A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens
A Christmas Carol Family Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Stave.Paragraph)
"Good afternoon," said Scrooge.
"I want nothing from you; I ask nothing of you; why cannot we be friends?"
"Good afternoon," said Scrooge. (1.36-37)
It's never really all that well explained why Fred wants to have anything to do with Scrooge, right? But then again the very lack of explanation—the idea that "well, he's family"—is pretty powerful in its own right.
He had been quite familiar with one old ghost, in a white waistcoat, with a monstrous iron safe attached to its ankle, who cried piteously at being unable to assist a wretched woman with an infant, whom it saw below, upon a doorstep. The misery with them all was, clearly, that they sought to interfere, for good, in human matters, and had lost the power for ever. (1.172)
Dickens's own original version of hell—being able to see but not being able to help family members. That would really only work on the emotionally healthy, though, no?
"You are quite a woman, little Fan!" exclaimed the boy.
She clapped her hands and laughed, and tried to touch his head; but being too little, laughed again, and stood on tiptoe to embrace him. Then she began to drag him, in her childish eagerness, towards the door; and he, nothing loth to go, accompanied her. […]
"Always a delicate creature, whom a breath might have withered," said the Ghost. "But she had a large heart! […] She died a woman," said the Ghost, "and had, as I think, children. […] Your nephew!"
Scrooge seemed uneasy in his mind; and answered briefly, "Yes." (2.71-79)
It seems to finally sink in here that Fred is Scrooge's last tether to the world of his childhood, which clearly was in some ways miserable, but was also the last place to feature love—his love for his sister.