the treadwell's at christmas

It was Christmas Day, throughout the land, in every house, children faces beamed as presents were unwrapped and toys played with. With the smell of turkey and Christmas pud, the sound of joy and laughter as the family unit gelled together; sharing in the harmonious love that makes Christmas so special.

Every house that is, except one - The Treadwell residence. There, there was an eerie silence witch crept through each room. Every room that is, except one - The living room. Here, on the couch, Mom Treadwell lay snoring in her sleep. It was because of these unearthly nocturnal sounds that she was resigned to sleeping downstairs. It was impossible for her not to sleep without making an infernal nasal grunting, which was punctuated only by server pig like snorts. One of which now woke her.

Mom Treadwell threw back the blankets, rose from the couch, lit a fag and drew deeply upon it. Smells of ripe turkey emanated from the kitchen up her nose reminding her that it was indeed, Christmas Day. Good-willed as she was she found it difficult to muster any kind of enthusiasm for the season, but if she didn’t make an effort nobody would. After all she had a few surprises up her sleeve this Christmas, which would, well, liven the proceedings up a little.

She stood at the bottom of the stairs and called out to her still dosing family. “Nickayyyyy”, she yelled, in the ominous fashion only she could, “are you gettin’ up, come on it’s Christmas.”

Nic was having a really nice dream. In it he was unwrapping a very special Christmas gift, Suzanne Vega. He was just about to undo the last button on her dress when Mom’s screeching call momentarily entered his head. Suzanne’s face suddenly morphed into Mom’s with nightmare intensity and Nic woke up with a start.

The memory of the previous nights events then began to dawn on Nic.  In a desperate attempt to remove himself from existence, he had, last night, taken a whole bottle of headache tablets. He, should not be here, he thought. It was clear that something had gone terribly wrong, just his luck.

“I shouldn’t be alive”, he shouted out,  “I took all those tablets and I’m still here, It can’t be. Oh no, now I’ll have to endure Christmas.” He began to sob.

Assured that her son was alive and well, Mom turned her attention to her husband, who slept alone in their bedroom. “H”, she called out, for his name was Harold, “get out of that stinkin’ deathbed.”

In H’s dream he had just won several million pounds on the National Lottery and was busy deciding whether he should give his wife any or blow the whole lot on his beloved car, maybe buy a new set of seat covers or something. As his brain recognised her shouts she was immediately brought into the dream, standing over him demanding all the money. He fought with her, trying desperately to hold on to the cheque but she swiped it from him. It was then that his eyes opened and he realised he was back in the reality of a poverty stricken Christmas.

“Why should I?”,  he shouted in reply to  his  wife.  “I ain’t got no presents, I don’t even exist in this family.  I may as well drive the car into a brick wall.”

“Oh stop being so melodramatic and get down here!” said Mom, issuing the command in her sergeant major mode.

Nic and his father rose from their respective tombs and made their way downstairs. On crossing each other on the upstairs landing they uttered nothing, not so much as a happy Christmas or even good morning. They mealy cursed one another under their breaths and went about their business.

After Dad had dropped his bowls, leaving and ungodly stench behind him in the bathroom, and Nic had took his array of laxative tablets and strained himself until he he’d nearly been gassed by the his fathers lingering fumes, they all settled down for the present opening ceremony.


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