Krampus grabbed Barry’s arm and shoved him hard, “So, tell us where you stashed my cousin and his friends.”
The Head Elf hesitated, “In your basement.”
For a moment the tall dark figure couldn’t speak, “What? Why!”
“So when they were found you’d get the blame and I would be able to do the list instead of you because you’d be found incompetent.” He said, “Why else? I’ve made sure I’ve got the upper hand in this whole thing – to make sure Santa looks bad, and so do you, Krampus.” He wriggled out of the demon’s grip and snatched his phone from Mrs. Claus, “That is mine. And as of now, your services are no longer needed.”
“Oh but they are.” She said, “It’s in the contract that for there to be a Santa of any type in this world and in this realm, there must be a Mrs. Claus as well. And so long there’s good in this world, as wholesome and wonderful as Santa, there must also be his polar opposite, such as Krampus... this is why he exists.” Smiling, she took a step towards the elf, “So, you can’t get rid of me.”
“What about me?” the young Halfling asked, “How did you get rid of me?”
Barry snorted, “Oh you were easy... I just stopped the delivery of the special candy and food to your place and your more Human traits began to show. Then, you started acting out after your attempts to take my job and, well, you were sent this dork!” he threw a thumb at Krampus.
Krampus grabbed his thumb and pulled it hard backwards towards the floor until the elf screamed, “This dork is losing his patience and that says something about him. My basement isn’t a pleasant place... so show us the way.”
It was then the Halfling looked out the window, “Why are the trees outside glowing a bright blue?”
All three of them turned toward the living room window where the unkempt front yard stood filled with the light of thousands of fairy lights, coming to help their Queen – the Blue Fairy – who had made the ultimate wish.
“That, my girl, is the garrison of Fairies who are coming to help the one person they know is missing from their lives... but when they find out who made her go missing, well, he’ll wish he never screwed with her.” Krampus turned a glaring, red stare at Barry, only to find he had disappeared from his side.
Santa looked outside, his horns scraping on the ceiling of the basement, “Your fairy folks are really mad, but not at us.” He turned from the view, “I’m still wondering who did this to us... and to me.”
Odin gave him a sceptical look, “I’d look around at your staff, there are thousands of people, but yet, the ones closest to you are normally the ones who are the most corrupt, Santa.”
He nodded rubbing his beard thoughtfully, “How true, Odin, I will have to scrutinise my staff better.”
As they all turned, Krampus spotted Barry running around the back of the kitchen, where the basement was and he raced after him. The two women weren’t going to be left out of this, and followed the tall, dark figure in the same direction.
The door of the basement swung open and Barry stood there looking around, “Oh, Santa, thank goodness I found you! You’re at Krampus’ house. I’m here to save you!”
“Barry!” he stood, hit his horns on the ceiling and sat back on the floor again, “Am I happy to see you!”
Odin stood by Santa, narrowing his eyes at the Head Elf, “One thing, you elf. How did you know this was Santa and not Krampus – seeing he looks nothing like Santa and you didn’t hear him speak?”
Barry shrugged, “Um, I could see it in his eyes.”
The other four captives looked at Santa and saw he had the same red eyes as Krampus, then Odin turned back to Barry, “Nope, he’s got the exact same features as his cousin.”
As he turned back, he spotted Krampus step up behind Barry and lay his hand on the elf’s shoulder, “You think you can outrun me in my own house, elf? Think again.”