It’s the last Writers Reveal round of the year! This month’s topic was sent to me by Emily Hawker, who suggested the prompt “Santa Claus is real”. Based on that idea, I wrote a short story with a Christmas theme. Hope you like it! Thanks for the topic, Emily! Happy Holidays, everyone!
Noelle crouched behind the living room sofa, staring at the fireplace as quietly as her excitement would allow. This was it for sure, she thought. The cookies and milk had been set by the Christmas tree, and hanging over the fireplace was a laundry basket tied to a rope that ran over the shelves all the way to her hand, exactly the way she’d seen her big brother do it. Everything was in place, and she was confident her plan would work. This year, she was going to catch Santa Claus.
The eight-year-old girl waited in the dark corner for what felt like an eternity. She was all alone in the living room. Her parents had gone to bed ages ago, and she had made sure to sneak back downstairs long after the lights had been turned off. The only illumination in the room came from the moonlight through the window and the dim lights on the tree, but it would still be enough to see Santa when he came… right?
Yes, of course it would. After all, the room starting to grow darker was just her imagination. She was so excited to see him; that’s why the lights on the tree seemed to be fading. She couldn’t possibly sleep now. No, she only needed to rest her eyes, just for a second…
The eight-year-old stirred at the sound of a female voice above her, and she slowly opened her eyes… until she remembered where she was. Suddenly, Noelle bolted upright to see her mother looking down at her from over the couch. At the same time, the string that had been trapped under her weight broke free. A second later, there was a loud crash, and mother and daughter turned to see a man sitting by the fireplace with a laundry basket over his head and some boxes wrapped in bright paper sprawled around him.
Noelle jumped up and hurried across the room to the man now lifting the basket off his head. Could it be…? No, it wasn’t Santa, she realized when the lights were turned on; it was her father. The man rose to his feet as his wife approached and the girl apologized profusely. After they asked if he was all right and he insisted he was fine, both parents turned their attention to their daughter.
“Noelle, sweetie, what are you doing?” said the woman.
The child looked at her feet, embarrassed. “I was trying to catch Santa Claus.”
“Tommy said Santa isn’t real, so I wanted to catch him to prove that he is!”
“Sweetheart”, said Noelle’s mom, kneeling down to her level, “you shouldn’t listen to your brother. I know you really want to meet Santa, but… it’s very hard to catch him, especially on Christmas Eve. He’s magical, and he’s always a step ahead. He probably knew about your plan all along, so…”
“That’s why he left your presents in our room”, said Noelle’s dad awkwardly. “He wanted us to put them under the tree for him.”
“Right.” The woman smiled at her husband before turning back to her daughter. “OK, sweetie? Now it’s time for bed.”
Noelle’s mother scooped her up while her father set about cleaning up the mess left by the trap. The girl sighed as her mom carried her upstairs, watching over the woman’s shoulder as her dad placed the boxes under the tree. Was Tommy right after all? Did their parents really leave Santa’s presents every year? Or were they the ones telling the truth?
Tucked into bed, Noelle bid her mother goodnight with a kiss and watched her step out of the room. Alone again, the child fell back on her pillow and turned on her side. That was when she noticed the red envelope sitting on her nightstand. Curious, the girl turned her lamp on and opened the envelope to read the neatly written letter inside.
I’m sorry for ruining your plan to catch me tonight. As you know, Christmas Eve is a very busy time for me. As much as I would love to help you, I have a lot of presents to deliver to other good children like yourself, and I wouldn’t have the time to stay. I hope you understand why I needed your parents to help me.
I’m sure we’ll have a chance to meet next year. Until then, keep being a good little girl. And try not to trap your dad with a basket again.
Thank you for believing in me, Noelle! Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!
P.S. Don’t worry about Tommy. He doesn’t like to believe in me because I put him on the Naughty list every year. He isn’t very nice to his little sister.
Noelle smiled as she read the last line of the letter. Jumping out of bed and rushing to the window, she looked outside just in time to see a silhouette flying past the moon, shaped very much like… Could it be?
Yes, it had to be. She had proof right in her hand, and she clutched the paper tight as she flailed her arm at the figure waving back at her. She didn’t need anything else for Christmas, not even to prove she was right. It was enough to know the truth in her heart.
From that night on, Noelle promised she would never again doubt that Santa Claus was real.
This has been a special topic post in Emily Morgan’s Writers Reveal. To learn more, just follow the button below to her site, and be sure to check out the other blogs participating in the event. Thanks for reading!
Other bloggers in the Writers Reveal
Emily Morgan: Emily Morgan Writes
Melissa Khalinsky: Melissa Writes
Jodi Gibson: JFGibson
Becky Fyfe: Imagine! Create! Write!
Rhianna: A Parenting Life
Ashley Howland: Ghostnapped
Emily Hawker: You Learn Something New Every Day
Emily Toxward: Have A Laugh On Me