[spoiler]Special thanks to [i]Gingerbread[/i] (a.k.a. ragingredhead) for taking the time to help me improve this! Also, another special shout out to [i]Charles Dickens[/i] for the story's inspiration! Thanks, man!
Since this story is too long, I've placed it's continuation in the comments!
I 'ope yeh enjoy, and 'ave a' mar-ee Christmas![/spoiler]
The giant helped himself to another slice of mince-pie, scarfing it down with a smack of his lips. Tugging his forest-green coat over his cherry-red waistcoat, Nat observed the giant’s feast. For the short time he had known him, the giant was always in a constant state of consumption.
[i]But then, I’d do the same as well if I had but a year to live.[/i]
The giant wiped his mouth on his pine-green robe and grinned at Nat’s paling expression.
“What’s the matter, Nativitatis?” asked the giant, its cheery voice resonating through the cabin. “Are my manners so unbecoming?”
“No, not at all,” assured Nat, adjusting his spectacles. “I simply can’t stand to witness such fine cloth to be tarnished by such poor manners.”
Pinching the fur-lined edges of his robe, the giant examined the stain.
“Oh- how unfortunate!” He dropped the cloth, reclining in his banquet throne. “I do love this robe.”
“Did!” interjected a spirit to the giant’s left. Her face was nothing more than a colorless blaze, casting a dreadful shadow from the giant’s form. “[i]Did[/i] love this robe. It has been spoiled.”
“Yes, quite right,” agreed the giant, feathering his robe sadly. “It is spoiled. I do not love it, I should think.” He shrugged his massive shoulders and dug into a barrel of red chestnuts, shoveling a handful in his mouth. The giant chuckled, smacking his belly in good humor. “I dare say, I’ve quite forgotten why we’re here!”
“You summoned me, if I recall correctly,” answered Nat. “It was quite urgent, I believe?”
“Indeed,” approved the she-spirit. “It was exceedingly urgent.”
“It [i]still[/i] is!” laughed the giant. “That’s why you’re here, my good Nativitatis!”
“Ah, then this isn’t one of your schemes to know me better, man?”
The she-spirit smoothed the folds of her white gown.
“A Christmas Carol?” she sighed, her soft echoes laced with pique.
“I would say Charlie portrays me rather well!” bellowed the giant as he stuffed a seed cake down his gullet. “He certainly captures my good looks!”
“No- he doesn’t portray you, he did portray you.” Her slender fingers rubbed the sides of her temples. “He’s dead! Your older brother passed away with him!”
“Older brother?” The giant stroked its great auburn beard. “Which one is that?”
“Which one [i]was[/i] that,” she corrected. “Your brother's name was Eighteen Seventy.”
“What? Eighteen Seventy? Good heavens! I-” The giant’s smile vanished. “I never met him.”
Before the she-spirit could utter another word, Nat cut her off.
“As much as I enjoy this jolly banter, I must ask the spirits to address the current matter of said urgency.”
“Ah!” exclaimed the giant. “The -blam!---blam!- man!”
“I- I beg your pardon?” Nat removed his fiddler cap, combing a hand through his dark hair. “By that, do you mean to say Saint Nicholas?”
“No…” murmured the she-spirit. “Not Nicholas of Myra… he has passed on.” Her face shifted into the bearded countenance of an old man before resuming its previous sheen. “Our trouble lies with Father Christmas- Santa Claus, as the mortals call him.”
Nat smiled at the name.
“Oh? Jolly Father Christmas? Yes, I remember him!” Nat turned to the she-spirit, frowning. “Spiritus Esset, he hasn’t gotten into trouble with you three, has he? I’ve only met him on sparse occasions, with each meeting being delightfully unforgettable. Why, I consider myself to be good friends with him.”
“I’m sure you are, Spiritus Nativitatis, but he is not who he claimed to be. You have never seen his true form… a form which surpassed description.”
“If I recall correctly, he assumed the form of a mortal, as I was given. How can such a man surpass description?”
“As similar as they are,” said the giant, “human attributes cannot be used to describe a fallen spirit.”
Nat raised a skeptical eyebrow.
“You’re telling me Father Christmas is a deadly sin- a demon?” He laughed, wringing the hat in his hands. “I’m terribly sorry, but I find that impossible to believe! The man’s an inspiration to the mortals! Is that not why you instituted him to begin with?”
“For one,” began the giant. “You should no longer refer to him as Father Christmas. His true identity is Spiritus Avarice.”
“Spiritus Avarice? I’m not sure I recognize any being of this title.”
“Once, he had another name.” Esset’s light faded, ever so slightly, exposing her smooth features. “He was Spiritus Liberalis, your predecessor. We did not know it, but he was a fallen spirit, infiltrating our system.”
“A deadly sin, a slave of the zealot, a fallen spirit, duped the three most powerful beings of the Spiritus title?” He smirked in eager disbelief. “How can this be so?”