Artifice Comics Presents…
Anthology 2 #20
“Jolly” Jason S. Kenney
[Inspired by Alex “Christmassy” Cook and Jac “Bah Humbug” Milnestein
And Ho-Hos. Gotta give props to the Ho-Hos.]
The moral rights of Jason S. Kenney to be identified as the Author of this Work have been asserted in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988.
First published in 2002 by
This version published by smashwords
Editor-in-Chief Jason S. Kenney
Cover design © Kevin Joyce 2016
copyright © Jason S. Kenney 2002 – 2016
Millennium Man created by Dorin, property of Artifice Comics © 2000 – 2016
Mayor Cliff Jerrod created by Tommy Hancock, property of Artifice Comics © 2001 – 2016
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used factiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise), without the prior written permission of the publisher. Any person who does any unauthorised act in relation to this publication may be liable to criminal prosecution and civil claims for damages.
This book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, resold, hired out, or otherwise circulated without the publisher’s prior consent in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser.
Ho Ho Horrible Tragedy Forced Upon Christmas!
“Ho ho ho!” shouted the jolly fat man as he waved to the crowd gathered along Bristol Avenue.
Children young and old alike smiled at the joyous figure that brought Christmas cheer to Pacific City.
The Pacific City Christmas Parade was an annual event that usually signaled the true beginning of the holiday season to many of the city’s fine citizens. The parade would lead the people like lemmings into the joy that is the Holiday spirit.
Nevermind the Jews or Muslims or any of those other unbelieving faiths. They don’t matter in this story.
This story is about Christmas!
And, really, those other folks CAN be included, because, hey, this is about what Christmas means to people today.
Christmas is for everyone!
Okay, so there’s no snow this time of year in Australia, nor is there really any Christmas tree stuff and what not, but that doesn’t mean the people of Pacific City weren’t enjoying themselves. No, quite the opposite. They were getting oh, so caught up in the Spirit of Christmas that many forgot to eat or even keep track of their own little ones who would get caught up in the crowd and spirited away in a rush of joy and kidnappings.
But those are sad thoughts and we leave those for another holiday like Flag Day or Arbor Day, things usually recognized by the Yankees in the States, therefore it’s easy to give them horrible meaning because they’re silly holidays anyways and merely excuses for banks to close.
Santa waved to the crowd as his float was led down Bristol Avenue by eight plastic deer hopping around on gears grinding away. He threw candy canes to the crowd every now and then, ignoring the cries from the people struck by these minty missiles and continuing his jolly shouting and shaking of his fat belly.
Yes, that belly, how enormous it had gotten over the years. Santa had certainly let himself go since his days as a find looking quarterback at Pole Tech. Yes, that class president/most likely to succeed gentleman was the man that all people adored and he won the heart of one particular woman, a fine looking lady who would one day become Mrs. Santa Claus and help run his sweatshop factory that churned out toys for all good little children the world round.
Santa needed to run his ass around the block a few times.
Yes, Santa had come a long way since his introduction oh, not so long ago, and reinvention by so many people, most notably Norman Rockwell and that bastion of Christmas joy and all things swell with the world, Coca-Cola.
Santa smiled and waved as did the crowd caught up in the thick joy that spread forth like a cloud of chlorine gas over so many young soldiers so many years ago in the fields of Europe during the Great War.
Yes, it certainly was beginning to look a lot like Christmas.
All the reds and greens, and greens and greens. Yes, this Christmas certainly was more green than red, and that can’t be good.
So let’s add a little red, shall we?
Santa’s smile quickly dropped into a frown (signifying the most exercise the man had done other than waving in over twenty years) as he saw the crowd part and people thrown into the air by an invisible force that pushed its way through the masses with ease.
And whatever that force was, it was coming straight for him.
“Hey, jackass!” shouted Santa to the man hidden under Vixen’s stomach, the man driving the truck that the float rested and glided through the streets upon. “Get me the hell out of here!”
“Oh, Santa!” said the man with a giggle and a wave back at the jolly ol’ elf.
Santa looked back and saw the thing getting closer, the crowd getting pushed and thrown apart quicker and quicker.
And then it was at the barrier.
And then the barrier was knocked over.
And then he felt the float tip slightly as whatever it was began to climb on.
“Ho ho oh no,” said Santa.
Suddenly, an invisible fist connected with his red nose, breaking it and sending the old tubby elf backwards and off of the float. The crowd smiled and waved at the sight, so caught up in the Christmas joy that they were blind to the happenings.
Santa rolled himself over and tried to get up, getting to his hands and feet when he felt something grab him from behind and lift him into the air, tossing him up and back into the street as the float continued forward and the crowd continued to smile.
Santa hit the ground and rolled to a stop right by the crowd. He looked up to see shiny faces smiling and looking down at him, joy filling their heart and souls.
“Santa!” shouted one little girl, pushing her way through and helping the man up.
“Thank you, little girl,” he said, starting to smile.
She pushed him back and he landed sitting up right. She leapt into his lap.
“I want a pony,” she started, “And a little brother and a Barbie and a Ferrari and a GI Joe action war scene with real war sounds and a new little brother and parents who love me and world peace and—”
Then she practically disappeared, an invisible hand swatting the child away and into the crowd.
Santa looked up as the air in front of him seemed to shiver and solidify, a being appearing.
Santa wet himself.
It was a good two meters of metal nightmares come to life, a beautiful cloak blowing in the breeze.
“Ooooooo….” said the crowd.
“I want one of those too!” shouted the little girl from somewhere in the crowd.
Santa reached up a finger and shoved it up his nose, wiggling it slightly and then rising into the air.
How do you think he got up that chimney?
The metal machine from hell reached up with its arms that fell away to reveal cannons.
“Oh, poo,” said Santa as the machine fired.
Santa wiggled his finger again and shrunk as the bullets sailed by, barely missing him.
Of course Santa can shrink. How do you think he got his fat ass up and down your chimney? He can only suck in that gut so much.
The machine stopped firing and studied the sky, trying to find this mini-Santa.
Now, if you were the machine, you’d be seeing many things at this point. Infrared tracking the sky for heat signatures, night vision so you could see in the dark, a targeting display with neat green crosshairs and boxes, a bunch of data scrolling by as you tried to get information on this target you were hunting down; all sorts of wonderful, high tech things that would help you in your task.
And help it did as the machine quickly leapt into the air and reached out, grabbing at the mini-Santa that tried to get away, but to no avail.
He was caught!
The machine came down with a crash, and if it could smile, it probably would have.
“You’re on my naughty list,” said Santa as he grew back to normal size and then kept growing. And growing.
Santa grew to forty feet tall and almost as wide, a giant Stay Puff Marshmallow man in red and white fur (fur is murder, kids, don’t be like Santa).
He stomped down on the robot and laughed.
“Ho ho ho!” he shouted (which sounded more like “how, how, how” because of his broken nose).
Then his foot was lifted and Santa was thrown back by a force he never imagined could exist! He fell backwards and onto a crowd of people that cheered and attempted to catch Santa for a merry crowd surf, only for every single one of them to be crushed to death under jolly old elf largeness.
Yes, folks, red certainly was starting to show up a bit more now.
Santa shrunk down to normal size and stood up, shaking his head to clear it and looking around to try and see this thing that was coming after him.
Then an invisible punch caught him in his huge gut and he just stood there and took it. And then another. Santa started to laugh. And then a punch caught him in the face, sending teeth flying and causing Santa to bite his tongue. And then another punch to the face, this one catching his left eye and immediately swelling it shut.
Santa stumbled back as the machine reappeared before.
“CHRISTOPHER KRINGLE,” said the machine in a loud, metallic, very unfriendly voice, “ALSO KNOWN AS SANTA CLAUS, ALSO KNOWN AS SAINT NICHOLAS, ALSO KNOWN AS JOLLY OLD ELF, ALSO KNOWN AS FUBAR THE WONDER BEAR OF THE EAST,” (Santa’s little known wrestling alter ego), “YOU ARE UNDER ARREST FOR THREE HUNDRED AND EIGHTY NINE BILLION COUNTS OF BREAKING AND ENTERING, ONE TRILLION EIGHT HUNDRED AND TWENTY SEVEN BILLION FOUR HUNDRED AND SEVEN MILLION NINE HUNDRED AND EIGHTY FOUR THOUSAND AND ONE COUNTS OF BRIBERY…”
And the machine went on and on with so many frivolous charges that Santa rolled his eyes and, with a twinkle of the same, he laid a finger in his nose and up the wonderful sky he rose!
And, giving a finger to the machine below, he flew over Pacific City in an attempt to get away.
And the crowd heard him exclaim as he flew out of sight:
“Thanks for nothing, you sons of bitches, you all can burn in hell for all I care. Naughty list, ALL OF YOU!”
And Christmas was saved.
“Who the hell put Santa in the Siege Engine’s database?”
“Um, that would be, uh, me, sir,” said Lewis Sommers to Mayor Cliff Jerrod. An emergency meeting had been called in the Mayor’s office after the incident in the parade.
“Damn it, Sommers,” said the Mayor, standing up and slamming his fists on the desk, “just because you never got the doll house you wanted when you were twelve doesn’t mean you have any right to use government equipment for some personal agenda.”
“But sir….” started Sommers.
“No buts!” said Jerrod, glaring at the man.
“But I wanted that doll house!” shouted Sommers, stomping his feet on the floor and sticking his lower lip out.
“Well…” said Jerrod, reaching under his desk and pulling up a box.
And there it was. The pink Barbie fun house with a matching Corvette that Sommers had wanted for years. His eyes lit up and his tears quickly turned to shimmering joy in his eyes.
And then Mayor Jerrod brought his super strength supported fist down onto the top of the box crushing it in one awesome blow.
It was neat!
Sommers’s jaw dropped.
“Maybe next time you’ll be good,” said Mayor Jerrod.
Sommers turned and ran from the office, bawling.
Cliff Jerrod stood for a moment and then sunk and sat on the floor.
“That wasn’t very nice,” he said in a high pitch voice, picking up and dancing a Barbie around in the air. His other hand grasped at a Ken doll.
“Shut up, bitch,” said Ken, bitch slapping Barbie. “If I wanted your opinion I’d beat it out of you. And where’s my dinner?”
And Barbie went to the kitchen in the Barbie fun house while Ken hopped in the matching Corvette and sped off to go find himself a whore.
THE MAGICAL END TO A MAGICAL CHRISTMAS TALE
Happy holidays, whores.
J[*ason S. Kenney *]writes stories that sometimes amuse and entertain. He is based in Richmond,
Virginia with his wife, son, dog and cat. His wallet is brown.
Loco rides with loco,” Virgil chided. “You could have hung back in Tombstone, Jim. Or ridden onto Tucson with Stillwell and Ike.”
Filled to the brim with tales both wild and weird, PSYCHOBILLY is a homage to the genre tropes of the Western as depicted on television and in print. Collecting together stories of wandering national deities, corrupt mansions, unspeakable underground horrors, pacts with the Devil himself, this volume promises celebrates the stoic steadfastness of lawmen and outlaws in the face of the arcane and the obscene.
Featuring the work of Greg Rosa (Dreamer’s Syndrome: New World Navigation), Adrian J. Watts (Guardian Force Roboman), Matthew Cavazos (Ars Magna: Talisman), Tommy Hancock (YesterYear), Jason S. Kenney (Bush43 Vol. 1: Oh, the Lameity) and PSYCHOPOMP stalwarts, C.S. Roberts and John Brown this collection is the latest in a series of speculative works from Mysteria Press recommended for fans of Neil Gaiman, Alan Moore, and Grant Morrison.
The quintessential Artifice Comics tale! Programmed to destroy super-powered beings known as Post-Moderns, the Siege Engine sets its sights on Santa Claus! Absurdist and puerile, Ho Ho Horrible Tragedy Forced Upon Christmas! focuses on the age old problem of just what do you do when you have a mechanized killing machine replete with a database of every super-powered human on Earth and a mandate for ruining the holiday season. Recommended for fans of sheer what-the-fuckery.