To @Dahob’s request to this call for Addergoole prompts.
Christmas, Year 11 of the Addergoole School
Lee wasn’t any good at this Keeping stuff, but he was trying hard.
He’d gotten Altaira by accident, really by accident, trying to keep her out of the hands of Silas, who wasn’t as bad as he could be but was a lot worst than he ought to be. Once he’d had her… he’d found he kind of liked having someone around. So he was trying to do this Keeping thing right, and, he hoped, only screwing it up most of the time.
But today was Christmas, and he really liked Christmas. He really liked presents. So he’d filled the space under the tree – a real tree! Tall enough that it hit the ceiling – with presents. Not all of them were for Altaira – about half were for his other friends, and five were for the baby that wouldn’t be born for another six months – but there were a lot for her.
He was out of bed before, in theory, the sun somewhere out there was above the horizon, re-arranging the presents, cooking – actually cooking; if there was one thing he’d learned in Addergoole, it was how to cook – a hearty breakfast casserole, something he remembered from childhood. Maybe he could get Altaira to eat.
He was already dishing it onto plates and making himself a pot of coffee when she woke. “Lee? What are you doing?”
He grinned at her and hurried over with a glass of orange juice. “Merry Christmas!”
He watched her take it all in – the tree, the presents, the breakfast, the juice. And then, miracles-do-happen, he watched her smile. “Merry Christmas, Lee.”
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