“Ssssh…..Percy! “ said Penny, “Not so loud!” Percy Rasmussen gave his wife a mischievous wink. “Oh Penny, whenever are you going to stop fretting” sighed Percy, climbing to another ornament. I am much too quick for anyone to see me.” You may be the fastest elf ever,” replied Penny, hanging onto a large ball ornament for dear life, but we are getting on you know.
It was almost dawn on Christmas Eve and Penny and Percy were sitting, watching and listening for signs of any kind of movement from upstairs. This was Santa’s last stop and Penny was particularly nervous, perched as she was precariously on an ornament hanging what felt like miles above the floor in the Christmas tree. Percy never minded, he was always calm. He practically flew from limb to limb, from glass ball to candy cane, holding on with one hand, his walking stick in the other. “After all Percy,“ she told him anxiously, “we worked for Santa for so many years, maybe we should retire”. “And do what,” Percy said kindly. “Should we sit in our rockers and just reflect on the things we’ve done?” No sir, not me and not you. We’ll do our jobs and keep watch for Santa as long as he needs us to.” “But Percy” continued Penny, “you are reckless and it frightens me.” Percy had just slid down a candy cane only narrowly grabbing a branch as he went.
So they had come with Santa this year and here they sat waiting and watching. Finally, Santa came to fill the stockings with such lovely things for everyone. It such magical time, and they loved being a part of it.
Suddenly Percy, sitting on a very high branch, heard a noise from upstairs. He scrambled to the very top of the tree, almost to the star. He looked down at Penny, startled. Not now, he thought. The people couldn’t come down yet! He heard the water running and then a door close. He breathed a huge sigh of relief. “It’s ok, Penny, they’ve gone back to bed.” No sooner had he said this, then he fell. He went down, hitting branches as he went. He made a grab for a glass icicle and held on with all his might. He was directly below Penny, who looked terrified.”PERCY!” she cried. “Penny, I’m slipping!” He started sliding down, twisting around on the slippery glass, “Percy, your walking stick! Reach up to me with your walking stick!” Percy stretch up his arm as far as it would go with the stick and slowly Penny reached down with her arm, she felt the tip of the stick and grasped it as tightly as she could and pulled with all her strength. Percy was able to climb back up to the ornament where Penny was sitting. They looked at one another with relief. It had been too close!
Later on, as they sat in their chairs with cookies and cocoa, Percy looked over at his tired wife. “Penny”, said Percy thoroughly exhausted, “I love this time of year and helping Santa, but I am sure glad to be home. “As am I, Percy, as am I.”