Sunday December 18th, 2011

The exercise:

With just a week to go until Christmas, I figure it's time to jolly things up around here. I haven't exactly decided on a theme yet, but my yearly countdown to the big day shall begin with: the elf.

Edit: now that I've finished today's writing, it's looking like I might be getting myself into another week-long story. We'll see where it ends up!

It hit plus ten degrees here today, so most of the snow has melted away again. The weather really can't seem to make up its mind.


"Have you seen Santa?" The question reached Miguel's ears immediately, seeing as Rosa had asked it from less than a foot away, but it took several seconds to work its way through all the thoughts tumbling through his mind.

"Isn't he in his office?" Miguel asked without looking up from his current project. The rocking horse for Emily in Boise was nearly complete, then he could move on to the train set for Jeremy in Toronto.

"No," Rosa replied, the worry in her voice bringing Miguel's hands to stillness. "And there's no note on his desk or anywhere that I could see."

"Mrs. Claus?"

"Locked up in the kitchens until Takeoff."

"Maybe he's checking up on Rudolph and his crew," Miguel said, not sounding like he believed it himself. "Have you checked the stables?"

"Not there either. Will you help me track him down?"

Miguel put the finishing touches on the wooden horse before placing his tools on the bench and rising up to his full height of two feet and seven inches. Looking down at his young coworker, he nodded once and they made their way out of the workshop without telling any of the other elves what was going on.


Greg said...

Christmas week would seem very seasonal and appropriate, I vote for it! Wait... I can't remember, is this blog a democracy yet?
So Santa's gone missing and the elves are hunting for him? Sounds like the makings of a mystery, definitely. I quite like Miguel, he seems like the helpful sort. My money's on Rosa being a serial killer though ;-)

The elf
"We might have a problem," said Santa, stepping out of his fat-suit. The jolly red-and-white suit hissed as hidden hydraulic actuators pushed air out of it and deflated it to a thin shell. When it was done Santa folded it up as neatly and compactly as a parachute and set it on the shelf with the seven others.
"Another problem?" Mrs. Claus poked her head around the door to the workshop. Behind Santa the faint limning of the wormhole was still visible.
"Take that mask off, Carl," said Santa. "This is serious. I think there's an Elf loose."
Mrs. Claus's head wobbled slightly and then lifted off, a young man with freckles and freshly-scrubbed skin appearing beneath it.
"I told you me need to sort out how many wormholes you're actually using," he said accusingly. "I told you the Elves have ways of finding and exploiting dimensional instabilities. I told –"
"Enough with the I told you sos! I get it, you told me. You still haven't told me how you know all this, though, Carl."
Carl twitched, and gave an atavistic shiver. "Another time," he muttered. "We've got an Elf loose now."
"I think. I think. I think we have an Elf loose."
"Yeah well, it won't look good if it gets in and eats a child for Christmas, will it? Although it wouldn't just stop at eating the children of course...."
"There goes the Coca-Cola sponsorship then," said Santa gloomily.

Anonymous said...

The Elf

I opened the xmas card which came in today’s mail.
Inside was a perfectly hand-crafted card, a collage of photographs...
A pair of dogs sporting reindeer ears;
ducks and chickens grazing on green summer grass;
a man in a Santa hat holding a tinny, captioned “cheers”;
a woman in a tiara of blue starlights blinking on and off, on and off, smiling her endless smile;
finally, a young toddler playing in the grass, standing on unsteady feet - the elf.
What a happy first xmas theirs is!

Cathryn Leigh said...

Inspired by my mother’s Grandmother’s Garden cards recently sent to us for Christmas. To explain, Grandmother’s Garden, is my mom’s dream of nature and the idea of the always listening, never judging, Grandmother, in her therapy sessions. Sometimes we don’t need Freudian analysis, but rather someone to listen and not judge. Sometimes we just need a sounding board to find our own way. I’m pretty sure that’s the sort of therapy she’d like to do. Anyway the idea spawned a though in my head and this prompt is giving me a good excuse to play with it.

The Elf
Noah sat under the rose bush sniffling. Didn’t any of the others realize what Grandmother Patricia’s death meant to them. The land would be sold and this garden, this last refuge for faeries and elves alike would be history. Obviously, none of them had ever dared to listen at the windows.
The little elf looked up and saw Tina hovering before him.
“You’re going to catch cold out here!” she chided. “It’s winter, for flower’s sake, come back down to the root of the oak.”
“But no one’s preparing!” he cried. “No one’s even listening to me! Grandmother Patricia’s gone and... and...” But his sniffles got the best of him and Noah had to stop talking.
Tina’s expression softened and the fairy flitted in sit by the elf.
“I know,” she said softly, her own emotions filtering through the words.
Noah stopped sniffling and looked at her.
She leaned in and whispered, “but I heard the land was bequeathed to Emily.”
“Emily?” Noah asked, a glimmer of hope sparked in his heart until his pessimism squelched it. “But does she still believe?”
Tina bit her lip. “I hope so,” she stated, “I really hope so...”

Marc said...

Greg - great, now you've planted the idea in my mind. But it's Christmas time and I'm not writing about a serial killer elf, damn it! :P

That is one sweet suit :D

And that's a fun twist on Mrs. Claus, too. I hope you're planning on continuing this!

Writebite - that sounds like a wonderful card to receive in the mail :)

Elor - those sound like very cool cards!

And 'for flower's sake' cracked me up, as I wasn't expecting that :D

Intriguing beginning. I'm hoping you carry on with this :)