Middle of an old forest covered in snow, elves flashed between the oaken trunks, evaded the branches like something chased them. Dasher, the fastest elf in the regiment left the white powder to salt from the disturbed branches and stopped beside my broad shoulders. I heard him coming, so I stayed motionless and focused on the tracks that led further in the forest. He was taking breath, stared at my red uniform and waited for the orders.
– I don’t like this. – Comet said, his voice filled with fear from the everlasting silence and wild hairy forest.
– Shut up Comet. He is Nick’s brother in arms. – Vixen said in her girly manner and trembled from the frost biting on her fingers that fought to hold a rifle.
– He was a brother in arms. – I groaned in my naturally deep voice while pushing against the knee and taking a deep breath where vapor turned to snowflakes, – He is a man of the forest, the same as people he protects. Neither of us wants to confess, but we need each other more than he thinks. He is near. – I added my gaze fixed on the treeline chained in crystal ice.
Snow squeaked under the military boots, wind stood away from my chalk of elves I always traveled with so our mission continued. I heard the song of winter, the one who called me to do what I had to, but I chose to ignore it until I find the man who could help me. Donner hissed, his petrified sight fell over his hands eaten by the creeping ice that told me everything I needed to know.
– Snyegutchka! – Blitzen shouted from far beyond the treeline we walked into when crackling of ice rang approaching our direction.
All of my elves fired up their torches, turned on the heat as I waved my hand to create a defencive barrier. Plasma shield stretched in known pattern of snowflakes and covered us in a bubble. Soon, the long furry womens coat breached out from the nearest oak, hood over her face, white hand pointed at us with bluish smoke piercing the forest around us.
– Fire! – Dancer ordered and flames bursted out to contain the heat inside the bubble.
I rose my head just in time to see Snyegutchka standing leaned on a hip, her hands crossed and Nikkola’s long white beard flappering by her head. Nikkola was a tall man, a real Slavic stereotype of a man able to wrestle a bear – and win. His blue uniforme fell in the deep snow, fists clammed stiff asking for a fight.
– I see, elves haven’t abandoned you. – Nikkola said frowning at my guards.
– And I see, you haven’t stopped turning men to ice blocks. – my attempt of being funny backfired when Snyegutchka went to strike the barrier and Nikk grabbed her hand, – I came to ask for help. The song is in the mountains. The dawn of Hope is upon us. – I said giving up on hiding my fear of what is about to come.
Nikk stood for a while, combed his beard and absently shook his head before he rose his eyes and smiled at the song that dimly ranged from above.
– You dare asking me for help! You, of all people? – he wanted to do a monolog when I interrupted him.
– Krampus is released. – I added swiftly and saw a change in the Nikkola’s eyes.
I haven’t had the courage to tell him who broke Krampus’s chains.
Here are more stories that might interest you.