The snow was falling softly through out the town of Molten. It was midmorning on Christmas, and aside from the lone Chinese restaurant, everything was shut tight for the day. Behind the closed doors of their homes, people were cleaning up their gobs of wrapping paper and split cardboard boxes. The childless among them may have just begun to open gifts, having woken late from their nights of cocktails and company. In a small town such as Molten, it was safe to assume an almost perfect Christmas: everyone was enjoying themselves.

Perhaps none more so than the man still behind the closed door of his business. The ambient sconces created a soft glow as he counted – twenty, forty, sixty – a pile of thin green bills, occasionally pausing to make small notes on a piece of paper. This was what he lived for: all of the power given to the tiny slips of paper.

It was what his kind thrived on, the very core – and often misinterpreted – heart of chaos. The breath before madness. The small barrier that could prevent – or create – a whirlwind of catastrophe. In the mind of Gregory Ducante, all of those things were perfectly encapsulated in money. In his capitalist endeavors, his pecuniary fetish. There was no better way for him to spend his Christmas than getting closer to this his most favorite force of chaos.

After all, it wasn’t as if he was foolish enough for something as simple as church.

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