18 December 2004

The Winter Wilders

Snow started to fall on Tumbleton Moor. It was a beautiful yet quiet place when the world turned white. Walls and hedgerows vanished into the landscape, and the small town of Tumbleton bolted its doors and retreated into its secure and warm indoors.

At this time of year the Wilders were about. They roamed the land, looking for any food they could find. A long time ago, the townsfolk invited the creatures into their homes to sit out the cold winter, but no-one realised the trouble they'd cause. The Wilders' huge feet trampled through rooms, devastating belongings and people's houses.

Never again were they let in from the cold, and to make sure they came nowhere near, the people would build huge beasts out of the snow to scare them away.

This year, however, a small girl watched through a frosted window as the Wilders skulked past in the distance. All she could see was their silhouettes on the dull grey horizon. She thought it very sad that they had to stay out in the cold.

So she decided not to listen to her parents and go and ask them to come inside. Maybe they'd learnt their lesson by now.

The girl wrapped up warm, with at least four layers of clothes, three pairs of gloves and two warm, bobbly hats. And of course, she had untold numbers of socks inside her shoes. Once your feet get cold, they stay cold.

She trudged through the snow with a small lamp lighting her way. It wasn't long before she found large footprints trailing away into the night, and when she came across the Wilders they were all huddled in a small hole, waiting for day to break.

The girl pulled out some oaty biscuits and handed them to the Wilders.
'Please come with me,' she said, ' you can keep warm and eat as much as you like'.

The Wilders looked at one another, all feeling the cold snow beneath them. They realised it was an option they couldn't refuse, and eventually trekked back to Tumbleton with the girl.

She pleaded with the Wilders to be good, and they decided it would be for the best.

When they reached her home, and after a few strong words from her very worried parents, all of them settled down in front of the blazing fire. The Wilders proved that they could be good, and they were aloud to come back every year.

The girl passed around warming drinks and roasted nuts, and they all felt very happy. It was nice to put bad feelings behind them, and they knew that Christmas this year was going to be very special indeed.