Santa looked up as we walked into the library. "So good to see you so early in the morning. Come in and we can get started before we take a break for breakfast. I looked over all the spells we marked and none will do the trick, I'm afraid."
"Santa! Santa!" I couldn't wait.
"Abbie found a box and we think it's a portal to the South Pole!" I exclaimed.
"Really, let's see the box," said Santa.
Mom handed the bag we had put the box in to Abbie. Abbie pulled the box out and showed it to Santa. Santa picked up the box and examined it.
"I haven't seen this box in years. Where did you find it?" asked Santa.
"It was in the dressing table of my room. Rudolph told us it was somewhere in Snow Cottage," said Abbie.
"Rudolph told you that? I thought she might have been visiting him. I guess it makes sense that those two stayed in contact. They were always such good friends. I'm still a little surprised he didn't go with her when she left the North Pole. Well, anyway, this box is from my childhood. Sandy and I created it so we could visit each other late at night when we were supposed to be in bed. She kept it in her room and if she turned the knob she could pass through to my room undetected by our parents. We occasionally used it to visit other parts of the North Pole too. I thought this had been lost a long time ago," said Santa. He went on to tell us how the box worked. Basically, Santa or something of his had to be on one end and Sandy or something of hers needed to be on the other end, and then whoever wanted to could travel between the two locations.
Jacob spoke up, "Santa... Ethan, Abbie and I were talking this morning and we think we can use this box to visit the South Pole and find the spell book that your sister Sandy is using to make the force field. We'd like to go and try to find it. You know it may be the only way. We haven't had any luck so far in the books in the library and there's no guarantee we'll find it in the remaining books. The only real option is to travel to the South Pole, grab the book and return. It's totally doable and we think we should do it. Besides, searching the library is getting us nowhere!"
Jacob looked at Abbie and me. He can be quite convincing when he wants to. It's why we decided he should present the idea to the adults.
"Oh no, it might be too dangerous," said Santa. "I don't know what Sandy would do if she found you. She used to be a very gentle soul but it's been over seventy years since I've seen her. I never thought she would stoop to doing something like this to Christmas and the children. I don't know how she might react if she found you. I can't let you risk it," said Santa. Just then a bell rang. "Saved by the breakfast bell. Let's all go into breakfast and we'll have no more talk of this. The right spell is just around the next book."
Mom and Dad looked relieved as they herded us back to the kitchen. Mrs. Claus had made cinnamon rolls, a personal favorite of mine, with eggs and toast. It was yummy but I still couldn't get out of my mind that box and I could tell by the distracted way Jacob was eating that he couldn't either. Abbie always did do a better job masking her emotions, but I thought she must be worried too. We all were. The time was ticking away to save Christmas.
After breakfast, we all started looking at more books in the library. I was tired of looking in books. I needed some action, something to do and I decided we needed to steal the box, go to the South Pole and find that book. If they were willing to go, I'd take Abbie and Jacob with me. I might need their help, at least as a lookout or something. I carefully walked over to Abbie and told her my plan to steal the box and go the South Pole. She agreed to go along with me without even hearing the full plan, which was good since there wasn't really one. I asked her to cover for me while I walked further down the aisles to talk to Jacob. Abbie ran over and distracted Mom but she didn't have to worry about Dad because he was too involved in the books to notice anything else. I walked down to Jacob and told him what I wanted to do.
Jacob came up with the full plan. At the next break for lunch, everyone would leave but as soon as everyone was out of the library, I would remember I forgot my sweater and would have to run in and get it. I would get the box and my sweater. I had to wrap the box in my sweater and take the entire bundle to the mudroom where I would hide it in Abbie's boot. Since Abbie's boot came from our house, we knew no one else would accidentally use it. Perfect! Jacob has the best plans, even if they do usually end up getting me in trouble.
Now, I just needed everyone to go to lunch.
Stay tuned for the next exciting chapter in the story.......available tomorrow!