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The Boogie Man and Santa Claus

Catalin Maxim • 16:49 - 06.05.2008 • 

The Boogie Man stood tall and dark in front of the child’s bed feeling somewhat uneasy under his small green eyes.
– Are you the Boogie Man?
– Yes.
– Good.
The boy stood up and turned on the lamp besides his bed. The light bulb flickered once and then bright light made The Boogie Man blink. He suddenly had a strange feeling.
– I need your services.
– My services?
– Yes. I have been told you can find people in hiding, yes?
The boy had a very serious face with tiny lips and a tiny nose and tiny eyes that, the Boogie Man realized, seemed not to blink.
– Who told you that?
– It doesn’t matter. Is it true?
– It is.
– Good. I need you to find someone for me and bring him here.
The Boogie Man blinked again.
– Does the light bother you? I can turn it off.
And without waiting for his answer the boy did it. It was dark again in the child’s room and the Boogie Man felt that he should feel more comfortable. But he didn’t.
– Of course, I will pay you. Is there a standard fee or something?
He cleared his throat before speaking but somehow his voice didn’t come out right.
– It depends on the target.
– The target, yes. Very well. I want you to find Santa Claus. Tonight, if possible.
– Santa Claus?
– Yes. I have business with him. Is it doable by morning?
The Boogie Man listened and in the dark he could hear the boy’s heartbeat. Thump- thump. Thump – thump.
– Yes. I can bring him to you before sunrise.
– Excellent.
And then silence. The darkness between him and the boy, the Boogie Man realized, had a strange quality. It was almost sweet and smelled like apple pie. He felt confused.
– Well? What is the price?
– The price is ten nightmares.
He heard himself saying in a deep voice; the boy replied quickly.
– Fine. But you will bring him here tonight.
– I will.
– Then I will wait.
The Boogie Man flew in the night through the open window feeling relieved. Relieved? Very strange, he thought.
The sky was clear, only a few gray clouds far away in the distance. The Moon was half-full, The Boogie Man breathed in its yellow light and then whispered in the night.
– Great winds of shadow, come to me.
He could hear their voice from far away, howling at the Moon as they answered his call. Great winds that blew only at night and they were under his command to do his bidding.
– There is a man that you must find, The Boogie Man whispered to them as they circled him above the concrete city. He is called Santa Claus.
No more was needed. The winds howled at the Moon, shadows dressed in yellow light then they were gone. The Boogie Man had only to wait now so he waited.
Sooner than he expected he heard their voice.
– We found him, Master, flying above the clouds.
– Do nothing, only follow. I will come.
He flew with great speed counting only seconds until he reached the winds.
– That is him, Master.
The Boogie Man saw him. Great white hair and a big white beard riding a reindeer.
– Wait here. Intervene only at my order.
– Yes, Master.
The Boogie Man followed silently the animal and its rider. He watched them closely until he was sure there would be no surprises. Then he attacked.
– Hey! What are you…
 The Boogie Man fell upon the animal blinding him, he turned quickly towards the rider and in a single swift movement enveloped him in shadows. Than he stood still as he watched the reindeer speeding in a blind course towards the city. He felt Santa Claus moving inside him but he was weak and could do nothing else.
– Return to the shadows, he whispered to the winds.
He paused for a second before entering the boy’s room. Then he went in.
– Do you have him?
The boy was awake watching him from the bed.
– Yes.
And as he said that from his body a patch of dark opened and his insides pushed Santa Claus out. He fell on the carpet and did not move.
The Boogie Man watched as the boy came down from the bed and approached with small steps. He did not look at him but knelled next to Santa Claus.
– Is he dead?
The boy raised his eyes towards him expecting the answer.
– No. Unconscious.
The boy’s face turned towards the unconscious body.
– Santa? Can you hear me?
Silence; only the boy’s heart for a while then….
– Mmmm…
He opened his eyes and blinked in the dark.
– What happened?
– Are you okay? asked the boy.
– Okay? I…
Santa Claus paused for a moment as he noticed him. The Boogie Man watched his eyes widen as the memory of his capture was recalled.
– YOU!

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