Christmas, it’s supposed to be a time to believe, a time for the darkness to let go of the children for just one night, just one day. Though the darkness may leave the children be, there is still that bleak and deep shadow that resides in us all even in times like this.
Into The Magic...
Children who find themselves alone may feel trapped, may feel that the dark is chasing them, but not this child. This one, she felt free. She clutched a match in her hand, her clothes dirty, her skin blue, but she was warm. She finds her eyes gazed at a big door, it was decorated in Christmas lights, but these looked different. She felt the magic slip off each one “Knock, my dear” a voice familiar to her whispers in her ear. The young girl knocks without question and the door slowly opens, she gasps as she sees a lobby filled with decorations, but she also saw the magic. The magic, only the In-Between could conjure.
“Beautiful isn’t it” she gasps again but this time in shock “No, need to be scared we’ve been waiting for you” it was a man clad in black. He smiled at her, and she felt somewhat at ease. She noticed his hands smooth and brown, his skin brown and smooth.
“Is this the last guest of the night?” a woman clad in red smiles at her, the young girl felt a different type of magic from this woman, and her striking eyes made her once again feel safe. It was as if her eyes were the beautiful side of the night and it was given a purpose and only the woman in red knew what it was.
“No, Allante we have two more” another man walked in, he was clad in green, had a long robe, like a cape. He was letting out beautiful magic, the young girl could see it and it only made her smile.
“Beautiful, well come on in and enjoy the party. Uncle Romell and Mr. Nathan went through a lot of trouble to make this happen” the young girl marveled Allante’s curly hair and her perfect, flawless, sweet, dark brown melanin skin.
“It wasn’t a lot of trouble, just a flick of the wrist” Romell flicked his wrist and candy, presents and baked goods appear all around a large table, but then Romell looks at the young girl in her dirty clothes. “We’ll have none of that” he grins and snaps her fingers and the young girl is in a wonderful party dress smiling. Then he blinks his eyes and presents appear all around the Christmas tree as the lights lit up by themselves.
“Nothing less for perfect bundles of joy” Nathan sits down and smiles at it all. The young girl looks at the room filled with children, children she feels a connection with. She feels they all have lost something too, but gained something else in its place. She looks back at Nathan, Allante, and Romell.
“Go on sweetie play, open as many presents as you can” Allante smiles at her and she goes to enjoy the party with the other children. “This never gets easy does it?” Allante asked them as someone phases in out of nowhere, like a ghost.
“What is it, Walton?” Nathan asked him.
“Gwen is here,” he said as the doors open and a gentle light touches all over the room as a woman clad in white steps out of it.
“Nice to see you, Gwen” Nathan greets her, while Romell hugs her.
“Hi Gwen, nice to see you, always making an entrance” Allante hugs her.
“A lot of children this year I see,” Gwen says as they continue playing and opening the presents.
“Yeah, after doing this for so many years it still doesn’t get any easier,” Romell said as he smiles at them. The young girl watches them, she sees magic everywhere. Different kinds of magic from them all, the man in black, the woman in red, the man in green, and finally the woman in white. She could see the magic and it was marvelous to her.
“I know you see it” she hears a voice and looks up to see Nathan smiling at her. “Go and keep on playing, the real gifts are coming” she smiles and drops her match and Nathan opens his hand and the match flies into it.
“What can we do, but give them something they should have had on this night,” Gwen said as she sits down in her white long dress.
“Exactly” Romell waves his hand and four wine glasses appear on the table.
“Red chocolate wine, my favorited” Allante sipped.
“Traditional for me I hope” Gwen winked at Romell.
“As always Gwen, I know people in your line of work can’t drink...at all” they all chuckle and grin.
Nathan looks at the clock which is about to hit midnight. “Christmas Day is upon us,” Nathan said as his eyes glow like a star on a tree.
“That means it’s time to say goodbye, but also means that the ultimate presents are coming” Gwen jumps up and she could not hide the excitement on her face.
“Children” Romell gets their attention and they all stop, “It’s time for the best gift,” Romell said as Gwen opened the door and all of the children’s eyes light up and fill up with tears. All that is heard is mommy, daddy, grandma, grandpa, friend, and more. Which only bring Nathan to smile, he looks at the little girl who looks around for a familiar face. Nathan goes to her and points her in the right direction, in the direction of an old angelic woman.
“Grandma!” the little girl runs up to her and hugs her crying, Nathan taps on her shoulder and hands her the match.
“You can see the magic, but I need you to guide other’s just like you until the spirit of true Christmas is no longer able to keep them safe” Nathan smiles at her, and she just nods her head yes. As she and her grandma walk out of the room and vanish into a peaceful white light a group of doves flies out of the light as the door closes. They watch as the doves glide over to a bird feeder and begin to feed.
“Merry Christmas” Romell says as he takes a deep breath and smiles. “So, shall we join Walton and the others in the club for the real Christmas Party?” Romell says as Gwen and Allante just smile.
“Just another Christmas at the Arrived Boarding House” Allante smiles as she takes her wine.
“Never a dull moment around this time of year,” Gwen says as she and Allante leave the room, but Nathan just admires the room and the doves.
“Little brother, are you coming?” Romell asked him as the doves fly all over the room.
“I’ll be there, you forget my job is not done” he smiles as Romell just nods his head, grins and closes the door. Nathan closes his eyes and they burst wide-open his dark brown eyes now filled with red, filled with darkness. He looks at the doves, he goes to the bird feeder and grabs a handful of seeds he clutches them and they turn black as coal. The doves one by one, come and eat the seeds out of his hand, and slowly they each become engulfed in darkness and become crows.
“You know how this goes” he looks at the crows, their eyes now red. A window opens by itself and they all fly out, but Nathan stops one, “I have a special job for you” he opens his hands and the match is there. The crow picks it up and flies out the window. “Merry Christmas, Little Match Girl” he smiles as he leaves the room, both doors gently close behind him.
The crows fly into the holy night, fly into the darkness he paved for them. As they go search for the guilty souls, he will come to claim in the dawn before the new year.
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“Central Point, the town which has been in fear, is now finally able to breathe after the Central Point Serial Killer, has not only been ID’d, but also gunned by the police. After almost 4 months of evading capture and claiming over 10 lives. The town can now claim some ease and rest on this upcoming fall night. I am Cristal Daniels, a reporter for the Central Point Evening News”
“Alright Cristal we’re out” her camera man tells her as she smiles at her him in relief.
“I can finally walk to my damn car without being worried about being captured and tortured by this freak, let’s head back to the station” she gets into her news van as she looks at the people surrounding the area she takes a deep breath and says, “Just in time for Halloween too”.
As the van drives off, a man appears and walks past the crowd unnoticed to view the body. He noticed that their shadow is gone, “Where did you run off to?” he says as he pans the crowd smiling as he receives a phone call. He walks past the crowd again to answer it before disappearing.
Over at a local restaurant a young man, named Virtue watches from the distances, and he feels something is wrong as he looks to see a shadow out of place. He sees a dark aura almost engulf the crowd, but he raises his hands emitting some type of glow and it vanishes. He gets up and heads to the train station across the street.
“All aboard for New York” he hears a train conductor yells out as he looks at his ticket.
“Can’t put it off now, I’ve come this far, which means I gotta see it through” he says to himself, “I’m just thankful to God that I have a couple of months before I go back home, back to the wonderful town of Virtuous” he gets on the train, but as he sits down in his seat he can’t help but notice a young woman out of place in the crowd, as if she was lost. He feels confusion coming off of her, as the train pulls away she vanishes, “I’m not even home yet, and I’m dealing with weird stuff” Virtue says as he sits back.
In a shopping outlet, a young man by the name of CK idles the crime scene “This would make a great story in the newspaper” he says to himself as he notices a strange shadow bouncing off of each end of the street, he looks away and it’s gone as it it was never there. “Weird, I must be seeing things again,” he said as a friend of his comes up and tugs on his jacket.
“Will you come on we have to make the train!” she pulls him from away from the view of the crime scene.
The shadow appears again and moves over to a fashion boutique. It idles in the widow as a young woman named Katie looks at the clothes. “I’ve scekteched better stuff than this when I was five” she scoffs at the clothes on the racks.
“Come on Katie, that’s rude” her friend nudges her.
“I’m just being honest” Katie said as she looks at her watch, “Oh man, come on that bus will be here any minute, and Crimson whatever that town is called sounds like it takes a long and boring drive to get there” they both leave the boutique and Katie notices the shadow but brushes it off. The shadow leaves the window and it lurks at a gas station.
“Rhythm, just let me come up there and drive with you, I can take a plane and be there in an hour”
“No, I have to do this by myself,” Rhythm said as she shifts the phone to her other hand as she puts gas in her car.
“I’m just worried”
“Don’t worry, I’m an adult bye” she hangs up the phone, but she soon feels an uneasy presence around her, she can’t describe it, but it’s a cold, dark, and hateful feeling. As she looks to see a young woman walking in the crowd. Rhythm goes to talk to her, but she vanishes. She looks around to find her, but she is gone. “That was weird,” she said as the feeling was gone also, she gets into her car and drives off as the shadow once again leaves.
The shadow stops in a park where it hides behind a bush of roses. Ethan takes notices to the rose bush. He walks to it, and the bushes begin to glow causing the shadow to flee. “Ethan, what are you doing, we don’t have time for this,” his brother says to him.
“Come on bro, it’s just like the one's mom used to grow in the garden,” Ethan said as he plucks one and smiles.
“I would love to go down memory lane, but we do have a plane to catch,” he said as Ethan rolls his eyes and they both leave to catch a cab and leave the park.
The shadow makes its way back to the crime scene, where an officer is watching as the serial killer's body is loaded up into a truck. “Manson, good work,” the chief of police says to him.
“No problem, I’m just glad we caught this bastard before he could kill anyone else” he takes a deep breath as the mayor comes up to them.
“I hear you’re taking a job in Sunny Oaks,” he asked him.
“Yeah, it’s time for a change, I’ve been here long enough and everything here reminds me of her,” he says as the shadow lurks around them trying to make its way into the van carrying the killer’s body. “Yeah, I leave at the end of the week, I’ve done all my paperwork, found my replacement,” he said to the mayor/
“We’re going to miss you,” he said as they both shake hands.
“Likewise” they both let go and leave the scene, as the shadow vanishes.
Two people watch the shadow at an evening cafe, “Isn’t that what you came here for?” Allante asked Nathan as he smiles.
“Yeah, but it won’t get far, hopefully” he grins as he sips some of his coffee, “How is the scoping going here for new models” he puts up air quotes.
“Good, I just thank you for coming to visit me, how’s home?” she asked him.
“Still full of ghost who can’t move on and other things that brings them there,” he said as he winks at her.
“Like that young girl over there,” she points to him as she fixes her red lipstick and then fixes her curly black hair.
“Hmmm, she’s something alright, but dead is not one”
“Her melanin is to die for,” Allante says as Nathan just smiles. “Hey, a queen knows a queen when she sees one” Allante sips on her blood red wine, as the young woman vanishes in the crowd. “Damn, I wish I could have admired her melanin just a little bit longer” she frowns.
“What would Andras say?” Nathan teases her.
“I don’t care, he can suck on whores for all I care” she finishes her drink and orders another.
“I see you’re an ice queen, but don’t worry, we’ll see her again just not anytime soon,” Nathan said as the shadow jumps onto a moving van. “I see that the shadow is on the move” he grins.
“Where is it going?” Allante asked him. Nathan’s eyes glow a greyish red.
“In the right direction….” he smiles as they both continue to sip their drinks.
The truck drives passes by a sign saying, “you are now leaving Central Point” it then passes a sign which says Sunny Oaks, 60 miles. The shadow hisses as it moves to the front seat it glows a dark glow which shines out of the windows.