The Yule Tide
Fractured Mind Publishing 12/21/2020
Make Christmas horror an event again with his delightful tales of holiday treachery. While you’re certain to meet some resistance in asking your family to gather around for a yuletide horror tale, give it a shot. It may be just the gift they didn’t know they needed.
The Yule Tide features Krampus and a character lost in a snowstorm who has been a very bad girl indeed…
Nellie held her gloved hand in front of her and it disappeared into the blizzard. That was impossible. No fall could be that thick. She stuck both hands back into her pockets, with her naked finger still on the trigger.
“Did you think nobody would know? Did you think nobody was aware?”
The syllables were rough, the words slurred as though they were coming from a person with a speech impediment. She fired a shot in the direction of the voice, despite her admonition not to waste shots. Nellie would have fled, if there had been anywhere to run to. But it was just her in this desolate place where nothing was real but the storm and her phantasm. It had to be some sort of fever dream. The words were weird, wrong, like the speaker had…a mouth full of teeth. Or fangs.
“Where are you? Who are you?”
It was December 5th, a day that was nothing special. She’d meant to surprise her father—instead she was the one being amazed. If she—when she—got out of this she’d turn around and flee to New Hampshire. Maybe if she holed up, they’d never link the robbery, and possible murder, to her.
The twin sound of clanking chains and tinkling bells came closer. “Americans, they are so ignorant,” the sibilant voice said. It was all around her, in the trees and in the snow, the tones filling her ears. She wanted to put her hands up to block out the sound and shriek. But if she started screaming, she might never stop.
“Americans?” She was in New England, the definition of America. “You aren’t making sense.” Maybe it was some sort of escaped prisoner. The nearest jail was some rinky dink thing in Nashua. The bigger prisons were in larger cities like Manchester, like the one she’d come from. Maybe he was a mental patient. It was likely some crazy wacko who draped himself in chains and was high on meth. That would explain why he didn’t feel the cold.
“You Americans, you don’t have a sense of history.”
Her hand trembled, her fingertips icy. She longed to get off another round but couldn’t waste the bullets. She supposed there were four more in the chamber, but had lost count. She didn’t think she could fire with her fingers so numb.
“Who are you?” The fact that he was talking meant he wasn’t a wolf. He might think he was, if he was an escaped mental patient. People believed a variety of weird shit.
Like those who assumed she was worth saving.