By Bill Vaughan
“Tell me a story of Christmas,” she said. The television mumbled faint inanities in the next room, and from a few houses down the block came the sound of car doors slamming and guests being greeted.
Her father thought a while. His mind went back over the interminable parade of Christmas books he had read at the bedsides of his children.
“Well,” he started tentatively. “Once upon a time it was the week before Christmas, and all the little elves at the North Pole were sad.”
“I’m tired of elves,” she whispered. And he could tell she was tired, maybe almost as weary as he was himself after the last few feverish days.
“OK,” he said. “There was once, in a city not very far from here, the cutest, wriggly, little puppy you ever saw. The snow was falling, and this little puppy didn’t have a home…
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