The Season of Grace

Submitted into Contest #123 in response to: Begin or end your story with “Well, that was dramatic.”... view prompt

24 comments

Christmas Horror Funny

(Content Warning: Violence, Gore, Language, Crude humor.)




Amongst the perils of evil, Grace Johnson stood defiantly with clenched fists ready to strike. The three-headed beast bellowed a deafening roar as it charged toward the twelve-year-old girl. A monstrosity of terror, the monster had the body of a lion, with the heads of a bear, dragon, wolf, and a serpent’s tail whipping back and forth like an animal tamer’s whip. 


Riding on top of this foul creature was Mrs. Claus, dressed in a black stitched battle-worn dress. Her white hair was nestled in a bun and cradled in a dark bonnet like a battle helmet. Grace saw the flickering flames of fire burning in the old woman’s eyes and heard the vengeance in her voice for the loss of her husband Santa, or Atnas as he loved being called. Nothing burns hotter than the passion of revenge, a deadly dance of death, and Grace was ready to tango.


The heavy thumping of Grace’s heart slowed to that of a peaceful butterfly flapping its wings on a warm sunny day. This was a welcome relief from the frigid North Pole temperatures that poured in from the broken wall caused by Granny and the beast. Grace was dressed in her black pajamas from the night before, and her inky eyeliner was running down her cheeks like a busted fountain pen.


The three-headed beast locked eyes with Grace salivating at the meal to come. Instinctively, Grace flexed every muscle she had to brace for the runaway freight train. As Grace smelled the creature’s putrid breath, she was pulled away to safety by an unlikely ally, an elf named Jack.


Grace recognized the little man dressed in tattered green clothes with his matching pointy hat and pixie boots. Jack was the brave elf who threw a bouncy red ball at Atnas, allowing her to kill the evil demon. Now, here he was again, saving the day.


As Jack pulled Grace out of the way, Mrs. Claus and the beast smashed through the back wall and into a nearby snow mound. Grace tied her black hair into a ponytail while her teeth chattered in the cold arctic air. She looked at Jack, who was still holding her hand.


His voice was shrill and squeaky. “Are you alright?” 


“I’m okay,” Grace uttered, gasping for air. “What’s your name, and why did you save me?”


“My name is Jack, and save you I did because you freed us from the confines of our own making.”


“I don’t understand,” said Grace.


Jack interjected hastily, “No time to explain. If you want to live, come with me.” He paused for a moment and shrugged. “I would stay and fight that old nasty whore, but I don’t have my balls!” 


Bewildered, Grace allowed Jack to pull her further into the toy factory as Mrs. Claus dug her way out of the snow pile. The three-headed monster followed suit, shaking the snow off like a wet dog fresh from a cold bath.


The old woman snarled through clenched teeth and yelled, “Run all you want, you little witch, but know that I will find you. I WILL FIND YOU!” She held her fist in the air and shook it ferociously. “You’re in my world now, and those little bastard elves won’t be able to hide you forever. Ah-ha, ha, ha, ha, ho!”


Grace and Jack rushed by the empty assembly lines that usually ran full speed but were now dead. In fact, the entire factory was at a standstill with the death of Atnas. The elves were indeed free, and without their wicked slave master, the only thing they could do was hide from his crazy wife. 


There were no fanciful decorations like you would see on television. No candy canes to suck on or hula-hoops to twirl, only sadistic torture devices that would make Satan look like the Pillsbury Doughboy. Atnas ran the toy factory with a stiff hand and a dirty mouth. The male elves worked the lines, while the females tended Atnas himself.


Grace noticed an overabundance of empty toothpaste tubes as she ran away with Jack. All the women were brushing their chompers and gurgling bottles of mouthwash while the men hid under boxes and buckets with their ass-cracks smiling sideways in the wind.  


Cracking a smile, Grace heard Jack squeak, “Come on! We must move faster, or she’ll catch us!”


“Okay, I’m moving as fast as I can!” Grace snapped. “Your legs are quicker than mine!” 


Out of the blue, Jack’s eyes exploded like fireworks as he saw the perfect hiding place. An old brown trunk that belonged to Atnas tucked away in a dark corner. Jack lifted the lid and shoved Grace inside. He followed and closed the top to find Atnas’s secret stash of dirty movies.


Grace scowled at Jack and slapped his slacked jawed mouth. “I-I didn’t know these were in here, I swear!!” Jack stuttered.


“Uh-huh…”  


The awkwardness was suddenly broken by the thunderous footsteps of Mrs. Claus stomping through the hallway. Jack and Grace slowly lifted the chest lid just enough to allow their peepers to see what was going on. Granny was alone, which meant she left the beast outside, probably due to its massive size.


Mrs. Claus sniffed here and there and listened all around but only found scared little elves hiding like cowards. With every find, she held each elf up to her wrinkled lips and ate them like candy bars. There’s no such thing as a Snickers bar on the North Pole, so the old woman made do with what she had. Mrs. Claus would pause to pick a random bone from her yellow teeth in between bites.


Grace could taste bile in her mouth and wanted to vomit, but Jack covered her mouth, preventing any such thing from occurring. Grace was also afraid that Mrs. Claus would hear the echoing booms of her heartbeat, but as luck would have it, the old woman was partially deaf. 


Mrs. Claus turned her attention to the chest and sniffed the air like Satan in heat. Grace and Jack quickly ducked, allowing the lid to close once more. They clenched their eyes shut and prayed that the old woman didn’t see them. Like a hound dog sniffing its prey, Mrs. Claus crept closer to the trunk and was very curious because it was the first time she had seen it. 


Grace could hear the evil woman’s footsteps just outside and couldn’t stop trembling. She glanced at Jack, squeezing his hands together like he was grasping an invisible object. It was odd behavior for sure, but there was no time to ponder about it because the sound of the trunk handle began to rattle. Mrs. Claus was upon them.


With devil’s delight, Mrs. Claus licked her cracked lips and moistened the long peach fuzz around her mouth. She narrowed her eyes and popped the lid open only to find a massive collection of girly magazines that Atnas had hidden away.


“That piece of shit!” blasted Mrs. Claus. “I can’t believe my husband would hide these from me!!”  


The old woman slammed the lid shut and stormed away. “Ugh!! I’ll find you, little girl! You can’t hide forever!”


Mrs. Claus marched further into the factory, and when Grace and Jack could no longer hear her cursing, they climbed out from the chest. Grace was relieved to see three other trunks scattered along the corner and thanked her lucky stars that Mrs. Claus had opened the wrong one.


Jack took a deep breath and listened as Grace asked him a question. “What were you doing with your hands in there?” 


Lifting his brow, Jack exclaimed, “Oh, I get nervous and like to squeeze my bouncy balls, but I threw my last one at Atnas to save you.”


Grace nodded and said, “Thanks for helping me, but now we need to find a way out of here.”


“I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but no one can leave as long as Mrs. Claus is alive. The Christmas magic resides in her now that Atnas is dead,” admitted Jack.


Jack was about to say something else, but the sweet smell of gingerbread cookies filled the air. It’s a known fact that all elves love cookies, especially gingerbread cookies. Being prisoners and forced to work as slaves, the little people rarely got to eat anything other than moldy bread.


Grace looked around and saw hundreds of miniature eyes poking out from the confines of their hiding spots. The elves stumbled out, sniffing the air like they were in a trance. They couldn’t help themselves and ran towards the sweet aroma. Grace looked at Jack, dripping with sweat, and came to the only possible conclusion. It was a trap. 


“Jack, you have to control yourself,” Grace said firmly. “Can’t you see this is a trick to lure you guys out!?”


“Oh… I’m trying,” Jack uttered, “the sweet temptation is tough to ignore! I need something to squeeze. I need my balls!” 


Grace grabbed Jack’s little hand and said, “You can squeeze my hand as hard as you want.” She pulled him towards the smell and declared, “Come with me, we’re gonna kill this stupid witch!” 


As Grace and Jack ventured deeper into the depths of the toy factory, their noses led them to the bakery where all the delicious treats were made. Grace spotted the perfect hiding place behind some supply boxes and held Jack tightly. The urge to run into the kitchen to grab a cookie was so strong that Jack’s grip felt like a vice. 


Mrs. Claus pulled out another batch of gingerbread cookies and was singing Jingle Bells to the hungry elves who were clustered around her feet. They looked like a pack of wild rats begging for a piece of cheese.


“Now, now, my little babies, the cookies are finally ready, so dig in!” Mrs. Claus said with a warm smile.


Jack chewed his fingernails, and Grace could feel his entire body quiver. “Hang in there, little buddy,” she whispered. “Something about this just doesn’t feel right.”


They watched as the elves devoured the gingerbread cookies, and for a moment, everything seemed fine. Nothing happened until a female elf grabbed her throat and puked a bloody, foul-smelling liquid. She glanced at the other elves as blood streamed down from her eyes, and like a chain reaction, the others began vomiting.


“That’s it, my lovelies.” Mrs. Claus cackled like an evil witch and bellowed, “Don’t you just love my new recipe? You’ll never guess what the secret ingredient was… Oh, alright, I’ll tell you. It’s cyanide, ha, ha, ho, ha, ho!!”


One by one, the elves gasped for oxygen and dropped dead in a pool of rancid vomit. In the shock of the moment, Grace didn’t realize that she had let go of Jack’s hand. When she looked down, he had somehow managed to grab one of the gingerbread cookies and was ready to eat it. Grace snatched it from Jack’s hand before the sweet pastry had a chance to touch his lips. 


“Don’t eat that!” snapped Grace.


“What? It’s yummy, and I need a little taste!”


Grace shrugged. “Did you not see what happened to your friends? If you wanna end up like them, be my guest.” 


Jack looked at the bloodshed and shook his head. “Ew… yeah, you’re right!”


The outburst was loud enough to give away their position, and Mrs. Claus was approaching. Her flesh melted away from her face revealing her true form. The old woman’s black skull glistened beneath the soft yellow lights and her pink fingernails transformed into long, razor-sharp claws. Her crimson eyes bore straight ahead towards Grace. 


“There you are! I knew I would find you sooner or later,” roared Mrs. Claus. “Have you tried one of my delicious cookies?” 


Making a stand, Grace threw Jack behind her, ready to fight. She did, after all, kill Santa or Atnas, so this should be a piece of cake.


“I’m not afraid of you! I killed your husband because he murdered my parents, so he had it coming!”


“Is that so, my dear? Atnas was a sleazy bastard, and I suppose you’re right in some small way, but you fail to understand that I must eat you. It’s what I do, ha, ha, ho, ha!” 


As Mrs. Claus came closer, Grace took a step back and tripped over Jack. She had forgotten entirely that he was there. The old woman was now upon them. She opened her mouth and stretched her jaw to accommodate Grace’s size. Her yellow teeth crackled and exploded like popcorn allowing dark fangs to sprout up through her rotting gumline. Her hunger was insatiable.


Jack tucked his head between his legs and cried. He knew there was no use running. Grace inched her way backward, searching for a suitable weapon when all the while she had one in her hand the whole time. The poisonous gingerbread cookie.


Bypassing Jack, Mrs. Claus lunged at Grace with her alligator maw. Grace expected the move and threw the cookie into her mouth. Mrs. Claus recoiled and coughed for dear life, trying to hack up the pastry of death, but it was no use. The sweet treat had already slid down her gullet.


“You stupid, stupid little girl! Do you realize what you’ve done?!”  


Grace rose and helped Jack to his feet. “Yeah, I know exactly what I did. I just murderfied your ass!!”  


Mrs. Claus fell to the floor and vomited. Her entire body convulsed like she was having a seizure, and with one final bloodcurdling scream, the evil woman died.  


Grace smiled and exhaled her pent-up anxiety and fear. She grabbed Jack’s hand again began her journey out of the toy factory. Along the way, they found more elves who were tucked away in boxes and containers, so they did not smell the scent of death like the others. 


Jack was elated because he found a whole box of bouncy balls, so now he had something to squeeze once again. He held one up to Grace and bragged, “Look, Grace, I found my balls! Now I can mash, squash, and pinch them anytime I want!” 


Grace giggled. “That’s great, Jack.”  


The only thing on Grace’s mind was going home. She hastily exited the toy factory and felt the cold chill of the North Pole wind. The air felt colder this time. She didn’t notice the frozen figure with antlers standing before her with brown skin and a bullheaded face until the creature spoke in an icy-cold voice.


“Where is she? Where is my mistress?” 


Grace shivered and asked, “Are you talking about Mrs. Claus, and who the fuck are you?” 


“My name is Krampus,” he said. “I was invited over to have a taste of Mrs. Claus’s pie,” he paused to lick his icy lips and continued. “She makes a wonderful dish!” 


“I’m afraid she’s dead,” vented Grace. “I killed her and her perverted husband!”


Krampus snarled in anger and charged towards Grace. Jack shoved his beloved new friend away to safety, and unbeknownst to them, Krampus crashed into the hideous three-headed beast that was silently approaching from behind. The two animals wrestled like mighty titans tossing snow everywhere. Neither one had the advantage because they were born from pure evil, and two wrongs don’t make a right.


Grace rose from the frozen ground and watched the two monsters slug it out. She knew that whoever won the battle would come after her next, so she grabbed a broken board that had a sharp tip from the wreckage of the factory and braced herself. The creatures came to a rolling stop right before Grace’s feet and growled at each other.


This was it. Grace raised the board like a spear and drove it down with all her might. It stabbed through Krampus and the three-headed beast so fiercely that they both howled in unison and died, staining the snow beneath them red. 


In the silent calm that followed, Grace looked at the elves surrounding her. They all had puppy dog eyes that were filled with tears.


Grace looked at Jack, squeezing his balls, and asked, “Why are they looking at me like that?”


“You saved us all, and they are eternally grateful.” 


“That’s great and all, but I really want to go home now.”  


Jack placed the ball into his pocket, and all the elves grabbed each other’s hands and circled Grace. 


“What are you guy’s doing, some sort of magical spell to send me home?”


Jack shook his head solemnly. “I’m afraid not, Grace. You see, with Santa and Mrs. Claus dead, there is no one left to deliver our toys to the world of children.”


“What the fuck are you talking about?” Grace snapped.


“We need someone new to take their place. That person is you, my dear friend,” Jack said smiling.


“Hell no!” Grace yelled. “I don’t want this!” 


In unison, the elves spoke before Grace could exit the circle. “La, chanta, glora, inifinitio, santy, santy.”   


A magical vortex of blue sparkles swirled around Grace, transforming her clothes into the traditional red and white Santa suit.


“You gotta be shitting me!?”


The elves released Grace, and Jack explained, “You are now the new Santa Claus and will deliver our gifts to the world once a year on Christmas.”


After a few moments, Grace accepted the reality of her situation. Her family was dead, and she didn’t have anything to go home to. This was the way of things.


Biting her bottom lip, Grace commanded, “Alright, but there’s gonna be big changes around here, and if I grow a beard, I’m killing every single one of you fuckers!” 


The elves nodded and sang Here Comes Santa Claus.


Grace rolled her eyes and said, ““Well, that was dramatic.” 





The End




Daniel R. Hayes 

December 08, 2021 06:59

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24 comments

Graham Kinross
21:28 Jan 16, 2022

Epic dialogue and I’m always there for magical creatures. I really enjoyed this.

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:51 Jan 17, 2022

Thank you Graham, this story was the second part to "Season of Evil" and it was really fun writing this :)

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John Hanna
14:25 Dec 16, 2021

Hi Daniel, My name is John and I received your story from the critique circle. Wow! It certainly was energetic and imaginative! Usually, I nit-pick through the few simple errors that everyone seems to make a few of - but I couldn't find any! Great! I found it horrifically amusing and I hope you keep them coming!

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Daniel R. Hayes
17:10 Dec 16, 2021

Hi John, thank you so much for reading my story. It's the second part to "The Season of Evil." I had a lot of fun writing it, so I'm really glad you enjoyed it, and didn't find any mistakes. I often make a few, so that made my day!! Thanks for the critique :)

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Palak Shah
17:29 Dec 11, 2021

I love the story and it was the anagrams were great to spot and great. I cant wait to read more of this. Keep up the good work. Could you please read my latest story if possible? :)) Thanks :))

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Daniel R. Hayes
02:54 Dec 12, 2021

Thank you so much Palak!! I'm glad you liked the story, and of course I will read your new story. Headed there now :)

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Boutat Driss
13:31 Dec 09, 2021

amazing tale! well done!

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Daniel R. Hayes
17:11 Dec 09, 2021

Thank you Boutat!! I'm so glad you liked it. Thanks for reading :)

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Francis Daisy
11:04 Dec 09, 2021

Santa, Atnas, Satan! Santy? OMG! So many anagrams! I love it! Only one thing I noticed: you change how you spell Mrs. Claus a few times. Sometimes with an e and sometimes without. I love how strong Grace is becoming. She is really coming into her own. I can't wait to read more in this series! (still waiting for her to conjure back her parents 😊)

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Daniel R. Hayes
17:09 Dec 09, 2021

Hi Francis!! Thank you so much for that typo catch. I missed it 2 times... lol :) I fixed them. I'm really glad you liked the conclusion, I had a lot of fun writing it. I might be able to bring Grace back for more holiday tales, so we will see :) Thanks again!!

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Francis Daisy
03:03 Dec 10, 2021

Amazing Grace! :)

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15:26 Dec 08, 2021

The sequel I have been waiting for! More Grace More Evil Mrs. Claus An elf purge? And this line: “make Satan look like the Pillsbury Doughboy” How don’t you have a Bojack Horseman cartoon series? 💯 would you watch And I think Grace needs a longer work where she takes on all the holidays gone rouge (Easter Bunny, Valentine’s Day, etc.)

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15:30 Dec 08, 2021

Also — you had way too much fun writing this 🤣

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:31 Dec 08, 2021

Hahahaha!! You're right, I did have a lot fun writing this one. I let the character's get a little dirty, and I did laugh a lot writing the dialogue. With a little brainstorming, I think I could bring Grace back for more holiday fun later... lol ;) I think there are a lot of bad Christmas horror stories, but not enough good ones, so I'm really glad you liked this!!! Thanks so much :) :)

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Shea West
14:53 Dec 08, 2021

🤣🤣🤣🤣 This was a wild romp of fabulous metaphors and similes galore. Things I loved: All the cussing/innuendo humor! What a firecracker Grace was! How cheeky Jack came across! The way you described Mrs. Claus as a baddie, and the teeth popping from her head like popcorn! The fact it's not categorized as humor and horror has me 🧐🧐🧐 This was a great piece Daniel.

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:24 Dec 08, 2021

Thanks a lot Shea, I'm so glad you liked this one. I think this goes along with the first story perfectly, and I think I'll add the humor category. I'm glad the funny parts came across and I took your advice and allowed the characters to get a little dirty... lol :) :)

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Shea West
16:49 Dec 08, 2021

Funny as hell! Give me all the language🤣🤣

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Kate Reynolds
14:31 Dec 08, 2021

Oh how I adore this This was so well written, hilarious, and a perfect second part to the first part XD I laughed so hard at the dialogue, and I really loved how almost simple the whole dialogue was but at the same time, that, with the gory and blood combined created such a unique story (in the best way.

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:20 Dec 08, 2021

Thank you so much for reading this Kate. It was a really fun story to write and I thought I could have some fun with the dialogue to make it a little lighthearted... lol :) Thanks for the wonderful comments and reading, I really appreciate it! :) :)

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Kate Reynolds
16:30 Dec 08, 2021

Ofc! Thank you for writing such a masterpiece, that’s probably one of my favorite stories I’ve read on Reedsy yet. :D

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:33 Dec 08, 2021

Wow... I'm speechless... lol. Thank you so much!!

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Kate Reynolds
17:03 Dec 08, 2021

You deserve the praise lmao

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Keya Jadav
10:01 Dec 08, 2021

Ay, finally the second part! Just as the last one, I absolutely loved it! The descriptions were amazing and kept me guessing the whole time. Hah! Loved the last trick of Grace when she burnt Mrs Clause in her own fire. The ending was totally unexpected. Great going! All I can say is you are an excellent author :))

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:17 Dec 08, 2021

Thank you so much Keya! This was really fun to write and I think it's a really cool Christmas horror story. I really appreciate the amazing comments as always, made my day! :)

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