This year’s Christmas ghost story: When the ghost came in from the cold

Tell us a story, please! (John Everett Millais, A Winter's Tale)

Tell us a story, please!
(John Everett Millais, A Winter’s Tale)

You all know about Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol: Scrooge and Tiny Tim, the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future, and all that. Whether he started it or not, Dickens supported the tradition of ghost stories at Christmas time for many years thereafter. And other writers took up the tradition, notably M. R. James.

I did a long ghost story last year, Nightfeather: Ghosts. This year I didn’t think I’d get to a story, because I’d injured my left arm. However, I had an inspiration this morning, and so, fresh out of my brain, let me present to you, “When the ghost came in from the cold,” this year’s Christmas story.


About Brian Bixby

I enjoy history because it helps me understand people. I'm writing fiction for much the same reason.
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8 Responses to This year’s Christmas ghost story: When the ghost came in from the cold

  1. danagpeleg1 says:

    Oh dear, get well soon! Are you left-handed? I don’t recall, but either way I wish you “Refua Shlema” – Complete/whole/full Healing…

    • Brian Bixby says:

      Thank you. Ironically, I hurt it while typing the Halloween story! I am right-handed, though, so it has not been a critical problem, and it is getting better. I just didn’t think I was up to do a long story, and I find it harder to think up short ones.

      And may you enjoy the rest of this holiday season. 🙂

  2. crimsonprose says:

    I’m not sure this painting, with its essence of proper Victorian modesty, is quite in keeping with the ghost story told. 🙂

    • Brian Bixby says:

      No doubt Millais would be even more horrified, since he was a proper type, save for marrying a divorcee, and a virginal divorcee at that!

      • crimsonprose says:

        I hadn’t known that of him though I like many of his paintings.

        • Brian Bixby says:

          It was a famous scandal; the Pre-Raphaelites were loaded with them. Rossetti had Morris’s wife as his mistress, Holman Hunt married his dead wife’s sister, and then, as meontioned Millais married John Ruskin’s wife, who was still a virgin. (I misspoke: Effie had her marriage to Ruskin annulled, not a divorce.) It was a bit of a scandal, and meant that Effie was excluded from many high society functions and from any event involving the monarchy. Millais was honored a great deal toward the end of his life, and when on his deathbed was asked by Queen Victoria if there was anything she could do for him. His answer: officially receive my wife at court.

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