The Deadline Before Christmas by Renee Scattergood

The Deadline Before Christmas

By Renee Scattergood


‘Twas the night before Christmas, when on my laptop

Was an unfinished story, no better than slop;


I let out a groan, threw my hands in the air,

Then stood, and I muttered as I paced ‘round my chair;


The deadline was looming, oh that I did dread,

But worse, was the fact that I had been misled;


A call interrupted, I was needed asap;

I went only to find that it had been a trap;


My friends said, “It’s Christmas, so come celebrate;”

Didn’t they see I was already late?


I tried to escape, but was met with backlash,

So, I finally gave in, and I joined in the bash.


Next thing I knew, the bell had chimed midnight;

I had less than eight hours to sit down and write;


My salvation came in the oddest of ways;

When St. Nick had appeared, and said, “Why so malaise?”


I explained that I had a short story due,

And what I had written so far just plain blew.


He chuckled and said, “I’m going to venture,

That what you need is a grand ol’ adventure.”


St. Nick took my hand as we strode to his sleigh;

Then he said, “Let us board, no time for delay.”


I climbed into the seat and strapped on the harness,

And I thought, how’s it possible to see in this darkness?


St. Nick took the reins and gave them a shake,

Then cried out so loudly, thought the neighbors would wake;


“Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now Prancer and Vixen!

On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donner and Blitzen!


The sleigh lurched forward, I was pressed to my seat;

I knew right then I was in for a treat.


We raced through the sky to spread Christmas cheer;

And I thought that space was the final frontier!


I watched as he handed toys out to good kids;

And we sipped our hot chocolates from mugs with tight lids.


He did something then that I hadn’t expected;

He gave, to the poor, all the food he collected;


Our exciting adventure was far from over,

We took off again as he shared his turnover.


I moaned as my mouth filled with luscious sweet berries,

Though I had wished it had been black cherries.


Just then a loud roar interrupted our snack,

A dragon descended, its scales were jet black;


I cringed in my seat, the beast gave me a fright,

But Nick, he just chuckled and said, “He won’t bite.


His name is Edmund; He is a good friend.”

I said, “Sorry great dragon, I didn’t mean to offend.”


The dragon snorted and let out a great chuff,

Then he flew off, disappeared in a puff;


“He was amazing,” I said to St. Nick;

He smiled and nodded, giving the rein a small flick;


All too soon the night had come to an end,

But I was filled with joy to have made a new friend;


Not only that, creative juices were flowing,

I had to write to keep my head from exploding;


In no time at all, I had finished my story;

It turned out to be a grand allegory.


If you are stuck and don’t know what to write,

Have a Christmas adventure, and you’ll be alright!