20th December 2012, 01:12 AM #1
A Scarlet Christmas
Okay I wrote this 6 years ago when I was a punk teen, so it's probably more violent than I would normally write now (hence the mature rating). I spruced up the writing, and I'm posting it here for the Christmas Season! My understanding here is that profanity is okay in stories without astericks (this is based off of posts from several years back and I didn't see anything in the rules thread so please tell me if otherwise).
This is a three part story.
A Scarlet Christmas
Part One: Tears and Blood
She hated the cold.
Despised it. Loathed it. Yet, because of nature’s cruelty, she was surrounded by it. For 12 years, all she ever knew was bitter frost. Great sheets of ice stretched throughout her world, and a thick layer of snow blanketed it all. The air was chilly, and the sky was gray with the glum aura this horrific world spewed. One day a year, her master traveled to distant lands, where all the cursed ice melted away and the blessed sun smiled. Any possibility of her finding that warm Utopia were as far away as the summits of the frosted mountains dotting the horizon.
Finally, after marching a whole day across the Arctic, she saw a remotely living being. It was a lone, gnarled tree. It stood barely five feet high, barely taller than herself. On its crown was a clump of thin branches, plastered with several layers of ice. She was curious as to how it even grew here, but her mind was too weak to wonder as she sat against it, exhausted and ready to collapse. Judging from the thin layer of ice below her, she guessed she was above a frozen bond. The ice reflected her image back at her.
She was a feminine pokemon whose beauty no beast rivaled. A mass of blonde hair topped her round, purple face, falling down to her hips. From her golden-lined, red breastplates flowed a scarlet dress covered her entire body. Completing her beauty were white arms and purple gloved hands, and her most prominent feature: thick, luscious crimson lips.
This is Andromeda. A Jynx, a loyal servant to Santa Claus.
Though she despised the cold, she despised her master even more. Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas, Santa Claus, Kris Kringle, all different names for the same filthy, fat bastard. He was a jolly old man with a ripe old belly and thick white beard, a symbol of happiness and holiday spirit to the greedy little human children in the sunlit lands beyond the mountains. It was his duty to bring presents to children on December 25th, a day known to everyone as Christmas.
Andromeda both loved and hated that day. It was the source of the monotonous misery that was her life. On the flip-side, it was the only day she got an extra helping of gruel (or “Christmas Pudding.”) Some celebrated it as a Festival of the Winter (though Andromeda found no reason to celebrate the loss of the beautiful sun), others celebrated it as just a time of love and family, and others celebrated the birth of a powerful religious figure, Jesus of Nazareth.
Whether for religious or secular reasons, one thing remained a constant for this dreaded day: presents.
Humans always exchanged presents to each other on the special day so that they could show their “love” to each other. Nowadays, the need for presents reached a point where old women attacked each other with their knitting needles to get the last copy of Grand Theft Auto for their five year old grandsons. Or, mothers shopped immediately after the fall festival “Thanksgiving” to get their “love” out of the way. Nevertheless, Santa Claus’s duty had always been to bring presents to little good children who believe in him while the naughty children were thrown into their fireplaces and chopped into pieces by the axe Santa always carried (cutting firewood was a clear lie...).
Surprisingly enough, millions of selfish, horrid children believed in the man Andromeda so loathed and behaved like saints in the last few weeks before Christmas in order to reap their rewards. The stupid little human children, of course, didn’t care about the logistics involved with one man delivering millions of presents in less than ten hours. While good ol’ Santy Claus sat on his big coach in his little cottage while eating delicious pies made by Mrs. Claus (a German woman who he kidnapped as his wife five hundred years earlier) 364 days a year, his battalion of nearly ten thousand Jynx were toiled daily in the Arctic sweatshops (or ‘happy fun workshops,’ as he called them) to make those days.
The other Jynx were completely content and even pleased with their pathetic lives, always smiling brightly and chattering happily as they made their toy cars, video games and pet ponies. Yes, they had freedom, a month of vacation, sick leave and even warm, cushy living quarters, but the thought of being a slave to that stupid jolly man was despicable! Yet, for Andromeda, this atrocious notion was once her life.
At last, she was free. Santa Claus was nowhere around, and for the first time in her life, she did not have to make a single toy. As she sat against the gnarled tree, Jynx looked down at her purple gloved hands. They were very dark and calloused from constantly working, but today, they felt strangely empty. They certainly did not look empty as they were saturated with small, clear icicles and one was broken. Normally around this time of the day, she would be casting the magical “Toy Pony turning to Real Pony” spell. As if she was performing the enchantment once more, her hands rotated in large circles…
“NO! I REFUSE!”
She clenched her broken hand in a painful, tight fist. As she clamped her eyes shut to avert the fierce blizzard winds out, she felt a tiny tear droplet building up inside. No matter where she would go, misery would always follow. It was her curse. Part of her wished that she would be back in the warm sweatshops, even if it was under her tyranny. Outside the safety of Santa Claus’s domain, the blizzards would constantly rage and the ice was sharp and jagged. Whereas in her home, the snow fell gently and the magical ice was ever so smooth.
Earlier that day
“Andromeda! Wake up! Christmas is only a week away, and we have to finish the toys for the Dutch children!”
Andromeda did not care; she was tired and her arms were sore. She did not feel like working. Grasping her Stantler-skin blanket tighter, she snuggled into a comfortable fetal position while her mother continued to shout.
As she did nearly every other day, Cassandra, Andromeda’s mother, threw a bucket of boiling hot water right onto her poor daughter’s bed. Andromeda gripped her scorching burns tightly, freezing the scalds with her ice power. While she did this, her mother laughed haughtily as she put on her own mauve gloves and took hold of her lucky hammer, ready to work cheerfully as she did all forty years of her life.
The young Jynx was tired and annoyed at her mother, but as usual, she kept her mouth shut while putting on her own work gloves and straightening her hair by the reflection on her small mirror. She, her mother and her baby sister had all lived in the same cramped room on the top floor of one of Santa’s wooden slave houses. Their possessions were few and their pleasures absent. While Andromeda grudgingly finished getting ready, her baby sister, Isabelle, leaped out of her tiny bed with a great big yawn. As she did first thing every morning, Isabelle scurried toward her elder sister and hugged her leg. Andromeda was more of a mother to the Smoochum than Cassandra, who cared about work and nothing more. Seeing the cute face of her little sister every morning and night was the only thing the Jynx looked forward to. And the face was indeed very cute.
“An-wo-me-da? Did you have a good sleep?” Isabelle asked after Andromeda picked her up and pinched her news. The baby Smoochum was very adorable. Unlike her beautiful evolved form, she was a very pretty shade of pink and barely a foot tall. Her hair was golden, looking like a broomstick’s end, while her lips were thin and light peach.
“Yes Bella! You behave good today in playtime, tell that mean bully Antiqua that your big sister will whip her good if she is mean to you again!” Andromeda baby-talked before blowing a small raspberry on her sister’s stomach. The two giggled before their mother cut them off.
“It’s time to go now Andromeda! Leave your sister with Wilhelmina. It’s a Tuesday so we are in—“
“Workshop 16C. I know Mother; you would think by eight years I'd know?” Andromeda spat, lowering her sister to the floor. She knew she would be punished for her insolence, but didn’t care.
The two exchanged nasty glares before Andromeda broke it to look back at her baby sister who watched the pair curiously. She became deeply immersed into the twinkling eyes, and pity sank to the deepest bowels of her stomach. Soon, her sister would evolve and have to start working every day for the rest of her life as well. Andromeda loved her sister dearly, she loved her more than she loved herself and couldn’t bear the fact her sister would seen be subject to the same life she lived. It was so unfair. It was too unfair.
“No,” Andromeda said simply, looking up in the air, tears welling up in her eyes.
“…Excuse me? What do you mean no?”
Andromeda’s eyes soon turned puffy and red; it was obvious she was holding back her tears.
“I mean, NO! I’M NOT WORKING ANOTHER DAY! I’M SICK OF THIS ROUTINE! I WON'T WORK FOR STUPID SANTY CLAUS! I HATE HIM MOM! I HATE YOU TOO! ISABELLE SHOULDN’T HAVE TO SINK DOWN TO THIS AND NEITHER SHOULD I!” Andromeda cried, throwing random things in their small hamper around, enjoying the way they shattered against the wall.
She then ran to the wall and punched it as hard as she could, until her knuckles couldn’t take it anymore. Her mother just watched silently and solemnly. Clutching her sore hand, Andromeda slumped to the floor and sobbed. Fantasies of a life in the Land of the Shining Sun that she dreamed of every night flooded her mind once more, making her sob even harder. Her mother finally moved from her spot, walking briskly toward her daughter, lips pursed and eyes detached.
“Andromeda, we have been through this more than enough times. I am not going to explain it to you again. Get yourself together, put on a nice big smile, and march to the workshop right now!” She demanded, pointing at the door, her face flushing with pure fury.
“No. I don’t want to.” Andromeda stopped crying and instead stared at her mother with an expression colder than any glacier in the Arctic Circle.
“You brought this upon yourself. I am very sorry I have to do this Andromeda.”
Cassandra sighed for a moment, took a deep breath, and then her eyes began to glow blue and her long blonde hair began to fan out behind her. Isabelle stepped back in fear and bewilderment, completely unaware of what was going on. Andromeda began to crawl back and retreat in fear, whimpering at what her mother would resort to doing.
Cassandra ignored her daughter’s pleas as she raised her hands. They slowly began to vibrate. Her lips contorted in a disgusting sneer while her blonde hair stopped fanning and instead stood up erect, while her blue glowing eyes erupted in a rainbow light. Andromeda shut her eyes tightly and grasped her head as tightly as she could, hoping that somehow her mother’s attack would fail.
But it didn’t.
An invisible force clamped Andromeda’s body, rapidly compressing it tighter and tighter until she felt like a mere ice cube. As quickly as the constricting force came, it immediately slipped away, leaving her entire body in a painful tingling sensation. While the Jynx shuddered and gritted her teeth as tightly as she could, she knew that the aftermath of the attack would be twice as worse. Her stomach sunk with dread as the tingling sensation she experienced far too many times ceased abruptly. A few seconds of painful silence followed while Andromeda opened her eyes to look at her mother. Her hair had fallen to her sides once more, but her terrifying eyes still flashed with rainbows, and her hands still rotated in mid-air as she muttered a few dreaded words.
“Mommy, no!” Isabelle pleaded running up to her mother, before being knocked back by the pure force of the attack.
The Jynx’s screams could be heard even from outside the barracks as her mind was smashed open. Whispers and mutters poured into her brain as her thoughts and memories swirled around her head in pandemonium. Cassandra invaded her daughter's mind, determined to destroy the part of her that hated her life. Before anything else could happen, Andromeda blacked out.
“Andromeda? Andromeda sweety, wake up. We’re already late to go to work. Andromeda?”
The Jynx’s eyes flashed open, and the first thing she saw was her beaming mother looking down at her. She felt strangely numb, devoid of any emotion or feeling. Her life was back to its normal monotonous routine, with no backtalk this time. Standing briskly and brushing the dirt off her back, Andromeda removed and put on her gloves and followed her mother silently, ready to work once more.
Climbing down several ladders of their barracks, they stepped outside into the frigid cold and trekked across the plush snow to their designated workshop where they would be building teddy bears. Andromeda kept her face down as she walked; only concerned with getting to the workshop, for she was unable to think or use her mind. Lifting her face to brush the snow off of her hair, she caught sight of the gate to Santa’s Domain. The entire domain was under a transparent dome, and the only exit was the big marble gateway that stood right in front of the first workshop. In fact, its official name was indeed “The Marble Gateway”. The only person that would be able to use this blessed passageway was Santa Claus himself when he got on his reindeer-harnessed sled and left on Christmas to deliver presents.
As she saw the Marble Gateway, something in Andromeda’s mind illuminated. At first, she ignored it, but while she marched, the light shined harder. Slowly, her thoughts and feelings began to reassambled back into place. She had desires outside of working for Santa Claus... And that gateway was her only way to those desires! The Hitmonchan gateman left his post, and for the first time in twelve years, she had a chance for freedom. She looked at her mother.
“Come along now Andromeda! You already delayed us once today!”
The blazing beast inside of the Jynx awoke once more and spread white hot fury throughout her entire body. Cassandra thought she could control daughter with her psychic powers, but Andromeda had a few powers of her own, and this time, she was refused to take her mother’s abuse. Her blood began to boil, and closing her eyes tightly, Andromeda focused all of her anger into her right hand, which burned burn white hot with the power of ice. Soon, her very fist itself quivered with excitement, desperate to release the anger stored inside of it. Cassandra finally caught sight of her daughter’s glowing hand, but it was too late.
Raising her glowing white hand as high as she could, Andromeda fired a powerful beam of ice from her hand, striking her stunned mother and froze her in her angry snarl. Firing her Ice Beam at any other nearby passerby, Andromeda screamed with rage as she watched walking Jynx transforming into frozen statues by her own hands. Many of the Jynx had never raised their hands to battle in their entire lives and ran away squealing, leaving only Andromeda and several ice sculptures behind.
Grimacing with madness, the insane Jynx drooled with greed at the beauty that was the great arched gateway to the world beyond. Panting heavily she began to break into a sprint toward the blessed site, unaware of the fact that a huge coat of ice stood inside the gateway, blocking her way. Staring in disbelief, Andromeda cursed vehemently; angered at the fact that her one chance for freedom was snatched under her nose. Looking back, she noticed the ice that coated her mother was cracking.
“Oh damn it! DAMN IT! ARGGGGGGHHHH! I didn’t come all this way for nothing!” Andromeda began to pound the enchanted ice wall that filled the gateway madly, in hopes that it would crack or somehow let her through.
The desire to leave the cursed land filled the Jynx once more as she pounded and punched the ice wall to the point that her knuckles bled as bone began to break skin. Splattering the ice with droplets of blood as she continued to punch the wall in agony, and as her mother nearly burst free from her icy prison, Andromeda gave the wall one final punch, doing nothing but shattering her knuckle bones. Clutching her bloody, mutilated hand once more, she rested her head against the wall and slowly wept as she heard her mother yell in rage. It was the end of the line. Any Jynx that attacked another Jynx was never heard from again… A single, pearly tear fell down the Jynx’s cheek and struck the wall not too far from the stains of her blood…
By some miracle of Mew, the massive wall of ice filling the marble gateway disappeared for a split second. Andromeda tumbled through to the other side, and the wall immediately reappeared, protecting her from the wrath of her angry mother. They said Hell hath no fury like a Jynx scorned, but that fury paled to Cassandra's response. Normally a very dark purple, she somehow managed to turn beet red as she stared at her daughter from the closed gateway. She screamed fervidly, but Andromeda could not hear her.
She was free.
The Jynx examined her surroundings in disbelief. The Arctic tundra was much colder, much more vicious than Santa’s workplace. The moment she stepped out, her face was immediately smothered and whipped by the brutal blizzard winds. The ground was no longer soft and plush with snow, rather hard and slippery with ice. Inside the dome, the holiday spirit kept sort of warmth flaring, but there was no such spirit outside, and Andromeda felt every single degree of the subzero temperature. She was already shivering madly and her injured hand ached horribly, but it mattered not because she was free!
More Jynx had gathered around the Marble Gateway and gawked at Andromeda: They had never seen a Jynx step outside of the domain before. Andromeda could have very well been the first ever to leave. Suddenly, she realized that though she was somehow able to go through the wall, the gatekeeper and Santa Claus could get through it even easier and could pull her back into the cursed captivity. Driven by the intense love of freedom, Andromeda darted across the harsh tundra, ignoring the unbearable pain in her bloody hand and staining the ground behind her with the sweet droplets of her ecstatic tears and blood.
All ecstasy from the first five minutes of freedom died like a human child under the blunt blade of Santa’s axe. Andromeda still sat silently at the edge of the pond, cold and miserable. She still had a long, treacherous journey ahead of her before she could reach the Land of the Smiling Sun. The poor Jynx began to doubt if she would ever complete her journey; it had only been a day, and she was already beginning to suffer with hunger and feared falling asleep, for she could freeze to death in her next slumber.
There had not been a single living thing in sight except for the dead tree she sat next to. Obviously the fat man was smart enough to place his fortress in the most desolate area of the Arctic so that none could escape him. For a moment, she considered turning back, but decided death was worth the pursuit of freedom. Leaping to her feet, Andromeda continued to march forward more determined than ever, toward the mountains, toward her freedom. Her hunger was worse than ever, but she still managed to walk, despite the pain she had never experienced in Santa’s Domain.
“What was that?”
Looking around vigilantly, Andromeda’s heart nearly froze. She was not alone.
A flash of black had appeared in the corner of her eye. Perhaps it was a hunger-induced hallucination, or just the desperate will to see another living creature, but Andromeda had definitely seen something. Bringing up her dried blood-covered fist to her side, she was ready to freeze any little beast that reared its head. Ten minutes passed by, and there was no sign of any living thing, so Andromeda had continued on forward, dismissing whatever she saw as an illusion. But she saw the black flash again.
“WHO IS THERE? REVEAL YOURSELF NOW!”
She began blasting Ice Beams randomly, hoping to draw out whatever slimy creature was watching her, but hit nothing but the gnarled tree and patches of the already frozen ice. The tree creaked ominously as the branches cracked under the weight of the thick piles of ice on top of it. Andromeda gazed at it in horror as the branches snapped off and came crashing down through the thin ice, smashing it open and taking Jynx down into the frigid depths of the water with it.
“Help! Somebody help!”
Andromeda thrashed violently in the chilly water as the pieces of ice drifted away. As much as she lashed and thrashed her arms, frantic to try and swim, she failed. Slowly, she began to sink into the arctic waters, to only be forgotten by the world as another nameless Jynx, a slave to the fat bastard, Santa Claus. Her head submerged into the waters and only her blonde hair floated ghost-like on top of the dark waters.