Dr. Stuart Ashen, better known as Ashens, sat in front of his couch. His camera was set up, lighting looked good, and the crap du jour was ready. It was time for his weekly review.
"Hello everyone, I'm your humble -ahem- host, and today..."
Ashens held up the product in front of the camera. It was a Christmas-themed Popstation. The package listed "North Pole Fight", "Arctic Sea Bustered", "Super Santa Jump" and "Oil Panic: Christmas Edition" as playable games.
Ashens sighed. "Really. Really, people in a Chinese factory in China? I mean, the bar's pretty low, but... but this, just... ugh."
He threw the Popstation to the side.
"You know what? I'm not doing this." He turned the camera off. "What am I doing with my life? I'm a fucking doctor! And what do I do for a living? I play with toys on the internet and look at 50 billion variations of the same fucking LCD Chinese shit!"
Ashens stood up. He looked at the Christmas tree in the corner, set up with lights and baubles and all that. And something... snapped.
"AAAARGH!" Ashens let out a distinctly un-British cry of feral rage. He grabbed his camera, which was extremely expensive, but he didn't care right now. He defenestrated it, and it was quickly followed by his computer monitor. He took the Christmas tree and snapped it in half, and with a feat of rage-powered strength that would make the Hulk proud, he picked up his signature brown couch, and it too suffered the cruel, cold fate of defenestration.
It took two hours for Ashens to come out of his rage state. In that time, most of his appliances and furniture had either been torn to shreds, or thrown through various windows. Ashens himself had cuts all over his body, and his hands were coated in unsavoury fluids.
"Fuck." Ashens said, observing the damage he'd inflicted to his poor house. "I need to finish my Christmas shopping."
He grabbed his coat, got in his car, and went off to the mall. Normally, he wouldn't have left his shopping until the last second, but he was pretty sure he'd trashed most of his gifts. He removed a piece of wrapping paper from his hair and threw it to the side.
Of course, there was no parking anywhere near the mall. He found a spot on the side of the road, and pulled over. On the way in, he saw a man dressed up as Father Christmas.
"Ho ho ho! Merry Christmas!" the man said, jingling a box of some sort. "Remember those less fortunate than yourself this holiday season!"
"Fuck you Santa!" Ashens said, belting the man in the face. He was almost tempted to take the donation box, but even he had standards.
The mall was packed with sweaty people, and almost all of them had screaming kids with them. Ashens bought earplugs from a shop near the entrance, but they barely helped. He wandered around the mall for about an hour, replacing most of the gifts he'd destroyed; fortunately, most of them were on sale, and he didn't end up paying too much.
"Hi." an obviously overworked female clerk said as he brought a pair of shoes up to the counter. "That'll be 130,94."
"For a single pair of shoes?" Ashens asked incredulously.
"They have Justin Bieber's name on the side, and that alone costs 120."
"God damnit!" Ashens threw the shoebox at a nearby kid. It didn't hurt the kid, but he did start to cry.
"What the bloody hell was that for?" the kid's mother asked.
"Well, maybe your kid shouldn't be in the wrong place at the wrong time!" Ashens shouted. "And maybe you should shave his godawful Bieber haircut! He looks like a midget lesbian!"
"Oh it's ON!" The woman threw a Hadoken at Ashens, but he blocked it, only taking chip damage. He responded by tearing out the woman's spine and skull, and holding it up.
"ASHENS WINS: FATALITY." a random announcer said.
Ashens turned back to the clerk. "Now give me some fucking shoes."
"Y-y-yes sir!" The clerk, obviously terrified, gave him some fucking shoes. Ashens stormed off, back to his car - but some bastard had towed it, since he was two centimetres in a no-parking zone.
Ashens had no memory of walking home. But he did remember the screams of the innocent, and the blood. So much blood...
He kicked the door in, and threw the gifts on the broken table in his kitchen. He grabbed the last bit of non-wrecked food in the place (a Poundland "pizza snack"), and went upstairs. The TV in his room was still in working condition, so he ate the "pizza snack" and watched some Blake's 7 before going to bed.
As he started to drift to sleep, he heard something loudly banging on the stairs. Was it a thief of some sort? Of course, he'd left his door on the ground and he had no more windows to speak of. But the joke was on him! All of his stuff (except his bed and TV, apparently) was ruined.
The door burst wide open, and Ashens sat up in his bed. An apparition, wrapped head-to-toe in chains, stumbled into Ashens' room. He could see the ghost's face, which he recognized...
"MasakoX?" Ashens wondered.
"ASHENS!" Masako wailed. "YOU HAVE LOST YOUR CHRISTMAS SPIRIT!"
"Fuck!" Ashens swore loudly. "A Christmas Carol parody? I'm not dealing with this shit!" He grabbed a random object from his bedside table and chucked it at Masako, but the latter dodged it by milking an invisible cow.
"ASHENS! YOU WILL BE VISITED BY THREE SPIRITS TONIGHT!" Masako said. "HEED THEIR WORDS, SO THAT YOU WILL NOT END UP LIKE ME..."
"Wait a minute, you're not even dead!"
"OOOOooooOOOOooh..." Masako vanished.
"The hell I will!" Ashens grabbed a vial of holy water and sprinkled it over his door and window. No spirit was going to get in here.
He drifted off to sleep.
But he was awoken by heavenly music. He got up, and looked out the window - only for another spirit, wrapped in a golden robe, to greet him.
"Ashens!" the Ghost of Christmas Past said. "You once loved Christmas! Come to the past with me, so that you may be reminded..."
"Wait a minute. Film Brain?"
"Yeah, I needed some extra cash for gifts." Film Brain admitted. "I got a gig as the Ghost of Christmas Past. It's easy work and good money. Now, come with me!"
Film Brain grabbed Ashens' hand, inspiring all sorts of slashfics. They flew off into the sky, into a passing storm; when they emerged from the storm, they were at a familiar house.
"This house, this was the one I grew up in." Ashens said.
"Duh. I thought you knew how these things worked?" Film Brain chuckled. They walked into the house, where they saw a young boy playing with toys on his bed.
"Oh no! Devastator has been killed by Giant Snake Eyes!" The young Stuart threw a fairly large Transformer to the side of the room, and the Action Man figure in his other hand danced around. "'Mwahaha! No giant robot can best me!' But what's this?" Stuart dug into his toy chest, and pulled out another Transformer with sunglasses and a giant 'fro. "It's Disco Megatron! 'Ha! No ninja can stand up to the power of Disco!' 'Noooo! Disco, my one weakness...'"
"Stuart, it's time for Christmas dinner!" his mother called. Stuart dropped his toys and ran downstairs.
"God, I was a stupid fucking kid." Ashens commented. "And Disco Megatron? What the hell is that?"
"Don't worry about it." Film Brain said. "But do you see? You too used to have Christmas spirit!"
They flashed forward around ten years, appearing in a university classroom. An old man with a bushy mustache and huge glasses wrote on a blackboard, while his attentive students absorbed every word he said.
"Und because uf our repressed urges to haff sex vith our parents, ve vish to please them vith gifts." The professor drew a line, connecting a penis with a crudely-drawn present.
"Uh, professor?" A young man stood up. "Pardon my language, but that's fucking stupid."
"Nein! It ees science!" the professor said. "Now, if you haff any furzer opinions, Herr Ashen, keep zem to yourzelf!"
"ACHTUNG!" The professor threw his piece of chalk, hitting Ashens square in the forehead.
"And after waking up from your coma, you acquired an intense hatred of Christmas." Film Brain said, as the scene dissolved back to Ashens' bedroom.
"No, I'm pretty sure that's not how it happened." Ashens said.
"Wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey..." Film Brain said as he disappeared.
Ashens climbed back into bed and nodded off again. But he was jolted awake again, as a man with an obviously fake beard burst through his wall.
"OH YEAH!" Guru Larry, the Ghost of Christmas Present, said.
"Was that really fucking necessary?" Ashens said.
"Well, your windows and door were sealed with holy water, so I just made my own entrance!" Guru Larry said, chuckling to himself. "Now come on, let's get this over with. I've got thirty other people I've got to show the meaning of Christmas to tonight."
"Let me guess, you're only doing this because you needed the cash?"
"Yep! Film Brain recommended the gig to me. Now come on!" Guru Larry grabbed Ashens' hand, inspiring all sorts of slashfics, and they warped away. They ended up outside of a normal-looking house, and they peeked into the window.
"God, I fucking hate Christmas." Mike J said. Him and a few orphans were crowded around a table set with all sorts of food; Mike J himself was carving the turkey, handing slices of fresh white meat to the starving children.
"But sir, how can you hate Christmas?" one of the orphans asked. "It's a wonderful time of year, where everyone reaffirms their love for one another!"
"Yeah, I know." Mike J said. "But it's still god-awful. I mean, the commercialization of it all, the fact that more people worship Santa than Jesus, and all that rubbish..." He took a swig from his teacup, which probably contained at least twenty different kinds of alcohol.
"Those are problems, sir." another one of the orphans said. "But it's also a time where families can get together, have a nice meal, and remember that they have an unbreakable bond with one another."
"Yeah, I know." Mike J said. "Too bad someone killed all of my family today."
"We're so sorry, sir." the orphans said in unison.
"Uh..." Ashens turned back to Guru Larry. "He can't see us, right?"
"Nope." Guru Larry said. "See, even though Mike J here dislikes Christmas, he still believes in all that 'good will towards men' bull. And isn't that what Christmas is about?"
"I thought it was about Jesus."
"Yeah, Jesus too. But the 'good will towards men' thing transcends culture and religion. And even if you're a bastard, you've still got a family who cares about you. Well, except if they were all killed."
"Yeah, let's just leave."
Guru Larry vanished, leaving Ashens alone on the cold street.
"Oh, shit, right. The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come's gonna show up and show me that I'm dead in the future. Because gee, who would've guessed that people die when they grow old?"
A bony finger tapped him on the back. Ashens turned around to see a tall, skeletal figure wrapped in a black cloak. Ashens could barely make out the glint of silver underneath the spirit's hood.
"Wonderful. Okay Wez, or Sad Panda, or whoever you are. Show me my gravestone, and let's get this over with."
"You misunderstand." the spirit said. "I'm not the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. I... am the Grim Reaper."
"You died back in the shopping mall. That kid who you threw those shoes at? Well, he tore your balls off, and while you've been slowly dying by bleeding out, we set up this hallucination for you. This entire thing has been a test of redemption, to see if you're worthy of Heaven... but you've failed. Miserably."
"Wha-" Ashens didn't have time to react as the Silver Skull Reaper drew his scythe, and in a single swing, took his head off. The Reaper laughed as he grabbed Ashens' head and threw it through Mike J's window, scaring the orphans. The cold, heartless laughter echoed into the night...
"GUH!" Ashens shook himself awake. He'd fallen asleep while filming his latest review. The dream quickly faded from his memory, and he went back to filming.
Once he was done with the review, he went over to his computer and hooked up his camera. While copying the footage over to the hard drive, he noticed a strange .txt file on his desktop. He opened it, and it said:
"MERRY CHRISTMAS. DON'T FUCK UP THIS TIME. -SS"
"Weird." Ashens deleted the file. He looked around, back at the Christmas tree. He had a sudden urge to snap it...
"Huh? Why would I do that? That's completely out of character for me!" Ashens said. "Well then, time to edit..." He sighed as the footage finished copying.
SUDDENLY, MASAKOX, FILM BRAIN, GURU LARRY, MIKEJ AND SADPANDA! They all burst into Ashens' house.
"Merry Christmas!" they all said to you, the person reading this fic. And I, GigaBob, wish you a merry non-specific holiday season as well! Don't drink and ship!