As she approached her door, Eblene Fostrooge thought she saw a strange figure appear on her doorbell. But she knew that Mr Holyneaux was long departed. She blamed the vision on the mince pie consumed earlier at the Loyal Orange Ladies Christmas Carols Service. 

It had been a wasted afternoon, as she needed to attended to formality, but in her heart only big politics mattered. She muttered to herself that Christmas was taking time from the bigger political impact she wanted to make.

As she pretended to pay attention to Come All Ye Faithful, texts kept coming infrom Mr Dodge who spoke of uncertain times in London Town. 

She was indeed committed to recent influence, but was increasingly unhappy with the outcomes business with they had partnerships with were producing.

While she had power, it was indeed never enough.

Christmas was a festering inconvenience. As the Loyal Ladies wished her a Happy Christmas, she found herself dismissing their frivolity, with a bah humbug.

Her mood was not improved by constant demands on her generosity. She had gone to a GAA match. She spoke with the gays. And yet she was asked for legislation! She was sick of the impossible demands.

She hurriedly entered her house. It was cold from not being home for so many weeks. Her trips to Brussels and London Town had meant her country house had not seen heat nor warmth for too long. She uncovered her boiler and winced. While she was responsible for its installation, she was not accountable for its lighting. She let the cold wash over her and she sat down to a small glass of whiskey.

Having once been given a bottle of Irish she knew that she would always only drink Scotch. She knew that if only Jameson was available,she would have to move to be closer to its origin.

She dozed off and fell into a slumber. As the clock struck 12 she awoke to the sight of a face she once knew. “Spirit Identify Thyself” she whispered. 

“Do you not know me Eblene?” the spirit replied. 

“David? I mean Mr Tremble? Is that you?”

“Indeed, it is. And I stand here as a Holy Trinity, the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future to tell you that if you do not change your ways your power will be lost”. 

“Ah but David you told me that once before in 1998 and look at me now.

The Spirit let out a moan and roared, causing Eblene’s brooch to fall to the floor, “Ah yes, and it is from my fate you must learn. Back then I had power. But I did not have the courage of my knowledge I must make real peace. I signed documents I did not stand over. I tried to say that I was open to sharing power while trying to retain the traditional veto andeventually I lost the confidence of those that surrounded me. I have walked in limbo ever since. Do not repeat my mistakes.”

Eblene woke from her sleep, and she knew that her ways must change. She threw open her window and below a young man walked, “Nollaig Shona a Mhic”, she shouted. “Do you know the woman with the blonde hair who seeks rights for all?” The young man startled “Indeed I do”. “Well go find her and bring her to me with copies of the Good Friday Agreement and all agreements made since, tell her we shall make this Christmas the last one where we speak with enmity and we will make peace with all men and women.”


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