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    The Gift of Present Presence

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    Alexander Dawson
    Sixth Year
    Sixth Year

    Posts : 248
    Join date : 2012-07-02

    The Gift of Present Presence

    Post by Alexander Dawson on Thu Aug 23, 2012 4:22 pm

    Firenze, Italy
    Saint Mary's Orphanage; an underfunded, much abused, building with cheery christmas lights, nevertheless
    Christmas Morning



    “Look it’s Santa!”

    “That’s not Santa, silly. That’s just Zander.”

    Grinning around the fake beard he had placed over his chin, Zander placed his massive bag of goodies on the threshold, closing the door against the chill behind him. “What gave me away?” He whined, his eyes glinting playfully as the scattered children ran to him. “Was it my devilishly good looks?”

    “Ew, Zander!”

    “What good looks?”

    “You need glasses!”

    Their taunts were simply thus, there was no bad feelings, no hidden disgust. Simply a greeting. Childish and innocent. That was what he liked about it.

    Their attention was caught on the giant bag all at once, as if they each hadn’t been eyeing it before they greeted him, but had known it would be impolite to focus on it before it’s giver. That, or they were sucking up to the bearer of such gifts. He was betting the latter.

    The six to eleven year olds crowded forward, their eyes alight with curiosity and happiness as the twelve to fifteen year olds hung back, trying to look cool. Too cool to greet someone with such exuberance. Zander simply did not understand it. They were happy to see him as well, however, and that was all that matters.

    “What’s in the bag? What’s in there?”

    “Hmm?” Zander looked down at the bag, as if forgetting it. “Oh this? I don’t think you really want to know.”

    “Aw, Zander!”

    “What’s in there?”

    “You know you want to tell us.”

    The routine was familiar, coming just as easily as breathing. The small orphanage in Italy had been like a second home to him, a much needed escape once the thought of life outside had begun to appeal to him. He had come and spent four Christmases here already, and was not about to just stop tradition because he had moved away. He had said he’d spend the day with Damian, and it was only Christmas morning. He’d probably be back for dinner. He’d have to ask the boy.

    “Zander! What’s in there?”

    Snapping out of his thoughts, the boy grinned. “What? In this old thing?”

    “Yes!” The cheer was immediate, and suddenly every eye that had not been interested before was on him, from ages seven to fifteen. He let his eyes slip over them, each boy and girl of every age, united in their excitement. There were roughly fourty present, a downsize since last year. A lot of them had aged out.

    He wondered where they’d gone.

    “Well, what do you think comes in bags on Christmas day?”

    “PRESENTS!” The roar was unanimous, and as tall as he was, Zander was suddenly quite afraid of being over run.

    “THEN IT MUST BE PRESENTS!” He bellowed.

    There was cheer, and he was suddenly being tackled, pummeled by a thousand smaller bodies in union. The boy fell over, but he was laughing, even as he waved to the head caretaker as she removed the bag of gifts from the loving hoarde. He himself stayed beneath them, gluttonous for the affection he got here more than anywhere else.

    It felt good to be home


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    Damian Gray
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    Join date : 2011-08-01

    Re: The Gift of Present Presence

    Post by Damian Gray on Wed Aug 29, 2012 4:05 am

    Damian grumbled quietly to himself. Why were the streets here so bloody confusing? At least he could mostly read the signs. Not that that helped when most of the damn buildings were missing numbers. And it wasn't like there was anyone around so he could ask directions.

    Stepping into a snowy alleyway, Damian pulled out his wand and shot a covert look around himself. "Point me, Dawson," he incanted. The wand spun about wildly before coming to a halt, pointed roughly past his right shoulder. Damian turned to look in that direction, eyebrows raising at the building it directed him to.

    Well, at least the two numbers that hadn't fallen off were accurate. Carefully picking his way across the street, he hesitated, then raised a fist to knock on the door.


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    Alexander Dawson
    Sixth Year
    Sixth Year

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    Join date : 2012-07-02

    Re: The Gift of Present Presence

    Post by Alexander Dawson on Mon Sep 03, 2012 7:47 am

    The knock on the door was like a kickstart, sending the boy to his feet in moments. Heedless of the many smaller bodies clinging to him as if he were his very own junglegym, Zander threw open the door, his face alight with happiness.

    "Damian!" He greeted, raising an arm to catch the six year old attempting to hurtle himself over his shoulder. Struggling to step backward - there were at least two kids attached to each leg, not to mention the ones clinging to his shoulders in an attempt to stay airborne - he waved into the modest boy home, unable to move further, a boyish grin overtaking his features.

    "Alright you lot, let Zander go. He has a guest, and you have presents." The motherly looking woman nodded to Damian before moving over through the doorway that led into the living room. The older kids had already disappeared inside, and now the younger ones were scattering in that direction as well. Helping the last of his attackers off of his person, Zander turned and smiled at Damian, tugging the fake white beard off from around his neck.

    "Do you mind staying for a bit? We have to open presents, then I'm all yours, promise."


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    Damian Gray
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    Re: The Gift of Present Presence

    Post by Damian Gray on Wed Sep 05, 2012 12:11 am

    Damian had easily heard the ruckus from the porch, though, he was uncertain what to expect. Zander in a Santa's suit covered in small children was certainly not it. He smiled politely at what must have been the matron of the home.

    The children trooped off, leaving Damian facing his... facing Zander. (He still wasn't ready to use that word, especially since he wasn't entirely convinced it applied to them.) Damian shook his head.

    "I don't mind," he said. It wasn't like he'd had any sort of really Christmas since he was twelve, anyway. Might as well look in.


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