Santa's Naughty Helpers by Elizabeth Knox




Chapter One





Missy


I wander around aimlessly immersed in Christmas, all around me the city is draped in red, green, and white. Trees decorated with lights and tinsel; windows flocked with the fake can of snow. Even the building to my office, the handles are wrapped in garland.

I dread this time of year. It is not that I hate Christmas, more so just the loneliness that comes with it. The never-ending family photos that come in, all the loving families sitting next to the fireplace, stockings hung by the chimney with care. The one time of year where family photos are shipped out by the thousands, each one carefully planned to wish everyone a Happy Holiday.

“Good morning, ma’am. Here is your mail and all of your memos from this morning,” my assistant says bringing my thoughts to the present.

“Thank you, Nicole,” I say dismissing her.

I make a mental note I need to get the ladies something for Christmas. Flipping through the mail, I notice the one thing I hate the most about Christmas staring me right in the face, the Holiday Party invitation for work.

“Damn it,” I say tossing the invitation down on the desk.

“Morning to you too.” I look up to find my business partner standing at the door.

“Ugghhhh, why do we have holiday parties.”

“Because, sweetie, it’s Christmas and it boosts holiday spirit, well most people’s spirit.” She rolls her eyes at me.

“Yes, Claire, just lovely. A bunch of drunk assholes and women throwing themselves at the said drunk assholes, they are my favorite,” I mocked.

“Ohhh, Missy, relax. It’s only a Christmas party, it will be fun. I even got a Santa to hand out gifts,” she snickers.

“What are you up to? I know that look, you have something planned and it never goes well when you do.” Sitting back into my desk chair I look out at the city below watching the people running back and forth as the hustle and bustle of the holidays are breathing down our necks.

“I swear you are such a scrooge; you should have been called Ebenezer instead of . . .”

“Don’t you freaking say it or I will kick your ass,” I interrupt her.

“Relax, Mistletoe, nobody is around,” she cackles before leaving my office.

As I toss a pencil at the door, looking at the invitation I have a month to find a date unless I want to go to the party alone, again, for the fourth time in a row.

That is not happening again.

Lunch time was brighter, I had lunch with Claire and her sister Ramona who is a nurse at the hospital down the street. She told us all about the charity the hospital is having for the children’s Christmas party.

“You can thank Ramona for the Santa, I borrowed him from them,” Claire says, knowing my reaction.

“Thanks, Ramona,” I say sarcastically.

“Yeah, Claire texted and said you weren’t happy about the Santa, but as I recall you haven’t ever really been excited about Christmas.”

“Well when you grow up like I did, Christmas was never really something to look forward to,” I say.

“It doesn’t help that they named you Mistletoe either,” Claire chimes in.

“Oh shit, no they didn’t,” Ramona says laughing her ass off.

“Oh, they did,” I say.

“Mistletoe Evelyn Jones,” Claire pipes up.

“You bitch, why,” I sneer. I hate my name so much, I begged my mother to let me go by Eve but, she refused.

“I just thought your name was Missy, but now I see why you go by Missy,” Ramona says, still dying of laughter to the point she almost falls out of her chair.

“God, I hate you,” I say to both of them.

“So, are you going to find a date this year and embrace Christmas or will you be another Scrooge again?” Claire asks

“She needs to get Scrooged,” Ramona jokes.

“My goal is to find a date, maybe I will hate the party less if I have someone to spend it with,” I say and by the time lunch was over they had a game plan to find me a date for the Christmas party, which was only four weeks away.

I leave the office at exactly four-thirty. If I leave now, I can make it before traffic starts to suck. The amount of people in this city is ridiculous so I build my schedule around the least amount of foot traffic, and now with the holidays looming so many more people are out there doing their shopping. I could not stop thinking about what Ramona said earlier about the children at the hospital and how a lot of them never get to leave there so they try and make the best holiday for them. So, I decided to head into the toy store down the block, once I finish there, I text Ramona to see if she is working that way I can drop these toys off. By the time I would get home I would be ready for a nice relaxing evening with my two favorite guys. Ben & Jerry have always been faithful no matter what.