This is another short story I wrote for my Intro. to Writing Fiction course. I wrote it in ten minutes as an in-class exercise. I won second place. Enjoy. :)

The snow was falling down hard. I wondered if Santa Clause would be able to fly in this blizzard. My father sat by the burning fireplace drinking scotch and listening to the Christmas music my mother liked to play. She was in the kitchen cooking dinner and singing along. I could already smell the Christmas fish in the oven. I sat on the rug rubbing my dog, Lily’s belly.

I kept eyeing the Christmas tree in the corner of the living room. Would Santa be able to deliver my presents this year? Last year I got almost everything I wanted except for the coal. It was really bubblegum, but it tasted nasty. The “Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer” song starts to play and my dad gets up swiftly, dropping his glass scotch in the process.

“Fuck!” he spits, “There was still a ton of scotch left!”

I look at the broken glass and see barely any liquid. My mother comes in with a broom and pail and begins to clean up the mess.

“I’m sorry, Sally.” He apologizes.

“Aren’t we all?” She replies.

I don’t know what my mother means by this, but then my father smacks her across the face. She cries out in pain and my hands tighten into fists.

“What is that supposed to mean?” he shouts at her.

“You’re drunk.” She answers, continuing to clean the broken glass off the wood floor.

My father storms out of the front door. We hear his Chevy engine run off into the distance. The burst of the wind blew out the fire. It’s cold in my house.

2012 (c) Jennifer Gioia

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