I was disappointed that there is no Christmas film or song this year, and that there has not been an original Christmas story made in way too long. So I wrote one! This is only a short story version, but I plan to flesh it out in time to a short novel.
Nicholas is an orphan in Roman times in a early day Christian foster home. He is the eldest of the orphans in the home and looks out for the younger. One winter he hears a crash outside the home and finds what he believes to be a angel injured and barely conscious.
Upon nursing the angel back to health, the angel tells him it is really a fairy from a far off land who got lost during the winter solstice. The fairy gives him a magical blessing for his kind heart, so that as long as his heart stays pure he will have good fortune in life.
Nicholas grows up and becomes a Priest in charge of the foster home and renowned for his kind deeds and helping others. Every winter solstice he would hold a feast for the small town and give gifts of toys to the children, to give thanks to what he called his guardian angel who he now believes appeared to him in a dream.
Two weeks before one winter solstice, a nearby village is struck by a sickness. Nicholas bravely went and helped in ways he could, before catching the sickness himself from drinking the village water and eating the village food.
He decided to make his last winter solstice party a large one and the whole town turned up to mourn and give thanks, but one of the orphan children goes missing during the feast. The town goes exploring the nearby woods and during the search Nicholas accidental falls into a hidden ravine after succumbing to a coughing fit.
He regains consciousness and crawls out of the ravine, to find himself in a frozen wasteland. After exploring the strange land, the fairy he helped in his youth appears before him and reveals he is in the land of fey folk. The fairy tells him the child had passed through the lands and was taken to village of the elves, who have a habit of mischievously taking orphaned children into their custody. The fairy said to follow the northern star to find the village, and gifted him a thick red coat to keep him warm.
Thanking the fairy, he follows the star until he comes across a child sized village half buried in the snow. Through a window he spies the child merrily playing and singing with the elves. He knocks on the door and the elves invite him in to join in the festivities. Accepting the invite he joins in, curious about these small human like creatures with pointy ears.
He asks why the elves steal orphans, and they explain they take a child who is broken by loss and try to bring the joy back into them. Sometimes the children choose to stay and lose their memory and become elves themselves. Sometimes they choose to return. Nicolas explains how even orphans are loved, then regales the elves with stories of his experiences with himself and others. And that their taking of children can cause others fear and hurt.
After some time the child starts to fall asleep and Nicholas begs the elves leave so that they may return to the mortal world. The elves are disappointed but understand their mistake and wish them well. As Nicholas is leaving the house, he goes into a fit of coughing and collapses at the door, scaring the orphan and elves.
The elves ask what ails him and he tells of his sickness and soon to be demise. The elves are devastated by the news and huddle together to discuss. They approach Nicholas and offer him to stay with them, where in the land of fey he will not age nor die from sickness. Tempted by the offer, Nicholas looks to the orphan and decides that he cannot leave the children behind while he still has breath left.
The elves are moved by this pure gesture and make another offer. That once a year near the winter solstice when the worlds are close, he may go to the human world for one night under the protection of fey magic and visit the children of the world to give gifts that they will make for him. Nicholas is brought to tears by this offer and accepts it gratefully, but first he must drop the child back home.
When he gets back, they discover that four days had passed and the village was overjoyed to see them return, and amazed by his new red coat that was finer then any material they had seen before. He tells them he must leave them for he had found a new even greater purpose, but he will return every year on that day to spread cheer and good will.
So true to his word, every year from then on he would visit the mortal world and give gifts to all the girls and boys. And though the true story of Nicholas was lost in the passage of time, people still leave food out and celebrate the return of Santa Claus.