I was in the mood to write out a short Christmas story for the season.
(Because I LOVE
I hope you'll enjoy it as I try to get it all written and posted before Christmas arrives.
It was the year 2013 in Aurora Skies, Simsland during the coldest holiday season the town had ever experienced.
With inversion setting in a few days at a time.
The many glistening waterfalls that showered into the great lake from the hills above were frozen solid, resting upon the frozen lake itself.
However this bitter cold year wasn't enough to dispel the warmth that came from the spirit of the season. That brightly burning spirit found its way into each and every resident's heart from the ever kind, caring, and influential personality of one named Miriam Day.
One resident's heart in particular was forever changed that Christmas for the better.
No one ever expected such a timeless Christmas tale to actually happen in real life. In the 21st century even! But it did...and the heartwarming story continues to be told each and every Christmas in Aurora Skies to this very day.
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Miriam Day was one of the happiest women around, coming from the most humble of families, and certainly the most festive person around when it came to Christmas the town residents seem to notice. In fact ever since her arrival to Aurora Skies almost 2 years ago, she teamed up with city council to make her first Christmas in the area a joyous one. (Because Christmas was her favorite
holiday of them all!) That meant encouraging the city to lavishly decorate public buildings and the parks, with strings of multi-colored lights and tinsel garland dressing the trees. Soon the local businesses followed suit, turning their buildings into glowing shops you'd be sure to find in Christmas Town itself. The spirit carried on to a few residents as well who started hanging up holiday house lights and wreaths in the windows for the first time in years.
No one really knows what caused the spirit of Christmas to dwindle in Aurora Skies over the years, but it seemed the lovely Miriam Day was the one destined to bring it back. Many were grateful for her spirit, others didn't seem to care. Either way, Miriam continued to strive to make a difference in this town that had become her new home.
Desiring to start a new chapter in her life after graduating from college, Miriam moved from Appaloosa Plains to the mysterious small town of Aurora Skies. Something about the place drew her to it and she hadn't quite figured out why. She figured she would've found out by now.
At the time she'd met up with three roommates looking for another roommate to help pay the rent and they all instantly fell in love with Miriam. One of the male roommates in particular, Ciro Perry, was smitten with her at first sight, but in the past almost 2 years he was always too nervous to pursue a relationship, fearing Miriam only viewed him as a friend. Which...was partly true. The two were comfortable in their friendship and didn't want anything to threaten it, especially if they pursued a courtship at the wrong time. This mutual feeling hadn't been talked about one to the other yet. As for their other roommate friends, Angelica Diamond and Pedro Herrerra, Miriam and Ciro couldn't be sure if they had stronger feelings for each other too or not. All that mattered is that every one of them were good friends, who clicked instantly, and rarely did they ever fight or disagree on much; which is a lot to say about four people all coming from different backgrounds living under the same roof! They were just having the time of their lives being single, 20 year olds, each trying to figure out their own individual destinies.
The day after Thanksgiving was the day Miriam pulled out all her Christmas boxes, overflowing with decorations, down from the attic. One box included a few items Ciro, Angelica, and Pedro collected over the years and she was sure to bring that one down as well.
"Oh boy," Pedro sighed, addressing Angelica, "and so the Christmas season officially begins in our house."
Angelica laughed. "And next thing we know the whole TOWN will be just as decorated as our place!"
As much as her roommates liked to tease Miriam about her obsession with decorating for the Holidays, Miriam knew they loved and appreciated her decorations. It brought a special love and warmth to the house that every person needs this time of year.
It only took 2 hours for her to get two decorated Christmas trees put up, one in the dining room and of course the main one in the living room, and all the other decorations. Including stringing a few lights around the outside pine trees.
"That's a new record!" Miriam whispered joyfully to herself. When all was said and done she blew a kiss toward the tree. "It is finished. Oh Christmas tree, you are indeed beautiful!
And within seconds she was on the phone with one of the city council members making plans for the decorating of the Festival Grounds.
That evening, the house was out of some essential food items so Miriam offered to run to the grocery store to pick them up. Normally she would've gotten a ride there from Ciro, the only one who owned a car, but since he was working she called for a taxi. She rushed out so quickly when the taxi arrived that she forgot about grabbing her coat. She'd been known to forget small things like that.
Once she finished shopping, the sun had gone down a few minutes prior so the temperature outside dropped significantly. As she waited outside for the taxi, which was supposed to have arrived already, shivering, she said to herself, "Man, I really should've brought my coat."
"Ya think!?" a gruff voice grumbled from behind her. "How stupid do you have to be to forget your coat in this weather? Especially when wearing a shirt like that!"
Miriam rolled her eyes. That voice could only have come from one
"Shut up!" another woman from behind her curtly responded to the man. But the man ignored her, continuing to grumble as he went on his way. "Don't let what that je'rk said bother you Miriam. It isn't always possible to 'dodge the Hodge.'"
Miriam smiled back at the woman appreciatively just as the taxi arrived.
Once inside she let out a giant sigh and thought about that gruff man whom everyone in town knew very well and dubbed during this time of year, "Scrooge McHodge."
No one knew his first name, and no one cared to, but it seemed obvious to Miriam that his last name was Hodge based on the names the locals had given him. He resided in the old abandoned warehouse in the woods near the lake, alone, after single-handedly evicting the town criminals from their hideout. She heard he'd been living there for at least a decade, living off the land and by the sweat of his brow, and then being a "scrooge" to every person he came in contact with whenever he had
to go to the town for something.
It seemed so cliché to have an actual Mr. Scrooge in town, but this guy was the epitome of the fictional character if there ever was one. He certainly earned the Scrooge name over the years and was clearly proud of it. With so many rumors flying around about him it was hard to tell which ones were true and most likely no one would ever find out the real truth. A definite truth was that he hated
Christmas and everything about it! He never hesitated to make that known to the public this time of year and Miriam witnessed it a few times last year.
On a couple of occasions some carolers from the local church would sing outside a few businesses and at the Festival Grounds. Once "Scrooge McHodge" appeared on the scene he'd start yelling at them to "Shut up" and then proceed to say terrible things about the songs. Another time he was caught ripping off some of the lights and garland from the trees in the park, to which Miriam gladly volunteered to put back up. One morning he got out his megaphone, stood in front of City Hall on a wooden box, and began protesting against Christmas and everything about it. It became quite obvious that he was dead drunk and was soon removed from the premises. He was just an all around grumpy guy who obviously hated the world and everyone in it. It's like he was on a mission to make everyone's life just as miserable as his own.
It just didn't any make sense...especially to someone as sweet and caring about others as Miriam. Truly, no one is born that
What could possibly have gone wrong in that man's life to make him hate everyone and everything? Especially...Christmas!
she thought. There had to be a reason.
She couldn't figure out why it was suddenly eating at her, but...she was determined to find out.
The last day of November brought with it a great snowfall, which blanketed the town in a bright and glittering white powder.
A winter wonderland it had quickly become.
Inside, Miriam and her roommates stayed cozy and warm, conversing on the sofas that sat not too far from the Christmas tree. It was so toasty inside, and so cold outside, that the windows fogged up a bit.
For the most part Miriam sat quietly, lost in her thoughts and nibbling at her index fingernail, while the others carried on in pleasant conversation about past vacations they went on with their families.
When there was an open opportunity to speak, Miriam finally did.
"So what's the deal with 'Scrooge McHodge?'" she frankly asked them.
Her three friends instantly met her gaze with bugged out eyes.
"Whaaaat about him?" Pedro bravely asked.
"Do any of you have any thoughts as to why he's such a grouch?" she asked.
The three friends shot questioning glances at each other, before Angelica replied. "Honestly, I've never entertained any thoughts about that man because he's an awful human being and I don't need that kind of negativity in my life!"
The two boys nodded their heads in strong agreement.
"I get that," Miriam said, "but...why does he live alone in the abandoned warehouse again? I mean, how did he end up there?"
"I heard," Ciro chimed in, "that his wife left him, took the kids, and everything else in the divorce so that's why he was left poor and destitute to where the only shelter for him was the warehouse."
Miriam raised an eyebrow. That certainly seemed like a realistic happening and reason for his behavior. Definitely one that would drive a man to hate people and not trust them anymore.
"No," Pedro countered, "I heard that his family died in a house fire while he was out of town...and it happened just a few days before Christmas! That's why he hates Christmas!"
Miriam nodded at that possibility too.
"No way!" Angelica countered. "Who spread that rumor because I've never heard it and I know ALL of the town gossip!" She grinned with pride.
Miriam and Ciro just shook their heads with a chuckle.
"I have heard Ciro's story," she went on, "but...I think the real
thing that happened is he caught his wife cheating on him so he
"Who in town is his ex-wife then?" Ciro asked, resting his arm on the back of the sofa.
"It didn't happen here
you punk. He's not originally from around here. He arrived here after leaving her and decided to settle in the warehouse because he had no money to stay elsewhere."
"Yeah right," Pedro muttered under his breath.
"Ok!" Miriam stopped them abruptly. "So...no one
in this town has gone out of their way to get to know this guy and find out what really happened?"
"H*** no Miriam!" Angelica cried. "You've seen how he treats everyone! He clearly doesn't want any friends. And everyone knows he owns a few shotguns and wouldn't hesitate using them if someone came onto his 'precious' property!" She said with a look of disgust.
"Yeah I think he said as much once," Pedro added.
"You know," Miriam paused. "It sounds to me like this man's story has made its way so many times through the grapevine that nothing about him can be deemed as fact anymore." Her friends sat in silence, not knowing what to say as that truth sank in. "And it also seems to me," she went on, "that the people in this town have been going about in the wrong way dealing with this grouchy man who continually disturbs the peace." Now she had her friend's undivided attention, curious as to what she was getting at.
"It's Christmastime," she said, "if anyone needs some light and positivity in their life, some Christmas cheer
in their life, it's him! No matter how much he shuns it. Heck, I think he just needs someone to actually care about him. It's the only
way to cure his attitude and turn him into a decent human being again."
"Like the whole 'kill 'em with kindness' thing?" Pedro asked.
"Kind of, but it goes deeper than that."
Ciro looked away, having a sneaking suspicion of what his crush had in mind to do.
"So...what are you saying Miriam?" Angelica asked with reservation.
Miriam smiled brightly.
"I'm going to show him what's been missing in his life and will use the Christmas season to do it!"
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So, what do y'all think so far?
I know it sounds like one of those typical Christmas stories, but trust me, it turns into so much more.