I was simply doing my normal chores when I heard a loud obnoxious, “CLAUDE!”
I sighed as I left to see what the little br-I mean-my young master wanted this time. “Yes, your highness?” I asked. “What is it?”
“You have a daughter, right?” he asked. “Amelia or whatever her name is?”
“Her name is Angel.” I corrected. “Why do you ask?”
Alois pouted and crossed his arms. “Ciel told me that Sebastian got his child the best Christmas gift in the world, and now they’re all happy over there!” he stated before he ripped his arms apart. “This is an order! Get Evangeline an even better gift and don’t return until you do! If we can’t rip apart their happiness, then we’ll out-happy them!”
I nodded and bowed with a growing smile. “Yes, your highness.” I answered before I left in the December chill of London.
I’ve been waiting all month for my master to give me that specific order. There was a doll I wanted to give Angel for Christmas for a while. It was a large stuffed white hound with red eyes. From the very day she first saw it back in the summer, she begged me to buy it for her, while all I could do was laugh a little at her hyper childish energy and tell her “Maybe for Christmas.”
I wasn’t sure why that stuffed animal was so special, or why she liked it so much, but I was determined to get her that doll, even more so now that my master ordered me to make her happier than the Michaelis child for the holiday.
Because it was Christmas Eve, the streets were crowded and difficult to navigate. I looked from window to glass door, from toy store to doll shop. I couldn’t believe that the stuffed dog was completely sold out in every store. As I went in each store, I requested to see if they had one in stock, but they laughed in my face and said that it was all sold out and the next shipment wasn’t due until the 26th.
Finally, I was on my way out of another store in the now icy night frozen air, once again empty handed. I sighed at my failure in discouragement, not looking forward to seeing what Alois would do as punishment. I was shocked when I heard something whisper, “Pst.” I looked around but saw no one. “Psst!” the whisper tried again as I looked around in more confusion. “Psssssssssssssssssstt! Over here! In the red!” I looked over and saw a man in a Santa suit with a white beard. “You looking for a stuffed dog? The white one?” I nodded. “I got one left.”
“Name your price.” I stated, already pulling out the bag of money.
The Santa shook his head in rejection. “No money.” he stated, reaching down to get the bags of wrapped gifts. “My only price is the homes in the countryside. I can’t deliver to those homes because I had a late start, so I can only deliver to the cities.”
I gazed at the bag in thought before I let out a small chuckle. “Your price for the stuffed dog is that I give gifts to my master and his rival?”
Santa pondered what I said. “…Well, Jim Macken gets only coal, but yes.” I scoffed and started to leave until he called out, “No delivery, no doll!”
I froze at that fact before I turned back and returned to the man in red. “What must I do?”
I felt uneasy as I sat in the small sleigh, a single reindeer strapped to the front. “…Now, once you’re done, just toss the bags in the sleigh, Cupid knows what to do from then. Any questions?”
“Only one…” I stated as I scratched my shoulder through the red fabric. “Do I have to wear the suit?”
Santa nodded. “And the hat, and the beard.”
I slumped. “It’s not like the children would be awake to see me.”
“It’s just in case they decide to take a peek.” he shrugged before he walked up to the deer. “Now, when this man is done, meet me and the others in Paris by the Eifel Tower, understand Cupid?” The horned deer nodded in understanding before Santa climbed in his own sleigh, the seven remaining deer huffing in the snow.
The man in red whipped the reigns and laughed whole heartedly. “On Dasher! On Dancer! On Prancer! On Vicson! On Comet! On Cupid! On Doner! On Blitson!” At the sound of her name, Cupid started to rise in the air along with the other girls (Fun fact about reindeer, males lose their antlers in winter while females lose their antlers after giving birth, so all of Santa’s reindeer are female! And yes, all reindeer, male or female, have antlers). I held the reigns tightly, not feeling completely comfortable off the ground. “Now, dash away, dash away, dash away all!”
“WOAH!” I yelped as Cupid zipped through the sky.
The first house Cupid landed on was the Phantomhive Estate. She landed on the rooftop with such grace and ease, I felt so clumsy when I nearly slipped off from the several inches of snow that piled on the roof. After I resettled on my feet, clinging on the sled’s golden rim, I reached into the seat and pulled out the large bag labeled “Phantomhives”.
I trudged over to the chimney and looked down at the large, square, charred, brick tube. Looking back at the reindeer, she looked right back at me with those dark brown eyes and nodded before I returned my golden gaze to the red coals at the bottom of the tall chimney. “…Well,” I sighed. “Here goes nothing.” And I lept down, zipping past the bricks.
I landed with my feet in the burning coals. Looking down, I was thankful that the Santa gave me the suit, boots included. I marched in the house, beating my boots over the coals so I didn’t track in ashes. When I turned around, I saw a little girl on the red carpeted staircase. Her blue hued green eyes widened as she watched me, hiding behind the bars of the rails. Tightly in her arms hung a large, beaten up pink and white bear.
A smile tugged at my lips as I held up the new light brown bear with a big red bow right in her line of sight before gently setting it under the large, orderly, bright tree. I unloaded more gifts labeled and tagged for Meyrin, Bard, Finnian, Ciel, one for Sebastian, and a few more for a name I didn’t recognize but placed the presents under the tree regardless.
Just before I started back to the fireplace, the little girl slender-man-teleported right next to me with a plate of chocolate chip cookies balancing on her head and a glass of milk in her hand. On the plate, around the rim, in red and gold writing, it read:
I was a really good girl all year. This is proof for the world that demons can make the nice list just as easily as humans. Please enjoy these cookies~!
Your Good little Demon~”
The smile on my face grew wider as I took a cookie and tapped her nose with it, causing her to giggle just like Angel. “Merry Christmas little girl.” I stated before continuing to climb up the chimney.
I sighed contently as Cupid flew off and I saw a light flick on in the servant’s quarters. “Daddy! Daddy! Santa was here! Santa was here!”
I saw the outline of a man hugging the girl close and laughing full heartedly before walking away from the window. No doubt about it, that was Sebastian’s daughter I met by the tree.
Whipping the reigns again, the reindeer zipped through the frozen clouds to the next manner. I smiled wide as I saw the manner of my own master. Before I even left the sleigh when we landed on the roof, I grabbed the bag labeled “Trancys”.
Much smoother than the last mansion, I walked over to the chimney and slid down the burned bricks. I tumbled out the large fireplace, landing in the center of the room flat on my face. When I fixed my glasses, I looked straight forward to see a pair of small feet before me. I moved my eyes up the small black pants, up to the toddler sized tail coat, to the crooked black and purple tie, all the way to the large golden brown eyes of my little girl. “…Santa?” she asked, wide-eyed and shocked.
I shot up and looked down at her. “Ye-I mean-” I cleared my throat and adjusted to the deep chest voice. “Yes, Angel, it’s me. Now, why are you not in bed?” The voice was obviously modified and false, but it was enough to fool her with her little 5-year-old mind.
Angel only gasped in excitement before she jumped and twirled in circles. “YES!YES!YES! I KNEW YOU WERE REAL!”
I was taken aback a little. “Who-” Again, I had to clear my throat. “Who told you otherwise?”
“Daddy’s boss, Alois.” she answered before yelping in joy and even popped out her puppy ears and fluffy tail. “Now I can rub it in his face!” She then took my hand in hers. “Let’s go wake him up! He can see you for himself!”
“I don’t think that’s a good idea.” I grumbled to keep the deeper voice. “You’re not even supposed to be out of bed!”
To this, the little girl looked up at me with big sad eyes and a pouty lip. “But-but-but-”
“It’s best that he doesn’t see me.” I stated, kneeling down to her level. “Why not this be our little secret? Alois wouldn’t believe you anyway.”
She nodded. “Okay, Santa.”
I thought for a moment as I unloaded the sack of gifts tagged for Hannah, Thompson, Timber, Canterbury, Angel, and even one for me. There was only one wrapped gift left in the sack, surprisingly completely untouched by the lumps of coal tagged for Jim Macken, the name Alois Trancy in parenthesis. I took out the wrapped gift and saw that it was for Angel. Looking back up at her little pout, I handed her the gift. “Since it’s Christmas Eve, why not you open one gift tonight?”
She looked up at me with a questioning look before rubbing her arms, the tips of her gloves (my gloves) flopping out and looking awkward on her little hands. “I don’t know…daddy says that opening Christmas presents before Christmas is against the rules.”
I smiled as I placed the gift in her hands. “I think your daddy would be okay with it for now.”
She hesitantly took the box in her hands and started to rip up the paper to a cardboard box. Shifting one of her hands into a paw after gnawing off the glove from her hand (so much for that pair of gloves) and used the claw on the little paw to cut through the tape. When the box was opened, her face lit up like the tree beside us. She reached in and hugged the large white stuffed dog close before reaching out to me and hugging me close. “Thank you Santa!” she giggled.
I smiled and hugged her back. “You’re welcome, Angel. Merry Christmas.” Quickly, I cleared my throat again to return to the deep voice before I stood. “You’d better get to bed, and I have more work to do.” With a smile on her face, she nodded and ran up the stairs, kneeling down on a step near the second floor and watched me as I returned up the chimney.
I tossed the bag in the sled along with the red suit, hat, and beard. After letting me down in the snow-covered garden, Cupid took off in the moonlight. Straightening my black coat and adjusting my silver glasses, I re-entered the manner, getting knocked back by Angel tackle hugging me. “Daddy! You missed it! You missed Santa!”
I started to smile but furrowed my brows when I heard jingling bells. Looking out the window past the red curtains, I saw a sleigh with a large bag, a single man on the reigns, and four rows of reindeer, sparkling golden, red, and green magical dust rained in the tail. “Actually, Angel,” I stated with a grin. “I think I caught him just in time.”
She looked at me in confusion as the man in the sleigh waved at us. “Merry Christmas Claude!”
My smile grew wide as Angel looked down at my feet for some odd reason. “…Daddy…why are you wearing boots?”
My eyes grew wide as I chuckled at her, scratching the back of my head. “Well…you see…funny story…” I then pointed out the window. “Look! It’s Santa!”
The figure of the flying deer and sled was only visible in shadow, crossing over the full moon’s silvery white glow. “Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”