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A FRIEND FOR ALL TIME

by Richard L. Provencher  
2/05/2012 / Holidays


Colin awoke to sounds of someone moving around. His warm feet on a cold floor sent shivers along his spine. Daddys snores followed Colin downstairs. He was silent as a coyote. Werent children supposed to be in bed this late time of day?

Down the stairs he sneaked, steps creaking along the way. Now he heard a muffled HELLLPPP, from the living room. Someone was in trouble.

His wristwatch said showed 1 am. It was already Christmas morning!

Yikes! Something moved between stockings hung on the fireplace! Looking closer Colin could see two wiggling legs. A flashlight moon streamed through the window, showing two shiny black boots.

Could that be Santa stuck in our chimney? the boy dared to think.

A muffled Help me, captured his ears once again. Quick, pull me down. Colin grabbed one boot and tugged. No luck. He tried the other foot. No luck. Im going to get mom and dad, he said.

Dont leave me, the voice said from the chimney.

Are you Santa? Colin asked.

Yes. Yes. Hurry up, pull me down. So Colin put all his muscles to work. He placed both hands around one boot pulling with all his might. RIPPP! was loud in the quiet room. The same happened to the second boot. OhOh, Colin said, holding onto both torn soles.

HO. HO. HO, was a familiar sound. Youre a strong little fellow. The famous bearded face and red cheeks smiled at Colin.

You are Santa!

Yes, young fellow. And you know why Im here, he winked. Then Santa reached up in the fireplace and pulled down a bulging bag of toys. He began sorting nicely wrapped presents.

Colin helped too. Last Saturday Colin also helped with decorations for his familys beautiful balsam tree. It was fun. And Colin scotch-taped colorful Christmas cards to their doorjambs. That way they could show all the friends they had.

However, being with Santa Claus was more exciting!

Would you help me with a problem? Santa asked. I dont have a second pair of boots. As you can see my soles are ripped off. HO. HO. HO.

Maybe daddy has a pair, Colin quickly answered. Come upstairs and try some on.

You go ahead and get them. I have work to do, Santa said.

Colin climbed the stairs, avoiding every wooden creak, then into his parents closet. This pair should do, he whispered. Whew, no one woke up when Colin dropped a shoe. It clunked noisily on the floor. Back down the stairs for the little boy.

OhOh Santa said. Wrong color, I need black ones.

The next time Colin brought daddys slippers without the backs. But they kept falling off Santas feet when he walked. Finally Colin found a pair of black leather shoes. But they were too tight. Colins cat meowed each time he came by, waking her up.

What are we going to do? the boy asked. He was sorry he had wrecked Santas boots. Besides, it was tiring going up and down stairs.

Suddenly, a thought danced in Colins head.

Daddys basement workshop had just what he needed. Some duct tape and black model paint should fix Santas boots. And it did. Santa proudly lifted each foot, after the repairs were completed. Just like presents from a little boy.

Now Colin could barely stop looking at the tree. Presents in all shapes and sizes lay under its bottom branches. Did you get my list? Colin asked shyly.

HO. HO. HO. I sure did, Santa answered.

You really brought me an IPOD and a Lego motorized motorcycle? Colin excited asked. And a Game Boy and Snowboard too?

HO. HO. HO. Not so fast, jolly St. Nick answered. Youll find out, after you get back to sleep. Now I have to go. Boys and girls all over are waiting.

Dont forget my carrots for your reindeer, Colin said. And peanut butter cookies for you, Santa.

Yummy, Santa said, patting his tummy as he munched one. HO. HO. HO. You will always be my special friend, he said.

Forever? the boy asked.

Yes, indeed. Now give me a push up the chimney.

Colin was proud to see Santas black boots looking good as new. Duct tape wrapped around the soles, and joined to the leather. Daddys black model paint was a perfect match.

HO. HO. HO sounds floated down the chimney. And anxious Reindeer hoofs readied for their next house visit.

Bye Santa, was no more than a whisper from a little boy. It was his promise to always try and be a good boy. Then, quick as a reindeer Collin hurried up the stairs. He charged past mommy and daddys room then dived into bed. Colin almost landed on top of Whiskers, his cat.

Opening presents later should be a blast. But it had already turned into Colins best Christmas ever.

* * *
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Richard & Esther Provencher

Richard enjoys writing poems; many of which have been published in Print and Online. He and his wife, Esther are also co-authors of stories and a print novel. They are "born again" Christians and very busy in their church, Abundant Life Victory International, in Bible Hill, Nova Scotia.

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