The Quill who stole Christmas.

"Okay." Said Quill, popping off this helmet as the jet-engine ting ting ting ed to itself as it cooled behind him on the mountain-top overlooking Hoovile. "So, we're all good on the plan? And take that stupid box of your head Rocket, what gives?"

"Beep beep frickin-boop, I am a robot…. Hey!" yelled Rocket, as Quill knocked the box of his head. "Hedy, asshole, did you miss the bit about giant frickin-owls? They get one look at me and there gonna go kill crazy! They see anything with fur smaller than then they're gonna try and eat it! I don't wanna spend Christmas day as a frickin three-foot-tall owl pellet!"

"I…. fine, but take of that stupid single antler, it doesn't work!"

"It's thematically appropriate asshole! Do you not see what we're doing here? I ain't even from earth and I've seen enough TV to know what we're doing! I…. oh fuck it, lets go." He muttered. "This is my one chance per year to rob shit and still somehow be the good guy, so I'm riding this redemption arch for all it's worth! So, we doing this?" he said, putting the box back over his head and tucking his tail unto his pants to hide it.

Peter Jason Quill slammed a fuel cell into his blasters, and nodded grimly.

"Lets do some good."

[Montage of Quill and Rocket breaking into a whole bunch of giant bird-houses and robbing a whole bunch of terrified terrified giant alien owls, set to a punk-ska version of you're a mean one, Mr Grinch and getting progressively more over the top and insane as they fight off enraged Owl parents, stuff fluffly chicks into heir own stockings to get them out of the way, strip the lights off trees, trample decorations, and steal all the milk and toasted vole cookies. Cut to them back on the mountain, afterwards, going over the loot]

"Huh. So, these Hoo people have a lot of surprisingly violent Christmas toys." Said Quill, going over a board-game called splat the Rat!

"Godless, feathery, murderers." Muttered Rocket. "It's no surprise."

"But hey, look on the bright side." Said Quill. "At least we saved them from some sort of horrible Christmas special. Trust me, Rocket: when the sun comes up and the ones who didn't wake up during all the robbing realize they've been burgled, they'll be glad to find out we saved them. Trust me, in" he checked his watch. "In about ten seconds, we'll hear the sound of happy, happy owl people realising that we've done them a favour. Any second… Now!" he said, as the sun came up, and hoovile awoke.

[furious and very angry owl screeching, giving way into heartbroken wails. Quill face slowly sinks.]

"Wait, no… that's not how It's supposed to go. They… they're supposed to be happy!"

"Uh-huh?" asked Rocket. "Happy that we robbed them? On Christmas eve?"

And that when Quill thought of something he hadn't before. "Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more… but people will still be Really really pissed if you rob them, and break every law!"

"Noooooo, you don't say!?" Said Rocket, hands on hips. "Frickin' humie. How am I the only one who saw this coming?"

"I… we screwed up, Rock. We screwed up big time! How are we going to fix this?"

"Well, what feels like thew right thing to do?"

"Err… go and give back their stuff and own up to our mistakes? Ow!"

Rocket slapped him. "Lets try that again, Quill, what feels like the right thing to do that also doesn't get us eaten alive by enraged two meter tall owls?!"

Peter and Quill looked to each-other.

"Fake bandit gambit?" said Quill. Rocket grinned, nodded, and put back on his "Robot" costume.

"Fake gambit bandit." He repeated.

[Cut to crying Owl-monsters, sheltering their chicks with their wings and trying to comfort them. The here a noise, and all suddenly look up. Quill and rocket standing on their sleigh, handing out presents.]

"Hello, good people of Hoovile, we, a group of passing adventurers, spotted a bandit trying to flee the planets atmosphere and chased him off, claiming his loot! We are here to return all of your stolen goods!" said Quill, striking a heroic pose.

"There wouldn't haven to be a reward, would there? Around 10% is customary, beep beep boop." Said his Robot side-kick. Quill kicked him.

"No! because doing a good deed at Life-day is it's own reward, Rocket."

"Fine, but I expect you to pay for the jet-fuel then, asshole, beep beep boop."

"Shut up! Now, good owl-men, please, take back your possessions and go with good cheer in your hearts, you have been saved!"

"Thank you, stranger" Cooed a particularly large Owl, approaching. "Thank you for your help, strange one. You have done us a great service May we have the name of our saviour?"

"Peter, peter Quill. But here is another mane you many know me by… Starlord!"

"Hoo?" hoo'd the Hoo.

Quill groaned "Yeah…. Yeah I walked right into that one. Okay, well, glad to be of service, we'll… we'll just go now. Come on Rocket. See that's wasn't that bad, was it?" Said Quill, turning his back and taking Rocket by the shoulders, Rocket's tail swinging behind him.

"See, sometimes when you try to do a good thing, even it it's horribly miss-judged, if you follow thought with good intentions in your heart, It all just works out and you never need to think about the consequences of your actions and…"

Behind him, the large lead-Owl noticed Rockets tail, pointed with a wing Invasion of the body snatchers style, and screeched, eyes turning red.

Quill, froze, looked back over his shoulder at the hundreds of blood-thirsty red-eyed owls, and then turned back.

"Run Rocket! Get the engine started! Get the fucking engine started!" he yelled, Firing both pistols as the owls came for him.

[Cut to Gamora and Drax and Groot, quietly enjoying a peaceful Christmas dinner. Stop the cavalry by Jona Lewie playing]

"So… do you think Quill will be doing well and safe?" asked Drax. Gamora sighed.

"I hope so: he's got Rocket with him, Rocket's survival instincts are pretty acute, and despite of the way they sometimes act, they're not actually stupid-"

It was at this exact moment, that a ram-jet powered sleigh shot past the cockpit of the Milano, engine and occupants both screaming, chased by hundreds upon hundreds of enraged giant owls, lasers and rail-gun shots as well as blaster fire from Quill trying to thin them out as they chased the sleigh.

Gamora groaned, and let her head slump to the dining table.

"All in favour of just pretending we didn't see that and enjoying our meal?" she asked, raising her hand. As she did, a stray railgun round punched thought the hull and mulched their roast beast, laminating the enter room with a fine film or ballistically re-shaped meat.

"Right! That's it!" She yelled, grabbing her sword and stalking up to the cockpit, before popping the windshield and just yelling.

"Hey! It's life-day! Also known as Christmas, Yule, and a thousand other local versions! A time of peace and love between all people! Can you please, for one day knock this off! We have no quarrel with you, Hoovians, and I'm sure that whatever dumb thing they've done to upset you, and I'm sure it was a doozy, whatever punishment you've got planed for them is peanuts to the chewing-out I'll give them, so knock it off!"

"But… the furry one is small and furry, and therefore prey." Hooted one of the owls.

"I… you can't just eat a sapient creature! It that really what this is about? Don't eat him, look at him: you'll catch something! Rocket is for life, and not just for Christmas! Leave him be!"

"Stay out of our business, you green bint!" Hooted one of the owls.

Gamora narrowed her eyes. "What did you just call me?"

"I said stay out of this, you green-"

[Hard cut to all of the Guardians sitting around the Christmas table, huge roast own sitting in the centre of the spread. Gamora is still clutching her sword, and covered in feathers.]

"So… fort the second year running out Christmas meal is a sapient creature, and we're all just going to ignore that?" Asked Rocket. "I mean, personally, I say he had it coming, he was trying to eat me alive, but I just wanted to be clear with everyone that that's what were doing? Right?"

"Shut up and carve." Said Gamora, staring into the middle distance.

"Third year." Said Drax. The others staired. "I had made the mistake, when making stuffing, of assuming that Soylent was made for Soy and lentils but apparently that is not the case so…."

"Wine?" asked Quill. "Thank you Groot, Gamora do you need a top up? We have red or wh-"

"Just leave the bottle." Said Gamora.

"So… is there a Christmas moral here?" asked Drax.

"Don't steal stuff?" said Quill.

"Don't try and eat me?" said Rocket.

"I am Groot?" said Groot.

"Don't start drama at Christmas when everyone has already had a really, really tough year, and just relax and be nice because no-one has time for that shit right now." Said Gamora, one hand on her wine glass, one on her sword.

"I'll drink to that." Said Quill. "Merry Christmas to all, and to all, a good night."

Apologies for my lack of output of late, it's been a hard two years.

I hope this finds you well wherever you are, and have a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays with your family, chosen family, or friends. And if not, know that you are not alone.