Less than a week left before Christmas, the sight of snow falling made Eris suddenly feel a bit nostalgic for her childhood, and how she and her family used to volunteer to help other families during the holiday season.
Determined to do something, but not sure what path to take, she got in her car and started driving around aimlessly, letting her mind wander in hopes of finding ideas.
Passing an old shopping mall, on impulse she decided to go inside and see if maybe she might find a present she could buy for a poor person ... and, walking through the doors, she meandered around until she spied a friendly looking man dressed as Santa Claus sitting on a recliner.
Looking at him curiously, she realized he was smiling at her, and when he beckoned her over, she decided it might be fun to chat with the old man for a minute.
"So, little girl, what do you want for Christmas," he said to her with a jolly laugh as she came close.
Chuckling in response, she said, "This year, all I want to do is make somebody happy, somebody needy, by giving them the perfect gift."
"Ho, ho, ho ... if that's what you truly want, I think it can be arranged, Eris," the red-dressed man said to her with a kind grin.
Wondering how the old man knew her name, she started to ask when an old lady, wearing an ancient dress with a tattered shawl around her shoulders, approached the two of them with a cautious expression.
"Well, well, if it isn't little Sarah, after all these years," the old man said to the lady with a soft but welcoming expression. "So tell me, little girl, and think hard, what would you most want Santa to bring you this year?"
The elderly woman closed her eyes deep in thought, and then, with an almost toothless smile, she responded, "When I was a little girl, my favorite toy of all time was a wind-up ballerina doll I had. She was so beautiful, and I cherished her more than anything. Somehow, during the years, she got lost ... and having her back would make me so happy. I know that would be impossible, but it's what I truly wish Santa could bring me this year."
At hearing those words, Eris suddenly began to get extremely dizzy, and the entire room began to spin. Feeling as if she was losing control over her limbs, Eris felt like she needed to sit down more than anything, and allowed her body to slump onto the floor.
"Why does everything seem so huge?" were Eris's next thoughts as she felt strangely as if she were being picked up and brought closer to the old lady by a strong but gentle force.
"Oh my God ... Santa ... How did you ever find her? She's so beautiful! Thank you, oh, thank you," Eris heard the woman exclaim, intense joy filling her voice.
"Just enjoy her, Sarah. You deserve it after the hard life you've had," Santa responded. "Merry Christmas!"
The next series of events for Eris were a confusing whirlwind, as she felt like she was being placed into a gigantic bag, then moved around in darkness, then at some point being placed aboard a vehicle, and carried into a building, and ... suddenly light shown on her, and she felt herself being picked up again, this time in the shaking hands of the geriatric lady.
All this time, Eris had noticed she couldn't move ... but for some reason, she wasn't scared by that, and it felt surprisingly natural to her.
Hearing a strange ratcheting sound, she realized it was coming from her back, and she felt something start to turn inside her ... and, without warning, she could move again!
A simple joy in her new existence flowed through Eris, and she began to dance around in place, a series of simple, repeating steps, but ones that made her heart sing ... and the idea of repeating those dance steps forever seemed truly like heaven for the little wind-up doll.
Hearing soft laughter, Eris realized it was coming from the old woman, and the little wind-up doll knew without a doubt this was truly her purpose from now on ... to make this woman ... Sarah ... happy however she could ... and Eris danced on and on, blissfully into the night.