‘I think there’s something special about Christmas,’ she said. ‘The way the lights sparkle and wink, as if they are the only source of light in this town. It’s wondrous, like watching flames dance in the dead of night, when everyone else is asleep.
‘It’s such a happy time,’ she continued. ‘Everyone comes together and the world seems so perfect at Christmas time. It’s like the cracks are painted over in red and green and the lights reflect right off of the blemishes and imperfections that are so noticeable usually.’
‘I agree,’ he smiled. ‘But what I enjoy the most is watching your eyes light up when you speak about something you are passionate about. All the life in your body transcends to your eyes and your face lights up. I sometimes think all the life support equipment that exists is wasted. All the patients in comas being told their remaining time is ticking away like sand through a child’s fingers; all they need is to see you smile and they will snap back to life immediately. I am sure of it. You are the brightest star of them all.’
She stared at him silently, in part shock, part awe.
‘Every Christmas, every birthday, every 11:11 wish is the same. You shine so brightly; you radiate the lives you touch. Like Christmas transforms and heals the pain and tragedy in the world, so do you to everyone you meet. I wish I could share my Christmas with you, show you the other side of my world that no one else sees. I want to lie close next to you and watch the stars in the sky on a cold Christmas Eve and wake up the next morning knowing I have everything I could possibly want without even moving.’