The Joys of Christmas by Sid Arbaon

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SUMMARY: Entry for December FFC. Kyrstael, a young alien, experiences her first Christmas on Earth, and she "convinces" her friend to pose as St. Nick.

"No." said the stubborn Matnis. He stepped away from the small girl who was holding out a white beard, a red hat, and a red suit- the classic Santa Claus suit. "I refuse to wear something so degrading."

"Matty..." The small girl whined, shaking the suit in his face. "You have to wear it!"

"No, I don't." Matty replied. "Don't even bother using those puppy-dog eyes, Kyrstael. I've been immune from that for a while." Kyrstael abandoned her act, and glared heavily at Matnis.

"Christmas is a time of sharing. Of love and of family and good will. You will not ruin my first Christmas on Earth because you're being so goddamned selfish!" Kyrstael shrieked at Matnis.

"I don't care if it's your first Christmas on MARS. I won't be wearing the suit!" Matnis had been subject to the aforementioned argument since the beginning of December. Of course, being the somewhat young alien she was, Kyrstael was ecstatic about the holiday.

It was on the darkly fated day that Kyrstael discovered the legend of Santa Claus, who gives free presents to all the good little boys and girls in the world. At first she dismissed it as humans being ignorant and immensely addled brained, but after seeing reactions from other little kids, began to grow on it.

Almost randomly, she thought that Matnis would make the perfect Santa Claus. He denied it when she first brought it up when they were hunting for food- that was his first mistake, for Kyrstael always liked a challenge.

"You know Matnis," Kyrstael said almost thoughtfully, "I could always make you."

"Oh really?" Matnis asked with a sarcastic roll of his eyes. "And how would that be?"

"I'm sure that Gregen would love to assist me in my quest to uncover your true jolly spirit." Kyrstael replied sweetly.

Matnis froze; he had completely forgotten about Kyrstael's mammoth alien bodyguard. Yes, he could very easily convince Matnis to become the Santa Claus Kyrstael wanted him to be.

"I-I'm sure he would." Matnis murmured, trying hard not to show Kyrstael how terrified he was about the prospect of the beast threatening him- and all for a Santa Claus suit.

Oh, how I wish I was back at Anderosse- no petty human legends, Matnis thought sullenly. But after his exile from Anderosse, there was no hope of going back.

"So, what's it going to be, Matnis?" Kyrstael asked, resting on the kitchen table. "Santa suit or alien pretzel?" Matnis looked at the suit, and shuddered at the thought of wearing it.

"Both are rather tempting," Matnis began, turning back around to attend to the dinner, "but I'd rather be a pretzel." There was a pause of silence and Matnis turned to look at Kyrstael. She glared at him, fiery determination raging in her eyes.

"Be that way." She hissed. "But you will regret that decision."

I already have, Matnis thought to himself.
Matnis woke to the sound of tearing material. Gripping the knife from his nightstand, he called into the dark, "Who is there?"

"Now!" cried a familiar voice, and Matnis felt the crushing weight before he could see anything.

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