.
No matter. I believe I shall never leave this place. I have seen too much and perhaps said too much. My advice to you, dear Jeffrey?
You better watch out, you better not cry. You better not pout, I’m telling you why. Santa Claus is coming to town.
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