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Everyone thinks Santa has just the two lists.  You know the ones I'm talking about.  The Nice List.  The Naughty list.  Those two.

Those lists are just as well-known as Santa himself.  Everyone is on one or the other.  Nothing in between.

Let me tell you something.  There is a third list.  No one mentions it though.  Can't blame anyone either.  They don't want on that list.

The Very Naughty list.

You don't just get there by being bad.  Oh no.  You have to earn your place on that list.

Who am I, you ask?  I'm not one of the elves, I'll tell you that much.

In all honesty, I used to be a member of the Vatican.  Yes, the Vatican.

Don't look so surprised.  It attracts far too much attention.  And right now I don't want attention.

You see, they are looking for me.

What do you mean who?  The Vatican, that's who!

I stumbled across something I really shouldn't have.  Deep below Vatican City is a library.  A library used by the Pope himself.  Well, him and a few select Cardinals.

Ok, you're giving me that look.  The look of disbelief.

Let me enlighten you just a little.  Think about all of the stories about Saint Nick that you've heard.

He sees you when you're sleeping.  He knows when you're awake.

He knows if you've been Bad or Good.  And he keeps those two lists now doesn't he?  Does that ring any bells?

C'mon.  You're a Catholic, but the same details hold up whether you're a Baptist, Anglican, Methodist, or 'E-pissed-a-pailful.

Yes, I'm not too fond of Episcopalians.  It shows too well.

But listen to me.  I know I sound crazy, and maybe I am.

But isn't it odd how the holiday associated with the birth of the Savior is also the holiday when another omniscient being makes the rounds?

Oh good.  I see the light bulb over your head flickering.  That means you're connecting the dots.

But deep below Vatican City is the library.  Only a select few are even allowed to read the books inside.  Just slightly more are allowed inside at all.

Why? Do you really think the Pope is going to restack a book when he is done reading it?  Or go get it off the shelf in the first place?

Oh no.  That was my job you see.  "Go fetch this book James.  And don't read it."

And I did that for several years.

Until the book next to a book I was getting fell off the shelf.

The more I think about it, the more certain I become that it was not an accident.

But when the book fell, it fell on it's spine and opened.

Of course I saw some of the words on the page when I went to pick it up.  And what I saw there terrified me.

Quit smiling.  You're starting to make me worry here.

Anyway, what was written there.  Well, let's say it is a really short list.

I'm sure you can guess the first name on that list.  I mean, the guy who wrote Dante's Inferno named an entire area in the ninth level of Hell after him.

Yep.  Judas Iscariot.

So I ran.  I ran as if the devil himself was after me.  Which I suppose he is.

After all, just switch three letters in Santa and you get... well, you get the idea.

But think of this.  What happens to you if you get on the Very Naughty list?

I'll tell you.  "Santa" comes after you.  Personally.

It's almost Christmas Eve.  I think my running will end then.  Whether or not I want it to.

It's only been a few months since I ran out of the Vatican you know.

Merry Christmas.




Such a strange man.  Amazing what you'll discover when you think that someone is about to beg you for money.

I didn't believe him.  Not at first.

But not thirty seconds after he departed, I heard a familiar "Ho ho ho!"  Followed by a scream.

So I am posting this here as a warning.

Be good.  For Goodness sake.

I read someone else's story about trying to summon Satan, and getting Santa. I happened to remember the Warner Brothers cartoon that has someone telling Yosemite Sam about going to see the guy in the red suit. Sam asks "You mean Santa Claus?" The reply? "No, I mean the other guy in the red suit."

My first deviation. I hope you enjoy.
BluRider Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2012  Professional Writer
This is very well done! A cool, conversational style and a great premise I've not come across before. =)

Top job! Thanks for contributing to the challenge!
DoctorAnsem Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
I see you're a troublemaker here, too. Well so am I.
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Submitted on
December 23, 2012
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