Santa woke Jessie up early and they visited the deer. Although Dancer was still in the medical wing, he had talked to the other deer, and they were friendly with the dog when she came to visit. Jessie had a good time playing with the young does until Santa called her to his side. Jessie ran to catch up with him and looked at him curiously.
“You can play with the does another day Jessie. Molly wants to measure you for another coat. It’s been warm the past few days but you will need a coat when it gets really cold.”Santa pulled his coat on and looked at the dog. Jessie’s ears were down and her head and tail were pointed towards the ground.
“Now, Jessie if you want to stay with us you will have to have a coat. Let’s go girl.”
Jessie walked behind Santa. She was not happy. The coat she had worn earlier made her feel like a stuffed marshmallow. It had been over-sized and the hat had continually fallen over her face. She didn’t want a coat but Santa said she had to have one. She really liked living with the Clauses. If they said she needed a coat then she’d get one, but she didn’t have to like it.
It didn’t take long to reach the Claus house and Molly was waiting for Jessie. She had a variety of fabrics piled high on the long wooden table. Sitting at the table were several elves. They each had a box with scissors, tape, needles and thread. They smiled as Santa and Jessie walked into the room.
“We’ve been looking forward to making your coat Jessie. These elves are members of the Elvin Junior Embroiderers Guild. They are learning to sew so that they can make stuffed toys, blankets and clothing for our distribution centres. They’re here to help me make you a coat.” Molly gestured to the elves at the table.
Jessie tentatively wagged her tail and walked further into the room. She licked Molly’s hand and laid down on the floor, her sad eyes looking at the pile of fabric.”
Molly laughed. “You’ll feel better once we’ve made you a coat that suits you. Now Jessie I need your help. Come up to the table please.”
Jessie shuffled to the table. There was an empty spot on the end of the bench. She climbed up and sat down on the bench ande looked at the elf sitting beside her. The elf was a boy and he looked to Jessie to be very young. His cheeks had a babyish roundness and when he spoke he talked with a lisp.
“Hello Jessie. My name is Morgan. My father is Himley. I believe you met him earlier. He said you were living with Molly and Santa. I’m pleased to be helping you with your coat. I hope you don’t mind embellishments. I love bling.”
Jessie cringed. She didn’t like flashy things. She didn’t want to look like a Christmas tree or like a couch for that matter. If she really did have to wear a coat she just wanted something plain.
“Now Jessie we have a number of fabrics to choose from. I’ll hold up some of my top choices. When you find something you like bark once.” Molly pulled a roll of fabric from the table and held it up for Jessie. It was green and yellow with pink and purple polka dots.
Jessie shivered. There was no way she was going to wear that. She scrunched her mouth tightly shut and lowered her head.
Molly waited several minutes hoping that Jessie would bark. When she did not respond she looked at the fabric in her hand and then began to speak. “I guess you didn’t like that fabric. It’s too bad. You would have looked so cute in it. Maybe you’re right. We should have something to match Santa in the sleigh. You don’t want to clash with his suit on Christmas Eve. “
Molly reached to the bottom of the stack of fabric and pulled and red and green swirled fabric from the bottom of the pile. She held it up in front of her face so that Jessie could see the full effect of the swirling pattern.
“What do you think Jessie? You’d look like a little elf if we use this pattern.” She lowered the fabric so she could look at the dog.
Jessie’s mouth was securely tightened. She looked at the pile of fabric. Enough was enough. She was not going to look like a couch. She looked around the table and spotted a bolt of soft black fabric near the bottom. Black matched her fur. Besides, it looked like a warm fabric.
Jessie jumped down off the bench and determinedly walked around the table. She jumped and placed her front paws on the table in front of the fabric and then began pushing the fabric bolt with her nose. She then looked at Molly and pointed again.
Molly looked at Jessie. “You can’t want black Jessie. If you want a more neutral colour how about a zebra print?”
Jessie pointed to the fabric again and again. She then jumped down off the table and went to sit by the fire in the kitchen. She sat down with her back to Molly.
Molly sighed. “All right Jessie. We’ll use the black fabric.”
Jessie twitched her tail slightly and then closed her eyes. She’d rather be asleep then watch the elves make her coat. Within minutes Jessie was stretched out sleeping in front of the fire.
Molly and the elves pulled the black fabric from the pile and Molly took a second look. It actually was a good choice. It was thick and would be warm. She could also embellish it a little with rivets and crystals. She looked at the dog. Not too many embellishments. Jessie would probably not wear the coat if she didn’t like it.
Molly and the elves sewed late into the afternoon. Molly worked on the jacket, Morgan worked on the hat and the others worked on the shoes. It was almost supper time when Molly looked at the completed product. She was pleased. She hadn’t expected the design to turn out so well but the black leather like appearance matched perfectly with Morgan’s black ball cap and the elves rhinestone embellished boots. She thanked the elves, showed them out the door, and then went over to the fire. She gently shook Jessie awake.
“Jessie, your coat is ready. You need to try it on so that I can make adjustments to the sizing.”
Jessie slowly stretched then stood up and then took as long as she could to walk to the table. She climbed back on the bench to take a look.
The table had been cleared and sitting on it was Jessie’s clothing. Molly grabbed the coat and gently put it on the dog. She then tied the dog’s shoes and placed her hat on Jessie’s head at a jaunty angle. She smiled at Jessie.
“It fits perfectly and you look dapper. Have a look in the mirror and see what you think, but let me take a photograph first. It will make a good photo for our calendar next year.
Molly pulled out a digital camera from the cupboard and held it in front of her face. “Smile, Jessie.”
Jessie looked upwards towards Molly and did the best she could tolook pleasant look on her face. She waited as Molly took at number of pictures. She finally tired of the photo-shoot and jumped off of the bench. She held up her front paw and tried walking forward. The boots were actually comfortable and they didn’t trip her like the ones she had worn earlier.
Jessie trotted over to a large mirror and looked at herself. The black jacket was fitted around her torso and was quite comfortable. The boots had rhinestones on them. She wasn’t particularly fond of the stones but she could live with them. But, she absolutely loved the hat. It was a ball cap. She’d always liked ball caps. She still didn’t want to wear clothes but if she had to wear them this would be the set to wear.
Molly walked over to the mirror and leaned down to the dog. “Do you like it Jessie. We want you to be happy here. Santa told me you don’t like clothes but they really are necessary. If we need to we’ll make as many coats as we have to until we find one that suits you.” A tear slowly ran down her face.
Jessie licked Molly across her face. She buried her head in Molly’s lap and turned it back and forth.
“Does that mean you like the coat Jessie”? Molly wiped the tear off of her face.
Jessie sat up and yipped once. She then chased her tail in a circle.
“I’ll take that as a yes. I’m glad we found a compromise. With your new clothes you’ll be the coolest dog at the North Pole.”
Jessie’s ears perked up. Molly had said she was the coolest dog at the North Pole. Does that mean there were other dogs living here? She’d have to explore later but for now she wondered if there would be eggnog for supper.