Friday, December 21, 2012

The Christmas Yak

With Christmas just around the corner, rather than try to come up with some holiday webcomic related post, I'm just going to post an old Christmas story I wrote some time ago.  It's simple, not all that great, but fun regardless.  hope you like it:

The Christmas Yak
By:  Yours Truly

            One day, some time ago, a yak was wandering across the snowcapped mountains of the Himalayas very depressed.  It was the middle of winter now, and he had, for some reason, not been able to move down the mountain this year.  Cold, lonely, and really, really hungry, the Yak simply wandered the crooked paths of the blizzard strewn mountains.

            Then a monster leapt out from around the corner, and let out a heart stopping roar.

            "Hey Yeti," the Yak said.  "How's it going?"

            The Yeti, an eight foot tall white beast, dropped his arms from their 'I'm going to tear you limb from limb' position.  "Oh, hey Yak.  Didn't know you were still up here?"

            "Much to my own dismay.  Know which way is back down, I think I'm lost."

            "Sure, but you'll never get there in this blizzard.  Let's go back to my place for the night."

            The Yeti's cave was large and relatively warm compared to the outside.  It was well decorated for a Yeti's cave, with some clumps of white fur, grasses, branches and the occasional collection of bones here and there.  "Make yourself comfortable."

            "Mind if I munch on your couch, I'm starving."

            "Sure, but leave the bed," the Yeti patted on a red cloth that covered more branches.  "I need somewhere to sleep tonight."

            The Yak began to munch on the Yeti's couch and let his mind wander a bit.  "You know, this sucks."

            "The couch?"

            "No, the season.  Every year, the big blizzards blow in and I have to come down off the mountains to live.  But it's just as cold down there.  I wish I hibernated, at least then I wouldn't have to deal with it."

            "You don't?"

            "I don't.  Maybe some of those others do, but I don't."

            "Ah."  The Yeti sat there for a moment, sucking the marrow from one of the various bones lying around.  "Well, what should we do about it?"


            "No, nothing to do in winter."

            "Right, well, I'm not sure," the Yak stopped eating, sustained for the moment, and curled up on what was left of the couch.  "What do you think we should do?"

            "Well," the Yeti said.  "A couple years back, about this time of year, I came across a couple of those really pale colored humans in one of those brightly colored leaves they're always setting up.  This one, in fact," he patted the bed.  "Anyway, right before I tore the thing down and ate them, I heard one of them say 'merry Christmas,' and I could just see a shadow of one handing the other a squarish rock.  Course, after I tore into the place I looked around and found what looked like a box made out of really thin bark with some garbage in it."

            "That's nice, but how is that supposed to help?"

            "I don't know, but maybe you could copy the humans and give other people boxes made of bark with garbage in it.  Then maybe they'd give them to other people and so on and so forth."

            The Yak laid there in thought for a moment.  "I don't know, most don't like garbage."

            "Then give them a big square rock."

            "That might work," the Yak said.  "But if I gave one person a rock, I'd have to give everyone a rock, and that could take a while."

            "True," the Yeti said.  "Well, maybe you could make it so that the person getting the rock would regret it or something."

            "Regret it?"  The Yak stood up with a cheer.  "That's it!  I'll throw the rock at someone every year.  The others will be real nice to me then as they won't want me to throw a rock at them next year."

            "Course," the Yeti interrupted.  "They could start throwing rocks at you."

            "Not if they don't know it's me," the Yak said.  "I've got an idea."

            A couple of weeks later, another yak, a nasty bastard who had knocked over the pervious Yak and laughed on several occasions, was minding his business in the valley below the mountains when an unfamiliar shape appeared out of the woods.

            "Who's there?"

            The shape walked forward.  It looked like a yak, but was covered in a strange red leaf like the ones humans use as shelters, and with puffy white fur tacked on to it with branches.  "I am the Christmas Yak," the strange yak bellowed.  "Have you been a good yak this year?"

            "What the hell are you talking about?"

            "I know if you've been a good yak or a bad yak.  I know you've been a bad yak, always picking on the others.  So I have a gift for you."

            "A gift?"  The mean yak took a step closer.  "For being bad?"

            "Yes," the Christmas Yak said.

            "Well let me have it then.  I've been a really bad yak this year."

            "I know."  And the Christmas Yak through a rock at the mean yak.  A big one.

            About twenty minutes later, the mean yak recovered from the blow and searched around for the Christmas Yak, determined to beat the crap out of him for hitting him with a rock.  The mean yak searched around for several minutes, but was unable to find any trace of the Christmas Yak.  Eventually, he came across the Yak he had picked on last summer.

            "Hey!" the mean yak called.  "Have you seen some joker in a red leaf running around throwing rocks at people?"

            "No," the Yak said.  "I haven't."

            "Really weird, he said I was a bad yak and threw a rock at me because of it."

            "Serves you right," the Yak said.  "You've been a mean bastard to me, I'm glad he hit you with a rock.  Assuming, of course, you're not making it up."

            The mean yak's eyes grew wide.  Could the Christmas Yak have been an apparition, dealing out justice with flying rocks?  "Uh, listen, I'm sorry about that.  All in fun, you know?

            "Wasn't fun for me."

            "Yeah, I guess not.  Like I said, sorry."

            The Yak smiled.  "Apology accepted."  The mean yak wandered off, spooked but wiser.

            The next year, on that same day, the Christmas Yak appeared again, and hit a yak that ate more than his share of a bush.  And then the next year, with one who always pushed his way to the front of the line.  Year after year, the Christmas Yak would appear and hit the meanest yak in the herd with a rock.  Eventually, people would try to be nice to each other as winter came.  Mother yaks would tell their children the same thing every year.  "Be good, or the Christmas Yak will get you."

            And as the faithful day approached, yaks will warn each other of the coming danger.  "Beware of the Christmas Yak."  They would say.  And when the danger had passed, they would have a party to celebrate them not being hit by the rock.  Everyone would have a good time, except the one who got hit with a rock.

            So to all the people everywhere, remember, beware of the Christmas Yak.

Oh, the story isn't over yet:

A Visit from Saint Yakolas

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the Alps
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The notes were all hung by the chimney rock with care,
In the hopes that St. Yakolas would read them there;
The kids were nestled all snug in their hey beds,
While horrors of flying rocks flew through their heads;
And mamma ewe was asleep, and I on the cliff
Having just settled down like a lame working stiff
When down in the valley, there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from my perch to see what was the matter.
Away to the pass I leapt like a flash,
Tore down the pathway, and up through the gash.
The moon on the breast of the glacier ice flow
Gave the luster of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a cart full of hey, and eight tiny sherpas
With a hairy old driver, so stinky and fat,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Yak.
More rapid than falcons, his carriers they came,
And he grunted and spitted, and called them by name;
"Now, Rinzen! now, Kalden! now, Tenzin and Dawa!
On, Dorjee! on Nawanq! on Karma and Mingma!
To the top of the arĂȘte! to the top of the headwall!
Now dash away!  dash away!  dash away all!
As dry snow that before the snowstorm fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,
So up to the cliff-top the carriers they flew,
With the cart full of hey, and St. Yakolas too.
And then in a twinkling, I heard on the snow
The pattering of the climbers dropping their load
As I drew back my head and was turning around,
There at the chimney rock, St. Yokolas appeared unbound
He was covered in fur, from his head to his hoof,
And his clothes were made of an old tent, with some soot
A mouth full of hay he had brought from the cart
And he looked domesticated, though without a cart.
His eyes -- how they twinkled!  his horns, how merry!
His hooves were like clods, his snout like a cherry!
His droll mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the hair on his hat was as white as the snow
The stub of the hay he held tight in his teeth,
And for a moment I though he would eat our wreath;
He had a broad face, and looked a little cranky,
That shook me in fear, like a bowlful of jelly,
He was chubby and plump, a right gaudy old beast
And I bleated when I saw him, expecting him to leave
A wink of his eye, and a twist of his head,
Soon led me to believe I had nothing to dread
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And read all the notes, then turned with a jerk
And flung a rock right at my head
Knocking me down and almost leaving me for dead
He sprang to his cart, to his team gave a whistle
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, as I held unconsciousness back
"Happy Christmas to all, and BEWARE THE CHRISTMAS YAK!"

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