Sunday, December 30, 2012

It's a Christmas Murder Miracle!

I love Christmas. I love the traditions that my family has developed over the years. We have a list of movies we always try to watch. (Unfortunately, this year we were unable to find the Patrick Stewart Christmas Carol that we prefer.) We have a flimsy advent calendar with a couplet for every day. (Day one: In the days of King Herod, a decree came from Rome that each must enroll at his forefather's home. Day two: So Joseph got Marry a donkey to ride and the long way to Bethlehem walked by her side. Day three: The Inn was so crowded with travelers that day, that the owner turned Mary and Joseph away. AND SO FORTH.) We have our traditional Christmas Eve feast. We have our eggnog while trimming the tree. We create our Christmas crime scene.

What’s that? You aren’t familiar with the Christmas crime scene? Well then, I shall explain! We have one of those ceramic Christmas village sets. Like this, but less elaborate:

One year, one of our villagers snapped in two! Throw in a piece of paper colored to look like a bloodstain, and a new tradition is born. Every year, a villager (usually the broken one) gets killed and is portrayed laying in a pool of his or her own blood while shocked onlookers look on and a policeman attempts to keep the peace.

Unfortunately, my mother threw away the broken pieces for whatever reason. So this year our victim was not snapped in half. However, I’ve decided to roll with it and create a photo story, for your viewing pleasure.

We begin in an idyllic snow-covered village. There are carolers. People are buying poinsettias. Children are playing. It is peaceful and glorious indeed.


A woman discovers a body in a pool of blood! It is Veronica, a local restaurateur and innkeeper. The woman screams and calls the town’s only police officer, Charles Marshwell who in my mind is getting on in years and requested to get a job in an idyllic town to begin his path into retirement.

 The police officer checks out the scene.


Meanwhile, the townsfolk are shocked by the news, and gossip amongst themselves.

The police officer interviews several residents and discovers that Mr. Macintyre – the town botanist – and Mr. Augustus – a local teacher who moonlights as a Christmas caroler – were both in a romantic relationship with Veronica.


This was the first Misters Macintyre and Augustus had heard of each other, and quickly fell to fisticuffs. A crowd quickly gathered.

Officer Marshwell tries to break it up, but is distracted by the town’s fireman apprentice, Ricky, walking the other way. Marshwell approaches the boy and asks him where he was the night Veronica got murdered.

Ricky quickly runs away, leading Officer Marshwell on a high-speed chase! The run across the bridge

and eventually end up in a visually stunning rooftop race. Officer Marshwell corners Ricky on the roof of the fire station.

Ricky, seeing no other choice, takes his chances and dives off the building.

Luckily, he is caught in a blanket of snow and is virtually unharmed. (It’s a Christmas miracle!)

It turns out that Ricky killed Veronica because Veronica was mad at schoolteacher Augustus and tried to burn down the local schoolhouse. As Ricky is a firefighter, he did his best to stop the blaze and accidentally hit her with his fireman pickaxe. So it really isn’t that bad, except for Veronica who is dead. But she was also probably committed all kinds of hate crimes, so it’s not too bad.

In the end, the villagers gather together and sing Fah WhoForaze and a plucky young child – suddenly cured of chicken pox for no real reason – says “God bless us, every one.” Also, at some point an angel gets his (OR HER, geeze) wings.


I hope your holidays were swell and you have a Happy New Year. God bless us, every one.


  1. This. Yes. This is at least ten kinds of awesome.

  2. I agree. Most inventive. I've never written a murder mystery but I came close once when I started plotting a two-murder story set at a local (Juneau, Alaska) salmon bake. The salmon bake - in real life - takes place in the woods along a stream and there are many paths through brush and greenery. When the first victim - a portly, middle-aged man - is found perished on a leafy path, they of course think he died of natural causes. While the coroner is preparing the body for transport away from the salmon bake a second body is reported, this one a young blonde woman. Thereupon police lock down the area and don't allow any of the 100 plus patrons to leave- while knowing full well that the perpetrator(s) have had ample time to escape...