Attack of the Sugar Plum Fairies
A Story for Demented Children
John H. Carroll
Published by John H. Carroll
Copyright 2011 John H. Carroll
Cover image Copyright 2011 John H. Carroll
Cover photography by Tracy Carroll
This story is dedicated to my Dad. The memory of him reading “The Night Before Christmas” to us kids every year is one that I have always cherished deep within my heart.
This story is not for normal children. If you have any intention of raising a well-adjusted child, this is not the right tale for you. This story is for kids who think the whole “Santa’s helpers” conspiracy is a government plot to spy on children.
In all seriousness: This is not a good story for most kids, especially not young ones. It could even give them nightmares. I mean it when I call it ‘a story for demented children’. “Winnie the Pooh” and “Amelia Bedelia” are excellent reads for sane children.
Light from tall streetlamps illuminated the snow that drifted lazily down to the cobblestones. “Wait here while I scout ahead,” Araedae the Sugar Plum Fairy whispered back to her two friends who had volunteered for the special mission with her.
“Be careful. Some of the elves might still be in the warehouses or walking along the streets,” Sydae warned while holding tightly to one of Araedae’s arms. She fixed her grey-blue eyes on Araedae’s silver ones. “I would just die if anything happened to you.”
“She’ll be fine,” Zannae reassured their friend. Her brilliant violet eyes sparkled in the light from the nearby streetlamp. Every Sugar Plum Fairy in the world had different color eyes with wings and hair to match. It wasn’t hard; there weren’t many of the rare type of fairy. “No elf would voluntarily be away from the sleigh loading ceremony.”
“True, they wouldn’t want to miss the spiked eggnog,” Sydae said derisively, causing the others to giggle. She shivered and wrapped her arms around herself. “Brr! It’s so cold up here. Why do we have to wear these ridiculous outfits at the North Pole?” Sydae stretched out a petite leg clad in candy-cane striped silk while scornfully gesturing up and down at a white tutu embroidered with poinsettias and candy canes. Silken gloves extending above her elbows matched the stockings, but provided no protection from the chill air. The whole effect was topped off with green lace and bows.
“It really is inappropriate for the children who have visions of us dancing while they sleep,” Zannae agreed with an emphatic nod.
“The children just have visions of sugar plums dancing, the sweet treats, not sugar plum fairies,” Araedae corrected.
“Not the naughty children,” Zannae pointed out.
“She has a point,” Sydae agreed with a grin.
Araedae rolled her eyes. “I’m going to scout ahead now. I’ll let you know if it’s clear.
“Go on. Just be careful, the attack is about to begin,” Sydae said.
Araedae gave them an encouraging smile and headed into the street, stepping lightly in her thin slippers. She stuck as closely to the building as possible without scraping her beautiful gossamer wings against the cold brick. The only sound heard over the gentle patter of snow was that of Christmas carol laced revelry from the sleigh warehouse in the distance. The scent of peppermint candy canes drifted under her nose. It was everywhere at the North Pole and Araedae was pretty sure the elves used it as cologne.
Flying would have been preferable, but snow was unpleasant against her wings and it was harder to sneak while flitting through the air. To make matters worse, the elves had defenses against anything that could fly over the North Pole, even fairies.
Calling it the North Pole wasn’t really accurate anymore. Santa had moved the base of operations a century ago when explorers started making attempts to reach it. The industrial age brought new techniques in toy-making that required retooling the warehouses and extra space was needed to handle the population explosion throughout the world. The result was that the entire operation had been placed on a series of enormous ice floes a few degrees away from the pole. Christmas Eve was the only time the ice came together in order for the sleigh to be loaded.