In the dawn of war, there were many that followed the Order of Hope. The great calamity descended over the shinny beacon and our ranks were decimated. There is only few of us left, so we went into darkness in order to conceal our existence. Others desperately tried to find us looking for the clues in the snow, searching for my tracks in a blizzard, but had no luck in their attempts.
They haven’t searching for me, but for the ancient weapon many knew as magic. My elf soldiers struck the last operative in tactical clothes when he got the closest to the entrance of our base. Blood instantly froze on a cold blade while snowflakes swooshed in the harsh stormy wind. His body was left to be devoured by the polar bears in the night where Aurora Borealis lit the sky, inflaming my proclivity to strap in and head to my duty.
It called for me in a singing voice like winter fairies that watched the outskirts of the North Pole where we decided to hide. I was weak to decline the song, shut my ears and lock the heavy screeching door of the kingdom of Hope. I thought voices will stop, that my urge will subside, but it didn’t, it became ever present and strong. 364 days I bloodied my fists against the wall, broke everything in my quarters, screamed and meditated to regain control over myself, but hope always came back in a wave of emotions.
I had to do it. Not for the voices, but for I felt the pain of my fallen brothers, the horrors of them being hunted in the centuries where humanity failed to breath with kindness and empathy. I had to do it for the children that have uncorrupted hearts beating with the purest form of Hope, many mistaken for Love.
For I wear the blood of the fallen enemies as my cloak, control the massive army of Elves and poses the God given power of Hope, my sledges take off.
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.
For our next trip, we had to swing by the Spain’s coast. Snyegutchka sat beside the Nikkola, looked through the small window of the chariots and held her legs crossed. My elves sat around them, their gear close by for immediate reaction if Nikk decides he didn’t liked the agreement and swing his massive fists around.
Cozy seats haven’t relaxed them in the journey where I piloted the aircraft with the cloaking module on. I restlessly tossed my beard about, trying to see how is everyone doing, but my co-pilot Rudolf comforted me with a wise nod. Soon the clouds dispersed enabling the sledges to gracefully slide on the white shore.
– Who inherited the Kingdom? Are Three Kings still alive? – Nikk asked correcting his traditional blue uniform, knocking his white bushy eyebrows to interrogative grimace.
– Kings are live and well. Order of Hope is strong among the Spaniards. Even with this economy crysis, they haven’t abandoned hope. Our enemy underestimated the power of people united and the empathy provoked by the suffering of the innocent. – I said coming through the cockpit, my arms laid on the chariot walls, red color of my uniform consuming their sight.
Elves stormed out clearing the path for me when Nikkola got out in a jump. He was too proud to let someone else take care of him, so he stretched and inhaled the salty air before Snyegutchka appeared beside him, her fur coat and fluffy hood still on. I joined them in a careful step where my eyes captivated the tall ridgid wall of rock that was the far edge of Spain’s coast.
Guns at ready pointed at the cliff, elves Blitzen, Donner and Dasher waited for the secret door to open. Just when I wanted to order Comet and Vixen to scout the ridge, a rain of colors shifted where one of the Kings stepped out from cover. He was worried, confused and angry for we came too late. His white robe with golden lining was severely disrupted by the unknown events, a secret that burned my mind and rose hair on my forearms.
– Where have you been for all this time? We were attacked while you rested in your cozy little homes. – King waved his finger at us like we were disobedient children.
– Who dared to attack your hideout? – Nikkola’s voice boomed deeply striking the King that was doubt founded by the blue uniform he haven’t seen in years.
– Ice Queen laid destruction on our home. – King said, his head rose high in the decency he had left, when I slowly steered my eyes at the Nikk and Snyegutchka, a woman half his size, clutching her fists in wrath, aware of the horrors her mother was able to perform.
Our landing was harsh. The pulsion engines coughed sparks as the chariot tilted left and elves tumbled in side the cart. I fought to keep us in the air, but when I saw we were about to hit the ground, Rudolf elevated the nose of the aircraft and brought us down. A boom parted the pieces of the ship, smoke rose – when Snyegutchka walked out from it in a royal posture. She rolled her shoulders and feminine fur coat fell down. Her face, shining in the thin layer of ice brightened the space when my elven soldiers broke out from the flames, rifles mounted in shoulders.
Krampus, a devil of four longhorns, fangs like ivory shaking in the anger twisted face, dark of skin like carbonated surface of a boiled spinach solidified his fur and roared at the incoming enemy. From the back, a clamor of soldiers striked the Krampus. He slightly brought his eyes on the turmoiled mass where three men stepped out in extravagant armors.
– For the God! – the man in green armor cried lifting his saber.
– For the Earth! – King in yellow shouted pointing his spear forward.
– For Death! – the last one groaned spinning his black blades, when the armies of yellow, green and black started running, battle cries in their throats.
Ice Queen was too poised to get in the real combat, so she swinged her fingers and smiled from her throne. An enormous mass of Iceman stormed out from the cold steam armed to the teeth with icicles. The clash of armies was followed by the Krampus’s fire and further shaking of the ground where black hands popped out, fire made blades cutting the soldiers down.
Nikk screamed like a wounded beast before coming down in the chaos raging beneath him. His massive fists were strong enough to break shields, rip the demon horns apart and smash down the charging enemy. It was glorious for me to see that blue Slavic giant having fun, then I swung my head and saw Snyegutchka slowly walking towards her mother on the ice throne. Every iceman that would come close to her were turned to a block of spikes, a cold radiating statue that bit human flesh if near. This was turning into a battle of ladies, a battle for power so I stepped in from the fallen aircraft and started pushing forward.
Donner, Blitzen, Vixen and Dasher were clearing out the path for me, gunning down the enemy that was allured by the red color of my uniform. My slow pace became running, then racing toward the Krampus that was bringing horrors in the center of the hall. His fast clouds, a specters of pure evil crawled the floor, sticked on the crying soldiers and suck their souls out. The empty shells were left to be taken by the demon spirits and reused for fighting.
– Krampus! – I screamed when he turned to see me and my elves flashed around him.
A hail of fire was breaking against his skin, painful wounds shed blood and he was livid with this mosquito bites. His ghosts reed havoc inflaming the yellow armored knights. Saber slashed Krampus’s leg, spear pierced his arm, then daggers ripped through his stomach. Krampus roared just in time when a shadow of a Nikkola in flight captured his eyes and fist swung his head backwards.
Now, we needed to take care of the Ice Queen, but her throne was empty and Snyegutchka wasn’t in the great hall. We all moved to look for her in the space behind the huge chair build from a glacier. Nikk was rampant in searching for his daughter. He flipped every block of ice and stopped when he saw a huge pullar of icicle stuck near his head. A weapon of Ice Queen, dreadful thing he wasn’t able to absorb in a way he absorbed the snowflakes of his daughter when she was playful.
Swift search of the long icey lake and a focused gaze on the middle of the flat surface where fog danced showed him the lifeless body pierced with numerous icicles that rose their peaks high. He haven’t stopped running through the stack of other icicles that torn his blue uniform, sliced his legs, crippled him with every step to safe his daughter. His warm hands finally grasped the tiny body of a woman that hopelessly looked at him. Elves cut the endless forest of ice traps in a line where I came near Nikk and watched how he bleeds.
– This was all your fault! – giant groaned, his body pumping up and down.
– She should’ve waited for us. – I said, taking my red hat down and holding it beneath my long white beard, – She is too powerful for her alone. We hardly defeated Krampus. – I talked more with a sense of discomfort and nervousness, than for what I really meant to say.
Nikk tossed his eyes at me in a jiffy, then he broke the massive ice blocks and laid his hand over the Snyegutchka’s body. Soon, ice begun melting, snow drizzled from the ends of his palms, then a pale woman’s hand twitched. She was still alive. The ice haven’t punctured her heart, so hope prevailed again. My irresponsible smile was interrupted by the Nikk’s scary sight that launched me back in the great hall. When I got back, Krampus was already gone, slithered between the cracks in a whiff of black smoke, an evil spirit going home to recover from the fight, wait to be summoned back.
Hey, this was for the season. Merry Whatever and here are some other stories that you might like.