charlie and the christmas angel

charlie and the christmas angel

A Story by lori c

Charlie and the Christmas Angel

 

Fraulein’s home was a story book cottage nestled in the thick of the woods. In a dusty corner of her kitchen behind the cast iron pot bellied stove lived Charlie. Of all the corners in the cottage, this was his favorite . When winter’s winds whistled, he would spin his web larger and larger to reach the stove, especially whenever Fraulein added another chunk of wood to the fire. Though the snow swirled and the wind howled, Charlie would fold his two front legs under his head and smile.

This was his favorite time of year. More than his birthday (of which he had already had five) Charlie loved Christmas with all its wonderful surprises. He loved the scent of the freshly - clipped pine boughs that Fraulein hung on the mantle and window sills. Pine needles tickled his tiny feet as he crawled along sniffing the trails of the spiders and bugs who lived outdoors.

 

From the bough on the mantle Charlie would watch Fraulein hang a pine - and - holly wreath on the cottage’s front door. He didn’t know what holly leaves felt like. It was always cold by the front door and Charlie disliked the cold as much as he loved Christmas.

Fraulein often talked to herself pretending the cat or the mouse who lived on the other side of the kitchen was listening. She especially talked to herself when she was busy baking as she was now. It wasn’t long before Charlie smelled the richness of cinnamon and the tart sweetness of apples. Fraulein set the cookies and strudels on the table to cool.

Charlie opened one eye, watched her stockinged feet scuffle into the other room then slowly uncurled his legs. Leaving the fire’s warmth he crawled across the cold wooden floor, hurry - scurried up the table leg and sat in the corner of the table top. Mouth watering, he surveyed the glories before him.

Charlie was an unusual spider. Not only did he enjoy fat juicy flies and even the occasional sweet honey bee, he also loved to snack on the crumbs of Fraulein’s pastries. Needless to say Charlie was a bit plumper

than most cottage spiders should be. Having eaten his fill, he rested near the fattest, most delicious smelling strudel on the table.

Charlie knew that this strudel was not only the fattest most delicious smelling strudel, but that it was for Herr, Fraulein’s special friend. Every Christmas she baked him a special strudel and he brought her a beautiful pine tree to decorate with gingerbread cookies, shiny red apples from the cellar, and candles.

“What a lovely tree, my dear,” Fraulein would coo after she’d lit the candles.

“What lovely strudel, my dear,” Herr’s words would be garbled for he chewed as he spoke.

It wasn’t long after he finished his snack when Charlie heard the jangling of sleigh bells, “ Whoa, girls” and the stomping of boots on the porch. With the opening of the door, a blast of wintry wind blew Herr into the parlor. He stumbled, thrown off balance by the biggest pine tree Charlie had ever seen. Herr dragged it across the room leaving a snowy trail .

I wonder what this snow feels like.

 

Just that afternoon he’d heard Fraulein mutter about the white flakes she’d shook from her cap and scarf after fetching firewood. Charlie hurried as fast as he could down the table leg and across the cold floor. He knew the flakes would soon disappear in the heat of the wood fire. Dipping one foot into the wetness, he shivered and backed away closer to the pot bellied stove.

Same as ever. Snow is definitely too cold for a spider like me.

“ Tsk, tsk” Fraulein clucked as she set about mopping up the melting snow and sweeping stray needles. Fraulein’s mop chased the puddle behind the stove to Charlie’s corner.

“Oh, my, how dusty it is back here.”

Fraulein’s mop poked Charlie’s face.

“These webs have got to go.”

The mop ate Charlie’s web along with the runaway snow, but not before Charlie was safe under the stove. Charlie giggled as something brushed his back legs. He looked over his shoulder.

Oh no, the mop.

 

Charlie scuttled across the floor under the table and stopped to catch his breath.. The mop brushed him again. Was Fraulein mad ? She’d never tried to hurt him before. Charlie looked to his left and then to his right.

Aha. There in the deepest shadows of the kitchen was the mouse hole. With eight spider legs tripping over themselves, Charlie crawled as fast as he could. He scooted into the hole just as the mop made one last swipe at his backside.

“There. All clean for Christmas,” he heard Fraulein say to Herr.

Still fearful that Fraulein might try to sweep him away, thinking he was a dirt speck, Charlie paced back and forth, back and forth inside the dark , cold mouse hole. He hoped the mouse was visiting in another part of the house. He liked to eat supper, he didn’t want to be supper. He shivered in the dark. He missed his warm corner by the cast iron potbellied stove . Charlie listened to Fraulein and Herr chatter and giggle, ooh and aaah. He knew they were hanging gingerbread cookies and fastening candles to the pine branches. Charlie waited and waited and waited a bit longer. Herr chomped his strudel, kissed Fraulein good night and Fraulein

blew out the candle.

“Lovely tree, my dear.”

“Lovely strudel, my dear.”

The door closed. The room darkened. Fraulein snored softly in her sleep.

Charlie peeked out of the mouse hole. All was quiet and still in the white moonlight shining in the kitchen. Wanting to see the Christmas tree, Charlie followed the moonlight path into the parlor. As he rounded the corner of the doorway, he gasped. There before him was the most beautiful tree he had ever seen. It stretched from the floor to the ceiling. Gingerbread men smiled from their lofty perches. Shiny apples twirled in the moonlight.

What’s that on the very top of the tree shining in the moonlight, sparkling like sugar in sunlight ? Charlie craned his head to see. He rose up on his back feet. Still he couldn’t quite make it out.

But if it sparkles like sugar, it must taste like sugar. Charlie thought. Licking his lips Charlie crawled to the oaken bucket the tree rested

 

in. Taking a deep breath, he began to climb straight up. The rough bark of the tree scratched Charlie’s feet. He moved out onto the limb and crawled through the soft needles which tickled instead of scratched.

Why didn’t I ever climb the tree before ?

Because it had never sparkled like sugar before.

Charlie slid over the apples, nibbled crumbs from the gingerbread cookies. Charlie wasn’t interested in the candles; they didn’t smell sweet. Charlie scuttled all over Fraulein’s beautiful tree. Up and up , around and around. Closer and closer to the top.

Ah - at last - the scent of sugar. Drooling, Charlie hurried the last few inches. He bit into a piece of the sparkling sugar.

“Hey, that hurts,” a voice whispered.

Charlie stopped chewing and looked up in the direction the voice came from. He saw a pair of eyes as blue as a spring sky and a pair of wings as sparkly as twinkling stars.

“Yes, that hurts and why do you want to eat me anyway ? Spiders aren’t supposed to like sugar. They’re supposed to eat flies.”

 

 

“Oh, oh, I do and I’m sorry and who are you ?” Charlie sputtered.

“Me ? I’m the Christmas angel, silly. Herr brought me to Fraulein. He said that my eyes reminded him of her eyes and that my sweeetness was as hers. Most of all, I am his betrothal gift to her,” the angel explained proudly. “Betrothal gift ?” Charlie had never heard of a betrothal gift.

He had heard of birthday gifts, and certainly Christmas gifts, but not betrothal gifts.

“That means they are getting married, you silly spider. Don’t you know that? Right here on New Year’s Day. In front of this beautiful tree. Looking down the angel wailed “Oh no! Ooh no!”

Charlie followed her gaze with his eyes.

“Oh no,” he whispered.

Fraulein’s beautiful tree was one very long sticky spider’s web. Covered with webbing the gingerbread looked old and grey , the apples appeared spoilt and the candlewicks were too coated to burn.

“You’ve ruined the tree,” the angel scolded. “ Fraulein will be so very

 

sad not to have a beautiful tree to be married in front of.”

“You’re a Christmas angel. Can’t you do something ?” Charlie

pleaded.

The angel sadly shook her head.

“I don’t know,” she whispered.

Silence filled the room.

“Well, I do remember something I heard once.”

“Go on,” Charlie urged.

“The confectioner who fashioned me told Herr that his Christmas angels always made one Christmas wish come true. Maybe -- if we wish really, really hard,” The angel paused, her brow wrinkled in uncertainty. “Oh, I don’t know.”

“C’mon, let’s try.”

Charlie crossed his legs. The angel crossed her wings. They both closed their eyes and wished really, really hard.

‘Now,” they whispered and opened their eyes.

Branches, once grey and sticky, shimmered with strands of silver

 

 

dancing in the moonlight. So beautiful was the sight that Charlie and the

Christmas angel could only stare at it the rest of the night.

In the Christmas morning sunlight Fraulein ooohed and aaaahed at its miraculous beauty.

In the Christmas evening moonlight Herr remarked that never was there a more beautiful tree.

And on New Year’s Day as Charlie and the Christmas angel watched Herr and Fraulein were married before their one of a kind tree.

From that day on Fraulein and Herr, and their children, and their children‘s children, and their children’s children’s children decorated their Christmas trees with silver tinsel while telling the story of Charlie and the Christmas angel.


© 2009 lori c



Author's Note

lori c
this is a work in progress.

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Reviews

This is very cute. Are you writing it as a child's story? I can see the way they could illustrate the pages. It would be a beautiful book for the kids. The pacing is just right.

Posted 4 Years Ago


Such a beautiful story to share during the Christmas season. Please leave as is. Reading this, brought back a flood of happy memories. Thank you.

Posted 7 Years Ago


I love Christmas and this is such a cute story. The tinsel was a nice touch. Well done!

Posted 8 Years Ago


Congrats on your winning story. Great work.

Posted 8 Years Ago


I love how you changed the spider's web into tinsel...it reminded me of setting up for christmas with my mom and brother when i was little. :]

Posted 8 Years Ago


The work is interesting. It blurs the differences between a poem and a story.

Posted 8 Years Ago



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Added on March 14, 2009

Author

lori c
lori c

schenectady, NY



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