The First Fall (A Short Story)

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When best friends, Jamie Abbott and Elle O’Connell, get into an argument over a Christmas tree, their friendship goes under the test. With the most celebrated holiday coming closer, will they save their relationship from crumbles or succumb to the fiasco? To my best friend since she wanted me to write a holiday-themed story, so here you are: 🧀 ********** No part of this book may be reproduced, or stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without express written permission of the author. Your support of the author's rights is appreciated. ********** Approximate word count: 10,000! XD

Romance / Humor
J. A.
5.0 2 reviews
Age Rating:

Six Days before Christmas (1)

Every day should always be like Christmas!

Jamie Abbott hangs the frame atop the mantlepiece where anybody can see it. The crackle of wood in the fireplace fills the silence. But her thoughts it’s the season to be jolly. Then she asks herself, so why shouldn’t it be every day?

She and her best friend, Elle O’Connell, haven’t decorated their maisonette yet, so instead of focusing on her songwriting, she abandons it to liven up their home. She turns her record player on, blaring Christmas jazz, and places the porcelain Christmas dolls with reindeers on surfaces. She hangs twinkling lights in every nook and corner and her memories of those times with her family in the Philippines resurface. This holiday gushes crystal clear on the dawn of the first September morning.

In the backseat of their car, she could see Christmas lanterns shining in the streets whenever looking out the window. On their way home from shopping, they’d passed by thousands of flashing lights from different designs displayed for sale on the sidewalks. And a silly memory of her giggling when different versions of All I Want For Christmas and Last Christmas played anywhere they’d gone.

Before settling back on the sofa to write, she plugs in the Christmas lights. The bulbs flicker alternately, giving their home more dashes of colors. Washing her hands in the kitchen, she murmurs, “All we need now is a Christmas tree.”

She grabs her writing materials and slumps down, where nothing comes to mind. Even Jazz music can’t help her creativity. She furiously taps her pen on the surface of her pad, grumbling under her breath and swimming in her uninspired mind.

The holiday sucks her in again. Jamie believes other countries, like here, are about presents, Santa Claus, and Christmas trees. Oh, and snow, but there’s no news about when it will come. There might be a lot of storybooks about Christmas, but she has read only one. She glances behind her and sees, Let It Snow by three authors; it was alright. I’ve seen numerous films, though. Ergo, Home Alone and The Polar Express. Thus, Christmas is about gifts under Christmas trees and Santa Claus.


But it should be more than gifts and Santa Claus.

“Jaaaaaames? What are you doing?” asks Elle, waving a hand to her face. She squints her blue eyes at Jamie’s dark chocolate ones. “Did you space out again?”

“Huh?” she replies, snapping out of the trance.

“I said: James! I love what you’ve done to our place,” she smiles, putting two paper bags on the kitchen counter.

“Oh, thanks.”

“So, instead of songwriting, you were decorating?”

James nodded. “I’m blanking on this.”

“How come?” Elle presses, tying her lush, honey-blonde, wavy hair into a high bun. “I’ve been gone for hours; surely you’ve thought of something?”

She shakes her head, shrugging. “Guess I’m juiced out.”

“Aw, the Rock God will bless you soon,” her best friend coos, giving her a one-arm hug. “Okay,” she steps away and takes out the groceries. “Now, get up and help me with these.”

“Okaaaaaay,” she says, dragging her feet to the front door and getting the other bags. She takes them from the foot of the stairs.

“Oh!” Elle calls out. “And please help me with the Christmas tree!”

“You bought one?” asks James when she puts down the remaining bags.

“Yup! Thanks again for letting me borrow Chloe; the tree is on her back,” Elle says in eminent excitement while clapping her hands. “Should we organize everything in the fridge first or take the tree in?”

“Let’s get everything in here cleaned up,” she gestures at the groceries.

“Yeah, you’re right,” Elle giggles and starts putting canned goods in the cupboard.

“Hey guys,” enters Kayden Santiago, carrying his guitar. “James, any progress?”

As James helps Elle place everything in order, she shakes her head at Kayden. “Not a bloody thing, Kade.”

The corner of his eyes, blue like the sky at dawn, wrinkle as he laughs, gently placing his instrument by the couch. “Going English on me, huh?”

James throws a bag of chips at him. “Whatever.”

Kade opens the bag and munches on sour cream flavored chips, “Thanks for this.” He points his thumb to the door, “Elle, you bought a Christmas tree? How long will it last?”

“Until New Year, I believe,” she replies, closing the cabinet. “Don’t worry; it’ll serve its purpose just in time for Christmas.”

James gasps, turning a sharp look at her best friend, “You bought a live tree? Instead of watching it die on us, we can buy a plastic one!”

“Yeah,” Kade agrees, chewing what’s left on the bag. “You’re just gonna let it die?!”

“Bro, you don’t live here,” snaps James at Kade, making him shrug. “But thanks for the support.”

He puckers his lips towards her, sending kisses in the air.

She rolls her dark eyes, hiding her blushing face from Kade, and turns to her best friend. “Seriously though, we can return the tree and go to the mall now.”

“And let’s buy pizza,” butts in Kade, wrapping the bag into a ball and tossing it into the trash bin.

“Nu-uh, you’re procrastinating,” Elle tuts. “We can do that later.”

“I think I need inspiration from the outside,” reasons James. “If you don’t want to go with me, I’ll go alone.”

“I’ll keep you company, James,” winks Kade, opening his palm to her.

“But live trees have a fragrant scent,” argues Elle. “It smells like Christmas; it will feel like home!”

“I’m sure we can buy a spray can with pine tree scent,” ponders James, wrapping her Slytherin scarf around her neck.

“There are, actually,” nods Kade, putting James’s knitted hat on her. He warmly smiles and curls her black hair between his fingers. “My mate has one, and he uses it as perfume.”

James laughs, reaching for her gloves. “I gotta hear about this!”

“It’s not real!” Elle stomps her foot loudly on their carpeted floor, making Kade and James look her way. “It won’t be like Christmas.”

“But it’ll be better since we’re not killing a tree,” murmurs James.

Kade places a hand on her shoulder, giving her a gentle squeeze.

“Oh! Since you want a fake Christmas tree, let’s have fake snow too!” Elle crosses her arms with a hard tug.

“You know there’s snow in a can,” butts Kade.

“I even saw Bretman Rock’s science experiment on YouTube. They put the artificial snow on their bathtub,” shares James.

Kade’s smile grows brighter. “Oh yeah! Maybe we can get those too! Since it’s still unclear when snow will fall.”

“Gah~!” Elle throws her arms up and stomps to her room. “Good luck finding where I bought that tree!” she loudly says and slams her door.

James grabs her car keys on the kitchen counter. “You’re coming with me, right?”

“As you wish,” Kade smiles and holds his gaze while James rolls her eyes.

They greet the crisp afternoon and watch the buzzing cafe below their maisonette. With Kade in tow, James waves at the barista as she leads him to her pink 1941 Ford pickup truck.

“Wanna grab a cuppa later?” asks James. “Just to blow some steam?”

“As you wish,” teases Kade, walking beside her.

“Will you knock The Princess Bride line off?” she lightly punches his arm, making him laugh. “It’s gonna make me think you’re in love with me or something!”

“Alright, alright! Geez, you don’t have to be violent, James,” he rubs where she has hit him, feigning pain.

Despite the freezing air, her insides send shockwaves of warmth while she giggles.

“What’s the big deal with you and Elle, anyway?” he asks, shoving his gloved hands in his coat.

“I just think it’s more sustainable than buying Christmas trees every year,” James shrugs, looking at the poor tree tied up on the truck bed floor. She climbs in and searches for any receipt so they can return the tree. Kade slides into the passenger seat.

“You know if we return this beautiful tree, it might go into the chipper,” he says, opening the glove compartment. “Ah, found it! Here’s the receipt.”

“I’m sure they won’t,” says James with a nervous chuckle, starting the engine.

Kade rests his gaze on her as they drive off to Greg’s Christmas Tree Farm.

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