FP304 – Coffin: Holiday, Part 1 of 1

Welcome to Flash Pulp, episode three hundred and four.

Flash PulpTonight we present Coffin: Holiday, Part 1 of 1

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This week’s episodes are brought to you by the The Dexter Cast.


Flash Pulp is an experiment in broadcasting fresh pulp stories in the modern age – three to ten minutes of fiction brought to you Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings.

Tonight we present a tale of lingering holiday cheer, seasonal depression, and the occult.


Coffin: Holiday

Written by J.R.D. Skinner
Art and Narration by Opopanax
and Audio produced by Jessica May


“I ####ing hate this movie,” Bunny told Coffin.

They were standing at the L-shaped counter of their apartment’s small kitchen, he was opening a fresh tray of Oreo’s, she was rubbing orange juice against a glass of Vodka and calling it a screwdriver.

CoffinIn the living room beyond, Jimmy Stewart was undertaking his yearly debate with a bumbling angel.

Will, eying the rapidly emptying bottle of spirits, didn’t bother to reply. Instead, he lifted a small plate, and returned to the fat man on the couch.

As the town of Bedford Falls continued to fall apart in its alternate timeline, Coffin handed across the cookies.

“Thank you! Such a nice gesture – but, could I perhaps trouble you for a bit of the gal’s potato squeezings as well?”

It was the third glass the old man had had that evening, but Will gave a nod and circled back.

By the time he arrived with the topped up drink, however, the friction had returned to the room.

“Might I inquire as to why you won’t stop staring at me?” the guest was asking Bunny.

She pulled hard at her glass and squinted. “Why’d you never give me anything?”

It was enough to distract the bearded cookie eater from Uncle Billy’s stay in the asylum. “I didn’t want to get shot.”

“Would you actually even die if you caught a bullet?”

“No, but it isn’t fun,”
“Doesn’t gun play fall under naughty or nice?”

“I don’t guess, I observe.”

Bunny kept staring.

“Ok,” said the fat man, “you need to understand that I’m just a figurehead. No one actually believes in me anymore. Parents buy presents for their kids, or each other, and single folks would assume a crackhead had broken into their home if I suddenly started dropping Barbies everywhere. I actually tried it, back in the ‘80s, and everything just got thrown out. Better than in the 1880’s, though, then it was all ‘work of the devil,’ and ‘let’s burn it to be safe.’ Sweet sassafras.”

”Anyhow, you keep me alive by lying to the little ones, but it’s clear no one really wants some large fellow stalking through their living room in the middle of the night.”

Coffin handed across the Grey Goose and toed the large sack beside the couch.

“This thing still always feels pretty full,” he said.

“Take what you want,” replied the visitor. “If I were to tell the elves the truth, they’d be crushed. Things smell of desperation enough as it is up there, forever slaving against a clock for nothing.

“Besides, Mrs. Claus would not enjoy a bunch of moping manual labourers getting drunk on nog and hanging around the house.”

“Whaddya do with it all?” asked Bunny, as Will crawled into the container’s broad opening.

“I give some to charities with drop-off boxes,” replied the caller, “but, frankly – well, you’ve heard of The Great Pacific Garbage Patch?”

Above her upturned glass, Bunny’s eyes widened. “Holy ####, Santa’s a ####ing dolphin murderer?”

The supposedly jolly man sighed. “While I’ll be adding to it before going home, I didn’t start the problem, you people did. While it does happen to be convenient, I take no joy in it.

“Giving is most of the satisfaction in my existence, but, having been robbed of my purpose, all I have to live for is that last taste of warmth before heading north.”

Coffin returned then, his arms full of fleece parkas.

“Would you mind if I took these?” he asked. “I owe favours to some guys down in the Sally Ann soup kitchen line, even if they’d deny it.”

“At least they’ll see some use,” replied the myth.

“Oh, hey, ####-a-buck,” said Bunny, jumping from her seat. “We should go now, and you should come. Those wobbly sum#####es’ll think you’re just another fake lookin’ to dish out charity.”

Kringle grinned, his eyes dampening. “Thank you,” he said.

Noting the change in his expression, the drunk continued, “Oh, hey, don’t think we’re starting a ####ing tradition or anything, I was just looking for an excuse to turn off that god#### movie.”

Little did she know how wrong she was.


Flash Pulp is presented by http://skinner.fm, and is released under the Canadian Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.5 License.

Coffin’s theme is Quinn’s Song: A New Man, by Kevin MacLeod of http://incompetech.com/

Freesound.org credits:

Text and audio commentaries can be sent to comments@flashpulp.com – but be aware that it may appear in the FlashCast.

– and thanks to you, for reading. If you enjoyed the story, tell your friends.