One day my cousins and I were looking out my bedroom window in absolute awe. Outside tied against my willow tree was what we thought was a buck. But when we got outside, we saw that it was female. And it's antlers made a snowflake pattern however way you looked at them. "Maybe it's a reindeer." My older cousin, Jessica suggested. My cousins and have heard tales of flying reindeer that pull Santa's sleigh. Being Armenian and Russian, we don't have a Santa Claus. We have Father Frost and his granddaughter, the Snow Maiden. Father Frost comes on sled pulled by, Troika, three horses. Father Frost didn't come on Christmas. That was the time when St. Nicholas came. Instead, Father Frost comes on New Years. It was obvious that the reindeer belonged to nobody. "We should to take her to the old garage." I said. "Of course," said my younger cousin Kristina said, fanning herself with her hand. "She won't survive out here especially in this weather condition." I quickly untied the rope from the willow tree and made a small loop big enough for my hand to fit in. "We should to keep the rope as a leash until I can get one of my dog's." I said.
We walked into the woods and spotted the abandoned tent. The roof was slightly bent downward, but it was the only place available for shelter right now. I led the reindeer to the tent where she settled down in the shade as I tied the rope to one of the support poles. "We need grass and ice-cold water." Jessica said "I'll go get grass!" Kristina said before running off into one of the hills to collect some grass. "Then I'll go get water." Jessica said before running into the house to get some water. I shrugged before grabbing two circular containers from my dad's old tractor-trailer.
Kristina came running up with two large handfuls of grass. She dropped them in the first container as Jessica came running up with a pitcher filled with water, which sloshed around before she poured it into the other container. I pushed them in and let the reindeer eat and drink. "What should we call her?" Kristina asked. I shrugged at the question. "That's a good question." The reindeer whinnied at us. "What?" I asked. She whinnied again. "Ok, ok we're thinking of a name." I said rubbing my temples. "How about... Nixie." I said. Then, Nixie neighed happily.
The next morning when our parents were still asleep Jessica and I crept outside with water and saw Kristina with two hands full of grass. We quietly unzipped the garage and saw that Nixie was gone!
"Where could she be?" Jessica wondered out loud. "Let's look for clues." I suggested. We walked in the garage and searched. Finally, Kristina called. "Over here!" Jessica and I ran over to her. There was a huge hole in the back of the garage, which was made out of a plastic-like fabric, that was big enough for Nixie to get through. "Someone must have stolen her." Kristina said. "Let's get my friends Lisa and Stephanie to help us."
I lead my cousin's to Lisa's house, which wasn't to far from mine. When I called her phone, she picked up. "Lisa, we're outside your door. Can you come out? We need you're help." "Yeah sure." Lisa said, then hung up. She came out a few minutes later wearing a tank top, shorts, and sandals. "We need you help." I said again. "We found a reindeer yesterday and took her into out garage but this morning, she wasn't there. We think someone stole her." "What makes you think someone stole her?" Lisa asked. "The huge hole in the wall that was cut with a knife." Kristina retorted. I harshly nudged her with my elbow. "We're getting Stephanie too." Lisa nodded. I called Stephanie. "Hey Stephanie?" I said, not giving her time to speak. "My cousins, Lisa and I are walking over to your house. Get some summer clothes on and meet us outside. It's urgent." I hung up led the way to Stephanie's house. She was outside already. "We need your help." I said. "Yesterday, we found a reindeer in out yard and today, she was stolen." Stephanie nodded. "I'll help." She said. "Ok, first, we need to get some supplies from some local stores." I said. "First, some pet supplies for Nixie, the reindeer we found." "I know the exact place to go!" Lisa said in a exited voice. "Let me guess." I sighed "PetLife?" "Yes!" Lisa cried. I took out my phone and went to my GPS app and typed in Pet- Life.
As we were walking, Kristina suggested, "If someone stole Nixie, then that person probably left a trail." I nodded. "All criminals and their crimes leave some kind of trail." To everyone I said, "Go look for clues on the way. I'll keep on following and call me when you find something." Everyone nodded and went of to opposite sides to find clues. After a moment Lisa called yelled, "Over here!" I hurled through the tall grass and stopped to see five jewels and hoof prints. "Those are Nixie's jewels." I said. "Here, put the jewels in this bag, I opened up a Ziplock bag and Lisa poured the jewels in. "Over here!" Kristina called. I ran over to her and saw a pile of jewels and a golden collar. "Put those in here." I said, opening two more Ziplock bags.
We finally reached the pet store. "It's a lot more work walking to a store when you don't take the highway." Stephanie said between pants. We climbed in a tree and rested on separate branches. "We should hurry." Lisa said. "Let us catch our breath." Kristina said. I jumped down with Jessica. "Come on, you can catch your breath walking." We walked into Pet-Life. Luckily, Stephanie is tall enough to pass as an adult. Kristina, Lisa, and Jessica waited outside while Stephanie and I got the stuff we needed.
As we were walking out of the store carrying the bags, we heard a quiet whinny. I turned to see Nixie. "Here Nixie." I whispered. She tried to come towards us, but she was tied to a tree. Before I could so much move to untie her, we heard a voice speak. "Stubborn animal." I gasped. "Madison!" We quickly climbed the nearest tree and looked down at Madison in absolute horror as Madison untied a rope and tugged on it so hard Nixie reared up. "Come on." She said and walked away, taking Nixie with her. "We have a couple of places left." I said. We climbed down the tree and I typed in Medical Animals. "Hurry up." Jessica urged me. "We still need to go to find out where Madison is taking Nixie." We walked on. Thankfully, Medical Animals wasn't too far from Pet-Life.
When we got out of the store, our bags were filled with vet supplies and a hair dryer. We hung the four bags filled with supplies and sat in a tree. Jessica and Kristina had clambered down and Jessica called "Hurry! Madison is coming and we need one more place to go." Ok." I called back. We walked on, trying to make sure Madison didn't see us. Something slipped out of her pocket. We waited until she wasn't in eyesight to go find out what it was. It was a white bottle. "What do you think it is?" Christina asked. "I don't know." I said before bending down and picking the bottle up. "Poison " Jessica said, looking at the label on the side." "It has Madison's name on it." Lisa said. "She might be planning to do something bad to Nixie." Jessica said. "Lisa." I whispered. "Madison is your best friend and she could be-" "I know." Lisa whispered back. "We need to follow her." Stephanie said. "Right." Lisa said. "But first," I held up my phone which was still on my GPS app. "We need one more stop." I said. "Woodwork"? Lisa asked. "Yep." I replied. We walked on, following the GPS's directions.
When we walked out of Woodwork, our bags carrying a hammer, nails, wood, a screwdriver, a saw, and paint. We climbed the tree. "I don't get it." Lisa said. "What?" I asked. "You guys haven't believed in reindeer your whole lives. Why do you want to save something you don't believe in?" "Because it's an animal." I said. "We'd help it no matter what." "If you don't believe in flying reindeer, then how do you think Santa delivered gifts to the kids?" Stephanie asked. Kristina, Jessica and I exchanged smiles. "Our Santa Claus is Father Frost." I said. "He delivers gifts by his sled, that is pulled by Troika, or three horse." "Father Frost has a granddaughter called the Snow Maiden." Kristina said.
We reached my house and saw Madison giving Nixie food and poured in a bottle of poison. "That's the same kind as the one I picked up." Jessica said. "We'll be in this bush." Lisa said giving me a small push toward Madison and Nixie. I gathered my courage and ran over there as fast as I could, shouting, "Stop!!" Madison straightened her posture and I kept shouting. "You're going to kill her! Step away and don't give her that!" She had a smirk plastered on her face when I reached her. "Abby are telling me what to." I glared at her. "No one takes what's mine from me without permission!" I snapped. "What?" "That is Nixie and she belongs to me." I said. "What in earth makes you think that you can go on my property and go into my woods and go into my garage and steal Nixie?!" Madison looked at the ground. "I thought that belonged to nobody." She said in a small voice. "That was in my woods next to my house." I said, my voice just as small. Lisa,Stephanie, Christina,and Jessica all jumped out of the bush and ran over. I got an idea. "Madison can you help us we are building a vet and stable office." I asked. Madison looked shocked at first, then nodded. "Sure." She answered. "So.." Christina started. "Madison is going to help us." I answered her unasked question. "What are in those sacks?" Madison asked. "Food ,water,toys, vet supplies,and a hair dryer." I said. "Also, Nixie's jewles." "Whats the hairdryer for?" Madison asked. "To dry a cast if we need to." I answered. "We also have nails,paint,a saw, and other hard wood supplies." Lisa said. "Well lets get started." Jessica said.
We all got to work. Lisa said the wood in lengths we needed, Jessica nailed them with Kristina, Stephanie and I worked on the inside and Madison painted. In no time the new stable and vets office, which was well hidden from the parents by the trees, was finished. Nixie woke up with a grunt. She limped toward us and sneezed. Achoosnoff! "Well we all need jobs right?" Kristina asked. "Yeah." I answered. I"ll think of the jobs and we'll write our names next to the jobs we want. I said. I wrote the jobs down on a notebook. Everybody signed there name...except me. I checked the list twice even three times! Nothing was open. All the employees chattered about there new job. I sat on the grass and out my head on my knees. Stephanie looked around to see where I was. She spotted me on the grass and walked over to me. "Are you okay?" "No." I answered. "I didn't get a job." Stephanie was about to ask another question when Lisa ran over and said, "Come on its almost time to start our new jobs!" Stephanie gave me an apologetic look then walked away with Lisa. Then she suddenly stopped and Lisa asked, "What's wrong?" Stephanie explained that I didn't get a job. "Well there's a job left I meant to save for Abby." Lisa said. "Really?" I asked. "Yep." She answered. "You are the patient." I looked at her confused. "What?" I asked. "The very first patient." She answered. "Abby!" Stephanie exclaimed. "You've got one of the most important jobs!!" "Wow I guess I do." I said. "Hey Abby!" Kristina called. "You got a job right?" "Yes I'm a patient." I answered. "Awesome!" She exclaimed.
I clapped and said "Listen up guys! I know you are all excited to start your new jobs but there's a promise we must make." I said. "Huh?" "What promise?" "What?" Everyone asked each other. I raised my hand and said, "Repeat after me; 'I promise not to tell my a single soul about Nixie, the new stable, or the new vet office.'" They said the promise and I said "Great now the moment you've all been waiting for... Time to start our new jobs!" Everyone cheered. Jessica the accountant, opened the new glass windows and put the open sign on. Kristina and Madison who were the nurses, were at there rooms and so were the vets Stephanie and Lisa. Then as soon as I saw the signal I walked in. "Welcome." Jessica said. I looked at her confused then said, "Uh the nurses and doctors need there uniforms on and so do you." "Oh!" She exclaimed. She called Kristina. "Get the nurses and vets into the office now." Kristina, Madison, Lisa and Stephanie rushed into the waiting room. "Abby." Lisa said. "The jewels." "Oh right." I said. I ran outside and stuck the jewels on with hot glue. "Where are the uniforms?" Jessica asked. "Oh no!" I exclaimed. "We forgot them!" "Two of us should go and the rest of us should stay." Kristina said. "I personally think Abby should go beacause she's the leader." "Really?" I asked, my eyes wide. "Yep." Christina answered. "Madison you're coming with me." I said. "Okay." Madison said. "The rest of you stay here. We'll go to the scrub store and get back as fast as we can." I told the rest. I grabbed some money from my bag and we headed off to the scrub store.
Madison and I finally made it to the nurses' scrubs store. "Hang on a minute," Madison said. "Those scrubs are made for adults. They won't fit on us." "We'll just have to adjust them at the vet." I said. "Or just get petite sizes." Madison and I walked into the store. I knew the two employees that worked here very well. "Well, hello, Miss Abby!" The cheerful voice of Jennifer, one of the employees, said, as I entered. "Hi, Jennifer," I said. "My friend and I were wondering if we could get some scrubs?" "Of course, dear," Jennifer said. "How many?" I thought for a moment. "Four," I said. "Okay, and what size?" Jennifer asked. "Petite." I said. "Okay, then that will be $20.00, please."
Once we got back to the vet and had adjusted the sizes for the scrubs on the nurses and vets, Jessica told me that they were ready for me. She had a business suit on that she had snuck form her mom's suitcase. I walked in with Nixie by my side...
"Hello, ma'am." Jessica said in a formal voice, as though we weren't cousins and she wasn't sleeping over. "How may this vet clinic help you today?" I spoke to her in the same manner, my voice sprinkled with worry. "My poor reindeer is sneezing and her hind leg is all twisted. I was wondering if your vets could fix it." "Of course, ma'am," Jessica said. " Sign out this form and I will have one of our nurses with you right away." So I filled out the form and gave it back to Jessica. She had me go to the stables, since that's where Nixie would be comfortable. Minutes later, Madison came into the stables. "You must be Abby Stepaniants." She said. Madison looked like a real nurse in her adjusted scrub. "Yes, ma'am that is me." "Alright, well, I have to take your reindeer into our checkup room and then we will have give her X-Ray." My nerdy instincts kicked in. "Will the radiation harm her?" I asked. "Oh, no ma'am," Madison said. "She will be perfectly fine."
After waiting for a while, Lisa came out with a clipboard. "You're reindeer is allergic to dust and has a sprained leg." I nodded. "What should I do?" I asked. "Keep her off that leg for three weeks, then come and see us again. Also, keep her quarters dust free." I smiled, dropping the worried owner act. "So, we'll just keep her in the stables and dust it every so often?" I asked. Lisa shrugged her shoulders. "Yeah, basically." As Stephanie and Kristina came into the room, Jessica clapped. "Congratulations Abby! You have passed as our very first patient!" I smiled and felt pleased with myself. "I wouldn't have been able to do it without any of you." I said. "If you hadn't called us to help you, we would never of learned about Father Frost." Lisa said. "Yeah, it's actually a lot more interesting." Stephanie said. "Really, this is mostly thanks to Madison." I said. "If she hadn't taken Nixie, we would never have done this." Kristina shook her head. "If it wasn't for your big heart, Abby, Nixie wouldn't be with us. She'd be in an animal shelter or the zoo!"
From that day forward, Lisa, Kristina, Stephanie, Madison, Jessica and I took good care of Nixie. Our parents eventually found out and let us keep her. She was as friendly as a house cat.