Lots of the helpers made it to the Sleigh Port before Santa and Mrs. Claus arrived. Orin was the first to greet them. "Good afternoon, Ma'am." Then he turned to Santa. "Ready to go over the route, Santa?"

            "Yes, I wouldn't want to miss anyone." Santa winked at Mrs. Claus, then followed Orin into the Reindeer Traffic Control Tower.

            Mrs. Claus turned her attention to the flight line. "Is everything ready?" She always supervised the Christmas Eve Run activities, and made the last minute inspections. "Where is Violet?"

            "Right here, Ma'am." Violet flew toward Mrs. Claus.

            "Violet, you must be very careful not to miss the tiniest spot," Mrs. Claus instructed. "And, use plenty of dust." Turning to Tessie, she said, "Is everything from your shop here? And where's Ticky?"

            "Here I am," Ticky said.

            "Everything is here, or on the runway." Tessie answered.

            "Is Rissy here?"

            "Yes, she's harnessing the Team now," Donovan said, as he organized the helpers who would drag the sleigh onto the runway.

            Mrs. Claus looked at Ticky. "Please give Rissy a hand with the reindeer." Then, she asked the crowd, "Where's Boog?"

            "On his way," Ticky called over his shoulder.

            "Nobby, fetch the wuffle dust," Mrs. Claus commanded.

            Nobby, Ted, Jackson, Dulcie, Farley, and North Pole Phil formed the bucket brigade between the wuffle dust well, and the tarmac.

            Mrs. Claus left the hangar and went onto the runway. "Bring the sleigh."

            Elmer and Smitty inspected the runners on the sleigh. Then they helped the others pull it to the runway. "The sleigh is ready, Ma'am, Ma'am."

            "Thank you Smitty. Violet, please dust Santa's sack." Mrs. Claus observed closely as Violet flew over the bag, meticulously sprinkling it, careful not to miss even the tiniest spot. "And now, the toys." Violet used many buckets of dust to cover the toys and presents.

            "Sheeny, please assist Bernard in supervising the loading of the toys." Mrs. Claus then asked, "Where are the stocking stuffers?"

            Dandy Lion gestured to the pile, and Violet began to dust them.

            Mrs. Claus left them working, so that she could inspect the reindeer. "Rissy, are they all well? No colds or sniffles?"

            "All are well, Ma'am."

            Mrs. Claus went from deer to deer, looking at their eyes and inspecting their harnesses. Once she was sure that all the reins and harnesses were safely and properly secured, she turned to the sleigh.

            "Donovan, a smudge!" She pointed to the license plate which read 'HOX3.'

            Donovan carefully polished away the spot, and continued to shine the sleigh, which was already gleaming.

            The sound of bells filled the air, as Boog arrived on the runway. "The sleigh bells, Ma'am."

            After checking the bells, Mrs. Claus supervised as the helpers adorned the reindeer and sleigh. They were just finishing the job, when Santa and Orin returned.

            "That will be fine, Orin," Santa said, as he gathered the charts and maps close to him. Then Santa addressed the community. "Thank you, again, for another year of faithful service. I couldn't do this without you. You make Christmas special for children everywhere."

            The helpers cheered.

            "And now the magic moment has arrived," Santa continued. "I must be on my way. Your work is done for now, and I wish each of you the most pleasant of dreams. I shall see you again on Christmas. Are we ready, Mama?"

            "Right on schedule," Mrs. Claus said. "Violet, dust the Team and sleigh."

            Violet flew above the Team. She thoroughly sprinkled Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder, and Blitzen. Next, she hovered over the sleigh, and, moving very slowly, began to dust heavily, from front to back, taking care not to miss the tiniest spot.

            Mrs. Claus looked at Santa. "Are you set?"

            He smiled. "I'm ready, Mama." Santa extended his arms and Violet began to fly over him with wuffle dust. At last, he was ready. He kissed Mrs. Claus on the forehead, and climbed into the sleigh.

            Mrs. Claus handed Santa the bag of cookies, the reindeer treats, and the magically hot cocoa. Tubbs gave him another bag of cookies. Coy offered him a thermos of Sleighride Punch, for his trip into the southern hemisphere, where it was summer time. Jimbo passed Santa the list, and Violet gave him a huge bag of wuffle dust.

            Santa thanked everyone once again, as Violet made a final flight, dusting everyone and everything one last time.

            "Bong," the bell of truth rang.

            "Ten, nine, eight ..." the Reindeer Traffic Control Tower began the countdown, as Santa bellowed, "Merry Christmas to all."

            “Three, two, one…”

            As the "blast off" command sounded, the helpers burst into a chorus of Santa Claus is Coming to Town.

            The reindeer began to trot, then Dasher and Dancer gracefully leapt into the air, and the others followed. Santa and the Team circled the starlit sky, and disappeared under the moon.

THE END

Or is it?

 


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