Wednesday, May 7, 2014

(Prose) - Some Christmas Carol adaptation (Writing the City, Dickens Writing Competition 2012)

Untitled (Really sorry, I don't know why :X)

The strong cold December breeze blew steadily across street as the patrol cars crowded around together, their red-blue lights flashing silently creating a cacophony of lights that bounced off the long-abandoned houses. A silver Toyota soon pulls up near the cluster of patrol cars, screeching to a halt as the wheels skid slightly over the moist road. A man in his early- forties steps out of it and head for the group of police-men that had gathered just before the weathered fence of an old bungalow. Upon hearing the man’s approach, the police-men turn and saluted him.

“Sir,” greeted an officer.

“So what have we got here?” the man replied.

“The police had received multiple calls at around 10 a.m. of strange occurrences in the house here. Apparently one of them saw a giant while another saw a luminous figure,” reported another officer.

“Heh,” smirked the man. “Now we’re talking ghosts here?”

“We’re not really sure as of this moment what it might be in the house, but a caller had said that he had notified the SPI.”

“No need for them, sergeant, I’ll go in myself to check.”

“But sir, it would be advisable to wait for the S.T.A.R. team, who knows what might be in there-”

“No need to waste their time either, I should be enough to find out what’s happening in there! Stay here and wait. If anything happens, I’ll contact you via walkie-talkie, understand?”

“Yes sir!”  The police-men were all too happy that this case of super-natural nature had been lifted off their shoulders.

The man sighed silently and shook his head. Cowards, the whole lot of them, useless cowards. The job can never be done if everyone was as scared as they were, while he, Senior Inspector Chen, had to do all the work. Ensuring that his gun was securely fastened to its holster, Chen pushed the fence aside and cautiously entered the house.

It was surprisingly warm and Chen could not help but feel unsettled. Even the cold breeze was completely shut out from the house which was seemingly in a bad condition. Chen spied a constant glow in a room that he had not noticed from the exterior of the house and Chen’s senses told him that it was a fire. Creeping closer to the room, Chen noted that the smell of smoke was mysteriously absent, but instead, the air was filled with the aroma of cooked food.

Slowly, Chen took a peek into the room-

Chen nearly fell to the floor in shock. There was someone in the room! Pulling his head back away from the room, Chen took a few silent gasps, hoping to come himself down.

“I AM THE GHOST OF CHRISTMAS PRESENT. LOOK UPON ME!” The voice seemed to reverberate around the house, but its tone was gentle and jovial.

Seeing no other choice, Chen cautiously turned into the room, and was greeted with a sight to behold. There seated on a throne of lush flora, was a giant dressed in nothing but a green coat, his chest baring through it. There was no mistake who it was, and Chen remembered the figure clearly from the books he had read in times past.

“What are you doing here?” Chen couldn’t help but feel his voice tremble. “I thought you weren’t real.”

“Ha! Dickens took inspiration from our existence in the midst of his financial troubles. We are as real as you are flesh and blood.” laughed the spirit in return.


“We are three but one and the same- the present, the past and the future.” The ghost transformed into a luminous figure and then into a hooded phantom as he said this.

“But I thought you were three separate spirits!”

“So says Dickens who made us to look like do-gooders who reform stingy old fools!” replied the spirit.

“Why are you here then?”

“To warn thee, Amadeus Chen, of thy possible downfall!”

“What are you talking about?” Chen inquired, puzzled.

“Thy arrogance! ‘Tis be thy arrogance that will soon lead thee to thy gruesome fate!”

The giant was swiftly replaced by the hooded form of the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come, and he held a finger aloof to a corpse that laid on its side, facing away from them. Chen noted that the room was now replaced by a deserted warehouse. Chen knew where this was going.

“That’s me isn’t it? That is how I am going to die.” Chen quipped.

The finger was still held unwavering towards the body. Chen sighed and went over to look at it. He screamed when he looked upon its visage, clearly unprepared for what he saw.

The corpse was clearly him, for it housed the all too familiar nose and auburn hair. Yet the decaying skin clung to the body loosely, almost as if melted under a fervent heat. The empty eye sockets gave no clue as to what was in the darkness that it held, but there was clearly nothing there as the now empty skull showed itself to have been sliced open and gorged of its contents. Chen was shivering now; he was clearly not expecting this. Dickens’ tale had been but a mere kiddy ride compared to this. The scene changed swiftly again, and this time it was Chen’s old office. The luminous form of the Ghost of Christmas Past now joined Chen by his side.

“You’ve worked so hard all your life to reach your position, and now it seems that nothing can stop you,” The spirit said as both it and Chen faced a past version of Chen working tirelessly in his cubicle in the now-empty office. “Solver of numerous cases. Enslaver of criminals. It was as if you’d never die.

“But death will come sooner than you expect, Amadeus. And only you can stop it, if you changeeee….”

The spirit started to fade, as did the office around them. Soon Chen was back in the old bungalow that he had entered, but this time, he was alone. Chen was speechless as to what just happened, but was broken from his trance by the static from his walkie-talkie.

“Come in sir, are you there? We heard some noises.”

“Everything’s fine sergeant, everything’s fine.”

It's been a long while, thought I'd put something up before this blog becomes dead, haha. This was for a competition I decided to join back in 2012, from a Singapore-based website called "Writing the City" (Heard of it?). Anyway, the premise of the competition was as follows: "To mark the 2012 bicentennial anniversary of one of Britain’s most beloved writers, Writing the City invites you to step into the imaginative world of Charles Dickens and write a present-day character sketch, taking inspiration from one of Dickens’ characters." (Taken from competition document) Here is my entry (at least in its original form; the final entry was shortened due to word constraints). I wasn't chosen. Oh well. : /

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