I do not own That '70s Show, or any TV sitcoms, game shows, songs, movies, or games referenced in this story.
I do not endorse drug use, it's just part of the characters you guys.
There are some curse words, and references to sex, so consider yourself warned.
Lastly, since this is a Christmas story, religion is referenced a lot. The intention is not to offend anyone this holiday season. And on that note, I know a little bit about Krampus, but there's a lot of creative license I took with him to fit the needs of this story.
All that being said, I hope you enjoy the story :)
He sees you when you are sleeping. He knows when you're awake. He knows if you've been bad or good… It's not Jolly Old Saint Nick this is referencing- It's Krampus! And he's visiting the basement for Christmas! Can Eric and his friends take on this dark spirit of Christmas, or will they crumble in the face of this holiday demon?
"I hate Christmas." Eric darkly muttered as he entered the basement, the stairs creakingly announcing his entrance.
At this, Jackie (who was standing by the ice chest), jumped in front of him and clasped her hands together in front of her chest as she beamed from ear to ear, "I love Christmas!"
Hyde, in his usual chair, looked over at him, agreeing, "Me too, man. It's all commercialism these days. Buy me this. Buy me that. It's all a ploy from retail stores to trick you into buying items you think are on sale, but never were 'cause they jacked up the price around the winter season!"
Jackie whirled around to face him, a look of disbelief on her face as she said, "That's what makes it holy!"
Over on the couch Donna, who had been reading a National Geographic magazine, didn't even look up from the article she was reading as she said sarcastically, "Yeah, that's what makes it holy. Forget Jesus, take me to Sears."
Kelso, in his usual chair and playing paddle ball, nodded seriously at Jackie, "Jackie, everybody knows Christmas is about Jesus and how he died on the 25th of December for our sins."
Donna finally looked up from her magazine, snapping her head over at Kelso, "He didn't die you, moron! He was born on December 25th!"
"Nu-uh, he died!" Kelso defended, playing his paddle ball more furiously, "The dinosaurs killed him!"
Before Donna could launch into her argument with him, Hyde shook his head, "Both of you are incorrect. Jesus, if he even existed, would have been born in the summer. The only reason the Catholic Church moved his birthday was to align it with the Pagan Roman holiday which was celebrated in the Winter Solstice. They did it to gain more converts. And besides, December was originally a month dedicated to monsters and death due to many dying in the cold, frigid, climates."
Jackie placed her hands on her hips, "Ok, I'm lost. What the hell is everyone talking about? I just wanna go to the mall and point out the gifts I want you losers to buy for me."
Eric went around her and sat on the couch by Donna, saying loudly, "I hate Christmas!"
Fez, who had been by Hyde's room, came out with a box of very old Christmas decorations the Forman's inherited from Red's mom. His jolly smile vanished as he heard Eric, and he shook his head, "Oh Eric! Don't say that! Christmas and all of the other holiday celebrations this time of year are about sharing happy moments with family and friends! Now my family may be half way around the world, but all my wonderful friends are here and I would like to share my happiness with you this Christmas season!"
Kelso stopped playing his paddleball, looking up at Fez, "I'll go with you to the gas station and I'll pick you up your annual Christmas Playboy."
Fez positively beamed, telling a chuckling Hyde, "Kelso always gives me the best Christmas gifts!"
Donna rolled her green eyes, "That is extremely degrading to women, you know that?"
Fez placed the box on the table, idly looking through it as he shrugged, "If you want, we can pick you up a Playgirl."
Donna made a face as Eric leaned closer to inspect the contents of the box Fez brought out. As he looked at Grandma Bernice's old, glass ornaments, he shook his head, "Christmas used to be all special. It used to have this magical feeling, y'know? And now I'm older and I feel no magic, no nothing."
Jackie moved closer to him and Fez, saying, "You know what's magical? Disneyland! If you want, maybe we can all save a bunch of money to go there! Maybe that'll help?"
At this Eric rolled his eyes, "Thanks Jackie, but I don't think Mickey Mouse and a trio of princesses can help."
Hyde piped up, "Don't get me started in the evil cooperation which is Disney!"
Jackie snapped at him, "Oh you shut your pie-hole about Disney, you unhappy man!"
Hyde looked up at her, quirking his eyebrow over the rim of his aviators, "Someone's extra spunky today."
Fez turned to them, smiling, "I know I am, but it's because Christmas is tomorrow!"
Hyde didn't correct him, only raising his eyebrow ever so slightly. Jackie looked over at Kelso and Donna, both doing their best to not bust out laughing. The only one oblivious to Fez's remark was Eric, who stared blankly at the empty television set.
Jackie turned her attention to Eric, "Y'know Eric, saying you hate Christmas isn't a good thing to say. That phrase is usually reserved for, like, the truly evil entities of the world."
At that moment, the basement door burst open, causing everyone to jump and turn their attention to it. A cold flurry of icy wind flew in from it, and everyone was instantly colder. Fez wrapped his arms around himself, whining, "Aye!"
Suddenly, a pair of snow-covered brown boots walked in, attached to a bundled up person. This person, their hood obscuring their face, fought the wind to finally get the door closed, only to then turn to face everyone in the gang. They lowered their Parka hood and shouted, "I HATE CHRISTMAS!"
This person was none other than the notorious Laurie Forman herself.
Jackie nodded, gesturing to Laurie, "May I present to the court Exhibit A?"
"Oh shut up, insect!" Laurie snapped at Jackie, her words stiff as she licked her cold lips, "It is freezing out there! The snow is up to your knees! And the stupid elementary school choir followed me two blocks! They kept singing 'Holy Night' so many times I wanted to kill them! And then the Christmas lights in every home was so damn cheerful and I am having a miserable fucking day!"
Kelso stood up, "What happened, babe?"
Laurie glared at him with icy eyes, "I am not your 'babe' and my friend Kate is a whore! Bitch left me at the mall so she could go home and hump a masseuse! I had to walk all the way back here to this dump!"
Eric seemed to have ignored his sister as he asked her, "Laurie? You feel it too, right? Like how the Christmas magic is gone?"
Laurie screwed her face, "Christmas magic?! The fuck are you talking about?! My legs probably have frost bite!"
"I can warm up your legs!" Kelso grinned.
Fez nodded eagerly, "I can watch him warm up your legs!"
"And all of you can watch me barf." Hyde threw in.
Jackie nodded, "Thank you, Steven. You took the words right of my mouth."
Hyde turned to Jackie, "I didn't say it for you; I said it for the good of all mankind."
Donna snapped her fingers, "Why is it 'mankind'? Why not humankind? I mean, 'mankind' is a word that implies that men are more important than women!"
"Donna, God wants it that way." Kelso told her matter-of-factly.
Jackie looked over at Hyde, "I don't know how this always happens. I follow the conversation we are having and then we hit a point where it completely goes off the tracks. For instance, when did God enter a conversation about Laurie's whorish legs?"
"God does not want that!" Donna ignored them, snapping at Kelso.
"Yeah he does, 'cause he's a man!" Kelso defended.
"How do we know God's a man?" Donna asked, standing to her feet.
Kelso snorted, "Well, he's not a chick."
Hyde rolled his eyes, "Girls, settle down. Yer both pretty." Kelso smiled goofily, as if agreeing with this statement, and Donna considered it for a moment before also nodding in agreement and taking a seat. Hyde continued, "This time of year, generally speaking, is supposed to be the time of year with storefronts and cooperation's capitalize on our idea of peace on earth and good will toward-"
Donna raised a perfectly arched eyebrow.
Hyde looked over at her, ending with, "-humankind."
Donna nodded, "Thank you."
"Jokes on you Donna," Kelso smiled, "The word 'human' still has the word 'man' in it!"
Donna snapped her head at him, "I refuse to listen any more to a guy that thinks Jesus died on Christmas by dinosaurs!"
While they had been fighting, Eric had been looking through the box Fez originally brought out. As he went through memory lane with all of his grandmother's ornaments and Christmas decorations, he looked over at Laurie, "Do you think Grandma Bernice ever thought that after she died we'd hold onto her stuff?"
Laurie folded her arms over her chest, her teeth slightly chattering, "Eric, she's dead. Just drop it." She then looked around, "I think there's a heater somewhere down here."
As he watched his sister look around the back of the basement, bit of ice still falling from her boots as she shuffled along, Eric turned back around, muttering, "Christmas is dead."
Fez heard him, and sucked in his breath, "Eric! It is bad enough you say that you hate Christmas but for the love of Old Saint Nick, don't say that!"
Getting agitated, Eric rose to his feet, "Why not, Fez?! I mean, look around here! Nobody cares about the true meaning of Christmas! The magic of life is gone and I'm the only one who's mourning it!" His hand then dug through the box of Bernice's decorations and in a second he took out a cardboard ornament in the shape of a circle- a flat circle. It was painted blue with glitter. Eric shouted at the top his lungs, "I gave this to my grandmother twelve years ago and she kept it all this time! And now she's gone!" He threw it back in the box, "How long?! How long do we have before we're gone?! How long before my mom and dad are just memories?! How long do we have for petty squabbling?! We don't have much time! But nobody cares!"
Laurie pulled a face, "Eric, settle down. Bernice barely took Christmas seriously. Her favorite holiday was Saint Patrick's day because she liked pinching mom, saying that whatever shade of green mom was wearing was the wrong kind!"
"That's not the point!" Eric whined, his voice strangled.
"Regardless, you should never say that Christmas is… gone." Fez whispered the last word, his eyes darting about the basement.
Eric folded his arms across his chest, "Give me one good reason why I shouldn't!"
"Because!" Fez squealed, licking his lips, "You will summon him!"
Jackie asked slowly, "Who's 'him'?"
"Is it Santa?!" Kelso jumped in joy and hope.
Laurie stepped forward from the shadows of the back of the basement, grinning, "Is it the Devil?"
Fez shook his head at both of them, "No… but his mythology is of both those worlds."
"How do you know it's a 'him' and not a 'her'?" Donna asked pointedly.
"Because he has a penis." Fez said seriously.
"Well, that answered that." Hyde clapped his hands, "Fez here is telling us that we should fear a demonic Santa of sorts who has a dick."
"Is it big?" Laurie asked Fez, slowly walking over to him.
"Whore!" Jackie shouted at her.
Fez shook his head, looking anxious, "I do not know- probably- I just know that this shadow of Christmas comes out to punish the naughtiest children of the world! He is a towering figure, seven feet… no- eight feet… no! Nine Feet Tall! And he is both a goat and a man! Though some depictions have him looking more like a demon! Either way, he has long horns! Long arms! And his hands are chained together, to signify that at one time this being was punished himself, perhaps by the Almighty! This is why so many believe him to be a demonic entity! But others look at him as an anti-Santa Claus! But no ba-humbug Grinch type is he! While Santa rewards good children, this being will discipline the naughty and the depraved! A lump of coal is the least of your worries with him! He carries with him a birch branch which he uses to spank you until your butt cheeks are bruised and swollen with red puffiness! He also has a basket on his back which he uses to cart away the bad children into his lair in the underworld where he will make them do his bidding for the rest of eternity!"
Everyone was unsettled by Fez's story, with Laurie looking the most intrigued. Kelso looked the most terrified by the prospect of such a creature, and Jackie herself looked more worried than anyone else.
At that moment, the lights in the basement flickered on and off, but only for a moment.
Kelso looked around the still lit room, whispering, "What was that?" He was so scared, he actually stood behind Donna for protection.
Eric looked at the basement light, confused, "Mom just changed that yesterday."
Subconsciously, all of them moved a bit closer to each other, all their eyes on the lightbulb as if they all expected it to turn off by itself.
To break the tension, Hyde looked over at Jackie, joking, "You hear that Jackie? You best behave of Fez's Christmas boogeyman is gonna give you a spanking."
This relieved some tension in the group, especially when Jackie snapped at Hyde, "Oh, you shut up!"
Everyone broke out into light chuckles, silently dispensing the tension in the room. They all stepped a back a bit, but Kelso still eyed the lightbulb, "But-but we've all been good kids this year. So there's no reason for an anti-gravity Santa to visit us!"
"It's not 'anti-gravity' you dink! It's 'anti-Santa'!" Donna said loudly.
Laurie rolled her green eyes, "Dad is right. You are all idiots! The light probably flickered 'cause of the stupid storm outside."
Kelso quickly agreed, "Yeah! That's it!" Soon everyone agreed that was more than likely the cause.
Fez sighed in relief, "Oh good. For a moment I was worried because in my country, to say that Christmas is, um, deceased is just opening an invitation for this being to visit you." He turned to Eric, saying seriously, "Which you should never say that because if you do, he will come."
Jackie asked cautiously, "What's his name, Fez?"
Slowly, Fez let out a breath, "His name… is Krampus!"
"That's a stupid name." Kelso blurted.
"Watch out, now he's gonna get you!" Donna teased.
Kelso, looking up at the ceiling said quickly, "But I bet it's a cool name back in Fez's country!"
"Y'know," Eric said, almost in an annoyed tone, "You're Christmas folklore and moral have no bearing over me. I don't believe in it, and I don't believe in Christmas anymore! It's all a myth! It's all consumerism and commercialism and all the other isms! Nothing is real! It's all fake this and fake that! Everything is a big 'ole phony and that includes your stupid Santa and your stupider Krampus! I don't believe in that garbage and we're all gonna die anyways! We're gonna die and be nothing but boxes of memories people shove in a stinky, old basement! So you tell me not to say that Christmas is dead? Well it is! It is and I officially invite Krampus to come over here and prove me otherwise 'cause I know for a fact that everyone in this basement is sinful! We do drugs, we party hard, and we've all had premarital sex!"
At this, Fez pouted, "I haven't had the sex yet."
"There is no Christmas magic because there is no true meaning to life and love! So come after us, Krampus!" Eric, despite everyone's large eyes, shouted up to the heavens, "Prove me wrong! None of us believe in Christmas! It's dead!"
He finally stopped his rant, his chest huffing and puffing before he turned to Fez, "Y'see?! Nothing happened!"
"Oh Eric, you tempted the shadow of Christmas! You better hope nothing happens!" Fez said, his eyes wide and fearful.
"I know Forman! What the hell?! You drew targets on all our backs!" Hyde grumbled.
"And you shouted so loud now the whole town knows I'm so not a virgin!" Jackie snapped.
"We all knew that already, Jackie." Donna told her flatly.
"Oh you shut up too!" Jackie said haughtily, placing her hands on her hips.
"Look," Laurie said in an unamused tone, "It's the day before Christmas, the holidays make people a bit edgy and stressed, and obviously my little brother is no exception. So I just suggest we take a quick timeout and-"
She never finished her sentence.
For in that moment, out of nowhere, the lightbulb in the basement instantly clicked off by itself, encompassing the basement in total darkness.
Jackie let out a shrill scream while Kelso's voice boomed, "It's Krampus! He's coming to get us!"
In the darkness, Donna's panic voice resonated, "The doors stuck! Go for the stairs!"
"Aye, Jackie that was my foot!"
"Shuttup Fez, move-move-move!"
"Do not yell at me, Hyde! I am in fear and in great distress!"
Kelso's frantic voice was heard shouting, "Everyone, just give 'im Eric!"
Donna could be heard hissing, "Shut up Kelso!"
Laurie could be heard screaming, "Geezus! Can everyone just calm down!
Sounds of more screaming and fumbling, tripping and shuffling, were heard as they climbed over each other to escape the basement from the stairs that led to the kitchen. The creaks of the steps were heard, the weight of seven bodies weighing on them.
Jackie's voice was soon heard, in full panic, "The door doesn't open!"
Hyde's voice was next, "Lemme over there! I'll bust it, man!"
He threw his body at it, and soon it gave in and opened for them. They threw themselves at the opening, their breathing ragged.
And then… a loud bang was heard as they shut the door.