The Perfect Christmas
Telecte was a small white Kacheek. Christmas meant everything to her.
On this particular day, Christmas was nearing in Altador. Snow was falling, trees were sparkling, and the festivity of the holidays was in the air. Telecte had been out shopping for decorations with Dani, her owner, and several siblings. Yes, their family was very large, but that just made everything more fun! Telecte was dressed up in Christmas clothing, trudging through the thick blanket of white as their lovely neohome came into view.
Usually, every neopet in the household would be working hard to get gifts for one another. But Telecte had bigger plans for herself. She had saved up all her neopoints and shipped them to Terror Mountain a few days ago for a huge pine tree that she would put in the yard and decorate herself, to surprise everyone, with the help of her trusty white faellie, Blizzard. She was so excited; it would be the perfect Christmas, and that was all she wanted for her present.
As the group set foot in the neohome and hung up their coats and took of their boots, Telecte couldn't help but smile. It was like a whole other Neopian land in here. The neovision buzzed with the sound of some classic Christmas Tale, all Telecte's siblings and their petpets laughed and talked, and the smell of gingerbread warmed the air. It would all be perfect once the decorations were set.
Telecte left the living room, passing through the family room and finally arriving at the kitchen where there was only one neopet, baking the gingerbread. It was Thunolt, an electric Gnorbu, who you could guess was the cook of the family. "Mmm, mind if I sample?" Telecte asked excitedly, reaching for one of the fresh-baked cookies.
Thunolt slapped her paw. "Don't! Those are the snacks for while we decorate the neohome. You can 'sample' one then."
Telecte giggled. Thunolt was very serious about his cooking.
"Everyone, come here please!" Dani called from the family room.
Telecte slid across the kitchen floor to the next room with Thunolt right behind her. The entire family was gathering, barely leaving any walking space in the room.
"It's time to decorate the house for the holidays, loves! I need to run out to the safety deposit box and get the tree, so start decorating while I'm gone! Don't forget to decorate the outside! Char, light the fireplaces here and in the dining room. Thanks, hon." Charolio, or Char, was a fire Gnorbu. Dani leapt down from the chair she had been standing on and dashed to the kitchen door into the snow of Altador.
Telecte sat down on one of the green sofas as she waited for the neopets to clear the room, decorations in hand. Once the excitement died down, and only some neopets remained in the room to decorate, she got up to look at the remaining decorations. The smaller Christmas tree and all of its ornaments remained in the box. Scooping it up, she headed back through the kitchen and to the dining room.
A plate of gingerbread cookies was on the table and a fire was burning in the fireplace. Some of her siblings were in the room, hanging up garland, setting out Christmas centerpieces and doing whatever else they needed to to decorate.
It didn't take long for Telecte to find the perfect place for the smaller Christmas tree, barely taller than her, and get the ornaments on it. She dashed outside to help put up decorations on the tall stone home.
Soon after, everyone was outside in the cold snow as it continued falling from the clouds. They admired from a few yards away: the lights glittering in all colors of the rainbow, wreaths and lighted raindorfs; it was perfect. Telecte loved neohomes that were thickly decorated for the holidays. She looked to one side and then the other, looking at the decorating the neighbors had done.
Dani carefully struggled to drag the tree, and a few neopets rushed to go help her. The entire family tried to squeeze back in through the living room door. A fire was roaring in the family room, as they all set up the tree, adding lights and garland as a petpet would occasionally attempt to add an ornament as high as they could. A fresh tray of gingerbread cookies and some mugs of hot chocolate arrived on the coffee table, announcing Thunolt's arrival as he helped finish off decorating the tree.
The night died down with half of the family in the family room, admiring the tree and cuddling their petpets, and the other half in the living room watching classic Christmas shows on the neovision. Telecte yawned and grabbed Blizzard, heading off to her room, which was one of the few downstairs. With Christmas only a few days away, she didn't want it to end.
* * *
It was Christmas Eve in the dining room, as the large family eagerly waited Thunolt to present his special dinner. He was going to make an even better one for tomorrow night! Telecte sat by her friends at the table, chatting. Finally, Dani and Thunolt appeared in the kitchen doorway with a large Turkey. Next came batches of potatoes, garlic bread, and veggies. "My Christmas gift to you all!" Thunolt called happily, then everyone ate it up.
Telecte and Blizzard planted themselves outside the front door, awaiting the large tree. Time was running low. Tomorrow was Christmas day, and the yard was still bare of any huge pine tree.
Soon, the sky was dark, and snow began to fall. Telecte felt like she was frozen to the spot. Loyal little Blizzard was still with her, shivering.
The door cracked open, and Dani appeared. "Come on, Telecte. It's Christmas Eve. I'm letting everyone open their gifts from me tonight, then it's off to bed."
Telecte shook her head, looking back into the distance.
"Don't tell me you're looking for Santa Kaus, Tellie." Dani laughed, squatting down to hug the little Kacheek.
"No," Telecte replied, shivering. She bent down to whisper to Blizzard, "It will come overnight, I bet. After present opening tomorrow morning we can peek outside and everyone can decorate it with us!" She then followed Dani inside the neohome to see what great piece of clothing her owner had gotten her.
* * *
Telecte helped to clean up the wrapping paper from around the Christmas tree that morning. She was content with the presents she had gotten; now it was time to show hers.
She dashed into the living room and opened the door. No tree. She ran around the side of the neohome through the snow, finding no tree yet again. Blizzard flew around her head. A couple tears fell down her cheeks, leading to sobbing.
Dani dashed out of the kitchen door. "Telecte, what's wrong?! Didn't you get everything you wanted from Santa Kaus?" she asked, wiping the tears off of Telecte's face.
"It's not that," Telecte sobbed hopelessly. "My gift to everyone never came."
Dani tilted her head to one side. "What happened?"
"I was going to get this huge pine tree from Terror Mountain. I know we have a fake one inside the neohome... but I wanted a REAL one for outside, and they don't grow in Altador. So I shipped all my neopoints to someone who said they would send me a tree in return. I never got the tree." Telecte wiped her face, sniffling.
Dani sighed. "Telecte, you fell for a scam. NEVER give neopoints to ANYONE who says they will give you an item in return unless we're on vacation in Mystery Island and you're using the trading post," she scolded, looking down on Telecte.
The little Kacheek let tears run down her cheeks again. "I just wanted to have a perfect Christmas," she cried. Dani held Telecte close to her.
"Right now, any normal Neopian would be giving a speech about how Christmas isn't about the presents, the decorations, or the trees. That it's about family. But you already know that, so I don't know what to say," Dani murmured, helping Telecte up out of the snow.
Telecte didn't look at her as they opened the kitchen door. The entire family was crammed in the kitchen. "Merry Christmas, Telecte!" they all shouted.
"You gave me exactly the present I was hoping for!"
"You write the BEST Christmas carols I have ever heard!"
"You made this the perfect Christmas!"
Dani smiled, and looked down at Telecte. "I told you it was about family," she whispered, hugging Telecte.
"Merry Christmas, Dani."
Have a Merry Christmas, Neopia! And a Happy New Year!:D