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SCROOGE TURNED SAINT!
What you are about to read may seem as fanciful as a tale told by the Brothers Grimm and as real as fairies and goblins, but to Ebenezer Scrooge, it is a true account of what happened this Christmas Eve, when he saw not one but four ghosts.
Mr Scrooge believes that the very origin of these strange visitations, date back to the passing of his friend and business partner, Jacob Marley, who died seven years previous on that very night and was declared, ‘dead as a doornail.’
Even though very few claim to speak to Scrooge directly, neighbours and associates describe him as ‘tight-fisted’, ‘squeezing, wrenching, grasping’ and ‘covetous.’
‘He was so shrivelled by the cold that he never thawed, even at Christmas,’ Scrooge’s niece said. ‘He sent carolers away, shouting at their attempts to bring Christmas cheer with their singing.’
A view not refuted by Mr Scrooge. ‘I thought Christmas was humbug, but after this night, everything altered.’
Local tavern owner, Mr Charles Dickens, confirmed that Scrooge was indeed a gloomy man, who even on that Christmas Eve, had his usual lone dinner over newspapers, before leaving without a word of Merry Christmas.
‘It was like any other day for Scrooge, except with all businesses shut, it would be worse, because it afforded no opportunity to increase his riches.’ Scrooge claims that what happened after dinner, left him a changed man. ‘As I went to grasp the doorknocker of my home, I saw that it had transformed into the face of Marley. It left me quite unsettled, but after checking my rooms and locking all the doors, I was confident I was alone. But it was not to stay that way.’
Bells began to ring, followed by the appearance of a ghost.
‘It was old Marley! There before me, bemoaning that he had not spent his life more charitable and agreeable. He came back to warn me not to share the same fate.’Scrooge claimed the next apparition transported him back to his past. ‘It was extraordinary. He called himself the Ghost of Christmas Past and he took me back to my childhood home and a time when I celebrated Christmas and was surrounded by much kindness.’
Mr Scrooge reported that he was also visited by the ghosts of Christmas Present and Christmas Yet To Come, both revealing to him scenes so miserable and sad, that he confessed, ‘I saw that my life was indeed sad and wretched.’
Scrooge found many events of that night momentous, but one stands out above all. ‘It was the Ghost ofChristmas Present speaking of Tiny Tim’s vacant seat. I was overcome with penitence and grief.’
Tiny Tim is the crippled son of Scrooge’s employee, Bob Cratchit, who, without help, was destined to wither from life.
‘We had little money,’ Mr Cratchit said. ‘But we were happy and contented but with Mr Scrooge’s increasing of my salary and attention to Tiny Tim, all is now well.’
Mrs Cratchit agreed. ‘I once called him odious and unfeeling, but he is now as far from that man as any I’ve known.’
‘I seen it,’ local man Mr Fagan said. ‘I almost couldna believe me own eyes, Scrooge givin’ money to the poor, looking after street urchins. It’s quite the miracle.‘
Speaking of his transformation, Scrooge says, ‘I am as merry as a schoolboy.’
There are many who remain skeptical about Scrooge’s story of ghosts and his dramatic change, but one thing remains clear: a man who was said to be mean and miserly seems to have disappeared and been replaced by as good as man as the good old city knew and one who now knows how to keep Christmas well, and that is indeed a Christmas carol worth singing. END by Deborah Abela
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Writing Competition Winners
Thank you eye-witness reporters! Deborah Abela, editor in chief, has selected the following reports as Untangled Times Winners!
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