It was snowing heavily in London, and a heavy freezing fog moved across the city.
'Morning, Watson', Baker Street's most famous resident said to that doctor, as he walked into the living room, and 'Merry Christmas, Holmes', came the reply, but then the sleuth realised that there was already a problem with untangling who was who in this sentence. 'But as few of the few people that may read this can write 'tis of little consequence', he thought to himself, then asked Holmes if breakfast was ready yet.
'I fear we must start this tale again', Dr. Watson gravely intoned, 'for now all the pronouns and characters have been muddled up, and now I don't know my rectum from my humerus.' 'Never mind that', came the reply, 'is it really Christmas Day today?'
'Why, yes, of course.' 'And I hoped for a day off from my inexhaustible detective work.' 'Wh -' 'No time to lose, Watson, there has been a murder!' 'A -'. 'And we must search for clues!' ' - '. 'Let us now go and solve the case. Come, Watson, or it will be too late!', and the detective strode out of the room and straight into the broom cupboard.
Dr. Watson sat waiting for Holmes to reappear redfacedly, like an American President, but when it didn't happen he put down The Times and went over to the cupboard and opened the door. Finding nothing but brooms and a few old coats hanging up there, he pushed through the clothing to the back, when all of a sudden he suddenly found himself outdoors in the snow and ice!
Looking round him he saw his colleague with his magnifying glass to the ground, and quickly hurried over to him. 'What on earth has happened?', he asked Sherlock Holmes, 'I tried to find you in the broom cupboard, but now we're here.'
'Quite elementary, Watson, look at this', the detective said, and in the snow was a large paw print made by an animal. 'What is it?, Watson said. 'There are 113 different species of felines, Watson, and judging by the size of this print and the placement of the tufts of hair this is one of an African lion.'
'Yikes!', the doctor gasped, 'but what can a lion be doing wandering around Central London? Shouldn't we write a letter to The Times about it?' 'No time, er, for that, I fear, Watson, for look, someone approaches.'
And approaching them was what at first looked like a woman in a skirt with much silver on it, but turned out to be a man in a skirt with much silver on it. 'So, you have dared to enter Narnia!', the man hissed, and Holmes and Watson shivered, for there was something cold and icy near them now, apart from all the snow and ice and slush around them.
'I cannot allow you to remain here, for I am the Black Wizard of Narnia!', and suddenly many horrible-looking dwarves and serpents and goblins were all around the pair, 'your presence shall no longer be tolerated! Out! Out! Get out! And never dare to return! Or ye shall suffer the -'
'I say', said Dr. Watson, 'could you keep it down a bit? It's just that old Mrs. Fothergill next door needs a bit of rest after her ingrowing toenail operation.' 'Never!', yelled the Wizard, 'ye shall get back to whence ye came from, or else the Curse of the Communication of Exx shall be placed upon you and your families!', and the dwarves and serpents and goblins all cackled hideously at that, and began passing around collection plates to hundreds of peasant onlookers who had appeared to see what all the fuss was about.
'Wait!', cried Sherlock Holmes, 'we shall indeed go back', to more cackles and collections, 'but not until we have solved the murder that has happened here. Watson, let us now follow this road to seek out the lion', and as the detective walked away Dr. Watson hurried after him.
'But what is this murder you keep going on about, Holmes, and what about the Wizard and all his ghastly followers?' 'They don't scare me', the sleuth replied, 'watch', and he lit his meerschaum pipe which was filled with Olde Bilberry's Crusty Lung Mix tobacco, and soon all the smoke made them invisible to the Wizard and his evil cohorts.
After walking miles in the freezing sleet and snow, Dr. Watson suddenly stopped. 'Look, Holmes', he said, 'I know this is frightfully good exercise and whatnot, but how much further must we go? I don't know about you, but I'm in the mood for going back to have a jolly strong cup of tea with a slice of Mrs. Doyle-Carte's Victoria Beckham spongebrain cake.' 'We are now at our destination', the detective replied, 'look!', and suddenly Watson saw that in front of them was a huge lion with slavering jaws and a swishing tail, and massive teeth that wouldn't have looked out of place on an American politician.
'What have you come into Narnia for?', the lion asked them, settling down in the snow as if it didn't feel the cold. 'We have come, sir', said Holmes, 'if 'sir' is how to address a lion, I suppose it would rather depend if the sun was above or below the yardarm, and if the ladies had or had not yet eaten their cucumber sandwiches, or whether -' 'Get on with it!', roared the lion, and Holmes quickly got on with it.
'What is your name, lion?' 'My name is Jesus', the lion answered, and 'As I deduced', Holmes said, 'for you are no different from any other animal, are you? No offence, of course', he quickly added, noticing the lion's large claws. 'You speak sooth, Mr. Holmes.' 'And you were not born on Christmas Day, were you? And your mother was a perfectly normal lioness, and if you should die - and perish the thought - you wouldn't be able to come back to life again, would you?' The lion laughed. 'Of course not!'
'But the murder, Holmes', Watson said, 'who has been murdered?' 'No-one has been murdered, Watson.' 'But why are we here then?' 'Because it is a thing that has been murdered', Holmes replied, 'and that thing has been the truth.' 'The truth?'
'Yes', said the lion, taking a break from eating three dryads and an antelope for a snack, 'even here in Narnia we have all heard of the great Sherlock Holmes, and once more he has solved the mystery. But what now?' 'We must now expose the trickster and conman that killed the truth', Holmes said, 'let us now go back to confront the Black Wizard, for it is he', and the two left the lion, who was now chasing a ball of string around the trees.
Soon they were back near their house, and it was snowing harder than ever. 'Couldn't we just nip in for a quick cup of tea?', Dr. Watson suggested, but Holmes advanced towards the Black Wizard and his evil followers. 'So!', he thundered, 'you thought you could murder the truth, did you?'
'I don't know what you mean', the Wizard muttered, whilst signing another paper rescinding a Curse of the Communication of Exx for a gruesome vampire bat, 'now depart swiftly, if you please, for we are preparing for the annual Christmas Day celebrations. To celebrate the birthday of Jesus, that miraculous birth so different from other births, his inevitable death, and his resurrection.'
'Poppycock!', shouted Holmes angrily, 'Jesus was born in January quite normally, and if he dies he'll die like anyone else! These are monstrous lies!' 'Mrs.Fothergill, Holmes, you know -' 'The lion Jesus is simply a lion, that is married and drinks wine and plays with string, you have murdered the truth for you own ends!' 'And what ends might they be?', the Wizard asked slyly, but gave a secret signal to his Holy Inquisitor mutants to get their torture instruments ready.
'For hundreds of years before Jesus appeared the people of Narnia worshipped the sun, and celebrated the birthday of the pagan sun god Mithra', Holmes said to the large crowd now around him and Watson. 'And the legend of Mithra included him dying but coming to life again. Mithra's birthday was the 25th. of December.'
'And millions of others also celebrated the Winter Solstice of the 21st. of that month. That is the truth you have killed off, you changed Jesus's birthday to Mithra's and made up a legend of Jesus being resurrected, so the people would follow you instead of worshipping the sun and Mithra, and you caught the pagans celebrating the Solstice around the same time also.'
'And as you couldn't persuade people to stop worshipping on a Sunday, your new fake religion about Jesus changed its own day of worship from Saturday to Sunday. You hijacked pagan religions to make yourself rich, to fill your house with art and treasures, and to create a whole industry of cards and presents and such baloney to line your own pockets with silver. And mass-murdered those who dared not to follow your new 'religion'. You are exposed, sir!'
'Seize them!', shouted the Black Wizard, and the Inquisitor mutants held the two by the arms. 'You know, I've changed my mind', he said, 'about you going back to where you came from. If it should get out in your world that Christmas is a fraud, merely pagan festivals with their names changed to make me even richer, why, people might not be so easy to con out of their money.'
'In the name of forgiveness, humility and non-violence I hereby sentence you to be tortured to death and then thrown to a pack of starving hyenas with tapeworms! Take them away!', and the mutants dragged the pair towards the Holy Inquisitor Torture Chambers, but not before passing the Holy Gold Bars of Germalina and the Holy Weeping Statues of Uno Borno Evero Minuto.
'Dashed awkward, this', Dr. Watson muttered, as the Inquisitor mutants began heating up their furnaces, 'looks like we're going to die.' 'That's where you're wrong', Sherlock Holmes said, 'for I have the whole thing in hand.' 'You do?'
'Yes, Watson, it's quite obvious we are safe, a brain-damaged alcoholic baboon that can't feed itself properly or walk far without falling over could have worked it out by now, though an American President couldn't have.' 'But - ' 'You there!', Holmes called to an Inquistor, 'release us now, for it is 4:15 and time for tea and Victoria Beckham spongebrain cake.' 'Release you?' 'Yes, hurry up!', and soon the duo were in fact released.
'Back to the cupboard, Watson, for everything stops for tea.' 'But how did you do it, Holmes?' 'Oh, it was quite easy. These tales about us are in fact 100% fictional, just as the tales about both Mithra and Jesus being born on the 25th. of December and both being resurrected are 100% fictional - none of it ever happened in reality.'
'So to keep the fiction going we had to escape unharmed, just like Jesus and Mithra had to have the same birthday and were both resurrected, because that's what the authors were told by the Romans to put in their stories.'
'Kind of ruins all the suspense, though, don't you know.' 'Possibly, Watson, possibly, but there is one good thing about all this.' 'What's that?' 'At least we now know that Jesus was never born on the 25th. of Demember, never had a virgin birth, and was never resurrected. A fraud for the Narnians many years ago, and now a tale for children.'
'Can't wait for Hogmanay, though, Holmes, now that's just an excuse for drinking huge amounts of alcohol and eating tons of food without any tripe about Jesus involved!' 'Very true, Watson. Let's hope that Mrs. Doyle-Carte has been distilling plenty of whisky for that evening', and Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson went back through the cupboard into their house, and were promptly shot dead by Mrs. Doyle-Carte with a rifle when she mistook them for burglars.
The lion carried on doing what lions do, drinking wine and eating dryads and playing with string, and years later died peacefully, and never came to life again. The people of Narnia had liked the lion, so celebrated his birthday of the 6th. of January for the next 300 years,
and carried on worshipping Mithra and the sun, but all that time the Black Wizard was persuading the princes of Narnia how richer and more powerful they would become if a new religion was invented around the lion, and if his birthday was changed to Mithra's, and if his resurrection was also invented to rival the pagan's one.
And the princes agreed, but the people were not that stupid and refused to listen to the Wizard, so the princes resorted to using torture and death to force the entire population of Narnia to accept the fictional tales as true, and so eventually that happened.
But of course there was no chance that 1700 years later people would still believe that Jesus - who was very much mortal, was married, who ate food and drank wine, whose birthday was the 6th. of January, and whose mother was pregnant with him when she got married - was born on the 25th. of December like Mithra, and came back to life like Mithra, is there? As Sherlock Holmes himself would have said, it's all quite elementary.
Or go and read a few books, and the Pope will be out of a job. Happy Saturnalia! And if you believe in Christmas, thanks for making my shares in gift shops go up, suckers!
The Puritans who briefly ran the United Kingdom as a republic in the 1600s made Christmas illegal, and hundreds of millions of Muslims, Jews, Hindus and even Protestants basically agree with that. It's all a con.