First Meeting

I won't lie to you

Merry Christmas. May your day be wonderful and filled with people and things you love. Here’s a bit of holiday flash fiction to brighten your day.

I was incessantly jostled as Mother’s horse loped along. Her arm kept me on the saddle. My eyes drooped and, I wished for bed as the snow-covered scenery slipped past.

Trees creaked as Mother lifted me from the saddle. She sat in the snow still holding me. Her cheek was warm next to mine.

I leaned against her, matching my breathing to hers. We waited. I had no idea for what.

My lean turned into a slump as a shadow passed over us. My mothers voice rumbled in my ear as she tried to shake me. “Wake up, sweetie. He’s here.”

I meant to ask who, but the words wouldn’t come. Instead, I snuggled closer ignoring the lights dancing beyond my eyelids.

“Oh, it’s fine, Aliza.” The voice had a body shaking laugh at its core. I felt a blanket tucked about me.

“But she’s nine this year.”

“And exhausted.” Fur tickled my nose. Mother’s coats didn’t have fur. “Next year.”

My eyes fluttered at the hand on my cheek. The hand was large and gentle. His face was in shadow, but he smiled. When I smiled back, he had already turned away.

“And that’s how I met Santa,” I said.

The wee ones looked at me, eyes large. Wanting to believe, hesitating. “That didn’t happen,” the oldest proclaimed. Crossing his arms, he rose and skulked away. Most followed him.

“I wouldn’t lie,” I whispered to the remaining and ran my fingers over the red blanket on my lap.

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