I have the tradition since a couple of decades back, to write a Christmas/New
Year's short story around that time of year. This is my seasonal greeting to
friends and others I have had contact with. (Earlier stories - some are in
English, some in Swedish - from 2007 and on can be found in the SKRIVA archive
around the shift December/January: https://www.freelists.org/archive/skriva
This year's story exists in both languages.)
Have a Merry Christmas now, the atheist said, and a Happy New Year, despite
some people's conviction that Mankind is doomed! I have my doubts. --Ahrvid
The Christmas Coup
"Our financier and client has bet hugely on this, and our share will be
substantial," the Boss said in a determined voice. "It will be a very welcome
Christmas present! By now, everyone knows what to do. My plans are immaculate."
The gang had gathered in a deserted garage to go through the final details of
their Christmas Coup. The atmosphere was rather tense. Dripping water could
heard echoing slowly from an icicle in a corner of the dirty brown ceiling. A
poster advertising some silly pastel-coloured candy had begun to peel from the
dark-white walls together with a poster of the local ice hockey team. Who had
put it in this disbanded shrine for cars, and why? The conspiring group didn't
care. They had more important things on their minds, and not primarily how to
celebrate Christmas. It was now or never for their great coup.
"We've gone through everything dozens of times," the Boss continued. "The
plan should be watertight... I've calculated everything down to the second. By
the way, I like your outfit Ma-"
"No names, Boss!" said the Woman whose appearance raised the temperature at
least a few degrees. "I'll be a little cold in this old rag. But it's bound to
bring the heat to any male with normal hormone levels. You'll get your
distraction and it will only take a few minutes before we're off anyway."
"Yes, and I've found the perfect spot for the getaway car just around the
corner," the Hack said and corrected his thick glasses. "I put a roadwork sign
there for now, so it will be free. If all goes according to plan we'll then be
away in no time at all."
"And you have verified the Wireless connection?" the Electrician asked in his
"Over and over again. It'll be no trouble with getting into their webcams.
These clowns run Windows which is full of bugs and loopholes. If Microsoft had
built the Titanic she would have sunk already in the Southampton harbour... The
gear is already in our car. And your gear?"
The last question was to the Electrician, who padded one of his thick pockets
and then he pointed to a little carrying bag.
"Got it on me. And a backup solution too, should it be needed. Everything is
tested and ready. I've studied all the electric circuits backwards and
The gang of Four smiled to each other as the Boss looked at his watch. It
wasn't long now. They felt sure of success. In the middle of the night few
people - if any - should be out on the icy streets. There wasn't much any
bystanders would be able to do, anyhow.
"OK. They have beefed up security," the Boss said, "but I think we've thought
of everything. Now during the night there'll be only one fixed guard, but we
will fix him... And else there are the webcams and the sensor fence, connected
to their command central. We'll take care of that too. Time to go, guys!"
The Hack took the driver's seat. His computer equipment was already attached
to the dashboard. The Woman rode shotgun as she was to be dropped off first.
The Boss and Electrician took the back seat.
They've made sure that car has spiked tyres. It was winter, after all, and
though not likely there could be a chase. The Police Department had declared
they would be on the alert.
The Woman was dropped off around the corner from the Target and the car
continued to its designated parking space, which was around a block on the
other side of the Target. The Hack simply ran over the false roadwork sign.
They waited in the car for a few moments.
The Woman approached the guard and smiled with a posture that oozed of sex.
"Hi handsome," she said. "Could you help a lonesome little girl who seems to
be lost. I thought I was...."
Her glittering eyes outshone the starry sky and her red lips put Rudolph's
reindeer nose to shame.
"Eh *gulp*," the guard said. "I think you hold the map upside down, Miss. Let
The Boss and Electrician were those doing the incursion. The Hack stayed in
the car as they sneaked out and stopped for a moment to carefully survey the
Target. They made sure to be as unnoticed as possible. Not yet.
The Hack grabbed his keyboard. With fingers tapping like a submachine gun he
brought forth a prepared video loop, activated the Trojan in the Target's
webcam server and uploaded the loop. The security personnel watching the
screens would now only see a perfectly still and quiet Target, and hopefully
not suspect it was a recording. He gave the intruders a hand signal.
It was dark and cold but not very stormy night. And it was quiet, perhaps too
quiet. The layer of snow dampened all the sounds, which fitted the two raiders
They now saw how the guard left his post together with the Woman. Apparently,
he had offered to follow here a bit towards her destination. He'd leave her as
soon as the alarm went off, and they'd be able to pick her up at a decided
rendezvous spot where she had some warmer clothes.
"She promises we'll get at least 2:30, perhaps three minutes," the Boss said
and consulted his watch. "Hurry up now!"
He lead the way to the first obstacle, fast and in silence. The wooden fence
had a spiked topside of sorts but he had trained to swing himself over it. It
was a fence made to resemble old-style farm types with heavy branches of wood.
He then took the Electrician's bag and helped him over. The man took his bag
and crept to the second fence. You could hear the cold snow crackle a little
but otherwise it was silent. The Electrician put an instrument on the inner
fence and whispered:
"Boss, it is not electrically charged, as we feared. But I'll have to take
care of the sensor circuits. Just wait a few moments and I'll bypass..."
The Boss watched his watch, waved thumbs up and looked around with watchful
eyes as his colleague went to work. The Electrician took out a couple of wires
from a pocket and some sort of electronic box. He found two special spots for
attaching the wires with crocodile clamps and connected the box between the
"Now, everything will look normal as I snap this..." he said and took out his
The guard was gone, the cameras blind, the outer fence climbed and the fourth
and last obstacle was now finally neutralised. It now took just a few seconds
for the two daredevils to conquer the last yards to reach the Target.
"Shall you do the honours, Boss?" the Electrician whispered.
"Yes. I why not!" said the leader of the pack as a little white steam emerged
from his mouth in the cold.
The Electrician stuck him a little flask of paraffin from one of his pockets
and the Boss took out his lighter.
And this was how the famous Christmas Goat of Gävle city was torched this
And the result on video:
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