Tuesday, 18 December 2018

Time for a Weird Christmas Story

As some of you may know, I have started writing.  Actually, that's not quite accurate.  I have always been a writer - a lot of my writing was technical or corporate and, of course, there's this blog.  I have written a lot of travel journals, a bit of poetry, and a variety of other projects.  But in the last couple of months I have started submitting some of my writing to various publications and entering a few contests.  Well, yesterday I received an Honorable Mention for a flash fiction story I wrote for the Weird Christmas Annual Flash Fiction contest.  My story was one of 12 selected from about 200 entries. You are welcome to click on the link at https://weirdchristmas.com to read or hear my story.  Weird Christmas read out the winning stories on their WC#14 podcast.  I was invited to record my story which they included in the podcast at about 04:20 minutes in.  Here's my story for your reading enjoyment:

Christmas Wishes

by Angelle McDougall

For the last three years Mike and Cindy have received a special gift from a mysterious source.  The first year it happened they had decorated their tree just like always.  Upon closing the box of ornaments, they noticed a small item inside.

“It’s just like the watering can we have outside.” Cindy showed it to Mike.

They were delighted with how sweet it looked dangling from the tree.  In the Spring they realized the real watering can was missing, but figured it was somewhere in the barn.   

The following Christmas, the box held an exact miniature of the scarecrow in their corn field.

“Look, his tie is exactly like Mr. Bojangles’s,” said Mike.  “I wonder who’s leaving these for us?”

Cindy shrugged. “I dunno, maybe your brother?  It sounds like something he’d do.”  Mike agreed, and they spent the rest of the evening on the sofa snuggling and dreaming about Christmas.  When the scarecrow couldn’t be found the following summer, they assumed the wind took it. 

Last year, they could hardly wait to see what their secret Santa had left them. 

“Omigosh, it’s the outhouse,” Cindy squealed.  Laughing, Mike took the ornament and put it on the tree with the other two.   It took two days for them to realize the real outhouse was no longer standing.  They couldn’t explain where it went, but it was old and rickety and needed to be taken down anyway. 

This year Mike and Cindy could barely contain their excitement.  Standing next to the bare tree, their eyes sparkling and with huge grins, they opened the box of ornaments.

“I can’t wait to see what we got this year,” said Cindy as they dug through the decorations.

“I’ve got it.” Mike held the item up to show Cindy.  As their eyes focussed on the ornament, their smiles faded.  Cindy’s mouth fell open.  Just then little Emma’s voice came over the baby monitor.  Mike dropped the replica and rushed up the stairs to the baby’s room.  Cindy picked up the perfectly crafted tiny wooden crib and clutched it to her breast.

Thanks to Craig Kringle at Weird Christmas for holding the contest.  It was great fun participating.