Twelve Days of Fast Fiction 2015, Day 01: THE END OF MOMENTUM

Posted: 13 December 2015 in 12DaysFF, Christmas, fast fiction, writing
Tags: , , , ,

Hugo Rifkind is a writer I like, a lot, both as a person and for the elegance and intelligence of his writing. He’s also one of the few columnists who can, in just a few well-chosen words, puncture the pomposity of politicians, make an important point and make me laugh out loud… with the same sentence. A frequent panelist on The News Quiz, his columns in The Times and The Spectator are always fun, invariably highly intelligent, and sometimes very, very silly.

Hugo Rifkind has six separate cheat codes for his dictionary app.

Title: The End of Momentum
Word: plateau
Challenger: Hugo Rifkind
Length: 200 words exactly

It is a myth that was old when humanity was young, but Santa does not sleep during the long months when the skies are free from reindeer hooves. In truth, Santa does not sleep at all.

Instead, following his obligatory day of rest after his exertions, Santa enters the world. Filled with hope for mankind, propelled by the wonder of humanity, he spends January observing those who, on Christmas Eve, he noticed as especially kind. In spring, warmed by recent memories, he experiences new life brought forth; flora and fauna are blooming, and Santa delights.

By late summer, his enthusiasm for the human race reaches a plateau, and has even begun to fade, if only slightly.

It is during the wet months of October and November that Santa’s mood darkens. Yet he continues to observe. By year’s end, he is suffused with upset and disappointment; returning home, he angrily forswears his annual duty.

In his study, alone, he furiously paces for four days, then stops. Then sighs. It is a deep sigh, aeons deep. Maybe… once more. He’ll give them one more year. He saddles up Rudolph and his colleagues and sets out into the skies… just one more time.

© Lee Barnett, 2015

This story is part of The Twelve Days of Fast Fiction (More information on the Twelve Days here)
Day 02: Brand New Dignity, Jane – challenger: Pippa Evans
Day 03: Mommy Needs It Bad – challenger: Chip Zdarsky
Day 04: Corbyn Stop The War – challenger: Frances Barber
Day 05: Gods On The Dole – challenger: Kurt Busiek
Day 06: When Nothing Adds Up – challenger: Matt Parker


“There are two hundred stories collected in this volume. They are funny, they are thoughtful, they are romantic, they are frightening. To me, though, they are more than entertaining. They are inspiring.” – Wil Wheaton, from his introduction to volume 2 of The Fast Fiction Challenge

Two volumes of The Fast Fiction Challenge, containing 180 stories in Volume 1 and a further 200 stories in Volume 2, for £3.00 each, are available in ebook format from the author; email for details.

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