Sunday, October 20

Friday Fiction: The Year the Magic Died

I'm very late for Fiction Friday, and this isn't even fiction... except where my early childhood memories might be jumbled. This vignette of Christmases past was inspired by the challenge topic "Curiosity killed the cat", and had I started writing before bedtime the night before it was due, I might have turned it into something more.

Vonnie (Yvonne Blake) is our lovely and loving hostess for Fiction Friday this week. Drop by My Back Porch to read her story about a different kind of turkey, plus follow links to more original writing. And don't be shy - add your own link!

The Year the Magic Died


A tiny me, sitting in my big sister’s lap. She’s saying, “Santa brings us presents on Christmas because that’s how he celebrates Jesus’ birthday.” I wonder at the logic of that, and decide it makes sense.

A slightly less tiny me, sitting in my big sister’s lap. She’s explaining, “Mom’s handwriting is on the tags because Santa doesn’t label them.  But Mom knows who the presents are for, and she puts tags on them.”  I don’t question that answer. It makes sense to me.

An excited little me, snuggled in bed with my big sister. She’s hushing me. “Santa has a lot of houses to visit, and a lot of presents to deliver. How can his sleigh hold them all? He came early and put some of ours in the storeroom. Now be very quiet so he won’t know you hear him. Pretend you’re asleep.” And pretty soon I was.

A little bit bigger me, in the den with my big brothers. One of them brags, “I bet we can guess what Santa is going to bring you for Christmas. We’ll write it down to prove we’re right.” On Christmas day, we all looked, and their predictions proved true for both my little sister and me. At first I was amazed, then I grew skeptical.

A slightly older and taller me, in the den with my big brothers. One of them confides, “Our Christmas presents are in the storeroom.”  I knew I shouldn’t, and I didn’t… for a while. But then I did. I snuck in and I snooped. And then I knew the truth. I mean, I kinda knew before, but now I really knew.  And on Christmas morning, when I saw those same presents under the tree, I felt like the magic of Christmas died.

An even bigger me, huddled behind closed doors with Mom. “Will you help me wrap some presents?” She knew that I knew, and the magic of Christmas was reborn as I gleefully and giddily wrapped presents from “Santa” for my little sister. Later that night, we read one of my favorite Christmas storybooks about animals at the Nativity. On Christmas morning, I smiled when I sat that “Santa” had added my name to a couple of the tags on my sister’s presents.

And the real magic of Christmas lived on.