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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/action/view/entry_id/837015
by Lani
Rated: 18+ · Book · Personal · #1455359
My musings, my rambles and I welcome you.
#837015 added December 24, 2014 at 10:01pm
Restrictions: None
Santa's Boy
Prompt: What is your favorite Christmas story to tell on Christmas Eve? If you don't have a favorite Christmas story write Christmas story.

What was he doing behind Santa's sleigh? And heading toward North America, how did that happen, wondered Ronald. Assembling the team was one of his Christmas Eve chores. His ears twitched with worry when he saw his mother enter the hanger instead of Santa.

“Ronnie, your Dad is ill and can’t fly tonight. Doctors orders.”

“Can’t fly?  It’s Christmas Eve.”

“I know son, and all those children counting on us, on you. Here’s your dad’s ring. Wear it in his honor.”

“In his honor? How sick is he? Is he going to die? Can I see him? I thought he, we were immortals.”

“Calm down Ronnie. The doctor just wants him to rest. As to being immortal, maybe he doesn’t need to be with all his sons now in place. Finish up so you can get started. I know you are going to make us both proud.” She opened her arms for a hug.

He wasn’t so sure of that, but hugged his mom anyway. When she broke the hold, he could see the worry lines on her face. I don’t know whether I’m the cause of those or Dad and I not sure what I hope the answer is, thought Ronald. As his mom left the hanger, he heard


Ronald looked down to see the elf assigned as his crew chief.

“Could we go over your final checklists now?”

“Sure. Let me find the clipboards. I’m sure they’re here somewhere.”


Ronald hoped that the reindeer knew where they were going. And that the elves assigned to help him couldn't see how his hands shook holding the reins. It was one thing to ride with Dad these past 90 years, but to actually take the route made Ronald's hands shake harder. Fortunately, it was only the North American route he had to cover. His brothers were already covering their own well established territories. Michael was Father Christmas in Great Britain, Joel, Pere Noel in France, Herman, Christindl in Germany and so on. They promised to help if Ronald got behind. He needed to do this on his own if only to prove he was more than the only screw-up in a large prefect family.

Christmas just wasn’t Christmas without a good naturally brotherly ribbing about his latest mishap.  Like the time he was very young, just 30, and took the reindeer for a joy ride while Dad was putting toys under a child’s tree. Ronald nearly fell out of the sleigh when his dad appeared behind him. Or the time the he was in charge of the flying team. He started them on a new and improved feed corn days before Christmas. Unfortunately, the feed didn’t agree with the reindeer and the secondary team had to be used. The team, composed of a motley crew of retired veterans and tyros, made for a wild ride that year. The jokes seemed never ending especially from his brothers. 

Every year he got better at the route, but Ronald dreaded the day his dad would hand over the reins. Last year, he forgot the Naughty and Nice list.

“I thought that was the elves’ job.”

“It’s your job to oversee the operation,” Ronald saw the disappointment in his father’s eyes.


"Okay Santa, here we are at the first house," said Dash bringing Ronald back to the present.

"Don't call me that. That's Dad's name!"

The elf looked up from the list that he held. "Santa is the office. Kris is your Dad's name as in Kris Kringle."

"Tonight you are Santa, Ronald. Don't worry. We'll help and after the first house it gets easier." said Dot who was loading the knapsack.

"Look, guys. I've ridden with Dad lots of times, but I don't know all of this really works. When I would ask, he just said magic. How do I go down the chimneys and get back up without being seen? How do I know what to leave? What about alarms? What if someone sees me? "Ronald's words came out in a rush.

The elves looked at each other concerned and then turned to Ronald. Dash, the more experienced elf, asked," Did your Dad give you a ring tonight? It has a star on it."

"Actually Mom gave it to me. She said to wear it tonight in honor of Dad." He held out his right hand and the elves saw a large ring with a bright green stone that shined like as a star.

Both elves let out a sigh of relief.

"It's alright then," said Dash. "The ring is the source of Santa's magic. It was given to him by Mother Nature when he took office. Transports you from the roof to the Christmas tree. Going down chimneys is a myth. Makes you invisible when you need to be. Lets you walk through wall. "

"Although, some children, who are true believers, will see through the invisibility." said Dot.”I got your knapsack packed. Ready for your first house?"

"As ready as I can be. How do you start this thing?" Ronald said nodding toward the ring.

"Uh...I don't know," said Dot. "Dash?"

"We're just the delivery boys, not Santa. He never told you in all those ride?"

Ronald thought about it. Santa always twisted the ring and smiled and disappeared before his eyes.

"Maybe he thinks about getting by the tree after he twists the ring." he told the elves.

"Try it now. We're running behind," urged Dash.

Ronald gave the ring a nervous twist and put on a tight smile and disappeared. The Christmas tree glowed with a familiar light.

"Ronald! What in the Name of Mother Nature are you doing back here!" thundered Santa. Sitting in his favorite chair by the fire, he looked anything but sick. Ronald was too surprised to be in his own home to notice.

"Dad! I twisted the ring, smiled and ended up back here! he cried. "I don't know what happened."

"Did you say the child's name?" his dad asked.

"I didn't know that part of it." Ronald said lowering his eyes.

"It's okay son. My fault. I forgot to tell you and the elves. Just say the name of the child or the place where you want to be after twisting the ring. Now say sleigh and get out here!"

Still in a bit of shock, Ronald did what he was told and found himself on the same roof with Dash and Dot.

"Well let’s get this show on the road." said Ronald to the relieved elves. "I need the name of the child we are visiting tonight."

"Shondra Marks, Santa." promptly replied Dash keeper of the list.

"Okay, here we go," said Ronald as he twisted his ring then whispered the name. His smile was weak, but a small twinkle lit his eyes. With hardly time to finish whispering her name, he appeared next to Shondra's tree. Unloading the gifts turned out to be easy as Dot had only put into the knapsack what he needed. It all took less time than he expected. Before he could say Hot Chocolate, he was on to the next house.

And so it went. Ronald popped into a house by the Christmas tree, delivered the presents, ate a cookie, drank some milk and popped back up to the sled for the next house.

"Santa, I wrote a list, but I don't want anything on it now." said a teary girl named Katelyn. "My daddy is out of work and needs a job. Can you get him a job? Please. He works on car and trucks. Daddy says you can't help us, but I know you can." Her face was resolute.

Surprised, Ronald dropped his bag when the little girl spoke to him. He listened to the girl talk and tried to think of a solution. Maybe Dad can help her later," mused Ronald. "I'll do what I can,” he said gently.  "Now it’s time to get into bed."

“Hey Dash, what does Dad do when a child asks for something in the middle of the night?” Ronald inquired after he got back to the sleigh.

“I suppose it depends on what the child wants. If it’s a toy, we try to accommodate them. If it’s something like world peace, well that’s something humans have to work out themselves.”

“And if it’s a job for a parent?”

“I’m not sure, but he always seems to know what to do.”

Ronald sighed. That answer wasn’t much help. He didn’t have the experience yet for this job.

As the night went on, Ronald grew more confident. He was in and out most homes almost at his Dad’s speed according to the elves. Dogs either ignored him or shared his plate of cookies. They seem to realize he was not there to rob the house. He talked to two more children who waited up for him, but their requests were not as serious as Katelyn’s. She remained on his mind for the rest of the trip.

“This is the last house here, and then we move onto California,” said Dot the navigator. “It should be easier there. Not so many children believe in Santa in that state.”

“Seems sad,” said Ronald before he disappeared.

When he arrived at the Christmas tree, he found a weary father was putting together a bicycle.

"I'm so tired from all the overtime at the shop.  Now it’s Christmas Eve and I'm seeing things," mumbled a bleary-eyed father.

By now Ronald had better idea of how his ring worked. He twisted it and whispered fix bicycle. The tired father jumped back as the bike assembled itself.

"Hey Santa, you wouldn't happen to have an auto mechanic in your bag would you? My shop is overflowing with work and no competent help," said the tired dad.

Ronald smiled and melted before his surprised eyes. The dad would find a note in his stocking with the phone number of Katelyn’s dad.

The first fingers of dawn were lighting the sky when Ronald turned the sleight North. Dot and Dash exhausted from the night labors, snored in the back seat.

Finished on time without my brother's help, Ronald thought. And Dad will have a new story to tell. I really surprised him at the fireplace. But Dad didn’t tell stories, he continued his musings. The elves told the stories and his brothers made the jokes especially his eldest brothers Herman and Nick who covered Turkey and parts of the Middle East. Dad made them stop the reindeer poop jokes after the feed corn disaster. And he insisted I continue to ride with him, even during my rebellious 30’s.  Dad has always been on my side, Ronald marveled.

“Getting sick on Christmas Eve my asteroid! Pushing me out of the nest is more Dad's speed. I can't wait to thank him." Ronald’s grateful laugh woke the elves as they were making the final turn toward home.

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