Once upon a time, there lived a very old man.
The man was mean and nobody liked him, least of all the neighborhood kids. When it was summer, and they wanted to play outside, he would come out and shout at them, calling them all sorts of words you weren’t meant to hear until high school.
When it was Halloween, and the bravest boys would go up and knock on his door for a dare, he’d open the door with his shotgun and wave it until all the kids were scared and the youngest had wet himself.
And when it was Christmas, and the girl scouts went around singing carols, he’d lean out the window and pour a bucket of water over their heads, despite the fact it was freezing out!
In short, the old man was a total asshole.
“Did you hear Mr. Jeffers last night?” One of the daddies might ask, for that was the old man’s name. “Shouting something about how he’d shoot Tanya’s dog if it came on his lawn again. Poor little mite was in tears.”
“Quelle surprise,” his wife would sigh, “that guy’s been a asshole since I was a kid. We used to say he was the boogeyman. Now I guess he’s just lonely.”
“Even the boogeyman,” the Daddy would respond, “has the decency to only come out at night. That guy’s a round-the-clock douche.”
And they would sigh and shake their heads, and say how something should be done, but never would be, because Mr. Jeffers was older than the pyramids – older than the sun – and everyone felt too guilty to go and tell him off.
And so the years dragged on, and the kids the old man shouted at grew up and had kids of their own, and they, too, were scared of the old man.
Then, one day, a little girl was born.
This little girl was special. No-one realized at first, but she was the 7th daughter of the 7th daughter of a white witch. Generations of magical power had been concentrated in her tiny little body, all ready to come bursting out.
When she grew up, the little girl could be a princess, or a queen. She could rule the world if she wanted to, a vast and terrible God, in complete control of time and space.
But Amy didn’t want to rule the world.
She was just a little girl, a thoughtful little girl whose mommy had taught her to always think about the needs of others.
All she wanted to do was help people. And maybe one day open a pony sanctuary, where they would let her visit the ponies and ride them every single day.
One Christmas Eve, when Amy was eight, her parents took her for a walk past the old man’s house.
It was a cold day. If Amy had wanted to, she could have clicked her fingers and it would’ve become hotter than the hottest day of summer. That’s how much power this one little girl had.
But she was still young, and hadn’t yet grasped what a special person she was. She knew she could do things other children couldn’t, but she couldn’t control it yet, and rarely liked to use her powers.
Besides, she didn’t think it would be fair to change the weather. She might not like the cold, but plenty of others did.
Making the snow go away would make them sad, and Amy wouldn’t want that.
“I’m telling you,” her Daddy huffed to her mommy as they walked through the snow, “it’s the damndest thing. Every morning there’s another one. I swear there’s maybe forty ponies in that field now.”
“You’re imagining things,” her mommy replied, “ponies don’t magically appear from nowhere. The farmer probably brought them in from his other fields.”
Walking between them, Amy assumed an innocent expression. She really had to stop magicking new ponies out of thin air, but they were just so cute…
She was idly thinking how she’d just create one more pony tomorrow, and that would be it, when the voice cut across her reveries.
“Get outta here, you little bitches!”
It was loud, raspy, grating. A nasty voice that cut you to the core. The whole family turned and watched in astonishment as two young carol singers, their clothes dripping wet, ran away from a creaky old house, howling as they went.
On the porch, the old man waved his hosepipe threateningly at them.
“And don’t come back!”
“Mr. Jeffers,” Amy heard her dad exclaim. “Christ, I thought he was dead…”
“Him?” Amy’s mom snorted. “He’ll be around forever. Why’d you think I never let Amy play on this street?”
“I see he’s still as nasty as ever.”
“Oh, yeah. Still…” Amy heard her mom give a little sigh. “I always kinda… I dunno. Pity him. A bit.”
“Look at him. He can’t be very happy, can he?” Her voice was thoughtful now. “I wonder what’s going on in that head of his. What’s making him so sad.”
Amy’s Dad shrugged.
“Who cares? It’s not like we’ll ever find out.”
But that wasn’t quite right.
As her mom talked, Amy had calmly focused on the old man. Calmly used her powers to delve inside his mind, to read his thoughts, to shuffle through his memories and see what could be causing this funny old man to act so weird.
Suddenly, her eyes went wide.
Oh, she thought, so that’s why… how sad.
Amy hated it when people were sad. She really did. Twice, now, she’d brought their next door neighbor’s dog back to life when it died of old age. She really couldn’t stand knowing other people were in pain.
So as her mommy and daddy led her away, chatting about inane things, she turned back and watched the sad old man with thoughtful eyes.
I gotta do something about that….
That evening, the old man sat inside his dark, cold house, trying not to think about Christmas, trying not to think about the world outside.
Trying not to think about all those wishes he’d made to Santa, every Christmas Eve. The wishes that had got more desperate as time went on and he grew up, before finally cutting off altogether.
Christmas… he thought to himself, staring aimlessly into space, if only they’d get rid of it…
Then he shuddered, and drew his arms around him. He could still remember those cold, unhappy mornings. Sat alone in his blank little room. Trying not cry.
Wondering if his parents would ever come back.
As he sat there, lost in his memories, the old man suddenly got an odd feeling. Like he was being watched.
He slowly raised his head, turned, and frowned at the girl stood in the doorway.
“How’d you get in here?” He snapped. “What the hell are you-?”
“I closed my eyes and I was here,” the girl shrugged, like it was no big deal. “I haven’t told mom and dad. I think they’re still angry about the ponies.”
The old man stared at the strange girl stood before him. A strange feeling, like a million pinpricks of ice, ran over his skin.
Who on Earth…?
“I’m Amy,” Amy said, answering the question like he’d spoken it out loud. “And don’t worry, I’m here to help.”
At that, the old man gave a dry chuckle.
“Help? What a load of…” he suddenly waved his arm. “Go on. Get outta here, before I-!”
“I saw you earlier,” Amy said, completely unfazed. “When you were little. I saw it in here.”
She pointed at the old man’s head. For some reason, the action made him feel strangely uncomfortable.
“You were little,” Amy went on, oblivious to the discomfort she was causing. “Like, maybe the same age as Tracey’s sister. And you were praying, coz you were unhappy. Really unhappy.”
The old man’s eyes went wide. Anger flickered across his face.
“I don’t know what…” he began.
“Don’t worry,” Amy said. “It’s not weird. I see loads of other grownups thinking that, too. Lots of boys secretly wanna be girls.”
The old man was pale now. Trembling. He started to rise from his chair.
“How dare you.” He snapped. “How dare you say that I…”
But Amy just went right on talking. Even if the old man took his gun and shot her, she could just turn the bullets into flower petals.
“It’s not your fault. It’s just coz nature. Nature got you wrong, like a little mistake. Like when I tried to make the ponies go away and accidentally put them in the bathroom.”
A little, guilty look flickered across her face. Mom and Dad had not been happy.
“I mean, it’s not your fault your mom and dad heard you pray and made you go into that place. Y’know,” she said. “The sad place. The Ay-Sy-Lum.”
She wasn’t really sure what that big word meant. But it was glowing in the old man’s brain. Glowing like fire. And it had all this sadness around it.
In his chair, the old man was watching her now with a mixture of fear and curiosity. He looked like he wanted to run away, or close his eyes, but what was the point?
Amy already knew everything.
“Who…” he stammered at last, in a weak voice, “who are you?”
Amy pulled herself up to her full height of 4ft1.
“I’m Amy,” she said, proudly, “and I’m gonna fix that little mistake.”
The old man suddenly looked terrified.
“Wait!” He croaked. “What are you…?”
And then he spoke no more.
Amy smiled to herself as she looked at the empty chair where the old man had been sat. There. That was better. She’d done her good deed for Christmas.
“Awesome,” she muttered to herself, trying out the new word she’d overheard her dad say. “That was awesomeness.”
Then she sighed.
OK, that was done. Now to get back and try and deal with all those ponies…
- Here we go…
The strange girl closed her eyes. Half a second later, the old man’s house was empty, boarded up, closed. No trace remained that anyone had ever lived there.
Far, far away, the old man knelt inside a veil of blackness, trembling with fright.
What the hell had happened? He’d been talking, then that weird girl had frowned slightly, and suddenly he’d been kneeling somewhere, his hands clasped together, his eyes closed.
But that wasn’t all that had changed…
His body felt… lighter, somehow. He was breathing easier again, as he hadn’t for decades. All the little aches and pains of age had… gone. His heart felt less like it was making a tremendous effort.
The old man swallowed. He was afraid to open his eyes. Afraid to see what had happened.
Down his back, he could feel long hair tickling his shoulder blades. He could feel the warm air of the house, caressing his bare legs.
What has she done to me? He wondered. Oh God… what has she done to me…?
He wanted to keep his eyes shut. Wanted to stay there and pretend nothing had changed. To just wait until he fell back to sleep and awoke from this nightmare.
But was it a nightmare? Fix that little mistake… the girl had said. What did she mean by that? What…?
There was only one way to find out. With a deep breath, the old man opened his eyes.
The first thing he saw was that he was no longer in his living room. He was in a brightly-lit bedroom, a child’s bedroom.
There were posters of Disney characters on the walls. Pink sheets on the bed. Dollies and fluffy toys strewn here and there, and jaunty Christmas lights in the window.
But that wasn’t what made the old man’s mouth drop open. Wasn’t what made his heart beat faster and his head start to spin.
Clasped before him, his hands had changed. Where they’d once been big, and gnarled and wrinkly, they were now small and dainty, their skin perfectly smooth.
In shock, the old man unclasped his hands. Reached up. Touched his face. His hair.
Felt the smooth, hairless cheeks. His tiny little nose. Felt the long, golden ringlets, tumbling from his crown and cascading down his slender back.
Oh Jesus.. oh dear Jesus…
In panic, he pulled himself up off the floor, amazed at how light his body was, like his bones were suddenly hollow. Amazed at how he barely came up to the height of a door handle.
He ran across the room to where a child’s full-body mirror was propped…
…and nearly fainted.
Looking back at him, from behind the glass, was the cutest little girl in the world.
She was about six years old, with pink, freckled cheeks, long, curly blond hair, and an adorable gap between her front teeth. She was wearing a simple little dress with Christmas patterns on it; snow and reindeers and Christmas magic.
She was him. He was her.
Amy had turned the old man into a little girl.
“No…” whispered the old man, “no, it’s not possible…”
But it was true. His old, scratchy voice had gone, replaced by one that was sugar and spice and all things nice. He could feel how different his new body was. How flexible. How alive.
As the old man stood, gaping at himself in the mirror, there was a timid knock at the door. A 30-something year old woman leaned in, a tired smile on her face.
“Hey,” she whispered, “how’s my little princess?”
Before the old man could stop himself, the words were out his mouth.
“Good, mommy!” He exclaimed in his soft, syrupy voice, a big smile on his adorable face. “It’s Christmas!”
“I know it is,” his new mother smiled. “And my special little girl is gonna get so many presents tomorrow!”
The old man heard himself let out a squeak of delight.
I hope there’s a Barbie! His new brain nattered, and a Frozen toy, and…
“But for now,” his mommy whispered, a smile on her face, the sort of kind, loving smile the old man could never remember seeing his previous mother give, “it’s time for you to go to bed, kiddo.”
She held out her hand.
“C’mon. Or else Santa won’t have any time for his deliveries.”
Gently, his mind whirling, the old man reached out, and felt his new mommy take his tiny hand in her big, soft one. She led him over to the bed, picked him up, tucked him in, and planted a little kiss on his forehead.
“Night, night, sweetie pie,” his mommy smiled. “If you’re lucky, Santa might bring you just what you always wanted.”
Then she was going to the door, turning out the light, blowing him one last kiss, and the old man was alone in blackness.
The six-year old girl lay in her bed, looking up at the ceiling, her mind whirling. So it was true. Amy had really done it. That strange girl had reset his life, so now he could be the girl he’d always secretly wanted to be…
A smile passed across his adorable new features. A smile of utter bliss. Suddenly, it was like a weight had been lifted off his shoulders. A weight that had always been there, his whole life.
For the first time in years, the old man let out a laugh. A soft, musical, high-pitched giggle that made him feel all warm inside.
This little girl didn’t need Santa to bring her anything this year.
She’d already got just what she’d always wanted.
This is my last blog this year! I hope all of my adorable fans have a lovely Christmas and a special 2017. Thank you all for being such troupers this amazing year… I’m so lucky to have all you wonderful sissies taking an interest in my work 😉