for christmas i wish everyone else in my family had more brains. i'm really sick of my sister being so stupid. And mum and Dad are so mean sometimes.
PS i’m NOT little. if any one calls me LITTLE Tommy again you might not be able to bring me any presents. sorry. TB.
Tommy stared down at the sheet of paper with his tongue between his teeth and his brow wrinkled. That looked about right.
He folded it up, tucked it into the envelope, and sealed it. He pulled a face. Envelopes tasted ick.
Tommy bounced down the stairs to the kitchen and tugged on his mum’s sleeve. “Mum, Mum!”
“Tommy, why aren’t you in bed?” she said, without turning around.
“Mum, I need you to post this letter! You have to post it quick, it’s nearly Christmas and it has to get to Santa in time!” He waved the letter up at her.
She smiled and took it from him. “I’ll post it when I go to get your sister from Betty’s, okay?”
Tommy bounced on his toes. “Will it get there in time?”
She tousled his hair. “I think so.”
Tommy ran back to his room and flopped on his bed. He stared at the ceiling. Mum said she’d post the letter, but what if she forgot? What if she only said she would? It was Christmas tomorrow. There wasn’t much time.
He tossed and turned and eventually fell asleep.
Tommy blinked himself awake. He stared at his door for a minute, feeling dozy. Then he bolted upright. “It’s Christmas!”
He leapt out of bed, whipped on his bathrobe, and pounded down the hall. He bashed on Samantha’s door as he passed, grinning as he heard her yell. He took the stairs three at a time and bounded into the living room.
He pranced around the Christmas tree, snatching at the brightly wrapped gifts. The blue one was his, the one with the huge gold ribbon too, and the bike in the corner. “Come on!” he yelled. “Faster!”
His mother stumbled into the room, rubbing the sleep from her eyes. His father yawned and stretched before plopping down on the couch. “We’re here, kiddo,” he said. “Go ahead.”
Tommy pouted. “Sam isn’t here yet. Do I have to wait for her?”
“She’s coming, dear,” said Mum. “Just a moment.”
“Sam!” Tommy hollered. “Hurry up!”
She stomped into the room, eyes mostly closed, hair teased up like a fluffy halo. She collapsed onto the beanbag and folded her arms across her chest. “Shut up,” she told him. “I’m here.”
Tommy jumped for joy. “Presents!” He dove at the stack, pulling them out with both hands and tossing them to his family.
Soon, everyone had a large pile in front of them, and the others had woken up enough to laugh and smile.
“What are these?” Tommy’s mother asked, holding up a strangely shaped package in green, the size of a football.
“I don’t know,” his father answered, “but I have one too.”
“We all do,” said Samantha, pointing at hers on the floor.
Tommy pouted. “I don’t.” He grabbed his sister’s and rattled it. “What’s inside?”
“I don’t know, who are they from?”
“Open them!” He bounced on the edge of Samantha’s beanbag, and she was too excited about her strange parcel to mind.
“On the count of three,” she said. “One, two...”
“THREE!” Tommy shouted, tearing at her wrapping.
She batted him away and he sprawled on the ground.
“Look!” She held it up. It was brownish grey, kind of squidgy. A ball? he wondered. Some sort of cushion?
The rest of the wrapping dropped away and he stared at it.
“It... it looks like a brain,” Samantha said, mouth twisted in disgust.
“I think it is,” said Dad, holding up his.
Tommy poked the brain, wondering what it could do. The brain twitched. He gasped, and scrambled towards his parents to see if their brains had moved too.
He whirled around. The brain was pressed against her face, thin tendrils grasping her head as she thrashed against it.
Tommy moved towards her but froze as another scream sounded behind him.
“Mum! Dad!” he shouted.
But they were too busy to notice; the brains sucked squelchily at their faces. Mum shrieked and leapt to her feet. She ran forward, right into the Christmas tree. It toppled over, tangling her in the cord of lights and tinsel.
Dad stood, trying to follow her voice, hands waving in front of him. He bellowed as the brain gave an extra loud slurp, and tripped to the ground.
Tommy shrank back under the lip of the sofa, whimpering.
Samantha screamed again, tearing frantically at the brain. But it was no use; within minutes all three family members slumped motionless on the ground.
The brains slurped happily.