All I want for Christmas...

Submitted into Contest #21 in response to: Write a short story about a work Christmas party that goes... awry. ... view prompt



“Father! Father!” a little boy called. He scampered his little feet across the hall and into his father’s office. Once he opened the door, he found no one but a string of holly, garland, and a beautiful deer statue and could only hear the distant tolling of Christmas bells. No sign of his dad anywhere inside.

He pouted and walked away. Before his tiny little toes could hit the ground once more, a massive red-figure snatched him up and whisked him away.

“Happy Birthday, Percy!” the figure exclaimed, swinging him around. 

“Father, there you are!” Percy pulled the man into a tight hug and excitedly walked to a stool. “It’s Christmas! It’s Christmas!”

“Not just Christmas, but also your 10th birthday!” The man rubbed his son’s golden brown hair and pinched his freckled face. 

“Daddy!” the boy groaned. 

“Sorry. Anyways! I have some extra special for you!”  

The boy smiled so brightly, it rivalled the Christmas lights on the tree beside him. “What is it?!”

The man handed him a present to which Percy immediately unwrapped. Instead of devices or candy as he’d come to expect, he found a little picture of himself as a baby in his dad’s arms. His father wore a red and white business suit with his name, Roy, plastered on his breast pocket.

“I don’t mean to be rude, but what is this?”

Roy sat on a chair opposite of Percy and gestured to his knee, calling Percy to sit on it. “It’s time I told you about someone special. Your mother.”

Ice crawled up Percy’s spine. “Mom? Didn’t you say that she died giving birth to me?”

Roy took off his Santa hat and wiped his eyes. “My boy, there is always more to a story than you expect. It all started one special little Christmas party in my office.”

I was severely depressed. I didn’t want to do anything new. Every day was an unspecial cycle. Go to work, do work, come home, repeat. Go to work, do work, come home, repeat. As you would expect, this life got lonely and cold. I didn’t have anyone to come home to nor anyone to leave home with. No one to share a blazing fire with. Just me on my for years.

People always viewed me as a loner but that couldn’t be further from the truth. All I really wanted was someone to love. A girlfriend, a wife, a son, a daughter, a boyfriend, or even a husband! Being alone grew tiring and I was done with shivering by myself in this apartment.

My office was throwing a work party in one of the more secluded branches, a facility located in the woods. It was a normal party with drinks, loud conversations, blaring music, and a massive crowd. AKA everything I hated condensed into a building I was forced to stay in for nine hours. Most of the time, I was drifting between the snack or drink table or by myself in the corner of the room. Even there it was just me on my own.

It all changed somewhere around midnight where things went awry. As I was heading down a flight of stairs to avoid everyone, I heard a loud crash coming from the downstairs kitchen. I raced down the cold and grey stairs and burst inside to see a basically naked woman crawling in from a broken window, raiding our cabinets and fridges for food! She had a loose cloak that covered most of her body. What wasn’t concealed by her cloak was covered by her long light brown hair. Once she made eye contact with me, she froze like a deer in headlights. 

“Hello?” I called out to her. “Are you okay?”

The woman started to scramble, knocking over some dishes and stepping on a piece of glass that made her stumble back in pain.

I ran over to her and turned on the lights and saw the most beautiful person I had ever seen. Her deep black eyes shimmered like evening stars and her pale white freckles contrasted her dark sandy skin.

“Are you okay?” I asked again.

The woman retracted, not saying anything but not running away either. It wasn’t until I looked down that I found out why. A small piece of glass was lodged in her foot and it was bleeding all over the floor.

“Do you need help with this?”

She nodded.

I hoisted her up to the counter and ran her foot under some cold water. Then I grabbed the first aid kit we kept on a wall and used it to pluck out the piece of glass and patch up the wound.

“There we are.”

The woman, still silent, touched my heart in some weird form of gratitude. 

“Um . . . you’re welcome, I guess! Do you mind telling me why you’re here like this in the middle of the forest? It’s the middle of winter and you’ll freeze to death out there.”

She shook her head and tried to go outside but I stopped her. 

“Where are you going? It’s too dangerous for you out there. At the very least take my jacket. My blazer is already warm enough for me.”

The woman accepted it and smiled at me before leaving alone, the cold air rushing in as she opened the door.

A few seconds later, I heard a scream radiating from outside. I rushed to examine the commotion and saw a group of five smokers chasing the woman into the woods.

“Who are you?!” a man with a gun pointed at her yelled. 

The woman froze again, unable to move.

“Whoa! Whoa! What’s going on?!” I stepped in front of the guy to calm him down. His icy breath reeked of alcohol and marijuana.

“I caught this girl trying to steal some food out of my truck.” He aimed his pistol at the woman again and she winced in fear but I intervened again.

“Hey! No need to be hasty!” I tried to lower the gun and calm him down. “You’re drunk and high so you need to calm down!” In the meantime, the woman was able to run out and into the woods.

He pushed me aside. “What does that have to do with anything, little corner boy. I could still aim like nobody’s business.”

“Wait! Don’t shoot!”


The shot radiated through the air and my entire body turned numb.

In my distress, a couple of other intoxicated people came by and picked me up off the ground. “Don’t worry, Roy. Bobby over here is as wasted as a teen boy’s used napkin. You don’t have anything to worry about.”

The small group walked away into the building but I stayed there staring into the forest. 

I had to make sure she was okay. 

After getting the first aid kit from the kitchen, I ran towards the same direction she was heading in hoping to find her. 

Before I could head in too deep, I stepped on an apple. Like one I would have seen back at the office. There were even more bits of food sprawled out in front of me. I followed the trail of food until it devolved into something worse. A trail of red.

“Oh no . . .” I didn’t want to believe it, so I kept running forward. 

Eventually, I came across a small White-Tailed Deer panting and dying in the snow. 

I took a sigh of relief and sat down next to the animal, stroking it in order to bring it comfort in its last moments of life.

“You’re in pain aren’t you? Well, it’s okay. You won’t have to suffer any longer. It’ll be okay.” I continued stroking the deer, its breath getting slower and calmer. 

And then voice trickled into my head.

“Thank you so much,” it said.

“Wh-who are you?” I asked the air.

“D . . . down here.”

I looked down to see the body of the deer start to glow until it transformed into the woman I saw from earlier. 

“Y-you! Ohmygodareyouokay?” I frantically pulled out the first aid kit in order to start to patch her up but I was too late. She was already dying from blood loss.

“T-Tamia,” she weakly said, “My name is . . . Tamia.”

“Well then stay with me, Tamia. I’ll bring you to a hospital and-”

She cut me off by grabbing my face. “I . . . I’ve never met a human-” she coughed up blood. “-like you before. You saw me and instead of hurting me. You . . . you helped me. Without question. Twice.”

I shushed her. “Don’t say anything. Save your strength.” I tried to call an ambulance but she grabbed my phone and vines wrapped around it. 

“It’s okay. I don’t mind it if I die like this.”

“But I do! I can’t just leave you to die!” 

Tamia giggled. “How sweet of you, Roy. But this death was foreseen. I was to find food for my son but I was always fated to die in the arms of a human. I just never expected my end to be this . . . peaceful.”

She said something about a child. A child she was about to leave because I couldn’t save her in time.

“I’ll take you to see him. You can see your child one more time! I promise.”

She weakly smiled at me and nodded her head. I grabbed her up bridal style and scanned the forest. Just as I was about to panic, a bright green line illuminated underneath the snow. 

So I followed it. I kept running and running across the line, ignoring the burning of my muscles in my arms and legs as Tamia grew colder and colder. 

Just a little bit more and you won’t be as alone as I am, Tamia. You’ll be okay! 

I burst into a clearing with a small cave shaped like a tiny palace. In it was a blazing fire and the cries of a baby. I walked inside with Tamia in hand as a bunch of other animals ranging from rabbit to bear walked in from across the forest to observe the dying woman. 

Once inside, I placed her on a bed of leaves and walked to a wooden crib next to a warm fire. A little baby was inside with hair as golden brown and freckles as snowy-white as Tamia’s. 

I cradled the little one in my hands and brought him to Tamia. 

“There’s my little Percival. Prince of this forest.”

I giggled as I clutched the little baby. He cooed and reached out to my finger, unafraid of who I was. 

Tamia cuddled her baby as hard as she could even though her gunshot wound was growing worse. “Thank you so much, Roy. You’ve been kind to me ever seen you met me.”

“Well, it is the holiday season.”

She laughed as her eyes fluttered shut. “Then I ask of this one thing.”

“Anything.” I gripped onto her hand as the warmth slowly faded from it. 

“Take care of my baby. Please. This is my gift to you. If you take care of him, you shall rule this forest as its king.”

“I don’t care about being king! I want to take care of him anyways! I promise you! No harm will fall on this baby as long as I live! I promise!”

She smiled. “Thank . . . you.” With those final words, her entire body went limp. 

Percival crawled all over her and clutched her lifeless face. “Mama?” he cried. Once he realized Tamia wasn’t coming back, he wailed a cry that echoed through the entire cave.

“Sh . . . it’s okay, little Percival. I’m here.” I clutched the baby tighter to soothe its cry but I could barely keep myself from crying too. I just let an innocent woman die because I failed to protect her.

Before I could think too much, baby Percival wiped my face.

“At the very least, I can save you,” I said.

I took outside the cave and back into the clearing where an entire troupe of deer, wolves, foxes, rabbits, and even bears, bowed before me. It was at that moment where baby Percival grabbed my face again and uttered one word that banished all coldness from my heart.


Roy wiped his eyes as Percy looked at him. “So that’s the story of mom?”

“Yes. It is.”

But then Percy giggled. “Oh come on now. I don’t believe that.”

“You don’t?”

“Nope! I’m not that naive, daddy. You expect me to believe that I’m the prince of the forest and that mom was a lady who could turn into a deer and that she gave me to you as some sort of Christmas present?”

Roy laughed through his frown. “Y-you’re right."

The boy laughed and kissed his dad on the cheek. "But it was a fun story! Thank you.” 

Percy hopped off and walked towards the door but not before a little white deer tail emerged from his back.


December 27, 2019 22:46

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