When a great storm approaches Richardson's
village he realizes there is a problem.
Richardson shares the problem of the
upcoming storm with his friend Tag, a descendant of the attic mice,
and explains that if Santa isn't able to get through there will
be no toys for the children.
Richardson is a master toymaker/ex-navigator
and decides he will make presents for all of the children in the
village. He then tells his secret to Tag that he will be the substitute
Santa and deliver all of the presents that he will make.
In order to get enough money to buy
the supplies for making those presents Richardson must sell his "beloved
Since Richardson owned the only phonograph
in the village and since the two greedy pigs who run the Emporium
had always wanted that prized machine Richardson was able to get top
Richardson is successful in delivering
all of the toys and returns home, awaking much later that morning
after a good night's sleep and thought he could music -- "probably
the pigs trying out the phonograph."
Richardson then realizes that he wasn't
in his own room, and not panicing, he quietly followed the sound of
the music. He then drew back a heavy curtain. He realizes it's Santa's
phonograph that is playing as Santa welcomes him to the North Pole
and offers him a job.
"I need a good man to help me,"
"You'd live here with us, of course,"
added Santa. Richardson looked around the cozy room--at the big bookcase
stuffed with books, the blazing fire, and at the phonograph."
Richardson decides to stay at the North
Pole and help Santa but he knows he must send a letter to Tag so that
he doesn't worry that he has disappeared.
Richardson writes the letter telling
Tag of his new job and that he will be delivering a very special present
to Tag next year -- "But no one else is to know anything about
this, Tag: it'll be our secret."
At the next Christmas Tag gets a specially
carved rocking horse. And under its chin an inscription in neat letters
said: "To Tag from Richardson, for keeping the Christmas Secret."