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A Simple Crime

Through the hallway, a coat hanger is tightly pressed against the door. A rather inconvenient position, since it prevents people from coming inside without awkwardly squeezing through. Hiding underneath a Christmas tree lay several presents of various shapes and sizes, some of them opened. Family was probably gathered around as you pretended to open socks with excitement on your face. 

You’re the kind of person who always opened the socks first so you could save the hard presents for last. 

Hidden underneath the carefully packed wrapping paper is a Nintendo Wii. An old model probably bought off of Ebay. Its sleek black colour shines through the dim light as it glistens ever so slightly. Below that, there are three video games alongside a slightly open Nintendo DS. A few games from Mario Kart DS to New Super Mario Bros. A calendar sits next to it for the new year. It reads 2017. 

Your family seems to have a fondness and an almost carefully picked out obsession of gifts and concepts crystallised in the past. Either you or they grew up with the console, which is why they bought it in the first place. 

On the dinner table lies a plump and juicy chicken with various salads and desserts, barely dug into. I can tell from the bread crumbs that a few of you managed to sneak in several cheeky bread rolls. 

Let me tell you about how I spent Christmas. As a kid I would always wait for my Dad to come home from work. Watching the passing cars in a quiet suburbia, I would cross my fingers sitting on the sidewalk, waiting for him to come home. Eventually, Mother called me in for dinner. I was often fond of the ravioli she cooked. Looking back it was not of the best quality. It was bought at Aldi, with a cheap packaging served with a large helping of slightly lukewarm and chunky tomato paste. 

After finishing dinner I would do the dishes. I would hear the car park in the driveway. Daddy was home. He’d come down with heavy footsteps, legs burdened by hard work and constant strain from standing in the same place for eleven hours. 

Eventually, opening the door became a habit as I immediately reached the handle with excitement every single time he came home. Oftentimes I was scolded by my mother to always check who was at the door before opening it. Except for Christmas. Christmas was the only day Mother didn’t scold me for opening the door without checking who it was, because she too was just as excited as me. 

I knocked, you opened. 

Grandma and Grandpa sit idly by, unable to do much. Everyone else thought I was a friend, a cousin, an uncle, an acquaintance or other coming in. That same excitement I felt opening the door seemed to be a universal feeling that I took advantage of as you opened the door to a monster. Confusion followed by a slight awkwardness, followed by fear and then- the loudest music filled the room. More harmonious than a Christmas choir.

The rising song of an entire family.

All screaming in unison. 

As I got to work.

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Giovanni groggily sat up in his wheelchair. He had fallen asleep again. He gripped the inner wheel as he pushed himself along the sterile hallways. The hallways were so familiar they appeared even in


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