Tom and Sally lived within walking distance of the great Rock of Gibraltar.

Their bedroom faced the Rock and for some time now, after the sun had set, they would sit gazing at lots of little lights dancing at the base of the Rock.

Tom passed the lights off as being fireflies. “After all Sal, we live in a semi-tropical climate” he said unconvincingly.

What Tom and Sally didn’t know were the magical things happening right before their eyes far below St Michaels cave. The lower caves were a hive of activity as over a hundred elves and fairies were working hard for St Nicholas’ coming. He had secret workshops all over the world but the Rock was a very special place.

As the fairies flew by dropping trails of stardust, lights deep within the rock escaped through tiny holes and this is what Tom and Sally could see. They would watch for hours not knowing they were living with elves and fairies.

Then one night, the lights seemed particularly busy. First darting one way, then another, or performing circles, they looked like a miniature fireworks display.

“What do you think it could be?” Sally asked wide-eyed.

“Probably the military” Tom said trying to be nonchalant, “they always mess about when people are asleep.”

As they continued to watch in wonder, deep inside the cave the Head Elf called a meeting.

“Come on men, we are running out of time. We need to work harder!”

“Harder!” exclaimed Harold elf, “if I work harder my hands will drop off!”

This created a burst of laughter.

“Come on Harold,” said Fimba elf. “We are nearly finished.You don’t want to disappoint the children do you? We are nearly done for another year!”

“Ok, ok,” replied the reluctant Harold. “But I will need a holiday after this.”

This bought another burst of laughter much to the puzzlement of Harold. With renewed vigor they all went back to work.

As Christmas approached, everyone was getting excited. Tom was hoping for a new bike and Sally hoped she would get all the arty stuff she wanted.

The night before Christmas Eve, everyone was working flat out. Fairies were flying everywhere, some colliding with each other, elves were singing at the tops of their voices as they worked, the sound bouncing off the cave walls.

That night, Tom and Sally were watching as usual, after gazing at the lights for a few minutes, Tom said, “Is it me Sal, or are there more lights than usual?”

Sally thought for a moment, eyes never leaving the Rock.

“I think your right Tom, there is definitely something happening.”

“Right,” he said firmly. “We’re going to take a look tomorrow night.”

“What?” exclaimed Sally, eyes wide. “Christmas Eve!”

“Yes,” Tom said. “Christmas Eve we will find out what’s going on.”

Sal gazed at Tom noticing how grown up he looked and sounded.

Christmas Eve arrived and Tom and Sally were getting excited. Santa was coming and tonight they would solve the mystery of the lights.

Waiting until everyone was asleep, they quietly crept out of the house and began heading towards the Rock. Soon their eyes became accustomed to the dark.

“Are you ok Sal?” Tom asked steadying her by the arm.

“I think so Tom, it’s a bit darker than I thought!”

Suddenly, a flash of light trailing stardust whizzed past her head.

“Wow,” cried Sally. “Did you see that?”

“I did” Tom cried. “Follow it; it might lead us to the lights.”

They followed the glowing trail until they entered a small cave. Feeling their way, they followed the stardust until they were aware of singing and noises and lights getting louder, they hid behind a rock barely able to take it all in.

What they saw had them in total awe.There were elves making toys, fairies flying around dropping stardust on the toys to make them sparkle. All around them was bathed in golden light. It really was a jaw dropping sight. Barely able to breathe in the excitement, their eyes widened at the scale of things they had found when they uncovered for the mystery of the lights.

“They’re fairies!” Sally breathed. “Hundreds of fairies and elves and they live here, in the Rock… And nobody knows!” She took a breath and turned to Tom. “What are we going to do Tom?”

“I think we should go home and wait for Santa, we must not mention this to anyone”. Tom gazed at his sister before continuing. “This is truly a magical Rock and the best thing is it’s our Rock Sal”.

As they turned to go home, one of the fairies flew past, tipping her wings in a thank you gesture as she had heard Tom and knew that they would be safe.

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