When the family returns home after midnight mass on Christmas and Rex Walls was drunk and belligerent, Rosemary decides to give him one of his Christmas presents to placate him. The gift was a "brass cigarette lighter from the 1920's in the shape of a Scottish terrier" (115). What did Rex do with the lighter that ruined the holiday?
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Answered by Aslan
Rex is pretty drunk. He receives a "brass cigarette lighter" for Christmas and lights their Christmas Tree on fire. This, of course, ruined the family's Christmas.