On today's show: It's Christmas in Night Vale, everyone's favorite time of the year. What's your favorite holiday tradition? Also: A very important message about the Christmas Spirit. And, as always, the weather!
Sleigh bells. A twinkling, in the darkness. Footsteps on the roof. Gunshots in the night. Welcome to Night Vale.
Season's greetings, listeners. How is everyone doing today? I hope you are all doing well, this morning! Today is a wonderful day, Night Vale, as I get to start off the day with some good news!
This morning, as I was passing by the Ralphs on my way to the station, a hooded figure emerged from the dog park. Now, normally that would be frightening news indeed, but today is no ordinary day. The hooded figure was not wearing the usual robe, made of what appears to be shifting shadows. Instead, the hooded figure was dressed in- You'll never believe this- Red! That's right! For the first time, well, ever, a hooded figure was seen wearing a colorful robe!
A crowd grew together around the hooded figure as he emerged, despite the many warnings issued by the city not to come within fifty feet of any hooded figures, as if propelled by some unseen hands, drawing us all in like moths to a flame. The hooded figure began speaking in some ancient, eldritch language that I do not know, but was somehow able to understand. And do you know what he- or she, it was pretty difficult to tell- said?
It's Christmas! Yes, Night Vale, that's right! I hope you got all of your shopping done, because today is everyone's favorite day of the year- Christmas! Oh, I do love Christmas!
As the hooded figure disappeared back into the dog park, looking downright festive in that blood red robe of his, which I still was not able to look directly at, Christmas day was officially kicked off!
Now, I know what you're thinking. "But Cecil, what are you doing telling us this? Shouldn't you get Christmas off? Shouldn't you be spending it with family? Or someone special, like, say, wonderful, perfect Carlos?" Well, you're right. I should be spending the day with family. But you know what, listeners? You are all my family, Night Vale, so how could I not come spend some of this wonderful day with you?
I know we're all huge fans of Christmas here in Night Vale. The Sheriff's Secret Police require us to be. Why, it's hard for me to even say what my favorite part of the holiday is! If I were pressed, though, I would probably say that it's the gifts.
Opening presents has always brought me such joy, ever since I was a little boy. Oh the joy and delight of seeing what wonderful gifts I had been brought that year, is there really any happier time in a child's life? And then, getting to burn those gifts, as a sacrificial offering to Krampus, your father or mother reading the traditional passage from an old Austrian book of spells which always seems slightly moist, being read in the original German, of course.
What a magnificent sight it is, seeing the wooden toys burn, the plastic ones melt, and any electronics spark slightly, before going dark forever, all to protect you from a terrifying beast who would otherwise surely devour you in the night. There truly are few sights as wonderful as seeing the toys you've so desperately wanted for so long being forever purged by flame. That sort of memory sticks with you for your entire life!
It sounds like word has spread about today being Christmas, Night Vale, because I'm receiving a report that the Night Vale Mall is doing its biggest business in years! Just minutes after opening its gates, the mall was flooded with shoppers, running frantically through the stores like packs of wild dogs, searching desperately, almost viciously, for the items they needed for their last minute Christmas shopping.
Now, I don't want to judge, but really, this is why you do your Christmas shopping early! I got Carlos a gift way back in mid-July, I know, it seems like a long time ago now, and as a result, I don't have to go to the mall this late in the season! Procrastination only leads to bad things, and while I, of course, hope that everyone gets exactly what they want this year for Christmas, I can't say that I'll be surprised if there's a lot of disappointing presents this year.
To anyone who might be listening to this from the mall or its surrounding area, good luck with your holiday shopping!
And now, a word from our sponsors.
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StrexCorp has set up Christmas tree lots all over Night Vale. And the best part is, the Christmas trees are free! Well, they don't cost any money, at least.
Here's what you need to do. Head over to any one of the StrexCorp Christmas tree lots. Find the tree you like. I personally have always been a fan of those noble firs, grand trees indeed. Once you've found the tree you like, find the cauldron at the center of the lot. Pick up one of the knives located next to the cauldron, and create a small slit on your hand- Don't worry, listeners, it hardly hurts at all. Let a few drops of blood drip into the cauldron.
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StrexCorp Christmas Lots: Death free since 2011.
Listeners, I don't want to ruin your Christmas day with bad news, so I'm just going to skip over the next few announcements. Let's see… War declared… Tramplings at the mall… Economic collapse… Oh, here we are! This is a fun one!
Little Abbie Mills, one of the students at Night Vale elementary, has decided to give up her Christmas day, and is spending it doing charity work. Isn't that great? She's decided to go around town today painting over graffiti, giving food to those less fortunate than her, and helping families protect themselves from any dangerous Christmas Elves they might come across.
Listeners, Christmas is always a fun time, but, like little Abbie just reminded us, it's important not to get too wrapped up in ourselves this time of year. So, I'd like to get a little more serious, for a moment, and talk about the Christmas Spirit.
The Christmas Spirit is a dark, terrible thing. Do not take the Christmas Spirit lightly. No one knows for certain who- or what- the Christmas Spirit once was, but one thing is for certain, if you should be out and about on Christmas after nightfall, beware. The Christmas Spirit is the stuff of nightmares, listeners. It's suspected to be the reason why Santa Claus hasn't visited our town in nearly twenty years- Oop! I'm sorry, I hope there weren't any children listening. Uh… What I meant, children, was that Santa Claus definitely still loves our little community as much as anyone, and it definitely hasn't been your parents putting those gifts under the tree. Moving on.
Should you see the Christmas Spirit, run. Do not look back. Do not think back, as thinking about the Christmas Spirit has been shown to attract it in the past. And, as you run, should you suddenly be possessed by a feeling of extreme merriment, then all I can say is, may god rest ye, merry gentleman.
I think I speak for all of us when I say, good job Abbie! Just make sure not to cover up any of the city's Sheriff's Secret Police officially mandated graffiti! Ha ha ha ha ha! You'll be able to tell which graffiti is officially mandated by… Oh. Well, it says here that there actually isn't a way to tell which pieces of graffiti are officially mandated. Hm. Well, good luck, Abbie.
An update on the mall story from earlier: I've received some reports that the Night Vale Mall has become something which can now only be accurately referred to as a battleground. The shoppers have formed tribes, and now hunt together not only for bargains, but for each other. They have fashioned everything from primitive weapons like swords and spears, to makeshift explosives, and are currently engaged in combat just in front of the RadioShack.
It appears there are two main tribes who have come out leaders in the struggle. The first are calling themselves "The Children of Nicholas." They are based out of the Sears, and appear to wear festive sweaters stained by the blood of their enemies to identify themselves. The second, based out of the Best Buy, referred to themselves only as "Shoppers," and, in their own words, "worship the malevolent god Consumerus."
If you are near the mall or, even worse, inside the mall as you hear this, I urge you to leave as soon as possible, and retreat to the safety of your own homes. I'm afraid that, before I received this update, I sent intern Timothy to the mall to investigate, and only now do I realize I may have been sending him to his own demise.
Listeners, I'm afraid little Abbie Mills has accidentally painted over some of the Sheriff's Secret Police officially mandated graffiti. The Sheriff's Secret Police have taken the eight year old girl into custody. I don't know what will happen to her, but I'm sure all of us here in Night Vale are wishing her the best, unless the Sheriff's Secret Police tell us otherwise.
And now, the weather. Today's weather has been cancelled. Because of that, I'm afraid our weather segment has nothing to report.
The open warfare in the mall was cut short today when one of the makeshift explosives created out of a propane canister which was being used by the Sons of Nicholas exploaded next to a load bearing beam, leveling a section of the Night Vale Mall, and crushing both the Shoppers, and the Sons of Nicholas alike.
I'm afraid intern Timothy wasn't able to make it out of the mall in time. And I regret to inform the audience, and his family, that intern Timothy has died in the line of duty here at the Night Vale Community radio station. Our hearts go out to all of those who knew intern Timothy and-
What's this? I've just been handed a piece of paper updating me on the situation in the Night Vale Mall… Why- This says that… Is that right?
Listeners, wonderful news! Intern Timothy has been… Found! Alive, no less! Rescue teams found him unconscious, pinned beneath the fallen Radioshack sign. Emergency armored medical vehicles are taking him to the Night Vale Hospital as we speak, and he is expected to live. It's a Christmas miracle, everyone!
Well listeners, that brings us to the end of our show. And really, could anyone among us ask for a more perfect ending, than to find out that a citizen of our fair town wasn't killed, but merely maimed and likely crippled?
Intern Timothy shall not be taken from us today, instead he shall get to know the many experiences left in life. The joys of falling in love. The pains of seeing your love leave you, either for another man, or for the one who takes us all, eventually, death. The utter sorrow of growing old alone and filled with regrets, until one day Intern Timothy will look back at his life, think of this day, and scream to a harsh, uncaring night sky "Why? Why couldn't you have taken me then?" I don't think there's a more perfect ending to be had.
Stay tuned for six straight hours of your favorite holiday music, as a part of our fair town's radio tradition "The Scares of Halloween." Merry Christmas, Night Vale… And good night.
Welcome to Night Vale is a production of Commonplace Books. This is a not-for-profit fan work with no relation to Commonplace Books. Please, don't sue me. Today's proverb: Rudolph the red nosed reindeer had a very shiny nose. Wait, that's not a reindeer, that's a bomb. Run away.
Today's proverb: Rudolph the red nosed reindeer had a very shiny nose. Wait, that's not a reindeer, that's a bomb. Run away.