Occupy the North Pole (Complete Short Story)
My fascination with the North Pole and twisting it around ended up in another short story from 2011. Please respect my copyright.
Occupy the North Pole
By Joel M. Andre
© 2011 by Joel M. Andre All Rights Reserved.
In a small conference room, a group of reporters huddled together for a major announcement that was set to come out of the North Pole. Their invitations were for nothing more than a free lunch and to receive some form of breaking news that would have an impact on the world.
Among the mixture of reporters, a woman in a snow print sweater and black slacks looked around nervously. A soft golden police star hung from the side of her pocket and nervously she covered it. The last thing she wanted anyone here to know is that there was a Natale Police Officer in the mix.
Her name is Diane Davis and she was sent here to deal with the matter. In fact the instructions were clear and to the point. She was to take care of this problem, before it escalated to a point that would be unacceptable.
Hushed whispers echoed in the room as the group waited for the announcement to begin when a set of velvet candy cane stripped curtains began to pull back and an elf began to hobble through them. With a step ladder giving him access, he tapped twice on the microphone and began.
“My opinion isn’t going to be very popular.” The tiny elf began. “But Christmas will not transpire this year.”
Scanning his icy blue eyes across the room, he challenged each of the reporters that had agreed to attend the announcement. With his soft pink lips pressed in annoyance, he adjusted the thin wired glasses on his face and pushed back his hat as it dipped slightly over his face.
“As many of you know, the Occupy movement has become a source of great debate this year. The world has been watching places like Wall Street and Phoenix filling with protestors against the 1%. As the crowds grew, so did the media attention. This movement has become a media frenzy and the people are standing up for what they believe in.”
Pausing again, he once again challenged the reporters in the room. All eyes were trained on the little elf, the silence in the room was more of confusion than anything else. After all, in front of them was a creature no more than three feet tall dressed in red and white leggings, short green shorts and a tiny green top lined in fur. His long pointed hat of green, lined with crushed red velvet, made him seem like something that would come from a holiday shelf, rather than a being from the North Pole.
“In the North Pole, the elves feel like they are part of the 99% that need to take a stand. That is why, effective immediately; we are going to stop Christmas this year. There is no need for us to work our butts off so that the man in the red suit has a chance to take credit for our hard work when all he does is fly his fat ass around the world one night a year.”
“But he keeps track of the children.” A wiry woman with long dark hair and poorly applied makeup replied. “I mean, isn’t his job to keep tabs on what they are doing? You are his helpers.”
“In your country, an individual who works for no pay isn’t a helper. We’re slaves making toys for children that won’t remember what was given to them three months from now. For the record, elves keep track of the children and he is given a detailed map of where he needs to drop gifts. Nothing more than that.”
Pushing back her black hair, the woman snickered at his response. “Clearly, you don’t know what you are talking about.” Looking around she sought the approval of the other reporters, however their gaze remained on the elf at the podium.
“Does anyone else want to try to offer up their wit?” The elf asked.
“Are you contractually obligated to work in the toy shops?” Diane spoke up.
“I was waiting for you to speak up, Officer Davis and to be honest; you don’t fully understand what is going on.” Hiss the elf. “Would anyone else want to try to butt in now, or is Diane’s failed attempt at being intelligent good enough for all of us? Very well, let’s continue.”
The officer forced a smile and nodded at the elf, blushing hard at his less than jolly approach to handling the interruption. Clearly, he had no idea what he was in for, but she would allow him to speak his mind. He was just one of the ones that had an ideal in his mind and there was no way her boss was going to let one tiny little creature have his way.
Tugging on her snowflake pattern sweater, she forced a smile and continued to pretend she was interested in what the little creature had to say.
“Now, as most of you are aware, the elves make up the majority of the workforce in the North Pole. However, there is the crew of the eight tiny reindeer. Unfortunately, these reindeer refused to band together with the elves in this occupy movement. As a result, the venison meal you were treated to before this gathering was courtesy of these wonderful creatures. Let the record show that anyone who chooses to stand in our way will be dealt with in a similar manner.”
A nervous murmur ran across the group of reporters and the tiny elf chuckled softly. The group was clearly eating the words he said and this was going to make the cancellation of Christmas considerably easier than he originally imagined. With a little more effort, the elves would have a chance to rule Christmas and turn it into a celebration of their species, rather than a worship of an iconic overlord that forced people to do his bidding over the course of the year to make a few children smile for a day.
“But with Christmas cancelled, what will the elves do?” A middle aged man with thinning brown hair and a bushy moustache asked. “I mean, you’ll leave the North Pole, but then what will you do?”
“We will find new employment options.” The elf responded. “Clearly, we are qualified to do a number of things and we look forward to our new options.”
“If you end up working for another employer, aren’t you falling into the same trap?” A young blond woman asked.
“We will have made a statement that will be heard across the world. Everyone needs to work, but we will have taught Santa Claus a lesson. That is after all the main goal, to let the 1% know that we are strong.”
“But what about him bringing in new workers to replace you?” Asked a beautiful woman with olive colored skin and challenging brown eyes. “If you are replaced by the fairies that are currently unemployed, what will your stance be then?”
“Well, that would be an act of betrayal.” The elf paused for a moment annoyed. “We would be forced to pluck their little wings from their backs and burn them for crossing us.”
“Isn’t the occupy movement supposed to be one that isn’t violent?” Asked a young man.
“Clearly, you are missing the point. It isn’t violent, unless we don’t get out way.” Answered the elf. “Can we focus now on the situation at hand. “
“But what about the children?” Asked a female reporter with long curly hair, dressed in black. “Their hearts will be broken. What will we do for them?”
“The children are unfortunate victims in this matter.” A smirk crossed the elf’s face. “But perhaps their increasing greed over the years for endless toys has led to this. Think about it, if you will. Every year, the children of the world get new toys and games that are upgraded versions of the previous seasons. They no longer want what they have, instead the focus remains on the newest item that is coming out. This leaves us working endless hours trying to keep up with the increasing demand for items. When we fail to produce enough of an item, we end up getting hate mail, instead of a thank you for what we did bring them. How do you think that makes us feel? But it is never the fault of Santa Claus, it is always that the elves couldn’t produce the gift for the children. We’re the scape goat and he gets off without having to pay for his crimes.”
“But, that is how the business world works.” Responded the olive skinned woman. “You do understand that is how business works, right? You are expected to deliver and when you fall short or the company fails, it will never be the responsibility of anyone with authority. It’s just how it works. ”
“That is one of the things we need to change. “ The elf howled. “If you continue to let the world operate this way, there will never be a change and things will continue like they already are.”
“Where society functions and people go to work and earn a paycheck?” Asked the young man. “If everyone stopped working and businesses were forced to shut down, what would have been solved in the process? Let’s just call it what it is, there is always going to be someone who remains at the top of the food chain in the business world. The 1% as you call them will continue to evolve, but there will never be an even playing field for the others. It is just how things work.”
Disgusted the elf looked at the man and began to scan the eyes of the others in the room.
“You really don’t get that the occupy movement is about economic and social inequality. “ Tears began to fill the elf’s eyes. “We are not being treated the way we should be. Why doesn’t anyone get that?”
Slowly, the reporters began to stand and leave the room. A few turned their heads to shake them in disgust. Others scoffed and rolled their eyes as they proceeded to leave the room. Soon, it was down to Diane and the tiny elf. Hopping off the stage, he made his way to her and sat in the chair next to her.
“They were all willing to listen to me at first, then they just stopped.” His face was in the state of shock. “It was all going the way I had hoped. What changed?”
“You tried to step in and change something that has been in existence for thousands of years, thinking that by making a scene, you could change it.” Diane replied. “Social and economic classes have been around for thousands of years and the outcry against them keeps coming and going. What you should have focused on were the things that mattered instead. Having a place to keep your family safe, being able to feed them, not complaining that life isn’t fair. It gets old and people will just grow to ignore it.”
“So the reindeer, they died in vein.” The elf began to sob hard.
“No, they died to become a tasty meal for a group of people that were happy for a free meal.” Diane smiled. “But we still have a problem.”
“Santa’s pissed huh?” Fear crept across the elf’s face. “How are we going to get around this one?”
“Thankfully, the crimes were all committed by you, while the others are guilty of watching the scene you caused, no one actually stepped in. This means there is only one issue we need to deal with.”
“You got it.” Dianne smiled. “Plus, you trashed Santa in the media and he isn’t going to be happy. But he pretty much knew what was going to happen and that is why he sent me here.”
“But what are you going to do?” The elf’s tiny eyes grew large in fear.
Picking up a black purse lined in crushed red velvet, she drew out a long candy cane. The elf watched her carefully as she peeled off the wrapper.
“Please, no.” Replied the elf as he struggled to get out of his chair.
Shoving him down hard, she shoved the candy in his mouth as he struggled to breathe. His eyes bulging as the stick remain lodged down in his throat. Within a few moments, his soft white complexion turned blue and his eyes turned lifeless.
Taking out a Kleenex, Diane pulled out a cloth and wiped down the tip of the candy cane sticking from the elf’s mouth and the area she had held on his body. Reaching into her purse, she picked up her cell phone and chose Detective Bruni from her contact list.
“Hello, Lauren,” she began. “This is Officer Diane Davis. The Candy Cane Killer has struck again.”