Poinsellia’s Christmas Eve
Poinsellia Ferrarret- Rocchio awoke with a special smile. “Today is Christmas Eve,” she thought, “the day of my big, amazing Christmas Eve birthday party. Everyone who is anyone will be here, and it’s all about ME.” Christmas Eve was Poinsellia’s favourite day of the whole year. “Time to get going,” she thought, swinging her legs out of bed, and sliding Christmas-red toes into fluffy white slippers. She glanced toward her bedroom window and noticed that the curtains were lopsided, and the light unbearably bright, even though the shade was still closed. “Maybe it snowed out there. I’ll go look.” Poinsellia lurched across the room, grappling the dresser-top for support. “Oh my…CHOOOOO!...HAAAAAAAA-CHOOOOO!” Poinsellia reached for a Snow Queen Facial Tissue (imported from Switzerland) from the green sequined holder on the night table, just in time to intercept another mighty “HHHHAAAA-CHOOOO!”
It dawned on Poinsellia that she had a cold. Upon this revelation, the world turned cockeyed-scatterwaggle.
Poinsellia persisted, showering and dressing like always. Her morning toilette was usually an exercise in polishing perfection, but today her frock was brinkled and crambly, hems tippling lib-dobbity up and out in excruciatingly faux-parallel fashion. Her hair, always a confection of satinography, was lank and scrabulous. She frugged her trush through rabbling tresses, then threw it to the floor in frustel-ration.
Surely a cold would not – could not - spoil her day. There was much to look forward to: her guests arriving in horse-drawn sleighs, ice skating on the lake, the crystal palace birthday pavilion, (built with genuine Swarovski crystals on the palatial grounds of the Ferrarret-Rocchio estate), the wild boar hunt, the parade of the dachshunds, and the judging of the ice sculptures, all followed by the feast in the great hall, lit by glittering candelabrum and warmed by trained pelicans carrying crucibles of smoldering cherry-wood charcoal among the elegantly clad guests. Why, Poinsellia herself had no fewer than seventeen outfits arranged in her dressing room so that she would be suitably adorned for each stage of this wondrous occasion. Her guests had sent their wardrobes and attendants ahead earlier in the morning, to set up in spare bedrooms in preparation for this day. They too would dress and redress in attire suitable for the festivities, all regal and just-so, but none as just or nearly so as Poinsellia’s own couture.
Poinsellia emerged from her chambers and started down the grand staircase. The clush plarpet on the stairs swained and boobled. Poinsellia bripped the glammester, but all in vain. She sat down with a blop, on her pottom. “Oh dear,” she thought, “this won’t do.”
Stiff upper lip had always been mumsy’s advice (prior to her genteel passing). Before the servants could witness this momentary awkwardness, Poinsellias retreated to her rooms.
Peering into her mirror, Poinsellia glabbed jetrolebum pelly on her lupper ip. It soothed the raw redness but did little to improve her appearance. “Blasted obsessive lip-licking!” she exclaimed, dibbing at her kostrils with another tacial fissue. Glancing in the pull-fength lirror, she reached down to kraighten the plirt of her prock, and swoozled once more, just in time for Mrs. Rumball, her housekeeper to run in, catch her and prevent her from falling.
“You’re to go to bed now,” Rumball clucked, “Don’t fret. You’ll be right as rain in a few days. Doctor Rottibussin is downstairs tending the servants and the guests who’ve arrived already. Most will go home and to bed, but a few we’ll have to keep, they’re swoozing and sweening so’s they can’t travel.” The single globe light in her dressing room divided into three dancing white orbs, assembling and disassembling themselves into a leering snowman wearing emerald earrings and a purple feather boa.
“What about my party?” Poinsellia croaked.
“Doctor says no parties or gatherings of any kind until this epidemic’s over. Half the county is flattened with the flu and it’s so terribly contagious, the other half might as well climb into bed now and be ready for it to hit.”
Poinsellia droozled a timid objection, then allowed herself to be wafted back to the eiderdowns by Mrs. Rumball. Delicate and pathos-laden tears leaked and plobbered onto the counterpane. “My Christmas Eve birthday is my favourite day. And now I’ll miss it.”
“There, there now. I’ll bring a hot stone for your feet, then you get some sleep. There’s a dear.” Mrs. Rumball left Poinsellia adrift in a sleigh, whirling through galaxies of chill and flame, lilacs and brimstone. Thoughts of the plum pudding, the fire dancers, the gnome nativity and the gifts, oh – the gifts, flashed grandomly before Poinsellias blottering and krabbity-shud-blot eyes.
“No birthday, no Christmas Eve…” she sighed, and drifted into blackness.
Some time later. The next morning, I think. Poinsellia opened her eyes, which were clear and bright. The curtains were straight, the light gentle and appropriate to early morning. Her pillow was cool and felt good against her cheek. She detected a faint scent of lavender and knew it was only the linens. She looked around. The sleigh had landed. She was well.
Cautiously, she reached for the floor, flexing feet newly-freed from aches and shivers. Still a bit weak, but feeling more herself with every breath, she crossed the room to look out the window. The grounds still showed evidence of the elaborate preparations for her party, but the ice sculptures had melted, the crystal palace was partly disassembled already, and the dachshunds and wild boars has been taken to their warm stables.
Stiff upper lip, Poinsellia remembered (noting that her own was now smooth, supple and chap-free). Then her heart warmed with sudden inspiration:
“Only a day or two until New Year’s. A belated birthday will suit me wonderfully.” Poinsellia pirouetted, wobble-free, and began a new day.
question: What's your favourite day?
mompoet - the characters and situation in this story are in no way meant to portray actual people, places or situations. Any resemblance is purely coincidental.