Stars twinkled all around me. The fireplace sparked and flickered. I sipped on my hot chocolate, leaving a rim of chocolate milk around my mouth. My mother came inside, a twinkle in her eye. “Time for bed, Sara.” She said. It all seemed happy, but a certain sadness still lingered.
I left to go to bed. Christmas often made me think of my father. Last Christmas, he disappeared.
It was when both my mother and I were in bed. We heard a huge bang on the roof, and my father disappeared. We have not seen him since.
A tear rolled down my cheek. I tried to fall asleep. I tossed and turned, I tried to close my eyes. I. Could. Not. Sleep. I was too sad.
I heard footsteps in the hallway. My mom came into my room, her face stained with tears. “Are you awake, Sara?”
‘Yes.’ She slumped over on my bed.
“Is it OK if I sleep here?” She asked.
She tucked herself under the covers and wrapped her arms around me. She fell asleep, eventually, but I couldn’t stop thinking about my Dad. Where was he now? Why did he leave us? Did he want to leave us?
I still could not sleep.
I trudged downstairs and sat on the couch. I turned on a random TV station. “A Christmas Carol” was playing. It was my Dad’s favourite movie. I don’t mean that it was my Dad’s favourite Christmas movie. I mean, it was his favourite movie, EVER. We watched it every Christmas together.
This was the first Christmas that I hadn’t even seen it once. I had not seen any Christmas movie. I continued to watch. It was a sad movie, even if it didn’t remind me of my Dad. But it did remind me of my Dad. So it was two times as sad. I cried. I cried. I cried. I cried and I cried and I cried.
And eventually, I slept. I did not dream of dancing sugar plum fairies. I dreamed of nothing. Black. I had no dream at all that night.
BANG! CRASH! I heard loud, loud sounds that were coming from the chimney.
It must be a robber, I thought. I did not believe in Santa. I had not believed in Santa Claus since I was ten years old.
A robber was breaking into our house through a chimney. I had to do something.
I ran into a kitchen and grabbed some matches. I was going to light the fire, and when the robber got down he would have to climb back up again, in order to not get burned. When I came back to the living room, a man was standing there. He was wearing a red suit and had a white beard. He was rather large and had a floppy, red pointed hat with a pom-pom on the tip.
It was Santa Claus. There was something familiar about him. A certain flicker in his eyes made me sad. But what scared me the most was that he knew my name.
“Sara! I haven’t seen you for so long.”
“I have never seen you before,” I replied. Before the strange man had the chance to respond, my mother burst into the room and gave him a hug. He spun her around.
I stood in the corner, still confused. “Sara, don’t you see it?” My mother said. “He’s your father!”
“My father never had a beard, and was never so… FAT!”
“Sara, don’t say that about your father!”
“But he isn’t my father!”
“Yes, he is Sara. Don’t you see?”
My “father” spoke up.
“Let me explain. Last Christmas, Santa came to our house. He needed someone to take over for him. He was too old for the job, so I stepped up. I remembered how magical it was to receive gifts from Santa, and I did not want kids from around the world to stop receiving gifts from Santa. I am Santa Claus now. I was wondering if you two would move into the North Pole with me.”
I realized what he said was probably true. I know it sounds crazy that I just believed him like that, but there was something about him that felt like he was my Dad. My mother said “yes.”
So we moved to the North Pole.
It was a long process to move there, but we did it.
And my family was reunited once again.