December 24, 1783; December 24, 1928
THE GIFT THAT KEPT ON TAKING
In 1783, young Ebenezer Scrooge receives a monkey’s paw that will supposedly grant wishes as a Christmas gift from his father but abandons it after making two wishes. On Christmas Eve 1928, Fascinax investigates the deaths over the years of schoolchildren who have suffered the same fates as the subjects of Scrooge’s wishes more than a century ago. He believes the murderer to be a creature variously identified as the Krampus, Hans Trapp, Belsnickle, and Père Fouettard. The occult investigator believes the first victim this Christmas will be Pinkie Brown. The spirit of Scrooge tells Fascinax that toward the end of his life, an old friend and three spirits showed him the error of his ways, that a Mr. White and his wife have another monkey’s paw, and that this paw can undo the curse that has lasted for over a century.
Short story by Matthew Dennion in Tales of the Shadowmen Volume 18: Eminences Grises, Jean-Marc and Randy Lofficier, eds., Black Coat Press, 2021. Ebenezer Scrooge is from Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. The Monkey’s Paw is from W. W. Jacobs’ story of the same name. Fascinax is the title character of a 1920s French pulp magazine by an anonymous author. The Krampus, Hans Trapp, Belsnickle, and Père Fouettard are all from European folklore. Pinkie Brown is from Graham Greene’s novel Brighton Rock, in which Pinkie takes over the gang of the late Kite, whose murder is described in Greene’s novel A Gun for Sale.
This crossover writeup is one of hundreds included in my book Crossovers Expanded: A Secret Chronology of the World Volume 3, which will be published by Meteor House! All three volumes are AUTHORIZED companions to Win Scott Eckert's Crossovers: A Secret Chronology of the World Volumes 1 and 2!