Christmas in Heaven, What Do they Do?
They all Come to Earth, to Spend it with You.
So Save them a Place and one Empty Chair.
You may not see them, but They Will be There.
I am past, present and future; the true spirit of Christmas,” Harold Verzakely said to the gentlemen.
Gazing through the wondrous, ever growing window, the gentlemen beheld a vision, a visage in which Scrooge, penny-pinching, money loving Scrooge, was in communication with something more frightening than anything they had witnessed that night – or ever before.
“I say,” said Mr Fosdyke, pointing fearfully through the window, “Mr Scrooge must be in mortal danger, conversing with such a despicable thing?”
“Indeed,” Mr Hartwell concurred, “that abomination must surely be the spawn of the devil.”
“That abomination,” Harold Verzakely said, calmly, quite smoothly to the gentlemen, “is what I am.”
“It is?” they answered, stunned that he had said such a queer thing.
“Yes,” he insisted, “I am that and a whole lot more. I am past, present and future; the true spirit of Christmas.”
“The true spirit of Christmas?” Mr Hartwell curiously asked.
“What on earth do you mean?” Mr Fosdyke asked.
Pointing at the magical window, Harold Verzakely said, “Tell me what you think you see.”
“What we think we see?” Mr Fosdyke retorted. “What I see, and I have no doubt about it, is Mr Scrooge conversing with an abomination of a creature, all pale and morose, floating a few inches above the ground alongside him.”
“Yes,” said Mr Hartwell, “it is indeed an abomination. Why, look at its clothes, they are little more than rags, and as for its face, it’s no more than a dark, shadowy space!”
Unfazed by their remonstrations, Harold Verzakely said, “That creature and I are one and the same.”
“But, but how can that be?” Mr Hartwell asked. “And if it is so, how you can be there yet also here? Are you in cahoots with the witch?” he then asked.”
Shocked that he had said such a thing, Harold Verzakely replied, “Why did you say that? Do you really think that I am in cahoots with her?”
“She controls the ghost of Marley,” Mr Fosdyke quipped, “so why not you?”
“The witch told us that she was going to dispatch three spirits to help Mr Scrooge to see the error of his ways,” said Mr Hartwell. “Are you telling us that is something entirely different?”
“No, I am not!” Harold Verzakely sternly replied. “Of course it is me! Having said that, though,” he went on, “you must believe me when I say that I am not in cahoots with her!”
“We want to believe you, we really do,” Mr Hartwell said to him, “but it’s a lot to swallow, to believe that you are telling us the truth.”
“It’s an awful lot to swallow,” Mr Fosdyke added.
Answering Mr Hartwell’s earlier question, Harold Verzakely said, “As to how I am here yet also there is quite easy to explain.”
“It is?” Mr Hartwell said doubtingly.
“Of course!” he insisted. “What you are witnessing is a vision of the future.”
“We are?” Mr Fosdyke asked.
“It is?” Mr Hartwell asked.
“Yes,” he replied. “What you are witnessing will come to pass, perhaps as you have seen, perhaps not.”
Addressing Mr Hartwell, Harold Verzakely said, “That abomination, as you described it yourselves, on the far side of the window is one of the spirits Scrooge must face this night if he has to have any hope of redemption. Believe me, I am that spirit and also the two others; the phantoms of Christmas if you prefer to call me, so.”
“Phantoms?” Mr Fosdyke asked, gulping hard, with fright.
“The witch told us that three spirits would visit Mr Scrooge this night,” Mr Hartwell coyly admitted. “Which one of them is that?” he asked, pointing fearfully through the window, at it.
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Twas a few days days before Christmas,
When all through the house,
Not a creature was ready, not even a mouse,
There were no stockings by the chimney so bare,
And no thoughts that Santa would ever be there.
The children were outside, not snug in their beds,
No visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.
Mamma lost her ‘kerchief, and I also in my cap,
Our brains were not ready for a long winter’s nap.
Then out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
So I sprang to the window to see what was the matter.
Gazing out through the window I saw in a flash,
The spirit of Austin, Princess, that is a fact.
TO BE CONTINUED?
Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;
And mamma in her kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap,
Then out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name:
Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! on, Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky;
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St. Nicholas too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.
His eyes—how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly.
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night.”
Merry Christmas, everyone!