The flurries continue to fall slowly, piling up on the pavement. Carver was watching the snowflakes speed by the bus window on his way to school. Snowfall came unexpected this mid-December morning. This was one of Carver’s favorite days of the school year, since the students got to write letters to Santa with one gift they would like to receive this holiday season. In previous years, Carver has asked for things like a dinosaur, a drone that was striped like a tiger, and last year, in the fourth grade, he asked for a baby brother to play soccer with. So far, none of these letters to Santa came true and were never gifted to him on Christmas morning. Feeling like Santa had never listened to him or maybe even cared, Carver promised to be more realistic this year with his letter.
Jessica was running a few minutes late for work this morning, and she couldn’t afford to be late again. She had almost everything she needed to head out the door into the crisp December air except for her morning coffee. She stretched her hand out to grab her travel mug and found her arm brushing a brown paper bag; SHIT. Carver had forgotten his lunch. The school was only 5 min out-of-the-way to work, but Jessica had a morning meeting that was crucial for closing a deal with a potential client.
Carver had never been called to the principal’s office before. He knew cutting the line for the swings was a bad idea. Or maybe earlier today when he made Stephanie cry by telling her the letter to Santa was a waste of a wish, and she would never get a pink unicorn for Christmas. The principal’s office was nothing like Carver thought. It was smaller than he expected and had a bowl of sweets on the desk; not so scary at all. Principal Edwards began to tell Carver something that would alter his holidays for the rest of his life.
The snowfall had begun to pick up, making the roads almost invisible. Jessica was just two minutes away from Carver’s school but seeing as the roads hadn’t been treated the night before, she knew she should take them with caution. The wind began to roar slowly adding to treacherous ambiance outside. She counted the turns left until she was at Havenwood Elementary; one, two, three… Just around this last bend…
Suddenly, the principal’s office began to grow astronomically in size; the ceilings now seemed ten feet tall. Paralyzed with fear, Carver’s feet dangled from the chair, as the floor disappeared below him. Carver’s letter to Santa fell from his finger tips and sailed through the air, landing on the floor and opening to reveal this year’s “more practical” wish.
“Dear Mr. Santa,
I know I always ask for like hard things. So this year I’ll keep it easy. I want my mommy and me to be safe and happy this Christmas.
Love, Carver Daniels”
Another year, another letter to Santa not granted.