The worst of being a Christmas Child is that you don’t get birthday presents, but only Christmas ones. Old Naylor, who was Father’s coachman, and had a great gruff voice that came from his boots and was rather frightening, used to ask how I expected to grow up without proper birthdays, and I thought I might have to stay little always. When I told Father this he laughed, but a moment later he grew quite grave.
“Listen, Chris,” he said. And then he took me on his knee—I was a small chap then—and told me things that made me forget old Naylor, and wish and wish that Mother could have stayed with us. The angels had wanted her, Father explained; well, we wanted her too, and there were plenty of angels in heaven, anyway.
When I said this Father gave me a great squeeze and put me down, and I tried to be glad that I was a Christmas child. But I wasn’t really until a long time afterwards, when I had found the Fairy Ring, and met the Queen of the Fairies.