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Christmas Cottage This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   I stood looking at the small brown cottage set off in a wonderful Christmas scene before me. It was cozy and pleasant, with a tiny mossy door surrounded by the intricate frame of a family house, trimmed with gingerbread lattice the same greenish color as the door. A wreath of evergreens and bright red holly berries hung there, as if welcoming me to open the door and go inside. But I stood away, a silent onlooker. The windows were lit and they cast a yellow glow on the fresh blanket of snow draped around the house.

The tall fir trees that seemed to guard the cottage were clothed in long rows of white snow, weighing down their outstretched limbs. Long dark shadows fell behind them in the grayish white of the background.

I looked a little closer and noticed a single candle in each window, with small orange flames dancing at their tips. Even the tiny attic window held a candle, shining brighter than the rest in the darkness. I peered in every window to take in the splendor of the season. The huge picture window caught my attention and I looked deeper in. I could see a family enjoying their Christmas holiday. A tree stood tall in a corner of the room, decorated with strings of lights and glittery tinsel. And a wreath just like the one hanging on the front door was fastened over the fireplace, beneath it a row of red stockings. But the people in that window, though strangers, made me smile. A father and mother with their children, telling them about Santa Claus and his reindeer before tucking them into bed.

My attention again drifted outside to the falling snow. The little flakes fell with a twinkle to them, blending with the snow on the ground making it the most beautiful Christmas ever. I sighed, it was so perfect - but not for me. I decided to take one last look of pure bliss, and move on my way. I set the glass globe back on the shelf, watching the plastic flakes fall, until it was all still again. The fake underwater fantasy of a Christmas worth more than the world vanished, and I walked away, wishing for a cottage of my own. 1


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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