Short Story
                                           Those Damn Lights
                                                                             By Ray Prew


     My name is Eddy Scott.  As I walked through the snow from the farmhouse, I could feel the delicious
bite of the cold through my pants leg.  The head I carried dripped blood, staining the virgin white snow
marking my trail from the farmhouse back to my car.

     They had those lights, those damn blinking Christmas lights.  I hate Christmas lights, I always have.  
Five years ago, I vowed no more.  Those wretched blinking lights are so annoying.  I never had a good
Christmas as a kid.  These people flaunt their good times in front of me.  They laugh at my unhappiness by
waving those damn lights in my face.  Blink, blink, blinking all night long.  These people don’t give a damn
about me all the rest of the year, and don’t really give a damn now.  They put up those wretched little lights
and their damn trees, pretending we all love each other, but not anymore.  Five years ago, I vowed things
would be different.

     I remember how as a young boy of five years old, I lost my dad on Christmas Eve.  Our old Christmas
lights didn’t work so well anymore, so he went out to buy new ones.  He went off the road on a patch of ice
and into a tree, a fully decorated tree in someone’s yard.

     The next three years were hard on my mother and me.  Without dad, we could barely afford the dinner
let alone presents.  The neighbors always put up those lights, mocking our poverty.  By the time I was nine,
my mother remarried and I got a stepdad, my drunken abusive stepdad.  He frequently made it clear to my
mother, sometimes in front of me, the only reason he took us in, was so he could have an in-house piece
of tail.

     One Christmas Eve in a fit of drunkenness, he sodomized my mother right in front of me in the parlor.  
All the while telling us we should be grateful, he gave us a home and food.  He slapped her ass hard
making her yelp, and told me this is how she pays the rent.  The whole scene was illuminated by the
blinking lights of the tree.

     By the time I was fourteen, my mother couldn’t handle things any more.  I came home from school one
December day, to find she hung herself with the Christmas lights.  The still blinking Christmas lights.

     So far, I’ve dispatched 25 people, right in their own homes.  I have a souvenir head from each one.  I
have the heads of men, women, and even children.  The papers call me Frosty the Snow Fiend because I
make a snowman in the living rooms of each house I visit.  In some of my snowmen, I put human eyes, in a
couple I cut off the arms of the light happy fucks and put those on my snowmen too.  I bet that freaks out the
cops.  In each of the houses, I tore down those damn blinking lights, and those trees, those damn
hypocritical trees.  Houses without lights I left alone, they were ok.

     The blood stopped dripping from my souvenir, so it was safe to put in my car.  I’ll add it to the others.  
Sometimes the heads talk to me, they tell me how happy they are that I killed them, now they won’t have to
look at the lights anymore either.  I’ll be glad when Christmas is over and people take down those horrid
blinking lights.

     All this killing is hard work.  First, I must select a house that’s isolated with few people inside; after all, I’
m not crazy.  It takes up most of my free time and my free time is precious.  My day job as a paramedic
takes up most of my day.  Being a paramedic is a lot of work but seeing all those injuries is fun.

     The next day I came out in an ambulance with my partner to the very site of last night’s fun.  As I carried
my end of the gurney with the body, my headless victim past the detectives in the living room, I overheard
the cops talking; they have no clue who has been committing the holiday murders all these years.  They
have no idea who I am.

     There was nothing my partner or I could do for the victims.  I am very thorough in my killings.  I take
pride in my work.  The place looked like the inside of a butcher shop, but at least those damn lights are out.

     It’s a good thing the holidays only come once a year; I couldn’t handle those damn lights all year long.

     As we were locking up the van with the two bodies inside, I saw an older couple crying and trying to
console two little children.  From what bits and pieces I could gather from overheard snippets of
conversations, and the fact I was the killer, the kids weren’t home last night, they had spent the night at
grandma’s house, lucky for them.  I really don’t like killing kids but I can’t afford witnesses.

     So far in this my fifth year, I’ve dispatched 3 people; soon I will reach my limit of 6 people.  I never
exceed that number, too many and I might get caught.  Each year the newspapers and the cops all put out
warnings that with the new Christmas season will come visits from Frosty the Snow Fiend.  I rather like the
name, I find it inspiring.  The best part, and the most bizarre, is that the cops still haven’t seemed to
connect the killings with the lights.

     As my partner and I drive away, I see a neighbor setting up his own damn lights.  I never did two
houses in the same neighborhood before, let alone so close in time, but he was putting lights in the
windows and on a tree in front of his house.  This will never do, that is way too many lights.  He will be my
next victim.

      Later as I prepared for what might be my last killing for this season, I remembered how in my 2nd year
of my killings, one of my victims saw me.  I usually try to do them in their sleep but every so often they wake
up on me.  This time he was wide awake on his feet and saw me.

     He thought his black belt in karate was a match for my full blown psychosis.  I made my first snowman
out of him in his living room using his eyes and arms, that’s how I got tagged with the name Frosty the
Snow Fiend.

     That night I returned to the neighborhood.  The man had finished his light display.  It was disgusting.  
There were lights in the windows, lights on a tree, just like the tree that killed my dad.  I’ll take my time with
this one, hell I’ll make his head my prize trophy.  I got out of my car and started across the street.

     The last thing I remember was the honk of a horn, the squeal of breaks and a flash of lights.  I woke up
in a hospital bed.  They tell me I was run over by a truck delivering some Christmas lights to a neighbor.

     The staff at the hospital was very nice.  They gave me a room with a great view of the city.  The only
problem is it’s still the height of the season, so I see nothing but blinking Christmas lights all over town.  
From my bed, I can see the nurse’s station; they have a small tree with blinking lights.  The hall has blinking
lights too.  Everywhere I look, I see those damn lights.  They tell me I’m now a quadriplegic, a talking head.  
I’ll never walk or move again.  A local church organization heard of my accident and tomorrow they will give
me my own tree, which I’m certain, will have those damn blinking lights.  I’ll be this way for the rest of my
life, unable to walk or move but at least as the years roll on, I won’t have to see the houses with those damn
lights.

                                                                                The End
About Ray Prew

Bio: Ray Prew was
originally from Rhode
Island, but now lives in
Florida.  He is a graduate
of the New England
Institute of Technology.  
Ray has been a blue-collar
worker all his life, and
started writing as a
hobby.  He spent 9
enjoyable years as a
phone psychic.  Ray’s
work has been published
in Spinetinglers magazine
(6 times) one of the stories
was used in a trivia quiz.  
Two Spinetinglers stories
are on You Tube, one
story called Some
Monsters Are Real is
narrated by someone, and
the other was made into a
short video called let me
out by Ray Prew.  He has
been published in Blood
Moon Rising (7 times
including 2 poems),
Aphelion magazine (11
times including 2 poems)
as well as several other
magazines.  He has an
anthology book of
published and
unpublished stories
available on Amazon
called Delightful
Nightmares.  His work has
also appeared in the
anthology vicious circle
season one put out by
sinister grin, and one
poem in an anthology of
vampire poetry called
vampoetry.
To read other short stories,
click one of the titles below.