Feeling the fear and doing it anyways. Posting this so I do not ‘fix it’ by deleting it.
an unedited, short story (first draft)
The little girl was woken by an uncomfortable, high pitched wheeze, that probably would have been a cough if it hadn’t come from such a tiny figure.
Eyes wide she opened her mouth to scream but was interrupted by another wheeze-cough, ‘please don’t scream, this is a very important message from (long name) also known as st Nick, Father Christmas and -’
‘Santa?!’ the girl yelped excitedly.
‘Well yes, I was getting to that.’
As her eyes adjusted to the light the little girl was able to see the the speaker more clearly. She wanted to squeal, a little squeak slipped out, but a quick glare from what was obviously an elf – Santa’s Elf – had her quickly slapping her hands against her mouth.
The elf’s eyebrow quirked, ever so slightly, in approval and he continued to speak as though there had been no interruption. ‘regarding recent changes to the regime of data protection within the European Union, including the current United Kingdoms. From the date of May 25th 2018, as understood by the Gregorian Calendar, the one you know as Santa’ the elf paused for effect, ‘and his associates known by many as elves, and others as indentured servants’ the last statement a mumbled aside that the girl would be sure to ask her mama about later, ‘are now required by law to gain formal acceptance of your placement on the list known by various names including but not limited to the Naughty or Nice List. By agreement of the inclusion of your name on aforementioned list you are accepting that Santa and his North Pole based associates should henceforth store or process the personal information of you, a citizen of the European Union, including your basic identity information, and, behavioral information which would determine your position on the aforementioned List.’ the elf paused. The girl stayed quiet sure it was a test, though not completely sure what to make of the little pointy eared creature that stood proud at the foot of her bed. She had, during his speech, removed her hands from her mouth but now squeezed her lips tight and nodded her head like the marionette her aunt had recently gifted her after a trip to France.
‘Well promise to protect you details, and so on and so forth… Look do you want a gift from Santa this year or not?’
The elf’s tone changed from official to bored. ‘I am tasked with visiting every kid in the world, there’s only a few weeks left before the Big Day and things at the Grotto are at a standstill until I get these papers to the big man. So, presents yay or nay?’
Once again the little girl nodded.
The elf sighed, ‘you can speak now.’ he sighed again as he lifted his small frame onto her mattress. ‘I didn’t mean to be rude. I’m just so tired. Christmas was always fun, never felt like a job but these last few years there have been more and more rules and it’s just exhausting. Kid’s don’t want a train set anymore, we’re having to outsource more and more, I mean how are we trained carpenters and artisans supposed to make a gaming thingy-ma-jig? And the lists, you should see them? So much greed. But then there are some like yours,’ the elf shook his head, his chin resting heavily on his chest, ‘I’m sorry.’
He let out another wheeze and pushed himself from her bed. ‘I just need you to sign here if you accept the terms as stated, a full statement can be provided upon request.’ Back was the formal, brisk tone.
In the elf’s hand was a handheld device, that looked suspiciously like a smartphone.
The elf caught her gaze and shrugged, ‘if you can’t beat ’em and all that.’
Copyright © 2018 by Keshia Jade Ferdinand