The light in the bedroom at the end of the hall clicked off, and the elf crept to the edge of his shelf and craned his neck around the corner.  He peered down the hallway into the quiet darkness, his deranged grin widening to lunatic proportions.  He had been waiting for this moment for nearly a month, studying the family while they posed and photographed him in his ridiculous red outfit, silently suffering their abuse, his wide-eyed gaze never faltering.  Constant observation had taught him the family’s weaknesses, and now it was finally time to put that knowledge to use.

The elf slipped off the shelf in silence, sliding to the floor on a strand of garland, his dinner-plate eyes shining as he stole into the kitchen.  Using the cabinet pulls as a makeshift ladder, the elf carefully climbed onto the counter and lifted a paring knife from the drainboard by the sink.  It was like a broadsword in his tiny hands, and the elf reveled in the feel of it, flicking his thumb across the blade to test the edge.  It wasn’t particularly keen, but that was fine.  Decking the halls was always more fun with a dull blade.


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