Mother was sure that all five of us were sound asleep. I was wide awake. I knew that something unusual was going on because I could hear the familiar creaking of floorboards. Just from this sound I knew that it was Simon going up and down the attic stairs. Simon had left for the day hours ago and he never came back at night. Or so I thought. I got out of bed just to have a peak at what Simon was doing but then I heard the faint whisper of Mothers voice. I got back in bed and fell asleep to the sounds of Simon and the creaking steps.
I was so excited when I woke up the following morning. Christmas Eve. Every morning I was awake and downstairs before any of the other four. This morning was different. I wanted to go up not down. Up into the attic to find out what Simon had been doing the night before. But I had never been up into the attic by myself before. The stairs were scary the skeleton key was scary and the bees both the dead ones and the buzzing ones were scary.
The cold morning air was filled with the smell of Mothers breakfast and it would only be a matter of minutes before the other 4 were awake and heading down. I started up. Step by step as quietly as I could until I reached the first landing. Then up again another flight and another flight until I came to the key. I really didn't think that I was going to be able to turn it but I did and then the door opened as if by itself with the key still in the lock. I almost started to scream when I saw it. How could this be true? What could this mean? I had to ask Mother.
I ran down five flights of stairs to the kitchen and into Mothers arms.
"what's wrong Thommy boy?"
"Santas' already been here Mother-- I went up into the attic all by myself and presents are everywhere --the attic is filled with presents from Santa-- how can this be?"
"none of the others saw or heard you?"
"no Mother they're all still sleeping"
"Thommy do NOT tell any of the others what you saw they mustn't know"
"but what does this mean Mother is Simon Santa Claus?"
Mother laughed and gave me a big hug and kiss. She then went on to explain to me that Santa had so many houses to deliver presents to that he had to get an early start. Santa had delivered to our house last night and Mother had phoned Simon and asked him to come back and carry all of Santas gifts up into the attic. I was so relieved.
"did you close and lock the attic door Thommy boy"
"no Mother I was so excited I forgot"
"well run back up there and lock it up real good so the others don't find out"
Christmas morning and all the gifts were under the tree.
I hadn't heard Simon creeping up and down the stairs on that Christmas Eve night. I wondered for just a moment how the gifts got back down all those flights of stairs. I didn't ask Mother. I figured I had found out enough for one Christmas. And I already knew that next year I'd be wide awake on Christmas Eve night.