Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and the Wishbringer (Part 4)

Dolce: Dad.
Dad: Yes, Dolce.
Dolce: Do you have something to say to my furriends.
Dad: Merry Christmas? Happy Holidays?
Dolce: No! You promised a story. A full story no interruptions this year!
Dad: Dolce. Do you know what life is?
Dolce: Of course I do. What is it for Beans?
Dad: Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans.
Dolce: Oh.
Dad: I am sorry. I didn't give your story the attention it deserved.
Dolce: You should be.
Baci: Chicken! Chicken! Chicken! Chicken! Chicken! and Ham!
Dad: Was that Baci?
Dolce: Just ignore him. Please. Just Ignore him.
Dad: The reason your story has been delayed, paused, stopped, interrupted is that sometimes your bean's brain writes more than a simple blog can contain. This years story grew a bit larger than intended. So I had to sit back and refocus the story. The story I would tell you and Baci as you curled up beside me next to our fireplace with your mom and grandma baking gingerbread in the kitchen.
Baci: Is there chicken in Gingerbread?
Dolce: No, stoopid brother. Otherwise it would be called Chickenbread.
Baci: Ooohmm! Chickenbread!
Dolce: Baci! You're drooling again on the Story Chair.
Dad: Before Dolce and Baci start arguing again, let me start the much delayed four chapter of ...

Jingles and the Wishbringer

Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh rode for many days on Sangilak's warm furry back. Myrrh even found herself falling asleep curled into a tight little ball in Sammy's lap. Tinker rode for the most part, but he also ran along Sangilak's side. He ran until his shorter legs could no longer keep up with the lanky Husky and then he jumped back up onto Sangilak's back and curled up next to his sister, Myrrh. Sammy sat upright and took in the sights and sounds of the forest and meadows they passsed through.
Sammy found the scenery quite beautiful. Although he was getting a little homesick for his warm fire and freshly baked cookies and hot chocolate from the Workshop cafeteria. He shifted his weight on Sangilak's back as he felt a twinge grow in his lower legs. Sammy looked down at Sangilak's back. There was something different about Sangilak.
"Are you doing okay, Sangilak?" Sammy asked as he shuffled his weight around.
"I feel fine." Sangilak replied. "I have not had this good of a run in a long time. Why do you ask?"
"It feels different back here." Sammy stated as he tried to move his tail bone off of the Husky's spine. "Are you getting taller and thinner?"
"I don't think so." Sangilak mused. "But I have never ran this long this far before."
Sammy nodded quietly and he went back to admiring the scenery and gently petting the two cats curled up asleep in his lap.
The strange foursome headed south for another week and a bit. The days had grown darker and darker a little bit at a time.
"I hope that Jingles is okay." Tinker said as he scampered next to Sangilak.
"I w..." Myrhh started to speak, but quickly caught herself. "I hope that everyone at the North Pole is okay too."
Sangilak turned his head to look at Myrrh. His brow furrowed slightly.
"They will be okay." Sammy stated. "As long as Jingles keeps the TiDE from going out, the North Pole will be on a different time than the rest of us."
"What about Christmas?" Tinker asked. "What if we don't find the problem by then?"
"We have until Christmas Eve. We can slow time or speed it up but we cannot go backwards. It is the same technology that permits Santa to visit all the children who believe in one night." Sammy said. "Once the TiDE is allowed to go out, the North Pole will race to match up with us. To them it will be as if nothing happened. Santa will get on his sleigh and will make his rounds like he does every year."
"That all sounds very complex." Sangilak said.
Tinker looked up at Sangilak. The great Husky's voice sounded a bit deeper and had more of an edge than it had when they first met. Tinker noticed that Sangilak was also looking more like the wolves that had nearly captured them in the forest. Tinker hopped up onto Sangilak's back.
"Sammy." Tinker tried to whisper so that Myrrh and Sangilak could not hear him. "I think Sangilak is changing."
"Yes, he is." Sammy whispered back. "I don't know how. I didn't hear Myrrh make a wish and when I asked her she said she has not made a wish."
"Should we be worried?" Tinker asked.
"I don't know." Sammy replied. "No matter what his exterior, Sangilak's heart is true. He has done nothing to deserve our fear."
"Okay." Tinker replied as he hopped back down to run in the light snow.
Neither Tinker nor Sammy noticed the penetrating stare Sangilak gave each of them.

Soon the foursome found themselves at the edge of a large human city at the dawn of the darkest day of the year. Sangilak stopped a good distance from the edge of the city.
"This is as far as I can take you." Sangilak stated. "I cannot go into the city with you."
"Why not?" Tinker asked as he leapt off of the Husky's back, "We can cover so much more distance with you."
"Although I was once a trusted friend of humans. " Sangilak replied, "I will no longer be welcome within their midst as a free creature."
"Why not?" Myrrh asked as she dropped to the ground and sat beside Sammy and Tinker.
"Because of you." Sangilak stated as he turned his great blue eyes firmly on Myrrh. "I never told you how I found you in the woods. While I was wandering in the Forest after being abandoned, I felt a voice calling me. I then caught your scent on the Great Northern Wind. It was like a brilliant blue ribbon floating through the trees. You called me, Myrrh. The Wishbringer called and I answered."
"No I didn't." Myrrh stammered as she shuffled her gaze from Tinker to Sammy and back again. "I promised them I wouldn't."
"Are you sure?" Sammy asked. "Back in the forest, when we were all cold and tired, you didn't make a little wish?"
"I'm sorry." Myrrh said softly. "I didn't say it out loud, but I did wish that we didn't have to walk anymore."
Sammy frowned slightly.
"I think that you not only brought our friend Sangilak to our rescue." Sammy mused, "But I think you also brought the wolves. One way or another, that night in the forest, we weren't going to have to walk anymore."
"I'm sorry." Myrrh started to sob.
"Don't cry, Myrrh." Sangilak nudged the cat with his great nose. "Once I found out that you are the Wishbringer, I have been making a wish everyday."
"What wish would that be, Sangilak?" Tinker asked.
"I have long been part of two worlds, but never belonging to either." Sangilak replied sadly. "Abandoned by humans, untrusted by wolves. My wish was to belong to one or the other. I thought that by taking you to the human world, I could once again live and be loved amongst humans."
"But instead, You're becoming a wolf." Tinker finished Sangilak's thought. "I thought you were looking more and more wilder."
"I made a wish." Sangilak said, "And the Wishbringer answered. I must go now. You only have a short way to travel to reach the human city."
"We would have never made it this far without you, Sangilak." Sammy said.
"If you hadn't come along." Myrrh purred and rubbed her body against Sangilak's long right foreleg. "We would still be far far away."
"You have granted me my heart's desire, Wishbringer." Sangilak lifted his head and he sang out his first true wolf cry. Sangilak lowered his head gave Myrrh a playful nudge and then gave her right cheek a big slobery lick. "I have named you to the Winds, Wishbringer. You and your friends. None who listen to the Wind will harm you. Ever. That is my gift to you."
"Take care, Sangilak." Sammy said sadly.
"You too, my Friends." Sangilak replied.
"One more thing, the scent of something terrible floats on the winds from over there." Sangilak motioned to a group of human houses. "It blows with the colour of danger and of Shadow. Maybe that is the source of your misery."

Sammy, Myrrh and Tinker watched as Sangilak trotted away from them. Sangilak paused at a small break in the tree line. The three companions sat and listened to Sangilak's mournful wolf song as their departing friend tried out his new found voice. A soft stillness deadened the winter air. Then, in the distance another mournful cry answered Sangilak's question.
"Friends!" Sangilak had cried out. "I bear news!"
"Come friend!" the far off voices had replied. "Tell us your tidings!"
"The Wishbringer has come." Sangilak replied joyfully to the newly risen full moon.

"Angels, We have heard on High." Sammy hummed as he wiped a tear from his cheek.
"What is that?" Myrrh asked.
"Just another thing humans got wrong." Sammy smiled as he coaxed his two furry friends onwards.

Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh headed to the collection of houses that Sangilak had pointed out before his departure. It was a small cul-de-sac of ten houses. Nine of which were brightly decorated. One of the ten had a sparse string of white christmas lights upon its rain gutters. This was a house that was trying to be in the holiday spirit, but Sammy could sense that there was no hope or happiness behind the yellow glow of the house's decoration.

Sammy pursed his lips thoughtfully. Sangilak had steered them to the the right house. This is where he, Tinker and the Wishbringer needed to be.

To be continued....

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Dolce Story Chair - Jingles and the Wishbringer (Part 3)

Dad: Dolce, Where are you?
Dolce: I'm here.
Dad: Why are you so tired today?
Dolce: Scout didn't transport home until he absolutely had to.
Dad: Were you up past your bed time?
Dolce: Just a little bit.Scout's brother Shaggy has a request; he can sit on your lap while you tell the story tonight?
Dad: As long as he knows that whoever is on my lap has the responsibility of turning the pages of the story for me.
Dolce: Shaggy is pretty smart; he can do that no problem.
Dad: When then, I guess I have a page turner for tonight's chapter. So let's all get comfortable and remember that we left off with Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh leaving the North Pole to find out what was happening in the human world...

Jingles and The Wishbringer

Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh walked steadily south. They only stopped for a few short hours at a time to grab a short nap in a quickly dug snow den. Tinker and Myrrh pressed their bodies against Sammy's to help keep him warm. Overhead the Aurora Borealis danced and flickered even during the day.

After trekking for many days, Sammy suddenly held up his mitted hand and brought the little group to a stop. He looked around and then he fished a strange pair of glasses from his backpack. The glasses had what appearred to be several snowflakes stacked on top of each for lenses. Sammy placed the glasses on his head and then adjusted the snowflake lenses on each side.
"What is it, Sammy?" Tinker asked.
"We are at the Last Marker." Sammy said as he pointed to something off to the group's right side. "We are now officially outside of the North Pole. The only way we can get back is if Jingles sends someone for us."
Tinker and Myrrh were suddenly frightened. They had not been in the human world since they were rescued from that cardboard box on Christmas Eve a year ago.
"Well all we have now is our wits, some North Pole engineering and Myrrh's gift." Sammy stated confidently. "if anyone can find out what is going wrong, it's us three."

Once again the three travellers began marching south and soon they began to see sporatic signs of human activity, but no towns or cities could yet be seen.

During their trek through a thick pine forest, Tinker suddenly bounded up to Sammy's side.
"Sammy." Tinker said in a low voice."I think there is something behind us."
"I know." Sammy replied. "It has been following us for the last couple of hours. I think it caught our scent as we crossed that last frozen river."
"Is it dangerous?" Tinker asked as he nervously looked backwards.
"I don't know." Sammy said. "It seems to be fairly large by cat and Elf standards and it is gaining on us."

Sammy and Tinker tried to get Myrrh to hurry up but she was having trouble moving through the deep snow. Whatever was behind the three friends was making great gains on them. Sammy thought he caught a glimpse of a furry dark body several times. He was somewhat worried that whatever it was it might mistake an Elf and two cats for a midday meal. He pulled a Snowstar Sparkler from his pack; it would not hurt the creature behind them, but hopefully it would scare it off if necessary.
"My paws are getting cold." Myrrh complained. "And this snow is sticking to my fur."
"Just a little farther, Myrrh." Sammy coaxed her on. "Then we will find some shelter for the night. I might even be able to get a little fire going to warm us all up."
"Oh."Myrrh sighed. "I would love a fire. I wi..."
"Myrrh!" Tinker shouted. "You can't say those words here in the human world. We don't know what might happen."
"But I'm getting cold." Myrrh snapped back.
"I'm sorry, Myrrh." Sammy apologized. "We will find a place where we can settle in for the night."
"Is it safe?" Tinker whispered to Sammy.

"I don't know." Sammy said softly, "But if we don't get your sister into shelter soon, she is going to make a wish. I have no idea what would happen afterwards. What if she wishes for warmth and then her wish melts all the snow?"
"We need to find her shelter right away." Tinker agreed.

They increased their pace over Myrrh's objections. Sammy kept reassuring her that there was shelter just up ahead just to keep her putting one paw in front of the other. Sammy and Tinker were so focussed on keeping Myrrh distracted that they failed to notice the dark shadowy forms that had stealthfully crept up and were now tracking the three friends on either side.
Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh came into a small clearing that had tall pines trees all around. The air was still and seemed to be a little warmer. Sammy stopped and looked around.
"I think that we should be able to stop here and get a small fire going." Sammy said as he laid his pack down on the snow covered ground.
"That's sounds good." Tinker said, "I'm getting a little cold, too."
"A fire would be wonderful." Myrrh said excitedly.

"I'm afraid we can't let you do that." A deep menacing growl sounded from the edge of the clearing. "You see my friends and I do not like fire."
Sammy's hand slipped into his pocket and he tightly gripped the Snowstar Sparkler as he watched four large wolves step from the cover of the trees.
"I have not seen your kind before." The largest wolf snarled as he slowly circled around Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh. "No matter. I am sure you will taste just fine."
"I want the fancy dressed one." Another wolf sneered as it crept closer to Sammy.
"You will wait your turn!" The largest wolf turned and viciously snapped at the other wolf who retreated quickly with a loud whimper.

The four wolves slowly moved towards Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh with their sharp pointy teeth bared and deep ferocious snarls emanating from their throats.
"I think if there was ever time for a wish it is now, Myrrh." Sammy said as he pulled the Snowstar Sparkler from his pocket.
"I can't." Myrrh cowered next to Tinker who was puffed up and hissing. "I'm too scared."
"Then get ready to climb a tree." Sammy said as he pulled the tinsel plug on the sparkler.
The sparkler in his hand began to pulse with a brilliant blue light. It grew brighter and brighter until it was painful to the eyes. The wolves pulled back slightly. The sound of something popping and crackling started to come from the heart of the sparkler. The wolves pulled back even farther, but there was still no clear path to one of the tall trees to provide safety from the hungry wolves.

Without warning, another large furry form bounded into the clearing and plowed fearlessly into the side of the largest wolf. The wolf was bowled over onto it side and it snapped helplessly at the new arrival, a large Husky with a thick white ruff and balck and silver sides. Sammy noticed that the Husky had the worn and tattered remanants of a harness around it's neck and on its side. It was the biggest Husky Sammy had ever seen. If not not for the harness, he would have mistaken it for another wolf.
"Whatever you were going to do, I suggest you do it?" the Husky barked.
Sammy tossed the sparkler into the air where it exploded with hundreds or brilliant blue and silver snowlflakes. The wolves yipped and whined and scattered from the clearing.
"Thank you." Sammy said.
"You had better climb on." the Husky said urgently. "These wolves will quickly recover their courage."
Sammy climbed up and was followed swiftly by Myrrh and Tinker.
"What is your name, friend?" Tinker asked and he sat in front of Sammy with Myrrh pressed tightly against him.
"Once I was called Sangilak." the Husky replied.
"Strongest of All." Sammy translated from the northern human tongue.
"Yes. That is what they called me." the Husky said. "Now hang on, I'm not known for my smooth gait."
"What are you known for, Sangilak?" Myrrh asked.
"I can run faster and farther than the Great Northern Wind blows." Sangilak said as he he bolted for the cover of the trees just as the four wolves overcame their shock and fear of Sammy's sparkler.

Through the trees, Sangilak ran with Sammy, Tinker and Myrrh on his back. Sammy held tightly to the old harness and Tinker and Myrrh held tightly on to him. The four wolves were in hot pursuit. They could hear their barking and snarling right behind them. Sammy even thought he could feel their hot breath on the back of his neck.

Sangilak had been well named and he lived up to his boast. He ran as though the Great Northern wind had lifted his mighty paws from the snow. Soon the wolves' cries began to fall away. Thanks to their new friend, they were safe. Sangilak ran true to his word, and he did not stop until they were safe.

"What brings you three here?" Sangilak asked as he slowed to a gentle walk. "It is obvious that you are not creatures of the woods."
"You two are housecats if my nose remembers correctly." Sangilak said to Tinker and Myrrh. His nose twitched as he sniffed the air about Sammy. "Your scent I don't remember. I do not hink I have come across your kind before."
"He's an Elf." Myrrh said as she balaned herself on Sangilak's broad shoulders."Elf?" Sagnilak repeated. "I have not heard that word before. But you smell friendly enough. Once again, i ask what brings you three here?"

Sammy told Sangilak about what was happening at the North Pole and what he and the two cats were searching for.

"Well, if you want to find a source of misery and hopelessness." Sangilka sighed, "Then it is humans you are looking for. There is a large human city a ways south of here. I will take you."
"Thank you, Sangilak." Sammy said.
"Don't thank me too soon." Sangilak laughed. "Especially after you have been riding my back for several days."

Sangilak found his strength again and he resumed his long striding pace southwards to the human city.

To be continued...

Monday, December 14, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and the Wishbringer (Part 2)

Dolce: Dad, our furriends are arriving! Time to start the second part of the story!
Dad: I'm coming, Dolce.
Dolce: What's taking you so long?
Dad: Maybe, if you helped around the house.
Dolce: I do help out. You bring my mousies from under the sofa, and I puts them right back.
Dad: That's not the help I was thinking of.
Dolce: If you think I am going anywhere near the Sucky Monster, you are on kitty crack.
Dad: Dolce.
Dolce: Yes, Dad?
Dad: Let's start the story...
Dolce: Okay, I am going over there to cuddle with Scout.
Dad: Okay, You do that. Now let me see where were we... That's right... Jingles had just been given a cryptic message. So here it tonight's chapter of...

Jingles and The Wishbringer - Part 2

Jingles and Tinker strolled along Marizpan Lane. Jingles was clearly upset. His tail twitched from side to side and he jumped at every unexpected noise. Tinker looked at his adopted brother and worried that Jingles was hiding something bad from him and his sisters. Jingles had been this way for nearly three weeks.
"Is there something wrong, Jingles." Tinker asked.
"No," Jingles replied quickly. He paused and then continued. "Yes. The Elfish Builder's Guild has noted some very peculiar failings in some of the buildings at the edge of the town."
"What do you mean peculiar?" Tinker sounded out the strange new word.
"A bunny hatch freshly built suddenly collapsed." Jingles stated. "And then a Sled Shop crumbled to the ground."
"Was anyone hurt?" Tinker asked.
"Luckily not." Jingles sighed, "But Mrs. Hopsalot and her fifteen children were just outside in their winter garden when it happened. It was far too close of a call for Santa."
"Why are we going there?" Tinker asked. "Wouldn't the Guild be the best ones to figure out want went wrong?"
"They are already there." Jingles turned his head and looked at the younger black kitten. "They are stumped. There is no sign of rot or weakness in either of the structures. They asked for the North Pole's resident engineering genius to come take a look."
"Genius?" Tinker blushed. "I'm flattered."
"Don't get too goofy."Jingles countered, "Or I'll tell your sisters, Myrrh and Cookie."
"Don't please." Tinker begged, "They will tease me mercilessly."
"Yup." Jingles agreed, "That's what sisters do."
Jingles and Tinker spent the rest of the day and all of the next with the Elfish Builders Guild going over the Sled Shop and Mrs. Hopsalot's hutch. Tinker talked a long time with the Elves. He sniffed the wood and the bricks and he paced about each site. Tinker and the Elfs were unable to fathom why the two buildings had collapsed. Both of the structures had simply ceased to hold together and had fallen apart where they stood. Tinker and the Elfs would have spent more time at the two sites, but then word came that another building had also suddenly collapsed.
In the four weeks that passed since the first collapse, eight more structures at the North Pole mysteriously fell to the ground. Soon, everyone at the North Pole was very worried. Rumours began to prop up in the Hot Chocolates Houses and Cookie Shacks around town. Some elfs were whispering that the Magic of Christmas was starting to falter. Santa himself was beginning to get worried.
Jingles, Sammy and Tinker were busy working on Santa's sleigh when Myrrh and Cookie entered the shop. They were each carrying a small basket of breakfast cookies, one basket was for Sammy and the other for Jingles and Tinker. Sammy fetched five mugs from his work bench and poured each of them a draft of Hot Chocolate. As they sat on Santa's sleigh and munched on the cookies and sipped their hot chocolate, Sammy looked at the cats and smiled.
"You four are quite the crew." Sammy Sleighmaster smiled. "It's like you have been here forever."
"I love it here." Cookie sighed. "All the wonderful smells and food."
"I like all the stuff to play with and fix." Tinker said over a mouthful of cookie.
"I wish that every cat could be as happy as we are here." Myrrh stated.
The hackles on the back of Jingles' next stood up and he dropped his cookie onto the floor of the sleigh. He did not know why but something told him to send Cookie away. Something terrible was about to happen.
"Cookie." Jingles said forcefully. "I need you to go and find out from Santa the pattern of the building collapses in Old Town."
"Wouldn't Tinker understand that better than me?" Cookie asked with a scrunch of her nose.
"Please, Cookie." Jingles pleaded. "Just do it."
Cookie shrugged her shoulders and then she bounded off the sleigh and headed to Santa's office to do what Jingles had asked. Jingles watched as Cookie disappearred out of the mechanical shop.
"Sammy." Jingles turned to the Elf in charge of keeping Santa's sleigh running. "Maybe the problem is with the Time Displacement Engine."
Sammy smiled and nodded to Tinker.
"Jingles." Sammy said. "I see you have reading up on your Licorice String Theory. Now if you could just grasp Einstein's Sugar Snowflake Theorems."
"I w..." Myrrh started to speak.
"Myrrh, please hold that thought." Jingles held his paw up to interrupt Myrrh.
"Sammy, maybe you should cycle it a bit." Jingles said as he gave Tinker a wink. "That should work right, Tinker?"
"Uhhh." Tinker stammered, as what Jingles was saying made no sense. "Sure, Give the TiDE a cycle."
"Okay." Sammy said as he turned a small sugar cookie shaped dial on the Time Displacement Engine. "Get ready we are going to freeze things for a second."
As soon as the dial turned, Jingles, Tinker, Myrrh and Sammy dropped out the time stream of the North Pole and returned to the same time as the human world. There was a slight whirr as the countdown clock started to run.
"Sorry to interrupt you, Myrrh." Jingles said. "What were you going to say?"
"I wish we could fix this." Myrrh said with a slightly petulant pout.
Jingles let out a faint gasp. Sammy and Tinker felt something in the air change. They could no longer hear the whirr of the TiDE's countdown clock.
"Shades of Evergreen." Sammy exclaimed, "What just happened?"
Jingles told Sammy, Tinker, and Myrhh about Elbereth's visit two months ago and about the message she gave him.
"I believe that you are the Wishbringer." Jingles said solemnly to Myrrh. "I knew it as soon as I heard you say 'I wish'."
"But why did you send Cookie away." Tinker asked.
"Whenever Myrhh and her were around together, I felt like something terrible was going to happen." Jingles said, "That is why I have been so..."
"Grumpy" Tinker added.
"Yes, Grumpy, the last few weeks." Jingles admitted. "Elbererth's message has been in the back of my mind everyday since. Then today when Myrrh said that she wished that all cats could be as happy as we are here, it became clear to me. Myrrh`s wishes have no power at the North Pole, because the North Pole is one gigantic wish full of hope and joy. It`s like a single rain drop in an ocean. But in the human world..."
"Her wishes would be like a rainstorm in the middle of a drought.`Sammy stated.
"Hope and Joy have faded somewhere in the human world enough to cause the problems here at the North Pole." Jingles said. "You three have to go and find out what is wrong and then fix it. Can you do that?"
"Why can't you come with us?" Tinker asked.
"Because someone has to stay and watch the TiDE." Sammy realized, "The TiDe will keep the North Pole safe, until we get back. But if it resets with no one here, then the others will have no way to get back to the North Pole."
"I will stay here."Jingles nodded."You three need to get provisions and then head south to the human world. Find the source of the lost hope and joy. Once you find it, turn on an emergency beacon. Once I see the signal here on the sleigh, I will reset the TiDE and I will come get you. Snowdrift should be able to make the trip alone."
"Sammy and Tinker, you need to watch over Myrrh." Jingles continued,"Some unscrupulous human might try and take advantage of her power. Myrrh, let no one know what you can do. I have a feeling that the magic will find you without you trying to find it."
Sammy, Myrrh and Tinker climbed down from the sleigh and began scurry about Sammy's workshop to find provisions and clothing for the long trek south. Soon they were ready to go. They stood in front of the open service bay of Santa's sleigh and stared at Jingles.
"Go, I will be here when you get back." Jingles commanded, and as he watched his adopted family start to walk out of the workshop, he called out. "Just remember, I can't do this forever."
"Jingles!" Tinker called back to his brother over his shoulder. "Me fix!"

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and The Wishbringer (Part 1)

Dad: Dolce, you and Baci did an amazing job of cleaning up the Story Chair. You would never have known I had ignored it. I'm sorry, Dolce and Baci and all our furriends.
Dolce: Just don't let it happen again. Do you know how we had to clean this? Trust me vacuum cleaners are not a Cat's best furriend?
Baci: We had to lick it clean!
Dolce: Baci! Shut Up! No one is going to want come over now.
Baci: But it's really clean. Cleaner than a human could ever get it.
Dolce: Baci, Please be quiet. Did you get the supplies?
Dad: yes. One ACME Company brand Hot Catmilk Dispenser with Catnip Foam Generator and One ACME Catnip Cookie Processor 2000. By the way where did you find this company?
Dolce: Saturday Cartoons. The Coyote seems to highly recommend it. You will have to stock the veggies and greens manually for our non-feline furriends. Suprisingly, ACME does not produce anything for Vegetarians.
Dad: Can I start telling the story?
Dolce: Yes, but wait. I need to warn our furriends that it starts a little sad and just a little bit dark.
Dad: Do you want to tell the story?
Dolce: Nope.
Dad: Then don't say it is sad and dark. There is some foreshadowing.
Baci: That sounds sad and dark, Dad.
Dad: Baci.
Baci: Yes,Dad.
Dad: Stick a catnip cookie in it.
Baci : Then you shoulda put a catnip cookie in it. Woo Ooo Ooo. Woo Ooo Ooo Ooo. All the single kitties.
Dolce: What is he doing with his paw?
Dad: I do not know. Anyways... To all our furriends, welcome to the first part of this year's story:

Jingles and The Wishbringer

Next to a wrought-iron stove with a gently crackling fire burning within stood a wicker cat bed with a thick plush red pillow. On top of the plush red pillow in the wicker cat bed, there was a fluffy young cat, with brown fur and dark chocolate points and pure white paws, sound asleep. Curled up nice and tight to the fluffy young cat were three smaller bodies all fast asleep, a orange striped cat with her head peacefully laying on Jingles' gently rising and falling chest; a white-mitted brown and black tabby with her head resting on her sister, Myrrh's orange striped tummy; and a fuzzy black cat stretched out along Jingles' back. It was late morning at the North Pole and no one had thought to wake the Santa's only feline citizens.

Jingles opened one eye and looked about Santa's office. The jolly old man was nowhere to be seen. Jingles might have worried about this but it was getting closer to Christmas and he knew that Santa had so much to do and to get ready for. From the corner of his eye, he saw a flicker of bright white.

He extricated himself from the limbs and paws of his adopted family and gave a great big stretch as he tried to coax some energy into his normally lazy limbs. Jingles looked towards Santa's desk that stood in the center of the room. There next to the desk stood the most beautiful creature he had ever seen.

"Elbereth." Jingles whispered as his heart remembered the creature that stood before him.

"Hello, Beloved One" Elbereth smiled. "I bring you tidings."

"But Santa is not here." Jingles replied as he slinked out from under the pile of gently purring and sleeping cats.

"I have already brought Santa his scroll." Elbereth said. "I have left yours on the table. Do not delay in opening it, Jingles."

"The scroll bears no fear for me anymore." Jingles said. "Without touching it, I know of one name that it bears. I know that you took her to play and run at the Rainbow Bridge. Maybe one eon, when all this is gone, I will see her again; maybe at the Meadow or across the bridge. Tell my mom, Amaretti, that I love her and that I have missed her everyday since we parted."

"You are a Beloved amongst all Beloved Ones. I will gladly bear your message to your mother." Elbereth said with a faint smile. "But that is not why I have come to you alone. I come bearing a message from another."

Elbereth pulled a single black feather from beneath her cloak. The air chilled about the feather, and it began to sparkle with tiny fine ice crystals. Jingles' gasped at the sight of the lone black feather.

"Shadow." Jingles hissed as he instinctively moved to protect his family.

"No, not Death." Elbereth reassured the suddenly agitated cat. "A Prophecy from one who has seen Death."

Elbereth crushed the feather in her hands and she cast the fine powder towards the ground. A dark cloud swirled and floated to the floor of Santa's office.

"I am sorry." Elbereth said softly and then she disappearred.

The dust of the crushed feather fell to the floor in a peculiar pattern. Jingles read the words the dust formed on Santa's office floor.

"When Hope is Lost
And Joy not Found,
To Pay the Cost,
A Wishbringer is Bound."

As he mouthed the last word of the strange verse written in crushed angel feather, Jingles felt a terrible load fall apon his soul. An unexpected breeze gathered within Santa's office and scattered the message across the timbered floor. This message was for Jingles alone.

To Be Continued...

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Dolce Story Chair starts tomorrow night.

To all our furriends,

The Story Chair has been all cleaned up and now looks brand new. The buffet tables are set up and ready for the treats our Dad has made (purchased) for our visitors. It looks all Christmassy.

We have fluffed all the pillows and freshened all the fuzzy blankets so there is plenty of room for all on the Story Chair.

So pop by and scope out a comfy spot for tomorrow.

Til then, Merry Christmas

Dolce, Baci, Magoo, Bella, Smudge and Chloe

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The Story Chair is in a sorry state

Dolce: Dad has not kept this place clean. There's catnip crumbs all over the place and the catmilk has grown a nasty green fuzz. This is just gross!
Baci: Dolce! Dolce! Dolce!
Dolce: Yes, doofus?
baci: Dad said no more name calling.
Dolce: But that is your name. I checked on your adoption papers and that is your real name.
Baci: No, it isn't.
Dolce: Yes it is. You can go and check. I'll wait.
Baci: I'll check later. Dad said that we need to make sure the Story Chair is still usable. It's been so long since we've used it.
Dolce: It needs some serious cleaning. There is stuff everywhere.
Baci: Ewww! It's really dusty!
Dolce: I know. Humans are so messy.
Baci: But we has to get it cleaned up. Dad has a Chrissymouse Story for us. We gets to go and visit Jingles and Tinker and Cookie and Myrrh and Sammy and Taylor and Santa.
Docle: Baci, breathe. I know. I was helping Dad with the cat action sequences. Sometimes he doesn't get it. Luckily, he has me for quality control and editing.
Baci: So when does the story start?
Dolce: We have until this weekend to get the Story Chair cleaned up. Dad is going to start the story early this year so that none of our furriends miss it. But we need to warn them that it will be over six nights so they have to come back and visit often.
Baci: Will Dad keep the catnip cookies and warm catmilk going so that all of our furriends can visit and enjoy whenever they want.
Dolce: Of course, but first we have to get that weird green thing off the cookie plate.
Baci (nomming and crunching): It's a catnip cookie from last year. Surprisingly still tasty.
Dolce: Ewww!
Dolce: Furriends who have not been here for a while, please come back. Our Chrissymouse Story begins this Sunday...

Dolce's Story Chair: Jingles and The Wishbringer

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Happy Purrthday, Dolce!

It does not seem possible that our little Dolce is not so little anymore.

It was shortly after we adopted her from a local rescue society that I started this blog.

4 years later...

She is still a troublemaker as she runs through the house leaping and jumping on and over anything in her path.

She is still my little girl who still likes to be held and cuddled and told that all her mousies are safely hidden under the couch where she placed them.

Here are her purrthday gifts...

Happy Purrthday, Dolce!

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Baci Waits Patiently...

Baci::Logs into the blog:: Nope. Don't see anything. It's like elebenty furrty! ::hangs his head and logs out::

::Time Passes::

Baci::Logs into the blog: What! Still nofing? I fink Dad wents to work and he didn't write nofing in the blog.::hangs his head and logs out::

::Time Passes::

Baci::Logs into the blog::Let's see if Dad has gotten off his butt. Crappity Crap Crap! He's posted nofing! Absolutely nofing! I gives him until my afternoon nap to post somefing very important. If he doesn't, something is going to meet a toothy or poopy death.::hangs his head and logs out::

::Time Passes::

Baci::Logs into the blog::Oh no, he didn`t! There`s nofing on the blog about my Purrthday! My very important 3rd Purrthday! This demands retribution! If I let`s him get away with this, then other peoples might think it`s okay to not post purrthday wishes. This is not acceptable. The question before is do I poop in the shoes and then pee in them or pee then poop. Decisions, decisions, decisions. ::holds his head high as he goes in search of dad`s good leather shoes::

Monday, May 25, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair: Cast Two Stones

Cast Two Stones
A Story of the Angels of the Rainbow Bridge

Phineus and Persphone played amongst the multitude of animals in the vast meadow of the Rainbow Bridge. Kittens fought over bundles of discarded Angel feathers while puppies chased balls of tightly bound meadow grass. As the two Seraphim played and laughed with the all the creatures, they were asked many times by the creatures would now roamed amongst the vast meadow; Why were they there?
Neither Phineus nor Persphone could answer why each creature had found its way to the Rainbow Bridge. The only answer they could give was that because they were loved and the humans that loved them had asked for them to wait until they could be together once again. The creatures accepted this for a time, but as the years grew and the residents began to notice that some animals seemed to remain longer at the Rainbow Bridge than others. Several of the long-term residents asked the Angels, that came to visit and play, why they remained at the bridge longer than others.
"This is what I know,dear friends." Phineus explanied to the throng of puppies, kittens,foals,cats, dogs, horses and an immense swirl of feathered friends. "By love, you are brought here. For love, you wait on this vast meadow. With love, you will cross into Heaven with your beloved friend."
"Do they not know how lonely we are without them?" An ancient ginger cat named Norton asked.
"Do you know how lonely they are without you?" Persephone asked the ginger cat. "Do you know how many times they have looked to their doorway, hoping you will magically appear? Do you know how keenly they listen to every rustle or movement of air, hoping to hear a hint of your passing?"
"I did not know." replied a German Shepherd named Sarge. "We forget that they lost us just as we lost them."
"Beloved friend." Phineus wrapped his arms about Sarge's great neck."It is the blessing of this connection that made the meadow of the Rainbow Bridge possible."
"Be at peace, beloved friends." Persephone said. "Your human friends are always with you. Although you may not hear their prayers for you, we do, and we are truly humbled by the strength of their love."
As the throng of animals slowly dispersed and were distracted by the many wonders of the Rainbow Bridge, Phineus and Persphone were troubled by the doubts that the animals had shared. As Angels, they shared none of these troubling emotions. They knew of two Angels who had shared these human-like feelings, Malachi and Dulcinea; and the results had been heartbreaking for the Angelic host. Phineus and Persephone noticed that two cats had remained behind.
"Oreo" Phineus bowed his head to a older black and white cat that had the the outline of a heart on his forelegs when he sat just right.
"Ubee." Phineus smiled to a fluffy tabby kitten who sat next to Oreo.
"What can we do for you two?" Persephone asked.
"We was loved." Ubee stated as he looked at Oreo and then to the two seraphim.
"What Ubee is trying to say is that we were loved." Oreo reaffirmed.
"We know that beloved ones, that is why you are here." Persephone smiled.
"No, that's not it." Oreo said. "Our humans do not need to be told how much we loved them. At least, I hope not. I would think that a headbutt every night for eleven years would have been a bit of a clue."
"We help tell the next human how much they be loved." Ubee said.
"How will you do that?" Persphone asked.
"We don't know. " Ubee replied. "We finked you help us find out."
"Ubee." Persephone picked up the little tabby kitten. "I don't know but I have a friend who might know how to help."
"Oreo." Phineus held out his arms. "Do you want to help us?"
"Of Course." Oreo replied and he jumped up into Phineus's arms.

The two Seraphim flew far from the Rainbow Bridge with the two cats held tightly in their arms. Phineus with Oreo clutched tightly to his chest had a much easier time than Persephone who struggled with a very squirmy and excited little kitten.

They followed the great swirling creek that flowed under the Rainbow Bridge to its source; the long lost cherubim, Malachi.

The Seraphim landed and placed their companions at the base of the small outcropping of stone where Malachi now sat. Phineus and Persephone froze in their tracks as they beheld the sight of one of their own; trapped in the misery that only humans can create.

Malachi sat on his stone seat and forever wept the tears that human indifference towards God's creatures had caused.

"Malachi." Phineus tentatively approached his long lost brother. "We need your guidance."

Malachi remained motionless and unresponsive on his stone perch.

The four companions stood and stared at the still weeping form of Malachi. The answers that they hoped to find did not seem to be forthcoming. Ubee looked at the his three companions and then at Malachi's still form.

Ubee trotted over to the the stone ledge where Malachi sat. He tried to scale the stone to get to Malachi's side but his tiny little kitten arms could not find any purchase or foothold in the cold hard stone. As Ubee strained to climb up, two stones dislodged from Malachi's prominence and fell to the heavenly firmament at Phineus and Persephone's feet.

"This is what you seek." Malachi suddenly spoke.

Phineus and Persephone each picked up one of the stones.

"Give each new creature at the Rainbow Bridge a piece of stone, and have them cast one into each of the two pools." Malachi said slowly and sadly. "Phineus, my beloved brother. Since you brought Oreo, who bears a lifetime of love and happiness, your stones will be cast into the Pool of Memory. Each creature will now forever add their own strength of memory to its power. Persephone, my beloved sister. Your young charge, Ubee, was taken young, but was loved very fiercely for his tender short life. Your stones shall be cast into the Pool of Loss, where they shall remind all that time is but a fleeting moment to those whose heart is open to God's miracles."

Phineus and Persephone bowed to their brother Malachi, and then picked up Oreo and Ubee and flew them back to the Rainbow Bridge. They did not stop at the Bridge but proceeded well past it until they reached the end of the creek that flowed beneath the Rainbow Bridge. There they found the Pool of Memory and of Loss and the heavenly creature that guided any human who came to partake.

"Malachi sent us." Persephone approached the heavenly being and the two pools of water.
"This is I know to be honest and true of purpose." The creature responded, and then motioned to Persephone. "Give your stone to the little one. He must cast it into the pool."

Persephone handed Ubee her stone. He pushed it to the edge of the pool as best his little paws could muster. The stone tumbled over the edge and fractured the pristine glass-like surface of the pool.Although Ubee's life on Earth had been short and sorrowful, it had been full of love; the kind of love that can bear any amount of loss. The creature tensed as the stone broke the surface of the water. Persephone looked at her hand and saw that her stone was once again held within her palm.

"Give your stone to the one marked by love." The creature asked Phineus. "He must cast it into the pool."

Phineus gave his stone to Oreo who carefully let it slide into the pristine water. Oreo's life had not been short nor had it been excessively long but it had been full of many loving memories nonetheless. The creature smiled at both of the cats.

"Thank you for your gift to humans who might come this way." the creature glowed. "These pools were formed by sacrifice and desolation, but now with your gift they shall be refreshed with love and hope."

The creature looked at Phineus and Persephone.

"Go release your brother from his exile." the creature said. "His love for these creatures has given them the power to help humans without his own suffering. The three of you will now be given the True Purpose of providing two stones to each creature who enters the meadow of the Rainbow Bridge. They will bring their stones here and cast them into the pools. In doing so they will share their own sense of memory and loss with any human who chooses to enter into God's covenant. The pain of loss and the joy of memory the humans feel when they come here in their dreams will be that of every creature who has ever been blessed by them. The humans are no longer the burden of a single heart-broken cherabim. These feelings are now the collective love and sorrow of every creature who calls the Rainbow Bridge their temporary home."
"Did we help? Ubee asked Persephone who wept into his fur.
"Yes, Ubee" Phineus smiled as he placed a kiss on Oreo's forehead . "You and Oreo both helped. More than you may ever realize."

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Happy Purrthday, Smudge!

Happy Purrthday, Smudge!

Today, you are elebenty years old. You don't look a day over eight.


Dolce, Bella, Chloe, Magoo and Baci

Grandma, Mom, and Dad

Monday, May 04, 2009

A Tribute to Lost Furriends

I meant to put up a tribute for one of our first blogging furriends Oreo, but I couldn't find the right words.

Then today I was talking with a friend and found out that he and his family lost their faithful friend, Sarge. My wife and I met Sarge and enjoyed recieving big slobbery kisses from this kindly German Shepard whenever we came to visit. Our friends don't have a blog so I chose to post this tribute to Sarge.

It fit for both Sarge and Oreo.

Godspeed, dear furriends. Godspeed.

What is this?

Baci: Dolce, Looked at what I founded.

Dolce: Baci, You are not supposed to be digging in Dad's stuff.

Baci: I am helping Dad. He said he losted something, so I was trying to help find it.

Dolce: So what did you find.

Baci: It's something called a con tracked. It's got his name on it and everything. I didn't know that Dad was a con. Or that someone was tracking him.

Dolce: Stupid Brother. Dad is not a con and no one was tracking him. It says here that they will pay him some green papers to do some work for them. It has Dad signature but that is not his name.

Bella: You two are so slow. Dad is now self-employed.

Dolce: What does that mean. Self-Employed.

Magoo: It means his boss is an egotistical ass and a self important jerk.

Bella: Magoo, that`s not nice.

Dolce: I don`t get it.

Baci: Me neither.

Magoo: That`s means you at least as smart as Dad`s lone employee. I`m going to visit Grandma. She has my favourite treats.

Dolce: I think Magoo is getting senile.

Baci: Isn`t that a river in Egypt.

Pee Ess: We need to send some purrayers to our furriend, Sarge, a great and noble German Shepard woofie who went peacefully in his sleep to the Rainbow Bridge last week. Let him know that he is missed and still much loved by his beans.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A Special Post

Dad: Sargeant-At-Claws!
Magoo: Yes, Sir!
Dad: Is Everyone Present?
Magoo: Yes, Sir!
Dad: Honour Guard! Attention!
Dolce and Baci:: shuffle nervously :: Attention, Sir!
Dad: M'Ladies, Would you please escort in our honored guest.
Bella and Chloe: As you wish.

Bella and Chloe leave the room. They return, escorting Smudge, one on each side.

Dad: Smudge, Present yourself to your family and kin!

Bella and Chloe lead Smudge until he stands before Dad, and then they solemnly move two paces away.

Dad: Smudge, Do you know why your family and kin have brought you here tonight?

Smudge: No.

Dad: They are here to bear witness and affirm what I as head of this household am about to bestow apon you.

Baci, Dolce, Magoo, Bella and Chloe look at each other and then at Smudge.

Dad: Tonight, You stood at the backdoor and growled for no apparent reason.

Smudge: I might have.

Dad: Good. So you admit the action which is the cause of all this ceremony tonight. Do you know what was discovered apon hearing your growl at the backdoor?

Smudge: I think so, I was growling at it.

Dad: But was it in your yard?

Smudge: No. It was past the fence over near the...

Dad: It was over near the road. Not a real busy road but a dangerous road nonetheless.

Smudge: Yes, You always told us to stay away from the road because it was dangerous.

Dad: Do you know what I saw when I went to investigate what you were growling at?

Smudge: The furry cat that sometimes comes to visit us.

Dad: Yes. The furry cat that comes to visit our yard from time to time. You have done a great and noble thing dear furriend.
:: Dad speaks to the other Cats ::
When I looked to see what was bothering dear Smudge, I saw our dear furry visitor attempting to cross the road at the end of our block. Now our road is not extremely busy but other stupid humans drive too fast and without care and attention to felines and puppies who might be out for an unsupervised stroll. I saw this poor feline soul starting to cross the road. I yelled at the feline. The cat surprisingly turned back and did not cross the road. Now if its home had laid across the road's expanse it would have ran faster across the road. But it did not. It came back to our side of the road. The side of the road where its home must surely be. By your actions, Smudge, I was able to prevent an unknown furriend from doing something that might endanger it own life. To do something for someone or some furriend that you do not even know that is the greatest act of honour and compassion known on this Earth.

As the bean of this household, it is my honour to bestow upon you the rank and privileges of the Holy and Ancient Order of the Catnip. Rise now, Sir Smudge, and accept your honours.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

We is looking for sumting

Dolce: Baci, Stop it. I'm looking for sumting.
Baci: What is it?
Dolce: Sumting Dad lost.
Baci: It's not a fuzzy mouse or our gushy foods is it?
Dolce: No. It's sumting called a job. Dad says he losted it. I am pretty sure that i can finds it.
Baci: What does it smell like? Maybe I can helps.
Dolce: It smells like gushy foods, and a warm spring day when things are peaceful. You know... things that make everything okay.
Baci: Do you mean that now that Dad has lost this thing that everything won't be okay?
Dolce: Nope. Our dad is berry conservative. He says our gushy food fund is well stocked.
Baci: Whooofoooo! i was worried. i loves my gushy foods.
Dolce: it means we have to be more carefulls. We won't gets new crunchy mice or nippy toys for a while. So no peeing on on the toys.
Baci: It wasn't me. It was Magoo and Smudge. they has been been peeing on a lot of stuff.
Bella: Baci, maybe if you would not chase everybody the peeing would stop.
Dolce: I losted my favourite box because sumbody peeded in it.
Baci: That's not my fault. I poop in grandma's room.

Dad: Everybody stop it! Yes, my job is gone. We will be okay. no more worrying. We just need to put our heads together and figure out how to make this work for us.

Dolce: But we is worried. We read about all our furriends who has had moneys problems.

Dad: We are not there. We will need to behave ourselves over the next while. But we will be okay.

Dolce: What can we do to help?

Dad: Ask your furriends to purray for us and everyone else in the same situation as us. We are strong, we will survive and we will be better afterwards.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Happy Purrthday Magoo!

Thirteen years ago, an angel came to earth. He did not have wings, but had four huge grey paws instead. He did not have a halo, but had a fluffy little tail instead. We did not know it at the time, but this little angel was made just for us.

The paws are still huge, and the little tail has grown into a long dust mop. He may have changed and grown up into a handsome mancat, but he will always be our little grey angel.

Happy Purrthday, Magoo!

With Love from

Mom, Dad, Grandma, Bella, Dolce, Smudge, Chloe, Dolce and even Baci.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and the Furry Helpers (pt 6)

Dad: Welcome dear furriends to Dolce's Story Chair. It has taken a lot longer to tell this year's story. I hope you all have felt that the wait was worth it. So sit back and enjoy the conclusion of "Jingles and the Furry Helpers"

Jingles and the Furry Helpers
Part 6: Home is the Sweetest Word

Santa’s sleigh appeared on the horizon due south of the North Pole. Two Elfs in the Great Southern Watchtower saw the sleigh’s approach and sounded their bright brass trumpets. A great bell was rung and its announcement tolled joyfully over the town. All of the Elfs of the North Pole danced and cheered and hugged each other for another Christmas Eve successfully over.
Sammy Sleighmaster looked sternly at the Toy Factory clocktower. A winkle crossed his brow and a frown crept to his mouth. Several other Elfs saw this and were taken aback. It was unheard of for an Elf of the North Pole to frown. Whispers and rumours spread like wildfire across the North Pole. Sammy Sleighmaster had frowned. Something had happened to Santa. The Christmas Magic was failing. Global Warming was going to send the North Pole to the bottom of the Arctic Ocean.
Sammy watched as the sleigh came in for its landing. The sleigh was listing ever so slightly to the left. The reindeer seemed to be strained and exhausted more than usual. Sammy noticed that Santa had the same wrinkle on his forehead that Sammy had on his. The trip this year had not gone well. Sammy realized he would have to spend many long nights figuring out what had gone wrong.
The sleigh landed with a slight skreech as metal runners struck the stone cobble. Sammy watched as a wave of relief washed over Santa’s face. Sammy’s worst fears came true as he realized that this years Christmas run had narrowly avoided disaster. He as soon as the sleigh stopped moving, Sammy raced to Santa’s side.
“Welcome back, Santa.” Sammy said as he scanned the sleigh for damage or anything out of place. “I hope things went smoothly.”
“We had some problems.” Santa started to explain.
Tinker, the little black kitten, walked across Santa’s lap and his sister, Myrrh, and stared at Sammy.
“Me fix.” Tinker said defiantly.
“And what did you fix, Little One.” Sammy asked with a tiny smile.
“Me fix.” Tinker repeated.
Jingles came to Tinker’s side and looked down from the sleigh at his good friend, Sammy Sleighmaster.
“We had a problem with the Gum Drop Diode Array..” Jingles replied. ” I tried to fix it but I was too large to reach it. This little guy seemed to know exactly what needed to be done and he saved us.”
“Excuse me.” Santa said as he adjusted the little orange ginger kitten in his lap. “But, if I remember correctly, I am the one in charge here.”
“Sorry, Santa.” Jingles said as he lowered his head. He reached out his paw and he gently pulled Tinker back.
“What happened, Santa?” Sammy Sleighmaster asked.
“It is as Jingles said.” Santa replied as he climbed down from the sleigh. “And as you warned us. The new Gum Drop Drive Array worked its way loose. We almost went for a long cold swim. If it wasn’t for Jingles and this little guy.”
Santa gave Tinker a loving rub on the head.
“Impound the sleigh!” Sammy commanded to several of the Elfs nearby. “Notify Safety and Health that there was a Class One infraction.”
The Elfs around the sleigh started scrambling about. The joyous return of Santa and his sleigh was replaced by the serious aura that surrounded a near catastrophic accident.
“So I understand that you helped save the sleigh.” Sammy regarded the little black kitten.
“Me fix.” The little black kitten now named Tinker responded.
“You know what. “ Sammy replied with a large smile. “That’s what I heard.”
“Me fix.” Tinker said proudly to his two other littermates.
“I think you and I are going to be very good friends.” Sammy said as he gave Tinker a quick loving scratch on his right ear.

Jingles woke in his own bed at Taylor Tailorson’s. He yawned and stretched and tried not to disturb the three other little bodies that were curled up on his puffy red pillow bed. He went towards the kitchen and saw Taylor siting at the table and reading the North Pole Post newspaper.
“They are still writing about you four.” Taylor said.
“Which one of us is an alien this time?” Jingles asked.
“You do realize that the New York Times is a not a real paper?” Taylor said, and then added. “You are still on the front page; Hometown Hero Rescues Three Forgotten Waifs.”
“I can’t believe they are still writing about it a whole month later.” Jingles said sadly as he shook his head. “And they still have it wrong. Tinker saved us not the other way around.”
“Well, He will be rewarded for that today.” Taylor stated. “Do the kittens have any idea?”
“Nope.” Jingles said happily. “I can’t believe what Santa and the Elfs have arranged for us. The kittens will be so surprised.”
“Remember that you have to be at Holly, Holly, Holly and Jolly at nine o’clock sharp to get the kittens’ papers finalized.” Taylor said.
“I know.” Jingles replied as he lapped at his morning cream. “We have to be finished by eleven.”
“Eleven.” Taylor said excitedly. “Eleven precisely.”

“What’s eleven?” A little voice squeaked from the hallway.
Jingles and Taylor turned to see Myrrh sitting sleepily in the middle of the hall leading to Jingles room.
“Eleven is the time when everything changes.” Taylor said as he got up and walked over to the tiny orange ginger kitten. “Now come and have some breakfast. I think Jingles left some cream for you.”
“Did someone say cream?” a little tabby with four white socks asked as she peered into the hallway from Jingles room.
“Yes, Cookie.” Taylor smiled. “There is some cream for you as well.”
“Can you put cookie bits in it again?” Cookie asked as she hopped up onto the stool Jingles had just vacated.
“Yep.” Taylor laughed. “There is some Elfin blood in all of the kittens.”
A small black kitten walked out of Taylor’s sewing room. He was covered in dust and soot.
“It’s all fixed.” Tinker said as he hopped up onto the same stool as Cookie. “The drive pedal screw was loose. It shouldn’t wobble anymore.”
“Well thank you very much, Tinker.” Taylor said as he winked at Jingles.
Jingles looked at Tinker and then at Taylor. Jingles knew that Taylor had loosened the screw himself yesterday and then pretended to complain about it in front of Tinker. Tinker responded quickly with his “Me fix” declaration. Jingles chuckled at Taylor, who had been loosening and detaching things all over his house so that Tinker could fix them.

As the four cats walked down the cobblestone street towards their very important meeting at Holly, Holly, Holly, Holly and Jolly, they were greeted and congratulated by every Elf they met. The three little kittens began to realize that something exciting was happening at the North Pole. They stopped following Jingles in an orderly manner and began to chase and tumble over each other as they walked.
“Everybody is so happy today.” Myrrh noticed.
“I smell freshly baked cookies and cakes.” Cookie mentioned as she sniffed the air.
“I smell fresh paint.” Tinker added. “And freshly cut timber.”
“Well.” Jingles stated as he looked over his shoulder at the three rambunctious kittens. “Today is special. Today you become citizens of the North Pole. Just like I did last year. The Elfs are extremely excited and happy because it happens so very rarily.”
“Oh.” All three kittens replied in unison.

Soon Jingles and the kittens were in the Law offices of Holly, Holly, Holly, Holly and Jolly. An impeccably dressed elf sat across from the cats and carefully arranged the papers on his desk. Jingles was happy to see the senior partner of the firm, Evergreen Holly, Sr. , Esquire again. The patriarch of the North Pole’s only law firm had also been the Elf who handled Jingles’ citizenship.
“It appears that everything is in order.” Evergreen Holly, Sr. Esquire stated as he sat back in his chair and then tucked his thumbs under the lapels of his jacket. “Now we just have to wait for Santa to come and give these youngsters the Oath.”
The kittens looked nervously at each other and then at Jingles and Evergreen.
The door to Evergreen’s office open and Santa was ushered in by a pretty young Elfin lady.
“Jingles.” Evergreen said proudly. “I don’t know if you have met my daughter, Judicious Jolly, Esquire.”
“Congratulations, Judicious.” Jingles said with a respectful nod of his head.
“You may call me Judy.” The young Elf smiled.
“Judy is now in charge of our Immigration and Citizenship department.“ Evergreen boasted. “We had to do something. Nothing like a four-hundred percent increase in business to encourage the younger generation. Now where are my manners. Greetings to you, Santa.”
“And to you, Evergreen.” Santa replied. “good morning to you Jingles, Myrrh, Cookie and Tinker.”
“Good morning, Santa.” The three kittens replied.
‘Good Morning, Santa.” Jingles said as he glanced at the clock on the wall.
Santa, Evergreen and Judy followed Jingles’ glance. The clock read three-quartermarks past ten.
“We better get this ceremony going.” Santa said as he picked up each kitten and placed it on Evergreen’s desk next to the paper that bore their name.
“Now repeat after me…” Santa began the kittens’ citizenship ceremony.

Now it must be said that the Oath of Citizenship of the North Pole is very strong Christmas magic. It cannot be written down anywhere. It resides only in Santa’s memory. Once spoken the words disappear from the oathtaker’s mind and are replaced with the feeling and presence of the magical connection to the North Pole. It gives the oathtaker knowledge of the exact location of the North Pole and a deep understanding of the Christmas Magic. In the wrong hands, much greed and evil could be done. As such, the exact wording and intonations are strictly guarded.

“Now place your pawmark here.” Judy instructed each kitten. She had to help Myrrh who seemed very reluctant to put her clean paw on the inkpad.
“It tastes like peppermint.” Cookie said happily as she licked and groomed her paw feverously.
“I name you, Myrrh. Friend to All, Citizen of the North Pole, Beloved One and Trusted One.” Santa placed a kiss on Myrrh’s forehead, and as he did so a faint blue arc crossed from his lips to her head.
“I name you, Cookie; Friend to All, Citizen of the North Pole, Beloved One and Trusted One.” Santa placed a kiss on Cookie’s forehead. The same faint blue arc crossed from Santa to Cookie.
“I name you, Tinker; Friend to All, Citizen of the North Pole, Beloved One and Trusted One.” As before, Santa placed a kiss on Tinker’s forehead and the blue arc appeared between him and Tinker.
“Welcome you three to the North Pole.” Santa beamed. “You are now citizens, friends and family to all at the North Pole.”

The clocktower at the Toy Factory began to ring out. Eleven chimes of the great bells sounded throughout the North Pole. Santa, Evergreen, Judy and Jingles all looked at each other.
“I have to get going.” Santa said quickly. “All that paperwork is not going to finish itself.”
“We have some contracts to get drafted up as well.” Evergreen and Judy nodded.
“We have taken up enough of you time.” Jingles said as he tried to herd the kittens towards the door.
“We shall see you later.” Evergreen said. “Congratulations and welcome once again to the North Pole.”

Jingles tried to get the kittens to hurry up. Unfortunately, all three were still very excited from their citizenship ceremony. Cookie was not walking properly as she kept trying to lick more of the peppermint ink from her paw. It took a little longer than Jingles had wanted to get the kittens from the third floor offices to the main lobby of the building. As soon as the four cats reached the main floor lobby, the three kittens sensed something big was happening outside the building. Jingles tried to get the kittens to ignore the distractions.
“Let’s go.” Jingles prodded and nudged the kittens. ”We can’t be here all day.”
“There is something happening.” Tinker stated as he regarded the scene outside the main doors with a little cant of his head.
“It looks very important.” Myrrh added.

As Jingles and the three kittens exited the building, the scale of the disturbance was evident. The street outside the building was packed with Elfs all waving banners and ribbons. Jingles felt a warm tingle grow in his stomach. The kittens were stunned into open-mouthed silence.
“Come along.” Jingles lead the kittens towards a tiny gold and red sleigh.
“Hello Jingles.” One of the tiny yearling reindeer turned his head to look at Jingles and the kittens.
“Hello, Blizzard.” Jingles replied. “And Good Morning to you too, Snowdrift.”
“Good Morning, Jingles.” The other yearling reindeer replied. “Are you ready?”
“As ready as I ever will be.” Jingles admitted. “Now everyone hop into the sleigh. We have a bit of a ride ahead of us.”
Jingles was soon peppered with questions from the three kittens, who bounded from one side of the sleigh to the other.
“I think we are ready, Blizzard; Snowdrift.” Jingles tried to calmed the kittens down.
“Nope.” Snowdrift stated. “You have to say it like Santa. Just because we aren’t full fledged reindeer yet doesn’t mean you can skip protocol.”
“We’re not going to be flying.” Blizzard said.
“I am a reindeer and this is a sleigh.” Snowdrift stated emphatically. “Jingles has to do it properly.”
“Jingles.” Blizzard turned his head to look at Jingles. “Please. Just to keep him happy.”
“On Blizzard, On Snowdrift.” Jingles called out with a gentle snap of the reins.
“Thank you.” Snowdrift replied and he began to pull the sleigh forward.

Jingles and the kittens rode the sleigh though the streets of the North Pole. Everywhere they went, throngs of Elfs cheered and waved.

The sleigh made a final turn onto quiet little street. It drove past several houses. From each window, an Elf greeted them. Blizzard and Snowdrift slowed the sleigh down in front of a small little house surrounded by a large catnip garden. At the front door there were two elfs standing patiently, Taylor and Sammy.
“We are here.” Blizzard stated.
“Thank you, Blizzard and Snowdrift.” Jingles said.
“Where are we?” Tinker asked.
“What is this place?” Cookie asked.
“Home.” Myrrh said simply."It is Home."
“Is it a fixer-upper?” Tinker asked hopefully.
“Home.” Cookie sighed. “Home is the sweetest word.”

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Can't trust the Cats

Sorry that it has been so long since we have posted any pictures. We have been busy with our two new housemates and the chaos that has ensued. Which brings us to the purpose of this post.

Baci is being a jerk. He keeps chasing Chloe and Smudge. There have been couple of fur-flying fights, which has upset Grandma terribly. So we decided that we need to stop encouraging Baci's bad behaviour and at the same time try to increase Smudge and Chloe's comfort in roaming about the house.

So I laid down a new rule...

If Baci attacks either Chloe or Smudge, he has to go for a time out in the bedroom.

It worked for about thirty minutes when his bestest furriend ever, Dolce, decided to spring him from the room. That's right, Dolce figured out how to open the door and let Baci out.

Now what do I do? Outsmarted by my cats again. Maybe I should give in to my wife's desire for a puppy...Hmmm...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and the Furry Helpers (pt 5B)

Jingles and the Furry Helpers
Part 5B: A Hectic Ride home

Santa and Jingles stared at the three little forlorn faces in the cardboard box. Each of the kittens were staring right back at Santa and Jingles. Jingles felt a deep excitement within his chest. He tried to fight it but his very audible purr betrayed his happiness. The loneliness that had plagued him at the North Pole was gone. The sorrow that followed the goodbyes with his mother and his siblings was also gone. Jingles had someone to show the wonders of the North Pole; someone who would understand the fascination and joy that a four inch piece of ribbon could possess, and someone who would understand how sleeping on top of a gurgling radiator was more comfortable than a silk, down-filled bed.
“Well, Jingles.” Santa asked. ”What do we do?”
Jingles propped his paws on the edge of the cardboard box and watched the three kittens intently. He dropped down to seat of the sleigh.
“You have to bond with them, Santa.” Jingles said. “they have to trust you more than anything in the world.”
“One at a time?” Santa asked.
“We are at least forty minutes from the North Pole, so I think you had better try to bond with all three at once.” Jingles advised.
“You don’t see a problem with letting three kittens loose on the sleigh as we cruise miles above the Earth?” Santa sought clarification from Jingles.
“Nope.” Jingles replied quickly, but then rethought his answer. “Why? Do you see a problem?”
“I can see several.” Santa stated.”But if you say I need to bond with these kittens, then I will.”
Santa reached into the cardboard box and scooped out the first kitten. The deep orange ginger kitten with the white strip emblazoned on its forehead started purring the minute it felt Santa’s gentle grasp. It snuggled into his lap and continued to purr contently. It seemed like it was made for Santa’s lap. Santa found a large smile on his face as he rejoiced in the kitten’s sweet loving disposition.
“Does it have a name?” Santa asked.
Jingles looked at the orange ginger kitten purring contently and loudly in Santa’s lap. He sniffed gently at the kitten. The kitten regarded Jingles and then twisted its body onto its back. Jingles sat back on his haunches.
“Her name is Myrrrh.” Jingles said.
“Her?’ Santa was taken aback.
“She is a gift that is fit for the King of Kings.” Jingles replied as he nuzzled the little kitten.
Santa reached into the box and lifted up the white-mitted brown and black tabby. The kitten sniffed at Santa’s beard. It began licking his snowy white beard. Santa pulled the kitten away from his beard but the kitten reached out and pulled his beard towards itself and it continued to lick and groom the lock of hair that it had managed to grasp.
“Santa.” Jingles looked at the kitten and at Santa. “Did you eat all the cookies at the last house?”
“Yes.” Santa answered and then hesitated slightly. “Well, we were a little rushed so I did kind of gobble them down.”
“I thought I smelled gingersnaps.” Jingles saw with a chuckle. “Her name is Cookie. It seems she knows what she likes.”
Santa attempted to place the kitten now called Cookie on the seat of the sleigh but she resisted and she grabbed an even larger tuft of Santa’s beard. Santa gave up trying to dislodge Cookie from her grooming session on his beard. He awkwardly reached over and pulled the last kitten from the box. He set the black kitten down on the seat of the sleigh as the orange kitten sat and purred in his lap and the tabby licked at his cookie crumb dusted beard. The black kitten sat and looked about the sleigh. He looked at Santa and at Jingles. He surveyed the controls of the sleigh. He made no move towards either Jingles or Santa.
Jingles did not know what to do with the strangely aloof little black kitten. After watching the other two kittens bond so quickly with Santa, Jingles fully expected the last kitten to adopt Santa similarly. The black kitten watched the other two kittens. He gave his little legs a stretch and then he sat beside Jingles and adopted the exact same stance on seat of the Sleigh.
“Does it have a name?” Santa asked Jingles.
Jingles sniffed at the kitten, who got perturbed at Jingles prodding.
“He will.” Jingles replied. “But he does seem to know what he wants. He thinks you smell friendly enough but that’s not what he needs. Maybe we can figure out what his name should be once we get home.”
“Home, it is then.” Santa repositioned the tabby kitten onto his shoulder where she could still get access to his beard and then adjusted the contently purring ginger on his lap, before he gave the reins of the sleigh a gentle snap. “Due North we Bear, To Home We Head, Fly Straight Dear Friends, To Loft and Bed.”
The reindeer surged forward on unseen paths and unknown footfalls. Santa sat with two new kittens cozied up on his shoulders and on his lap. Jingles sat with a tiny black shadow that mimicked his precise posture. Jingles looked down at the tiny black kitten.
“What do we call you little one?” Jingles asked.
The kitten looked up at him briefly and then went back to studying everything about him.
Jingles nose wrinkled as a little whiff of gas wafted up from the black kitten.
“You’re quite the little stinker aren’t you?” Santa also grimaced as the kitten’s gas reached even his nose.
Jingles look up at Santa. They both felt a great giddy laugh build within. Santa let it out and he gave both Jingles and the little black kitten a loving head rub.

From the seat of the sleigh, Santa, Jingles and the three kittens could finally see the beginning of the permanent ice sheath that lead to the North Pole. Even the reindeer could sense that the worst part of their yearly trip was over. Soon the sleigh would return to normal weight and inertia and their natural talents would slowly supplant the magical means that were necessary to propel Santa around the world on his unique yearly journey.

The sleigh shuddered suddenly. It dropped almost a hundred feet in altitude in a blink of an eye. Santa’s hands gripped the reins tightly. Even Jingles could sense the panic in the reindeer as the sleigh suddenly took on more weight and inertia than they could magically handle.
“What’s the matter, Santa?” Jingles asked as the kittens instinctively cowered
next to him on the sleigh’s seat.
“I don’t know.” Santa struggled with reins. No matter what he did the sleigh continued to rapidly lose lift. “Sammy warned us about this,remember.”
“The gum drop diodes.” Jingles remembered. “They must have worked themselves loose.”
“Can you check Jingles.” Santa asked as he tried to keep the Reindeer’s path above the horizon.
“I will look, Santa.” Jingles hopped down to the floor of the sleigh and opened the access hatch to the amazing mechanical works of Santa’s sleigh. “But that was added after my trip last year. I don’t know where they are.”
“You have to try Jingles.” Santa replied excitedly. ‘We only need about thirty more minutes to reach the permanent ice pack.”
Jingles worked himself through the access panel. He could see the gum drop array as it vibrated and started to shake itself loose. He tried to squeeze himself closer towards the gum drop drive array, but he was too big. Jingles felt a sharp, jarring thud as his body was slammed against the roof of the mechanical compartment by a sudden loss of altitude of the sleigh.
“Jingles.” Santa cried out. “You better hurry. The reindeer can’t hold this line much longer.”
Jingles suddenly felt the same pangs of weakness and failure that he had felt his first year on Santa’s sleigh. He had one task to complete, it was beyond his ability to finish and now it seemed that not even Santa would be able to help him. The sleigh’s rapid descent sharpened.
Jingles tried to reach the Gum Drop Diode Drive Array. It only needed to be pushed back into place to save the sleigh.

Neither Santa or Jingles noticed a little black kitten follow Jingles into the heart of Santa’s sleigh. The little kitten followed Jingles unheard and unseen. He watched as Jingles tried to reach a small rectangular panel that was bouncing irregularly amongst the other equipment. The little black kitten looked around at all the miraculous gizmos and gadgets that whirled and spun in the heart of Santa’s sleigh. He watched and studied each and every little movement, bob, jump and wiggle of the vast myriad of candy-cane control rods, wreath gyroscopes, and licorice cabling.

Jingles felt the press of a little body against his. He turned his head and saw that the little black kitten had followed him into the belly of Santa’s sleigh.

“Go back, little one.” Jingles demanded. “This is no place for you. Go find Santa!”
The little black looked at Jingle and then at the vibrating Gum Drop Diode Array that was threatening to break loose from its designated spot.
“Me fix.” The little black kitten said defiantly as he wormed his way along Jingles’ side.
“Go back!” Jingles tried to order the little black kitten.
There was another sharp drop of the sleigh and both Jingles and the little black kitten were slammed against the roof of the sleighs’ mechanical space. Jingles let out a gasp as his back hit a supporting strut. The little black kitten had been tossed a couple of feet away. He was dangerously close to one of the wildly cavitating wreath gyroscopes.
“Stinker!” Jingles called out in panic. He had not figured out the little black kitten’s true name yet, so he had resorted to the last thought he had of the little black kitten.
“Jingles!” Santa cried out. “You better get those diodes fixed or we are all going for a very long cold swim!”
Jingles tore his gaze from the still form of the little black kitten to the now madly flopping diode array. He tried to move closer to the diode array but he was still a paw length away. He did not notice that the little black kitten was slowly crawling back towards the Gum Drop Diode Drive Array.

“Me fix!” the little black kitten said defiantly aloud to himself.
The little black kitten crawled past Jingles and reached the loose diode drive array. His small frame allowed him to rear up slightly with the narrow confines of the sleigh’s mechanical space. He drove both of his tiny fur tufted paws down sharply onto the vibrating array.
“Me fix!” the little black kitten cried as he reared up again and then drove his paws down on the array. “Me fix!”
There was a slight shudder as the Gum Drop Diode Drive Array temporarily reconnected. Santa’s sleigh jumped slightly higher into the sky with each and every pounce of the little black kitten onto the diode array.
Jingles saw that the little black kitten’s efforts were working.
“Come on, Stinker!” Jingles cried out, “You can do it!”
“That’s it, s’Tinker.”
“You’ve got it, ‘Tinker.”
“That’s it, Tinker!” Jingles exclaimed, “You did it!”
There was a deep thrum as the Gum Drop Diode Array fully engaged. Suddenly the sleigh jumped upwards and found its original flight path home.
“Thank you, Tinker.” Jingle snuzzled the little black kitten. “You have saved all of us.”

Santa’s sleigh broached the break between the land and the great northern ice sheet as it raced towards the North Pole. Santa gave a great sigh of relief. Even if the flying magic of the sleigh and the reindeer failed, they would now be able to make back to the North Pole. It might take several weeks of traversing the ice and snow fields on the ground to get back home, but they would get home.

To be continued...

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and the Furry Helpers (pt 5A)

Jingles and the Furry Helpers
Part 5A: A Hectic Ride home

“On Dasher, On Dancer, On Prancer and Vixen!” Santa called out to his magical reindeer. “On Comet, On Cupid, On Donner and Blitzen!”

Santa’s reindeer strained against the sleigh. There was a most unChristmas-like screech of steel runner on snow-clad asphalt. Slowly, the sleigh picked up speed. Soon it jumped free of the snow lined street and rose into the Christmas Eve sky. The faint redness of the eastern sky warned that Christmas Eve was soon to be replaced with Christmas Day. The sleigh arced high and fast and made a straight and true run for the North Pole. Everyone on the sleigh, from Santa and Jingles to the reindeer, knew that to be caught by the sunlight on Christmas Day would extinguish Santa’s magic forever.
As they raced further northwards, the rising sun grew dimmer and dimmer. Santa gave a small sigh of relief as the fear of being caught by the Christmas Day sun was quickly fading.
“Santa.” Jingles was busy sniffing and checking out the box they had found by the silent humane shelter. “There is a tag here on the box. It’s addressed to both of us.”
“Let me see that.” Santa looked at the cardboard box he had retrieved from the humane shelter.
“To Santa and Jingles.” Santa read the silver and gold inscripted tag. “From Antonius, Dulcinea and Elbereth.”
“Who are they?” Jingles asked as he found his perch looking over Santa’s shoulder.
“Elbereth is the Angel who brought you the scroll.” Santa replied, “I think Dulcinea is the Angel who built the Rainbow Bridge. I do not know who Antonius is. He must be an Angel as well.”
“He brought me to my mom.” Jingles said softly. “He is the Angel that brings all kittens to earth.”
Santa looked at Jingles.
“Shall we open it?” Santa asked.
“I don’t think three important Angels would give us a gift if they did not want us to open it immediately.” Jingles said as he canted his head and regarded the cardboard box.
“Well then, we open it. Now.”Santa said as he pulled the cardboard box open.

There, looking back up at Santa and Jingles, were three kitten faces, one solid black, one a deep orange ginger with a bold emblazoned white stripe on his forehead, and a white-mitted brown and black tabby.

To Be Continued...

Dad: Now, dear furriends, I want to give you all the chance to help out a poor, unimaginative story-teller. I need three names for the kittens that Santa and Jingle found in the cardboard box. They need to be names that you think a cat located at the North Pole would have. Do you think you can help?

Friday, January 09, 2009

Dolce's Story Chair - Jingles and the Furry Helpers (pt 4)

Jingles and the Furry Helpers
Part 4: One Last Gift

Jingles and Santa made their yearly trip around the world. Now that Jingles was no longer hanging out the back of the sleigh or trying to time his jumps through Santa’s fireplace portals, the trip went quicker for both Jingles and Santa. It went so well that Santa let Jingles have several extra minutes with his brother and sister at one house and his mother at another.

“I am so proud of you, Jingles” Amaretti purred as she and Jingles rubbed cheeks.
“I miss you so much.” Jingles purred as he flopped over to let his mother groom and lick his forehead.
“You are far more than any of us could ever hope to be.” Amaretti said. “You bring joy to everyone you touch.”
“There is something else…”Jingles tried to explain to his Mom about the scroll.
“Of course there will be pain and sorrow along with the joy.” Amaretti purred knowingly. “You may be my son, but you now understand how I feel. I bring you, My joy, into the world, knowing that there is pain and sorrow waiting out there for you.”
“Santa says that it becomes easier to bear.” Jingles replied.
“Depends.” Amaretti replied. “I never found it easier. But then I never knew what became of any of my kittens. I know some found their way to the Bridge far too soon. But other than the word you bring of Ruffles and Monkey, I do not know what happen to any of my other offspring.”
“I can find out…” Jingles offered to help.
“No, Jingles.” Amaretti gave Jingles a firm but loving headbutt. “My children have been set upon their Path,just as you have found your own miraculously chosen task. Live your life, Jingles. Live it with every essence of your being. That is how you honor me and the rest of your family.”
“I will.”Jingles bowed his head.
“Jingles.” Amaretti said proudly. “I am so proud of what you have become. I mourned for my little lost kitten, but I see that he has returned as a big brave cat.”
“Thank you, Mom.” Jingle said as a tears pooled in his eyes.
“Jingles. There is one more thing.”Amaretti added as she placed her paw on Jingles’ paw. “I do not want you to mourn when and if you see my name on your scroll. I can sense that you will outlive all of us. You must find the strength to go on and remember that we are always with you.”
“I am always here Jingles.’ Amaretti placed her paw on Jingles chest, next to his heart.”Never forget that.”
Suddenly the magic that surrounded him and Santa revealed a terrible secret to Jingles. In his heart, he knew that this was the last time he was going to ever see his mother again. He did not need the scroll to tell him that.
“I love you, Mom.” Jingles said softly.
“I love you, Jingles.” Amaretti replied with a gentle head rub. “Now go and fulfill your destiny. “
Jingles moved slowly to Santa’s portal through the fireplace. He took one last look at his mother as she sat next to the silent and quiet Christmas Tree. He nodded once to Amaretti and then he disappeared through the portal with Santa.

As they cruised far above North America. Santa looked down at his newest helper. Jingles was no longer prowling back and forth on the seat of the sleigh in anticipation of their next stop.
“Jingles.” Santa asked. “Are you okay?’
“Yes, Santa.” Jingles replied. “My mother just gave me the best gift ever.”
“And what was that?” Santa asked.
“Her love, Santa.” Jingles said sadly.” Her love.”

The sleigh was making a high gee turn above a large city. The sleigh was finally empty and Santa and Jingles sat exhausted on the padded red seats. The reindeer sensed that their yearly mission was over and they began their high speed parabolic flight path back to the North pole.

Jingles felt a stone growing in his stomach. It screamed that he had forgotten something back on Earth. He looked into his bag. There was nothing there, so he had not missed delivering one of his gifts. The pain grew and grew within his tiny body.
“Santa!” Jingles cried out. “There is something wrong. We have missed someone! But there is nothing in my toysack.”
“Jingles.” Santa cried out as he quickly checked his toy bag. “Mine is empty as well. Are you sure.?”
“Santa.” Jingles cried out in pain. “It hurts!”
“Dancer! Dasher!” Santa called out, “Emergency decent! Follow Jingles’ beacon!”
Santa’s sled dropped from the sky as Santa gave control of the sled to Jingles. Whatever was causing his pain guided the sleigh to it’s final position. It crashed through a heavy cloud covering and raced along a strong storm front. The temperature in the sleigh dropped several degrees as ice and frost formed on the sleigh’s runners and hand rails. The reindeer began to strain as the extra earthly weight became too much for them to bear.
“Land” Jingles stated, his voice strained with pain.”We must land now.”
“To the roof, To the Peak.” Santa cried out as he snapped the reins.”Dasher and Dancer, Now must we seek!”
The two lead reindeer snapped the sleigh in a rapid descent. From Jingles’ cry, they now had their landing vector. The sleigh plummeted rapidly. Soon an industrial building came into view and the reindeer aimed the sleigh not to land on the roof as is their custom, but on the snow covered street. Normally Santa forbade any street level landing as it would give evidence to anyone who might believe without faith. The sleigh skidded to a stop in front of a plain brick-faced building. Santa could tell that their arrival was not to deliver any presents for their was no signature of a fireplace or of a Christmas Tree to be seen. He looked over the fa├žade of the building and saw the unlit letters: “Edmonton Humane Society”. He looked down at Jingles.
“We are here for you, Jingles.” Santa said. “Shall we see what awaits for us?”
“I don’t know.” Jingles was nervous. “Now that we are here, the pain has lessened, but I think there is something here for both of us.”
“Standfast.” Santa called to the reindeer pawing anxiously at the snow. “We will be here but a moment.”
“This way, Santa.” Jingles took off across the thick covering of snow.
Santa followed quickly after Jingles. He had not seen this happen in all in his centuries as Santa.

Jingles lead Santa through the thick blanket of snow. He avoided the obvious front door of the building and ran straight to hidden alcove of the building. Jingles meowed angrily and growled as he ran. Santa followed quickly behind.

There, in the protective leeward side of a weathered brick wall , sat a cardboard box that was quickly being buried by drifting snow. Jingles raced up to the box and began pawing and scratching at the sides. From within the box, a small plaintive cry leaked out.
“Santa!” Jingles cried out.”This is why we are here. You have to help me!”
“Jingles!” Santa replied as he picked up the cardboard box and headed back to the sleigh. “I have it, we must get back to the sleigh.”
Jingles fell in behind Santa and used his foot falls to move through the thick snow.

To be continued...

A vivid dream

In the comments of our last post, Grr, Midnight and Cocoa made a very special request. It was not special in what it asked but in the way it asked it.

During the Christmas Holiday, I was working and at the same time trying to progress the story of one of my favorite characters, Jingles. One night I had a dream. Now I am a believer in what some people call Vivid Dreaming. A dream so real and true that you feel you have lived it. I have experienced this several times. Some have been terrible, some have broken my heart.I have always woken to realize that it is up to me to either realize the dream I experienced or to do whatever I could to change the outcome.

I have been married for thirteen wonderful years, so yes, I can change the outcome of one of my vivid dreams.

I had another one during my Christmas holiday that I do not not want to see realized. I dreamt that I came across a book about "Jingles, The Christmas Cat". I saw the details on Amazon and I could see the cover as plain as day. It broke my heart to see something that I thought I had created claimed by someone else.

That was the dream. The reality was that I knew that I wanted to do something more with the stories I told on Dolce's Story Chair. Please dear readers, I want you to understand; I will finish the current story. But it will be longer than any other story for my dream showed me that maybe it has a life beyond these simple electronic pages.