So, having finished the Secret Project (a Christmas present for someone who hasn’t yet had the chance to read it through in full, so it’s remaining shrouded in mystery for now) I thought I’d do some Christmassy short stories. And then I realised that a) Christmas is not technically my winter festival and b) I was a bit Christmassed out after working on the Secret Project for a month solid. So, instead, have a less religious story (it’s very short, but I hope it’s sweet enough to make up for it).
For the Sun
by Eleanor Musgrove
“Mama,” the little child asked, “can we get the sun a present this year?”
“The sun?” his mother replied, astonished. “Why do you want to get the sun a present, sweetie?”
“Well, because it’s warm and bright and nice and I don’t want it to go away.”
“It won’t go away, baby. The sun’s always here.”
“No it’s not. It gets sad in the winter because everyone’s always thinking about snow and cold and they don’t think how nice and warm the sun makes things. So it stays in bed for ages and only pops out now and then to say hello.”
“Really,” his mother asked, “and how would a present help?”
“To let the sun know we love it really,” he explained patiently, “and snow is nice but so is being warm and lovely.”
His mother thought about that for a moment.
“Then what about summer, when it gets so hot you can hardly move?”
“Well, the sun’s birthday is in spring, isn’t it, so it’s happy and then it realises we all forgot to give it a present. And it gets a bit sad, like when a baby wants cuddles and it doesn’t get them. And then it gets angry because we forget its birthday every year, so it gets hotter and hotter. Anger is a hot feeling. And it can’t sleep, so the days get longer.”
“And then in autumn?”
“Well, in autumn it realises it might have been throwing a bit of a big tantrum, so it calms down again. And then we start talking about snow and it feels like we don’t love it and it gets sad.”
“Hmm.” His mother thought about this for a long while. “You may be right. How thoughtful of you to consider the sun’s feelings. But do you know what might cheer the sun up more than a present?” The little boy shook his head, eyes wide. What could be better than a present? “A party,” his mother told him, “and we’ll invite all the people we know. We’ll eat lots of food and we’ll celebrate the whole year the sun has given us, just for one day. And the sun can look down and see it and know that we care, so it can start feeling a bit better.”
“Will the days get long if the sun feels better?”
“Maybe, over time. When you feel sad, or you have a cold, it takes a while for you to be better too. The sun might take a little while to feel better. But it’ll start.”
The little child considered this for a moment.
“Let’s throw a big party. Can we do a birthday party, too, in spring?” His mother smiled.
“Of course, my generous boy. And the sun will know to always come back.”