Ink After Dark has only started up recently, but with Ruth Long, Cara Michaels and Laura Jamez running the show, I expect quite a lot from it. The Christmas themed competition was christened Tipsy Santa, and you can read all the entries here. This is mine:
“You think you’ve got problems Bobbin?” Rudolph said to the elf who was sitting on a couple of phone books on top of the bar stool next to him.
“Anthropopopomorphism isn’t all it’s -hic- ‘scuse cracked up to be. See?” he said, holding up his hand, “No opposyable thundbs. Makes things like this… “ he paused, concentrating on attempting to pour the bottle of beer into the mug yet spilled much of it “…a right pain.”
“Get on! Listen to you piss and moan,” the elf said, pausing to drink from his egg cup. “At least you only have to work one night a year!”
“Well, Fatso doesn’t hit you!”
“Want to bet?! You take that back, haybreath, or you’ll also cop a flogging from me! Your nose will be red from me breaking it!”
“It’s on is it? On? Wanna piece of me do you? You an and an me, behind the toyshed in 10 minutes! I’ll stomp you initto the dust I will! -erp!”
Rudolph pushed himself away from the bar, and fished a crumpled cigarette out from behind his ear. He squinted down at the bar, then sat down heavily. “Lessth’s just finish these beers finish these first though, huh?”
Bobbin’s scowl turned into a smile. “Yeh, it’d be a shame to waste them.”
As Rudolph struggled with to pick up the beer bottle the elf rolled his eyes and sighed.
“Put your ruddy great paw out, you damn fool, and give that to me.”
Quick as a flash, Bobbin jumped onto the reindeer’s shoulder and scurried down his hand. Grunting with effort, he heaved the bottle up. The neck clinked onto the lip of the glass, and the beer flowed. Rudolph burped, and the tremor caused Bobbin to lose his footing and fall into the glass. He surfaced, sputtering, then took a deep breath and dived back in. Rudolph roared with laughter, and waved the barman over for another round of drinks.
“Ease up, tiger! Save some for me!”
After a false start, Rudolph caught the elf and fished him out. “That’s dedidication right there -hic- to the drink my friend, deedication indeed! But if you’re gonna swim in it mate, let’s get a jug.”
Bobbin blinked owlishly a few times, then broke into a beatific smile. “Can’t believe I never thought of that before. We need something to sort you out as well…” the elf began mumbling to himself, taking an occasional drink from a discarded bottle cap and looking speculatively at his drinking partner.
“Got it! I’ll be back in a moment, never you worry!” And with that, he scampered out of the bar.
Rudolph set to work on reducing the level of beer in the jug, so that the elf would be able to find his feet if necessary. Before long Bobbin was back, tool belt slung over his shoulder and trailing long bundles of tinsel and rubber hosing. He walked to the far end of the bar, and had an animated discussion with the snowman who had been serving them drinks all evening. The two agreed, and Bobbin came over, rubbing his hands.
“Leave it to me friend and you’ll be off your face in no time. Lift me up to your horns and sit still.”
Rudolph complied, and Bobbin leapt about, weaving tinsel and tubing in an intricate pattern that made sense only to him. Finally he leaned back and appraised his work through one eye, then waved the barman over. The snowman approached with a dozen beer bottles, one for each point of Rudolph’s antlers. He placed them carefully in the makeshift harness and attached the hoses. With a deft touch of Christmas magic, the beer flowed, fed by gravity into the reindeer’s mouth.
Long and raucous was the carolling that night, and Rudolph was feted amongst his kin for a feat deemed more astonishing than guiding the sleigh.