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|Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol Feature - Scrooge (1970)|
"But he was early at the office next morning. Oh, he was|
early there. If he could only be there first, and catch Bob
Cratchit coming late. That was the thing he had set his
And he did it; yes, he did. The clock struck nine. No
Bob. A quarter past. No Bob. He was full eighteen
minutes and a half behind his time. Scrooge sat with his
door wide open, that he might see him come into the Tank.
His hat was off, before he opened the door; his comforter
too. He was on his stool in a jiffy; driving away with his
pen, as if he were trying to overtake nine o'clock.
'Hallo.' growled Scrooge, in his accustomed voice, as
near as he could feign it. 'What do you mean by coming
here at this time of day.'
'I am very sorry, sir,' said Bob. 'I am behind my time.'
'You are.' repeated Scrooge. 'Yes. I think you are.
Step this way, sir, if you please.'
'It's only once a year, sir,' pleaded Bob, appearing from
the Tank. It shall not be repeated. I was making rather
merry yesterday, sir.'
'Now, I'll tell you what, my friend,' said Scrooge,' I
am not going to stand this sort of thing any longer. And
therefore,' he continued, leaping from his stool, and giving
Bob such a dig in the waistcoat that he staggered back into
the Tank again;' and therefore I am about to raise your salary.'
Bob trembled, and got a little nearer to the ruler. He
had a momentary idea of knocking Scrooge down with it,
holding him, and calling to the people in the court for help
and a strait-waistcoat.
'A merry Christmas, Bob,' said Scrooge, with an earnestness
that could not be mistaken, as he clapped him on the
back. 'A merrier Christmas, Bob, my good fellow, than I
have given you for many a year. I'll raise your salary, and
endeavour to assist your struggling family, and we will discuss
your affairs this very afternoon, over a Christmas bowl of
smoking bishop, Bob. Make up the fires, and buy another
coal-scuttle before you dot another i, Bob Cratchit.'
Scrooge was better than his word. He did it all, and
infinitely more; and to Tiny Tim, who did NOT die, he was
a second father. He became as good a friend, as good a
master, and as good a man, as the good old city knew, or
any other good old city, town, or borough, in the good old
world. Some people laughed to see the alteration in him,
but he let them laugh, and little heeded them; for he was
wise enough to know that nothing ever happened on this
globe, for good, at which some people did not have their fill
of laughter in the outset; and knowing that such as these
would be blind anyway, he thought it quite as well that they
should wrinkle up their eyes in grins, as have the malady in
less attractive forms. His own heart laughed: and that was
quite enough for him.
He had no further intercourse with Spirits, but lived upon
the Total Abstinence Principle, ever afterwards; and it was
always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas
well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that
be truly said of us, and all of us! And so, as Tiny Tim
observed, God bless Us, Every One!"
- A Christmas Carol, Stave 5: The End of It