After lunch Ms. Claus and I exited Christmas Village and headed up a small hill to the West. As we reached the top, Anya gave me a nudge. “Look Santa, there’s Nippy and Pete.”
Trudging toward our North Pole friends, Anya frowned. “Why are they talking to that snow pile between them?”
“Hmm?! It just moved, so I don’t think it’s a pile of snow. I haven’t seen my favorite snowman or polar bear for a few days. Nippy! Pete!” I yelled.
Hearing my call, our friends turned and waved. “Santa, Ms. Claus, how are you?” bellowed Pete.
Motioning for us to come over with his hockey stick arm, Nippy added, “Come meet our new friend.”
Getting closer I could see that the ‘pile of snow’ was actually an Artic Fox. “Well, who do we have here?”
“This is Onni,” Pete responded.
“Onni? Isn’t that a Finnish name, meaning ‘happiness’ or ‘luck’?” Anya asked.
The white fox nodded and faced Ms. Claus. “It is, and today I feel lucky to have found Polar Pete.”
Ms. Claus and I turned towards Pete. Anya grinned. “Pete, I’ve rarely known you to be a source of good luck.”
Nippy burst into laughter. “Good one Ms. Claus, but this time he is.”
“Well, you see, it seems Onni ventured further North than he should have,” began Pete. “I noticed that he was following me and eating my left overs. This went on for a few days.”
“When Pete stopped in his tracks and came towards me,” the white fox broke in, “I took off because the only polar bears I have ever come close to wanted to eat me. I was surprised when Pete called out and asked me to join him. I never guessed that one of the predators I feared the most would invite me to join him hunting. That’s when we became friends.”
“Both of us have good abilities to pick up scents over long distances. So, we started to find more food when we hunted together,” Pete added.
As Anya and our friends continued talking, I moved behind Pete’s new friend and reached out to touch his tail. When nothing happened, I shook it hoping to see the colors fly. It was so white, I wondered how his tail could make such beautiful blues, greens and reds.
Pete roared, “What are you doing Santa? That’s no way to treat our new friend!”
The Artic Fox stood up and asked, “You believe in the Revontulet (Fox Fire) myth, don’t you?”
Pulling my hand back, I stuttered, “I do . . . well I was just trying . . .”
“To see how Onni makes the beautiful lights in the sky,” Anya finished trying not to smile.
Chuckling, the Artic Fox trotted past me and waved his tail quickly back and forth on the snow.
Befuddled, I stared at Onni waiting for the brilliant colors to appear. “I’ve heard so many stories about how the Revontulet (Fox Fire) is caused by the Artic Fox who runs through the forest while his tail makes colorful sparks when hitting the ground.”
“I always loved that story when I was little,” said Onni. “Imagine if I could make sparks and watch them fly into the sky to create the Northern Lights. That would be so magical, Santa.”
I walked over and patted Onni on the head. “You and I certainly like mystical possibilities.”
Ms. Claus and our friends giggled. “Santa, you know that the Aurora Borealis is created by energized particles from the sun hitting the earth’s atmosphere,” Anya explained. “I can’t believe that you would entertain the idea of the Fox Fires.”
“I guess I’ve always thought the stories of the Fox Fire were interesting and fun. Somewhere in the back of my head, I wished they were true.”
Onni nodded. “So did I Santa. So did I.”
The sad tone to Onni’s voice made the laughter from the other four fade away. “Yes, that would be exciting,” Anya said, “but, you can’t believe everything you hear. People always make up stories as a way to explain things they don’t understand.”
“I know that,” I responded. “Yet it’s fun sometimes to let your imagination go and believe in something mysterious.”
“I agree,” Onni said. “And I promise you Santa, that if I ever find a fellow fox who can imitate the Northern Lights, I’ll be sure to introduce him to you!”
Laughter cut through the darkness that had settled in for the day. All of us stared into the heavens hoping for a little magical color to stream across the sky. Disappointed, we plodded down the hillside toward Christmas Village. “Well my friend,” I announced, “though you cannot create the Northern Lights, I bet you can amuse us with some interesting tales from your part of the Artic Circle.”
“I certainly can,” Onni chuckled, “as long as you share some of yours.”
“Story-telling around a bonfire with some of Judy’s famous hot chocolate. Great combination!” I shouted. “Looks like we’ll be creating some of our own magic tonight.”
Notes From Santa
I hope you enjoyed today’s story. Stories are posted on the 1st and 3rd Saturday of each month, except December. Santa’s next story will be posted on Saturday May 6, 2023. If you have any comments or if there is something you would like me to tell you about, please feel free to leave me a comment. Until the next time . . .
To read more about Santa’s friends please check out
Santa’s Newest Friends – July 8 2019
Wiggle and Waddle Meet Polar Pete – July 15, 2019
A Visit From Jack Frost – January 20, 2020
The Lost Elves – February 3, 2020
Homesick Penguins – June 8, 2020
Nippy Falls Apart – March 8, 2021
Wiggle and Waddle Go Home – May 31, 2021
Missing Friends – July 1, 2022
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