Christmas is supposed to be the season for giving, for loving, for staving off the darkness of winter with the combined radiance of a thousand tiny lights. I looked across the room at my youngest sister, laughing merrily with her new husband and glowing as brightly as any star, and I wanted to strangle everyone present with a garland of tinsel. It said a lot about the night's festivities so far that "How's your love life, Karrin?" was one of the pleasanter memories of the evening.
I made my way past hordes of relatives--all happily patting each other on the back for their year's successes, but who could only greet the woman who had lost all her status in her crappy department with blank expressions and a feeble "better luck next year"--and finally arrived at the window. I took another sip of egg nog and exhaled heavily, my breath fogging the glass, then identified the brightest star I could find.
Anything, I wished. Disgruntled elf, rampaging troll... I'd even take creche figures marauding around Chicago Ghostbusters-style. Something I can deal with right now.
In the distance, I heard the squeal of brakes, a distant crash, and the deranged, put-put-putting roar of a familiar engine, growing steadily louder.
Maybe there were such things as Christmas miracles, after all.