Yomiel leaned on the sill, peering through the glass pane at the expanse of endless white stretching out before him. Snowflakes tumbled down from the sky, scattered about by the strong wind that blew past. People would be waking up in their beds to this sight about now, revelling in the white Christmas that had been brought to them.
It was a day on which families would be getting together and celebrating with each other, sitting around the table and talking merrily while dining on delicious roast turkey. For many people, it was a day full of happiness and cheer.
Not for him. After all, he was a dead man. The dead didn't get to celebrate Christmas with their families and loved ones.
Yomiel tore his gaze from the window, clenching his teeth. Even if he no longer felt pain, it still hurt just to think about all those people in their homes celebrating on this day.
Nobody would wish him a happy Christmas or give him a gift. He wouldn't get to sit at a table crowded with people and eat a roast dinner. Even if he did eat a turkey, he wouldn't be able to taste it and he didn't need to. There was just no point to eating anymore.
How he had come to despise this day. Yomiel couldn't stand it, thinking about what everyone would be doing on this day. He still remembered the last Christmas he had ever celebrated, with his beloved fiancée. For two years now, she had lain in that cold earth while he was trapped in this existence, miserable and alone.
A furry body rubbed against his leg and the silence was broken by a loud mew.
Of course, he wasn't completely alone, a fact he was thankful for. Yomiel reached down and picked Sissel up. "Good morning, Sissel. I suppose you want some breakfast now, don't you?" He took the cat into the kitchen and got out a tin of cat food, which he emptied into the empty bowl. Sissel immediately started eating, purring contentedly.
While the cat was busy consuming his breakfast, Yomiel went back to the other room and opened up his desk drawer to find a certain item he had stuffed in there a few days ago.
Shoving the item into his pocket, he returned to the kitchen and sat down, waiting until Sissel was done eating. The satisfied cat turned away from his bowl and walked over to Yomiel, mewing and rubbing his leg fondly.
"Do you know what today is? It's Christmas Day."
Sissel raised his head at the sound of the man's voice, staring intently at him.
"Nobody is going to be wishing me a happy Christmas or giving me a gift. I won't get to eat a nice roast dinner. It's a pity really." Yomiel thrust his hand into his pocket. "But I can at least give my only friend a present. Merry Christmas, Sissel."
He took out the gift - a large plush mouse stuffed with catnip - and placed it at Sissel's feet. Sissel pounced upon his new toy, wrapping his limbs around it and biting down fiercely. Yomiel watched him play, his lips forming a smile. It was good to see the cat liked his present so much. Even if Yomiel could no longer live a happy life, he wanted to ensure that Sissel was always happy.
Later on, Yomiel went out for a walk. There were very few people around, which was understandable, considering the chilly weather and the circumstances of today. Even those who weren't celebrating Christmas had little reason to step out with most of the shops being shut too. This feeling of being completely alone, with nobody around, wasn't new. He felt it every day. If it wasn't for Sissel, he didn't know how he would cope. He thought that some day, he might just end up losing his sanity.
His journey took him to the nearby cemetery. Yomiel thought that he should have brought some flowers to lay upon her grave, but it was too late for that now. He found the gravestone, half buried in snow, and brushed some of it away to reveal the name etched into the stone.
"It's been a while since I last came, hasn't it? I'm sorry. Today is Christmas, you know." Yomiel sat down, not caring as the snow soaked into his clothes. Since he couldn't feel the moisture on his skin, it didn't matter. "I gave Sissel a present and he really liked it. Cats are easy to please. It's nice to have him around, but I'm still lonely. I really miss you." He hung his head, staring glumly at his lap. "If only I had got there sooner."
Yomiel sat there, staring at the gravestone for a while, not speaking. There was very little to talk about. Life as a dead man was horribly uninteresting. Anyway, it wasn't like she was going to respond. Eventually, he rose from the ground and turned to leave. Before doing so, he threw one last glance over his shoulder at the gravestone.
"Goodbye, Sissel. I'll bring flowers next time I come over. You will like that, won't you?"
Yomiel returned home and looked around for the cat. Sissel soon emerged from the kitchen, clutching something in his mouth.
"What have you got there?" Yomiel knelt down as Sissel approached him.
Sissel deposited it on the floor and nudged it toward Yomiel with one paw, mewing loudly. Yomiel realised that it was a dead rat. He stared at it in silence.
"Is this... a gift?"
The cat mewed in response.
Sissel had actually given him a present back. Yomiel rested his head in his hand, his shoulders shaking as he started to laugh. It wasn't the kind of present he would ever want, but he was still happy. Even while he languished in despair, Sissel still managed to bring him some joy in his life and he was thankful.
"Thank you, Sissel." Yomiel picked him up and stroked him. "That was really nice of you." He carried the cat into the kitchen, closing the door. Once he was sitting down, he jumped out of his body and went to possess the rat's corpse, making it walk out and hide itself somewhere close by.
Despite how grateful he was, this was one gift he didn't want to keep.