by Jean Martin
Under the old king, it would have been the Feast of Stephen, the second day of Christmas.
But our new king took us back to the Old Gods and the old ways.
As he decreed, nine men and nine women were offered in sacrifice that morning, in the woods, near the spring that had been named for Saint Agnes.
The snow lay roundabout deep and crisp and scarlet. There was steam rising in the frosty air from the hot blood.
One small page, lying still on the ground, his dead eyes staring wide and empty at the grey winter sky.
A long-time fan of Sherlock Holmes, Jean Martin is a single lady, currently stuck at home in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, which is in the Monongahela Valley. She has been writing fiction for longer than she cares to admit and has talked to channellers, psychics, vampirologists, Anne McCaffrey, and some lesser-known authors.