“Tainted”

Once upon a time, there was a great man who lived in a mansion.  One day, he made some snowmen and brought them to life in his yard.  The snowmen were white and pure and happy.  The maker told them very clearly not to jump in the mud, for then they would not be able to come inside his perfect mansion.

Some time passed, but the mud looked cozy.  It lured the snowmen and said, “Jump in!  Jump in!  I’m warm and soft.”

The snowmen thought it wouldn’t hurt to try the mud once, and they jumped in.  Before they knew it, they realized they were dirty.  “Brush it off!” they said, but they could not make themselves clean.  The mud had worked its way all through the snow and all over the yard.

The maker came outside to observe them and warned, “You may not enter the mansion now, for it is set apart as a haven for the pure.  A fire is coming to clean away the mud from all the land.  If you want to survive, you’ll have to get rid of the mud, for anything tainted will perish.”  He went into his mansion and closed the gate, making a chasm appear between the muddy yard and the mansion.  The chasm was too big to jump.

Time passed, and the snowmen tried everything they could to get the mud off, but everywhere they stepped, there was more mud spreading and spreading.  Some snowmen tried jumping the chasm, but they fell to their deaths.  Other snowmen distanced themselves from the other snowmen and called themselves clean, but they were really just as muddy as the others.  Some pretended the mud didn’t exist.  None could feel the approaching fire that would soon melt them all, and the mud laughed.

One day, the maker took pity on the snowmen and sent his son across the chasm with a special snowman-cleaning-machine.  The son walked among the snowmen, proclaiming, “If you want to be free of mud, just ask!”  Many snowmen turned away in disgust, for the maker’s son was unlike the rest, being white as snow and free of mud.  Other snowmen tried to explain to the son that they were already clean, and still others tried to tell him the mud didn’t exist.  For the snowmen who did believe, they asked the son to please clean the mud off them!

The son used his special snowman-cleaning-machine that removed all the mud from the repentant snowmen and placed it on the son.  The snowmen who had been cleansed now were white as snow!  They still had to step through mud, but it didn’t stick to them.  Many of the clean snowmen thanked the maker’s son and told all their snowmen friends about being freed from the mud.  However, the snowmen who were still dirty kept saying they were already clean or that the mud didn’t exist.  Other clean snowmen hid in a corner of the muddy yard, afraid to talk to the mud-covered snowmen for fear they would get muddy again.  These did not realize that being cleansed was not a gift that could be removed.

The fire was now quickly approaching, and even some of the snowmen could feel themselves starting to melt.  The maker’s son, now full of the mud of all the believing snowmen, stood in the fire to burn away the mud, but he did not melt.  He was not really made of snow, see, and so he came out of the fire alive and clean.  The mud that had once tainted the clean snowmen was gone forever!

The maker’s son ushered all the clean snowmen to quickly cross to the mansion before the fires came!  To their surprise, the snowmen who had been cleansed were able to follow the son to the mansion on a special, narrow path.  A few muddy snowmen tried to follow last minute, but they could not see straight, and they were too heavy, and they fell to their deaths.  All the clean snowmen made it to the mansion, and all the muddy snowmen were burned up in the fire.

After this, there was no more mud left in all the land, and the maker and son and snowmen lived happily ever after.

The end.

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