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Merry Christmas

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It was the 25th of December, it was a special day for all the witches at Cackle's academy. The snow Covered the surroundings of the castle, the roofs were covered in ankle-high snow and the gardens were covered in snow, up to their knees.

The castle was decorated in so much Christmas decorations that there was nearly no sight of the brick walls. There was tinsel hung in every doorway in the castle, even the potions classroom. There were Christmas trees in every hall and classroom, with fake snow poured on them, along with the surroundings of the tree, though there were always footsteps of 'snow' around the castle.

The girls didn't miss any spot in the castle, never leaving a room not decorated. There were multiple girls sneaking around into Miss Hardbroom office, trying to get a place in the room. Of course, Indigo was always in charge of sneaking in when Miss Hardbroom leaves for lunch or to Miss Cackle.

It didn't take long until everyone was in the Christmas mood, even Miss Hardbroom, who usually didn't celebrate Christmas. Though with Indigo and Mildred going around with Christmas treats and cards they made Miss Hardbroom join them, knowing that she wouldn't like to be left out when Indigo is ruling the parties, with Mildred Hubble and her friends.

Miss Cackle also helped them get Miss Hardbroom out of the classroom when the Christmas preperations were ready and Christmas was closer. When everyone was involved that day of Christmas eve, everyone was making cakes and helping Miss Tapioca with the food, not wanting to have Christmas with bland or boring food.

Mildred always managed to get her mother's special fla ousings and ingredient, sneaking them in with Miss Tapioca's turkey.

With the snow out, everyone was outside.

"Come on, Mildred! Indigo!" Maud shouted as they ran into the thick snow. Girls were laughing, the staff were too enjoying themselves. Miss Drill was ruling the snowball fights, making them aim at Miss Hardbroom, who would be the main target.

Miss Bat was helping the first years to make a snowwitch. Mr Rowan-Webb suggested Snowwizards. Soon, everyone was playing together.

Hecate Hardbroom had sat on one of the benches, separating herself from the students, who were all crowded together, finding another target other than her. She ended up being covered in a thin layer of snow. With her dark clothes now looking like she was in white.

Miss Cackle was helping the girls make a large snow model of Cackle's while watching over the girls on the ice rink. It was magically made with Miss Cackle's help.

Hecate smiled when she saw Mildred helping Indigo onto the ice, and couldn't help but laugh when she saw Indigo fall over. After a few tries, Indigo was so smooth on the ice, already spinning along the ice, girls doing the same.

Indigo smiled at her as she surprisingly left the ice rink. Seeing her walk over, she just smiled. "I see you're a snow target!" Indigo laughed. Hecate just nodded.

"So, why aren't you excited for Christmas?" Indigo asked, " I guess that has changed since we were girls and when we would go out in the snow... Remember, we played for hours." Hecate nodded, saying, " Yeah, Christmas was never as fun after what happened, Christmas was never my kind of thing... " Indigo sighed as she nodded in understanding.

"We should go on the ice rink together!" Indigo sat up, looking excited. "But... I... It has been years since I have ice skated!" Hecate said as she followed Indigo past students, who have yet not forgotten their target. 

"Come on! Don't act like a baby! Come on!" Indigo laughed as she got onto the ice. Hecate rolled her eyes as she transferred some skates on and took a hesitant step on the ice, feeling as if everyone was looking at her. 

She waved her arms around for a moment before balancing onto the ice, noticing her hair had loosened and now she was in the middle of an ice rink and Indigo laughing so hard she looked as if she was about to accidentally pee her self.

After a few small accidents, she finally managed to beat Indigo in how long someone can spin without falling over. They never had so much fun, they found themselves falling on top of each other, students laughing as Hecate fell onto her stomach, roughly onto the ice and Indigo falling on top of her. 

Hecate couldn't help but feel embarrassed when she could see Felicity taking a photo. But seeing Indigo laughing she smiled as she quickly got used to the Christmas mood. She herself couldn't believe she had avoided this for years, she knew it was only because Indigo had forced her onto the ice which turned out to be less of a disaster as she expected. 

It was time for lunch by the time Hecate had changed from the uncomfortable trousers and jacket. Knowing that she could not go out in the snow with a dress, she had to dig through her neat pile of clothing and find some of her old clothing from years ago. 

Finally changing into something comfortable, she had decided to wear some comfortable, loose jeans and a blouse, though she never felt so awkward walking around as of she was some non-magical, though knowing others were in different clothing made it more comforting for Hecate. 

Walking into the great hall, she sat down next to Julie Hubble, very unenthusiasticly as it was the only seat left.  "I see you had fun?" Julie said, a cheeky smirk on her face. Hecate rolled her eyes, sighing. 

"I only did it for Indigo, it was her idea," Hecate said, almost mumbling. Julie just chuckled as she saw Mildred walking in, still helping Indigo get twigs out of her hair. 

"I am so glad that everyone is joining us for the celebrations this year!" Ada clapped her hands in excitement. Miss Drill just nodded as she grabbed multiple gingerbread biscuits. Miss Bay and Mr Rowan-Webb were smiling adorably at each other as they drink their hot chocolate. 

The girls were also delighted at the sight of the food, the multiple mugs of hot chocolate set at neatly, surrounded by fresh oranges and gingerbread biscuits, which were made by some first years helping Miss Tapioca in the kitchens, including the third years, Mabel and Beatrice. 

Indigo was delighted by the beautiful memories this would bring her later in life. Even Ethel was smiling as she sat with her own friends, such as Felicity and joined by Sybil, who still felt anger towards Ethel's horrible plans but it was Christmas and they were family, she couldn't stay away from her when they were having a great time, even away from home. The best thing was that Esmerelda was joining them, which they were both delighted by. 

There was Christmas songs playing from the organs as they start to eat their meals. They had roasted turkey, with potatoes and sliced tomatoes and cucumber; along with thick gravy. It wasn't everyday they had such amazing food, along with beetroot soup and pasta. 

Lunch was longer than expected, with some girls getting extra servings and some eating so slowly, due to the talking they did, it took them an hour to empty the hall completely.

The rest of the day, they spent preparing the feast and the girls spent their time playing in the snow, which was growing deeper and deeper.

Before they knew it, it was the evening before Christmas, the great Hall was warmly lit. The fire burning in the chimney as the Christmas tree was lit brightly, it's colours reflecting on the walls. The darkness outside did not affect their mood as an endless amount of small flakes of fake snow fell down from the ceiling, landing on the floor, which soon would pile up.

The girls were all sat down on multiple pillows and blankets with loads of snacks. The stage was piled with presents, from the colour red to even rainbow or gold. They were all shapes and sizes, it was absolutely countless, the amount of presents under the tree which seemed small compared to the pile, though it was the biggest tree they could find.

The girls' excitement vibrated in the room. They were all talking as they get comfortable in the large piles of pillows and multiple blankets which slowly piled up.

"Merry Christmas everybody!" Ada got everyone's attention. They all reply the same, saying their best wishes to the headmistress.

"We have a lot for you all this evening!" Ada smiled as she watched the small flakes of snow fall lighter to the floor," We are going to sing Christmas carols and we are going to unpack presents that we all have made for each other. Now, let's get those Christmas carols on!" The girls cheer.

The organs start playing as girls began to sing or rocking side to side with the music. This was a different Christmas to the non-magical Christmas. There was no santa that goes down chimneys, they give each other blessings for the future and giving each other gifts. Their Christmas season and preparation lasted from the 15th of December all the way to January the 14th.

Even the staff joined in, the Christmas spirit was amazing, everyone was smiling and no frown or negativity was present even from Hecate Hardbroom, the most severe of them all. There were a few traditional songs and a few records from Vesper Espertilio.

Indigo and her friends linked arms as they swayed to the music, many others joining them, as the fake snow piled around them. An hour passed before the girls were exhausted their throats dry and sore from all the singing, it was time for the gifts.

They were so excited for the their favourite part of Christmas, the presents. Mildred and her friends helped to pass everyone their gifts and there were multiple girls hugging each other as they tear right into their presents.

"Millie, here is one of yours!" Maud said as she passed Mildred a golden wrapped box with a red ribbon. "And another!" Indigo said, retrieving a package in silver wrapping and green ribbons.

"Oh, Mum gave me this?!" Mildred's face lit up as she put it aside, looking at the other, " From Esme!" Maud retrieved one of hers, smiling as she saw the size.

Soon, they all nearly unpacked all of theirs. Indigo had unpacked multiple boxes and received multiple notebooks. Mildred had five boxes, from multiple students and a few teachers. Maud got four and Enid also got four from Miss Bay and a few students. Ethel got three, two from her sisters and one from Felicity. "There are still a few presents!" Claricd noticed as she pushed a large one. 

"Mildred, it is another for you!" Beatrice frowned as they pushed it to Mildred. Mildred looked confused for a moment as she searched for a note from who it is from. Students slowly crowded around them, leaving the two other presents aside, still unknown who they are from. 

"Wait... From... HB..." Indigo noticed, smiling as she noticed the black marker on the corner. They all circled over it, Julie glancing over in curiosity at the large present.

She tore the paper, revealing something rather long but narrow. It was a new broomstick, not one of those boring ones with the simple ending. It was one of this more modern ones, with small flowers on the ends and a crimson red ribbon along the stick. 

Mildred gasped, along with her friends as they noticed another box with it. It was a large art set, it was one that Mildred had never seen in the non-magical shops. 

"How beautiful!" Mildred squealed in excitement as she couldn't help but feel so Happy. She noticed a note on the edge of the art set, which read: 
"Merry Christmas. This is a gift to say thank you for saving the school and helping Indigo pass her exam. You are an intelligent witch for your age..."  Mildred wanted to cry in happiness as she pushed aside, to where her mother was. 

"What a nice present, Mildred, who from?" Julie asked as she smiled at the art set that mildred carried and the broomstick she had under her arm.

"Miss Hardbroom..." Mildred smiled softly, hugging her mother as she was so happy. Julie was took aback for a moment but smiled as she saw her daughter so happy.Mildred walked passed her, towards Miss Hardbroom. 

She hesitated as she walked towards the staff, seeing Miss Hardbroom looking deeply in the direction of the girls, looking as if she was deep in thought.

"Miss Hardbroom..." She said awkwardly and quietly as she walked closer. When she noticed that Miss Hardbroom had turned to her, she tensed a little.

"Yes, Mildred Hubble?" Hecate turned to her, mug of Hot chocolate still in her hand. Miss Hardbroom seemed more cheerful so Mildred was convinced that she would be happy.

"Thank you, for the gift, Miss Hardbroom," Mildred smiled as she hardly was able to say how happy she was, " I didn't expect so much... Merry Christmas, Miss Hardbroom!" She smiled again, as she saw HB smile in appreciation.

Walking away, she could see Indigo unpacking her own present, the one that was left aside for some reason, she wondered who it was from. Walking closer she could see that it was from Miss Hardbroom.

It was a potions guide for young witches, with tips and facts, some paints and a sparkling notebook and a set of pens. Indigo seemed to be delighted to know that Joy... Well, Miss Hardbroom, had made a present for her. Luckily, Indigo recognized the last present. It was hers to Miss Hardbroom. It was in golden paper and a blue ribbon. It was rather small but wasn't too small.

She walked up to where Miss Hardbroom was in the middle of a conversation with Julie Hubble, who was obviously mentioning Mildred's unexpected gift.

"Miss Hardbroom..." Indigo said rather confidently, not like some other students would do it,"I have a gift for you..." Miss Hardbroom looked rather surprised, but Indigo was confident that she would like it.

She passed her the gift, watching as she unpacked it. It was a mug with her name on it, but as "Joy" which made Hecate smile and a bracelet with loads of small charms on it and letters that spelt "Joy".

Hecate looked at Indigo in shock for a moment before saying, " Thank you so much, Indigo..." Indigo smiled as she hugged her friend before heading back to the rest, while the celebration slowly came to an end.

Maybe it wasn't a bad Christmas after all?