Christmas Around the Corner (2018) Script

Okay people, let's go.

That's great.

We're gonna need like 10 more bottles of champagne, okay?

Those are perfect.

Perfect, beautiful, stunning, I love it.

Okay, let's go.

Does that Santa inflate on its own?

Perfect.

Bad or brilliant, we'll know in a few minutes.

Mistle-Toe Corporate CEO.

We are so very proud of you, Claire.

I really think this gamble is gonna pay off.

Well you know, Mistletoe's a great company and I think people are gonna want a piece of it.

Who'd known that an online Mani petty service would turn out to be such a lucrative venture?

All because of you.

Call me when the clients get here.

We expect you to make us a lot of money today.

The company took off overnight and has grown into a nationwide service, but I'm still not sure about the timing of this endeavor.

Okay people, fasten your seat belts, here we go.

And we off to the races. Okay, it's moving.

I have to say they've set-

It's moving people! at the high end of the spectrum.

I expected to see more movement up front.

Have they topped out already?

We're not even five minutes into the session.

There's not a lot of competition today.

No.

We've discussed this before, it's important to take...

No, no.

...early in their lives.

But is it too early?

Maybe Mistle-Toe isn't IPO ready?

Look, they're dropping.

Not a good sign so early.

Clients aren't coming.

The clients aren't coming!

Suz.

Hey, I've been leaving messages.

I just figured you were out celebrating.

What happened?

You didn't post anything.

No.

Okay, your place, one hour.

Okay.

Honey, I'm so sorry.

I know how much you were counting on that IPO.

Crash and burn does not even begin to describe it.

What's with the tree?

Well, I knew that you wouldn't have a shred of Christmas around here.

So monochromatic holiday cheer.

I'm gonna make you some food.

You know there was a little voice in my head that kept saying don't do this on Black Friday.

The market is too distracted, but all of the analytics that I ran just said go for it.

You know?

Why didn't I just listen to my instincts?

Okay, sweetie, there is no food in this house.

I know, I'm never here.

You need a break, sis.

When was the last time that you went anywhere that did not involve work?

Okay, if you can't remember, then it's been too long.

HR has been on me to use up all the time I've accumulated.

I think I have like a month saved up.

Do you remember that place mom was always gonna take us as kids in Vermont?

Ghastly something.

Glastenbury.

Okay, so when I suggested a vacation I was thinking St. Barts.

I wonder if I could book something this last minute?

It looks like Christmas on steroids.

Well, mom said it was enchanted.

I remember her talking about this Christmas Festival they had and they would line the streets with luminaries all month.

I'm sorry, luma, luma what?

You know, there's those little paper bags you put sand and candles in.

Okay that just sounds like a fire hazard.

Oh my god, this is the same place as mom's picture.

They rent the apartment and you get to run the bookstore on the 1st floor, how great is that?

I'm sorry, it looks like Hogwarts.

Stop it, you're just seeing what you want, don't, no.

Have an open mind here, okay?

Look, they have availability, it's perfect.

Come on, you're always on me for not celebrating the holidays.

It does not get more Christmassy than this.

Okay, so you're gonna go all the way to Vermont to celebrate Christmas by yourself?

Freddie and Bill want you here, I want you here.

I know, I know, Suz, but you have your family and I always feel like a 3rd wheel.

I promise I'm gonna come back for Christmas dinner.

Okay?

It just doesn't make sense.

How are they not booked?

I've had a horrible day.

It's been a terrible year.

And I miss mom.

Don't they make those creepy Christmas gnomes there?

They're not creepy, they're cute.

You are gonna be bored to death.

I give you one week, okay?

One week.

Hi.

Hey, I'm Ernie.

Hi.

You heading to town?

The Fortenbury.

Of course.

Thank you.

Is it Ernie like It's A Wonderful Life Ernie?

I don't know if that's what my mom was going for, but she sure loved the movie.

So are you here visiting friends?

No, I'm taking a break from work.

Couldn't think of better place to escape to.

Shall we?

Yeah.

Thanks.

Thank you.

So has the Christmas Festival started yet?

Fortenbury didn't tell you?

Tell me what?

The festival's canceled this year.

What?

What, no, no, there's supposed to be Christmas windows and sleigh rides and what about the luminarias, are they doing that?

Canceled, canceled, canceled, we had a big flood come up here in the early fall.

Wiped out all the businesses in the upper village.

Thankfully Main Street was spared.

I'm so sorry.

I grew up here, I've never seen anything like it.

It's really killed our tourist trade.

All the merchants decided not to celebrate this year.

So how long did you say you were staying?

This is lovely.

Yeah, Fortenbury's an institution, been here longer than I can remember.

Help you take your bags inside?

No, that's okay, but thank you.

You must be from New York.

How can you tell?

Nobody around here tips like that.

Thanks.

Merry Christmas. Merry Christmas.

Hello?

Is anyone here?

Hi.

I'm sorry, dear.

I've had my ears turned off.

I'm suppose to be able to work them with this new-fangled phone that my nephew gave me, but every time I try my hearing aid dials 9-1-1.

I'm Mary Tumilty, everyone calls me Mrs. T, you must be Claire.

Yes, it's nice to meet you.

Okay, so this is the bookstore?

It's not what I expected.

You're not at all what I expected.

Excuse me?

Well most of our renters are retired librarians or school teachers, blue hairs like me.

You burn like a bright light.

Thank you.

That's really sweet.

You know you're website didn't say anything about the Christmas Festival being canceled.

You should really update your site.

Sweetheart, I can hardly update my hearing aid, much less the website.

I'm sorry you're disappointed.

It's okay.

We're thrilled to have you.

Thank you.

Well I work nine to five generally and you will take over after lunch, but nobody will care if you quit by three.

What about nights and weekends?

Well if the spirit moves you, but we don't expect many customers.

No, anybody who comes in is usually lost.

But this is very important.

This is the registry that has been signed since 1906.

They write something nice about Glastenbury and of course Fortenburys.

Yeah, okay, yeah absolutely.

There's not many customers this fall, huh?

No, after the flood there were a lot of cancellations of bookings.

You know nobody's in a holiday mood, but we can always hope for next year, right?

Right.

Let me get you to your room.

I can get it.

No, no, it's all right.

It's good for me.

Move it or lose it, right?

Now my nephew owns the place.

He has a forge out in back of the store.

Which was built by his great, great grandfather in 1888 when there was nothing but pine trees around here.

So if there's ever anything that you need, you will find him out in the back.

Anything at all.

It's what you young people call a man cave.

He makes things there.

He makes things?

Yes.

What kind of things?

He feels more at home with tools than he is with people.

Oh my god.

This is beautiful.

This is exactly like I was picturing it.

Well I told Andrew it needed some sprucing up.

I wish he'd let me do the same with the book store, but my nephew's not a fan of Christmas any more.

Well you obviously are.

He thought the apartment would be a good idea to raise some extra money and I came up with the idea of the guest managing the book store.

Oh my god, it's a reading nook.

I've always wanted one of these.

For afternoon naps and romantic novels.

You and I think alike, I like it.

Sleep well.


No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.

No.

Gross.

Gross.

Shoot.


I'm sorry, your door was open.

I, this.

I'm so sorry, I was just trying to take a shower.

Well I thought I fixed this.

See this is why we shouldn't be renting this place.

You hand me the channel locks over there?

I don't know what that is.

Oh my god, oh my god!

The bigger one. This one?

Yeah, the big one.

Yeah, the big pliers. This one?

Yeah, yeah that's it. Okay.

I'm Andrew.

This is no way to greet a guest, I'm sorry.

I'm Claire.

I re-piped the bathroom last month, so I'm really not sure what's going on.

Everything's under control.

Can you get a couple of towels maybe.

There we go.

It should be safe to take a shower now.

Safe.

Handle comes off again, there's my number.

Okay, thank you.

Okay.

Hey, where'd that painting come from?

My mom painted that.

Really?

Yeah, she came here years ago, she loved Glastenbury.

She really captured the way it used to look.

I remember those curtains from when I was a kid.

My mom sewed them.

Your mom sewed those curtains?

Yeah.

It's a lost art.

Well, until the next disaster.

That's not funny. You'll be fine.

Goodnight, Claire.

Goodnight.

Thank you.


These macarons are lovely.

The sandwich cookies, can I get you a dozen?

No, no, that's okay.

I would love a coffee though, do you do coffee to go?

Yeah.

Great.

I'd love a decaf Americana with an extra shot and soy milk foam cap.

Two black coffees decaf, creamer's on the way out the door.

Okay.

You're bakery is lovely.

Those breads look fabulous.

I would love to try a sample of maybe the seeded rye.

You eat 'em, you buy 'em.

Come on, everybody does samples.

They're a great way to bring in customers.

We do just fine here.

I'm Claire, I'm.

Okay.

Good morning.

I brought us some coffees.

God bless you, dear.

So you've met Barb across the way?

Yes, not the friendliest.

Well, Vermonter's are notoriously suspicious of outsiders, especially those from New York.

How can you tell?

Your shoes.

How do you walk in those things anyway?

Do you mind if I let some light in?

Of course, you're the manager.

Okay.

How come there's no Christmas decorations, not even a wreath in the window?

You should have seen it when Andrew's folks were still around.

The trip to Glastenbury was not complete unless you came to Fortenburys to witness all the Christmas decorations.

What happened?

Andrew inherited quite a responsibility, but God bless him, he keeps up the family tradition.

Do you think I can get him to move these bookcases?

Good luck with that.

Doesn't he wanna fix the place up for the holidays?

Andrew has lost his spirit.

Really?

For Christmas?

For just about everything.

Why don't you relax, get the lay of the land?

Do you have a broom?

Maybe a dustpan or something. Not in those heels.

I'm so sorry.

I'm so, so sorry.

What's going on in here?

Isn't it great?

She's only been here a few hours, think what the rest of the month will be like.

Claire, we don't expect our guests to reinvent the wheel during their stay.

You're on holiday, enjoy yourself.

I am.

I was thinking we could do some wreaths in the windows, maybe some garland and twinkly lights.

Can you help with that?

I don't think so, no.

Really, why?

The bookstore's not doing holiday decorations, nobody in town is.

Just something, you know like tasteful and elegant.

It's freezing in here.

We're wasting energy.

The heat doesn't even work so it doesn't matter.

It's spring cleaning.

It's December.

Yeah, that's even better.

It's better in December. Better in December.

She talks a lot, doesn't she?

She's full of ideas.

But in all fairness, when was the last time anyone showed this kind of interest in the place?

I can't even remember.

But I don't like being told what to do.

Get off your high horse, young man.

Give the girl a chance.

I can't believe the way you talk to me.

Listen to your auntie.

She's looking out for you.

You know I should probably get a key for when I lock up myself.

Well you can check with Andrew.

Do I have to?

He just acts like everything I ask is an imposition.

He's harmless.

He's all bark and no bite.

You'd never know it was the holidays.

You have to come back next year.

The festival leads up to Midnight Madness and everybody comes out of the street til the wee hours, shopping and partying and they have to bring in extra generators to supply the electricity for all of the Christmas lights.

It's wonderful, wonderful.

Don't you find it kind of depressing?

Well do something about it, dear.

You're here for a another month.

That's true.


Excuse me.

Mrs. T said that I could come and get a key from you.

I'm sorry, do you make these?

Yeah.

It's my hobby.

These are beautiful.

Kids in town call them reindeer bells.

We used to sell them in the bookstore.

You used to sell them.

These are perfect Christmas items.

We should put them all over the shelves.

No one's gonna buy 'em, Claire.

No, you're wrong.

These are incredible.

The craftsmanship is amazing.

Where did you learn to do this?

My uncle Ned.

My aunt Mary's late husband.

He was the best blacksmith in Vermont.

He learned from his father, it's kind of a family thing.

And I'm gonna pass it on some day.

You needed a key to the bookstore.

Right, okay. Yeah.

Let's see here.

Guests are forever losing these.

Why don't I give you one of these?

Really?

Yeah.

For me?

Thank you.

Oh my gosh, I have to take a picture of this.

What are you doing?

I'm just gonna post it on social-

No, no, no picture.

No, no, no, it's good for business.

The bookstore is doing just fine.

Yeah, we had one customer today and all she was looking for was gas.

You're a guest here, you know, you don't have to do any of this, Claire.

I know, I'm just trying to help.

We don't need help.

Okay.

Thanks. Yeah.

Each item on the list will enhance the customer shopping experience.

You wanna have an open house and cocktail reception?

I majored in marketing before I got my MBA and I specialize in merchandising.

I know about these things.

Really? Yes.

And I want your sleigh bells all over the shelves, especially the ones with leather braids.

They're great impulse buys.

Look, I have a plan for the bookstores future and it doesn't include cocktail parties, okay?

But why not?

Claire, the ski resorts are 40 minutes away.

You could be on the slopes having the time of your life.

Okay, let's negotiate the terms.

Excuse me?

Every item you take off the list, you agree to help me with one that I want.

It's my bookstore, why would I want to negotiate against myself?

Because I'm here for a month.

Yes you are.

No.

No.

No. Stop it.

Those are great.

Absolutely not, what... I don't understand that.

Well it's a fire hazard. It's not a fire...

Yes it is.

Okay, maybe.

Great.

I have five more.

What? Yeah.

We're having an open house at the bookstore tomorrow night.

No one holds night hours any more.

Well we are.

And I was wondering if you do custom orders?

Yeah, sure. Great.

Could you do these macarons or the sandwich cookies in red and green and maybe with some sparkle or something?

How many? Three dozen.

This is like water torture.

I've been posting all morning.

Stop worrying.

Wrong hours, wrong books, wrong drinks, and wrong food.

This isn't even Vermont cheese.

All right, this might be fine for your upper east side friends, but not gonna cut it here.

I'm telling you, we're gonna be mobbed, okay?

Just trust me, I do this for a living.

It's a ghost town out there.

She's heartbroken.

Hey, these are pretty good.

Then go tell her.

You act like you don't want her to succeed.

You act like you don't want the bookstore to succeed.

No, no, that's not it, aunt Mary, it's just she's not making this any easier for me.

What are you talking about?

So, what'd you put in these crazy holiday drinks you made?

They're good.

They're cranberry juice, vodka, and bitters.

I made my own bitters.

Where'd you learn to do that?

I put myself through grad school working as a bartender.

Well you are just full of surprises.

I totally blew it, I didn't read the market place.

Why do you beat yourself up like that?

I'm so sorry we wasted all this food.

No, no, no, no, no, we don't waste food around here.

I'll take care of it.

What do you mean, what are you going to do with it?

You can come with if you want.


Andy.

Good to see ya. Good to see ya.

Luke, this is Claire Clayson, she's running renting the room above the bookstore for a month.

Nice to meet you. Hi, how you doing?

Who is this handsome boy?

That's Dash, short for Dasher.

He's a rescue, we found him last Christmas Eve.

Hi. Well, he found us.

Awe, I used to have a dog when I was a kid.

He was my best buddy.

I wish I could have one now, but I'm always at work.

What's with all the boxes, Luke?

Chewy donated packages to our food pantry, so we give the pet food to the homeless for their animals.

That's fantastic.

And it looks like Chewy gave us a Christmas card.

Your choir sounded wonderful tonight.

It was the first time it felt like Christmas since I got here.

Of course the town might not wanna celebrate Christmas this year, but in this house we're going all out.

We had a little misfire at the bookstore tonight, but Claire had the brilliant idea of donating our food.

Well, thanks Claire.

We're a small town, but we have a homeless problem just like any other city in America.

Macarons, nice.

Thank you.

You'll have to excuse Luke here, he's a new dad.

A very sleep deprived new dad actually.

What do you have, a boy or a girl?

A little girl, Mable.

And a pair of lungs you wouldn't believe.

And as soon as she learns how to walk, she's gonna be in that choir.

Well we will get out of your hair.

We'll let you get back to work.

Okay, well thanks for coming in and thank you so much for the food.

Of course.

Any time you wanna come back and help the church out, you're more than welcome. Yeah, thank you.

You should come by the bookstore because we're gonna have a 20% off sale for the holidays.

We are?

Yeah, I thought I told you.

Well she's amazing.

Yeah, yeah, she's got a great eye for business.

I wasn't talking about the bookstore, Andy.

I still don't understand why we're doing this.

It's probably been here for 50 years.

Because it's bad fengshui.

I wanna put it over there.

You must be some kind of bigshot at work because you sure are good at giving orders.

I'm a venture capitalist.

Don't you mean a vulture capitalist?

I'm more like a guardian angel.

I save companies and put money back into them, pay off their debts, set up IPOs, you know, that kinda thing.

Okay, Mrs. Guardian Angel, use your heavenly powers and let's all push, huh?

I'll help. Okay.

Ready? Ready.

One, two, three.

What?

Who puts a bookcase in front of a fireplace?

I've never seen this, Aunt Mary?

Well I don't remember this at all.

This is beautiful.

You know what, we'll put these two chairs in front of it and arrange the whole room around it.

Does this mean moving more furniture?

Of course it does.

Good.

Bless you.

Hope you're not allergic to books.

Most of my friends are, but I'm not.

Do you have O. Henry?

We just read Ransom of Red Chief at school.

The classics are right over there.

Are you looking for a particular title?

Gift of the Magi.

That is the best Christmas book

...and the ending... Don't tell me.

Our English teacher said it was a big surprise.

What's your name?

Alicia. Alicia.

I can't believe was written 113 years ago.

I know, but you know what it's still fresh today.

I mean it's about Christmas and love and life going haywire.

Do you like Christmas books?

Any kind of book.

I wanna be a writer some day.

I write short stories all the time.

Well I'm sure your school library probably has tons of great books.

Closed until spring.

The flood, lots of soggy pages.

That's awful.

I gotta go.

Real cool bookstore. Thanks.

Well it was nice to meet you.

Come back again and don't forget to sign the guestbook.

Okay?

Hey, I'll be right with you.

It's nice to meet you.

Bye.

Hi, can I help you with something?

Just, sorry, just one second.

Alicia.

Hey Alicia, it was really nice to meet you.

Do you live here in town?

My parents run the tree farm on Route 12.

Listen, I need to get going right now.

You know what?

I think you have something of ours.

Please don't call the police.

My mother will kill me.

Do you want me to get Andrew?

No, no, I can handle it, it's okay.

So, you like surprise endings?

I don't know.

Well here's one you didn't see coming.

I will keep this between you and I on one condition.

You read Gift of the Magi.

You can take it.

And, A Little Princess.

This is one of my favorite books.

You come back on Friday after school and we're gonna talk about them.

Deal?

Yeah.

Yes. Okay.


Claire, extension cords aren't a substitute for proper wiring.

Next time just let me know and I'll rig something up.

Yeah, but then I couldn't hear you whine and complain about it.

Yeah? Is that what I do?

See Andrew, I'm not the only one who says that.

Hi.

It's not Friday.

I stayed up all night reading.

The ending of Magi was so good.

I can't believe she cut her hair and he sold the watch.

I know. I never saw it coming.

I wanted to say thank you.

These are from mom's greenhouse.

That's so sweet.

Thank you.

Hey Andrew, this is Alicia.

Yeah, I've been out to your folks farm.

You sell Christmas trees, right?

Yeah, not many customers this year.

And I loved The Little Princess.

OMG, it was so good.

I love the end where the rich family brings Christmas dinner over to the neighbors who didn't have anything. Yeah.

It's the best gift you could give someone.

Thanks. Christmas books.

This is our resident critic, the Grinch.

Christmas novels are the worst.

Are you for real?

It's a totally distorted view of the holidays.

Happy families gather around the table.

Everybody gets the perfect Christmas gift.

Nobody lives like that.

Don't listen to him.

He's, I don't even know.

My mom used to read A Little Princess to me and my sister.

She was a single parent and we never really had a lot, but she, thank you.

She always found a way to make Christmas special.

Yeah, thanks.

Good job.

Would you be willing to write like a little paragraph about the book and I can put it on the shelf?

Nobody cares what I think.

I care what you think.

Actually, you know what would be better?

Is if you were here in person.

How 'bout an internship?

You could come after school.

Claire.

I realize we can't pay you, but I would really like to have you here and we can talk about books and you could help me tie bows, you know?

Seriously? Yeah, absolutely.

Claire. It would be really good for your college applications.

I'll have to ask my mom.

Yeah, of course and if she wants to talk to me just have her come by.

Okay.

Bye.

Okay listen, before you start.

I love that you see value in people, it's a beautiful thing, but we are not guidance counselors.

She loves to read, this is the perfect environment for her.

The idea just occurred to me in the moment.

Okay there was a little voice in my head and I'm just really trying to listen to my intuition for a change.

Well can you please just check with me first?

Andrew, these kids need a break.

They have nowhere to go, nothing to do with the Christmas Festival was canceled.

If you think you're gonna fix Glastenbury problems-

No I don't, I just, one, one kid.

Okay, just one.

That's all I'm asking for.

You are impossible to argue with.

That's because I'm always right.

Okay, all right, so what happens when you leave?

If I can just plant one little seed while I'm here, then I will have had the best Christmas vacation ever.

I just wanna give back for a change, come on.

Fine.

Thank you.

You won't regret it, I promise.

What is this?

What is that doing here.

All that stuff is suppose to be down in the basement.

You're like a kid on Christmas morning.

I know, I feel like one.

I mean look at this stuff.

This is Austria, 1902.

And this was just sitting in the back of the storage room.

I don't get it.

Look at that.

What is this?

Is this, is that Andrew?

Yes. He's so cute.

Yes, that's Andrew and that's my sister, his mother, Addie and that's her husband, John.

It's been three years since she's been gone.

Hey. Hi.

Look what we found.

This picture.

So cute.

What's all this stuff doing out?

Isn't it wonderful?

I thought maybe we could decorate the store with these things.

Yeah, these boxes are full of family memories, Claire.

No one wants to see that stuff.

Come on, you were at St. Paul's.

I mean there wasn't an empty seat in the house.

People out there are starved for Christmas.

Just get it cleaned up.

It's all right, you didn't mean any harm.

It's been a hard time for him.

We've gotta find a way to get people in here.

I mean if we could just get the luminaria's back on the streets, I know it would bring in business.

The Chamber of Commerce meets every Wednesday at two.

You're not exactly a shrinking violet.

I didn't say that.

Mrs. T, I thought you put that thing away?

Andrew's gonna be really upset about that.

I must've left it out by accident.

Sometimes my memory's not as good as it should be.

Sneaky.

Hi there, can I help you with something?

I was on my morning walk and that adorable Santa caught my eye.

Yeah, it's lovely, isn't it?

When I was a little girl I remember coming to Fortenbury's and seeing that cookie jar in the window.

You know it belonged to the owner's family.

Any chance it's for sale?

No, absolutely not.

Claire, can I?

Are you looking for a gift?

Because we have these lovely sleigh bells here.

And they're made by our very own Andrew Fortenbury.

These are wonderful.

My daughter loves anything that's handcrafted.

So artistic.

You made these young man?

Yeah, yeah, my workshop's just out back.

You know I've been trying to get him to sign them or at least put his initials on them.

So that everybody can know who the artist is.

I'll take them. Great!

But only if you sign them.

Really?

I wanna be able to tell my daughter I met the artist in person.

Okay, sure, sure.

Here, let me ring that up for you.

See, what did I tell you?

Now are you gonna let me put up some more Christmas ornaments?

Claire, we talked about this.

All right, let's negotiate it.

Well no. Yes.

For every ornament that you hate I get to put out two that I like.

No.

So road construction on the F12 bridge will be completed two months ahead of schedule.

Now, let's put that to a vote.

All in favor of approving additional funds for the flood relief construction, raise your hand.

Opposed?

Motion approved.

Okay, moving on to new business.

The floor is open.

Hi.

I'm Claire Clayson from Fortenbury's Bookstore and I'm here to talk about the Christmas Festival.

With all due respect, this board has voted.

I'm aware of that, but in the last few days since we put out Christmas decorations, we've seen an increase in foot traffic.

All of the events are canceled.

Have you looked up and down Main Street?

I mean it's kind of like a ghost town celebrating its own funeral instead of Christmas.

Yeah.

I mean listen, clearly it's too late to salvage the festival, but what about just doing a piece of it?

You know instead of the luminarias all month, how 'bout just a week leading up to Christmas?

And then the Midnight Madness sale could just be one night.

I mean how hard would that be?

You know when I was a little girl my mom used to tell me about this magical place called Glastenbury where the streets were lined with candles and holiday lights and where Christmas was real.

Anyone else with public input?

I really think you're being short-sighted about this.

No other new business?

This meeting is adjourned.

Mom's windows were always the main attraction in town.

She'd start planning in the summer.

She sounds like quite the woman.

Yeah, yeah, she was.

You know Mrs. T was mentioning that she used to have book readings during the holidays.

What if we scheduled one?

Book readings a lot of work, Claire.

No, no, it's really not.

You just pick a book and put out a sign and you know have refreshments and stuff.

Refreshments, you wanna go there?

Stop, I'm gonna have Alicia help me, okay?

I know she knows what real Vermonters like.

You know, the nutcracker's always guarded the front door.

Shall we?

We shall.


I think it looks good.

Hey Barb!

Hey!

We've gotta get this girl fed!

She's been working like a fiend.

Yeah sure, come on in.

Let me see if I can find you a seat.

Great. By the way, I've never seen anyone stand up to Puttnam the way you did at the chamber meeting.

I know.

All the power to ya.

I wish I would have succeeded.

Yeah well, you know those red and green sandwich cookies, the macarons that I made for your open house? Yeah.

I made an extra batch, sold out in a flash.

Now I can't keep them in stock.

Really? Yeah.

Everyone's looking for Christmas wherever they can find it.

So what can I get for you ladies?

It's on the house.

So what's got you so intrigued about New York?

I know this sounds silly but I want to go to NYU for their writing program.

That's not silly, that's amazing.

My parents think it's kind of silly.

Who spends all that money to go to college to become a writer?

Lots of people.

Just like you.

You just have to do what's in your heart and follow your instincts.

But my parents-

I know, but it's your life.

You can make it whatever you want.

Why don't you come visit me some time?

We can go to NYU, I can show you the campus.

Really? Yeah, absolutely.

I would love to.

I promise, okay.

And I never break a promise to a friend.

Pinky swear.

Hey. Hi Father Luke.

Nice to see you. How ya doing?

Great, I heard that was quite a speech you gave at the chamber meeting.

Yes.

Let me introduce you to Erin my husband and little Mable. Oh my gosh.

Mable you're so sweet.

You so cute.

You're not so bad yourself.

Thank you.

Rumor has it you sure know how to fire up a crowd.

Can we borrow you over at the church?

Absolutely.

I'm so happy to see what you're doing here.

It's like the old days. Thank you.

Unfortunately, we can only stay for a bit.

Mable here keeps us on a pretty tight schedule.

Yeah. Of course.

How is it living here?

Two dads and a baby.

Actually pretty great.

I'm from Boston, so at first I was a little worried.

But you have to be careful about stereotyping small towns.

That's true.

This place surprises me every day.

Yeah.

Hey.

Okay, so I want you to do the first reading.

Me?

Why?

Well, because I'm gonna be gone in a couple weeks and you're still gonna be here and I just think it's good for people to get to know your face you know?

Are you sure? Yes.

Okay. Okay, perfect.

Don't you clean up nice?

Thanks.

Look at this crowd.

Well what did I tell you, I've been posting all day.

That's smoke.

What, what?

Did you open the flue?

Yes, yes I opened it.

What do I do?

Wait.

Okay.

We gotta get 'em outside.

There we go.

Alright, everybody out of the way!

Oh no.

Oh no, I can't believe this is happening!

I'm so sorry.

Please tell me that you didn't do this on purpose.

No I didn't do it on purpose!

Had I known.

Well, so much for good intentions.

Great, well, I'm covered in ash now.

I know, me too.

I've got some soap in the shop.

Okay, okay we'll be right back.

Watch the fire.

Okay, it's okay.

Is it always so hot in here?

Yeah, when I light the furnace it stays on day and night.

Summers are awful but winters are kind of wonderful.

You're right, this stuff really works.

Yeah, it's volcanic pumice.

It's, good.

If my New York friends could see me now.

You gotta really really get in there and scrub.

May I?

Sure.


Claire?

Andrew?

We need more chairs.

Yeah, I'll come.

I just, need to finish. Yeah more chairs.

Washing. Yeah.

So, about last night...

I was gonna bring that up also.

It doesn't really make any sense, right?

'Cause I'm not gonna be here for...

I'm leaving in a week.

Right.

No of course.

I knew that...

...and I'm not looking for any kind of commitment.

And you're on vacation.

Right, exactly.

So, you know. Exactly.

That's what I thought you were gonna say.

Alright, so we'll just keep it coworkers and...

Coworkers. Friends.

Yup.

That's a good plan.

Okay, that's great. Yup.

See ya at lunch.

Hey!

Looking good neighbor.

Hey, everybody's talking about how you almost burned down the bookstore.

Whatever it takes right? Exactly.

You know, I'm thinking of extending my stay.

Maybe through New Years.

That's great!

Consider yourself invited!

Great, thanks!


Such a beautiful night. Yeah.

Full moon.

Okay, where's your phone?

Why?

Well, if there was ever a picture worth posting online.

Oh no, not tonight.

What ya thinking about?

My mother.

How long has she been gone?

Since I was in college.

What was she like?

She was scraffy and determined.

She was the hardest worker I've ever met.

Like you.

You know, my mother was kind of like that too.

She never ran out of patience, especially with me.

My mom had a nine to five job that she hated.

But she painted on the side.

That's how she came here actually.

Her sketch group would take a trip once a year and do nothing but paint.

And they rented these cottages over Christmas break.

So that's how that painting happened.

Yup, and she came home and just quit her job and started painting full-time.

She would always tell me that Glastenbury was this magical place where dreams came true.

We should put that on a billboard at the Train Depot.

She was always gonna take me here.

It was kind of a dream we had together but it just never happened.

I think that's why I feel so connected to her here.

Christmas can do that to people.

Okay, now you sound like one of your sappy holiday novels.

Stop.

You do!

It's not that sappy.

Just the last part.

Claire!

Hi!

Did you have a good time last night?

I did.

It was so beautiful.

The church in the woods, with the lights.

Hi.

It felt like the holidays.

What happened?

We had a run on bells yesterday afternoon.

A woman from Maine bought six of them.

Really!

That's fantastic!

Hey, Alicia, can you go down and ask Andrew if he can put together some more bells?

Sure. Great.

Yeah it's Andrew Fortenbury.

Yes it's urgent.

No, no, no, no, no, no, I don't want to move the closing date.

I've already delayed the sale a month.

I need the bookstore to close escrow right after the first.

No, I can't move it again.

No, no, it's gotta be the beginning of the month.

I can't wait any longer.

Yeah okay, yeah, thank you.

Hey!

Are you okay?

I accidentally overheard Andrew on the phone.

What happened?

I think he was talking to someone about selling the bookstore.

What?

Why didn't you tell me?

About what?

You're selling the bookstore?

Look, I appreciate all you've done around here Claire.

I do, but you don't need to get involved in this.

It's not a big deal.

It is a big deal.

Why did you let me do all of this work if you knew you were closing?

Things have turned around.

The bookstore's doing better.

It's not sustainable.

Okay after the holidays this little uptick will turn into a trickle.

You know, I evaluate companies for a living, and from what I can see-

I can't do this on my own Claire.

You made this place come alive.

But if you go back to New York, what am I supposed to do?

I know, but this bookstores been in your family for over 100 years.

And here's the good news, nothing's changing.

The bookstore's not closing down.

So all of your hard work is not in vain.

But I don't understand.

The building is being sold, but the bookstore and the apartment, they all stay the same.

That Fortenbury sign stays right above the door?

Well who's the new owner?

George Puttnam.

George Puttnam? Yeah.

The Chamber of Commerce President?

Yeah. No, no, that guy's a jerk.

Well he's the largest real estate broker in the area and he's paying a fair price.

Yeah, in a down market. It's perfect timing for him.

He gave me his word, Claire.

Okay.

My sister's in real estate.

And no offense to her, but you never trust anything until you get it in writing.

And even then...

His family goes way back alright, just like mine.

So he understands the value of Fortenbury to the community.

I've never seen him at any of our events.

What if he loves the location more than he loves books?

Look, the decision's been made.

You're just gonna have to trust me.

I can't believe that Andrew would do this.

I know things have been tough, but surely...

Have you heard the news!

The City is putting the Luminarias back on the calendar for a week.

And we're going to do Midnight Madness again!

What?

How did this happen?

Well you lit a fire under the chamber Claire.

We start decorating tonight. We need volunteers.

Yes. Yeah, okay, cool!

Okay.

When were you going to tell me?

I'm family for God's sake!

I didn't wanna say anything until I knew it was certain.

If you think that I'm going to stay here and run the bookstore for George Puttnam, you have another thing coming.

I'm only here because of you.

I made a promise to your mother.

I'm sorry.

The Luminaria Festival is back on.

You represent this family.

As long as you own the bookstore you will be there.

I'm disappointed in you Andrew.

Alright!

George and Ernie, if you could start at the General Store.

Father Luke and Erin are on sand brigade.

I will just give us a shovel we'll get to work.

And Claire and Andrew, I have you on candle duty.

Can I trust you with a lighter?

Very funny.

I could do this by myself.

Yeah, and I can't stay very long.

No, we need every able bodied person we can find.

What are Luminarias without candles?

Go!

Light this town!

Let's go!

Hey guys, thanks for coming.

Look, sorry about this Claire.

I didn't mean for us to argue like that.

No, you know what, it's not your fault.

I shouldn't of said anything.

I mean I'm just a guest.

It's not really any of my business.

You're more than a guest alright, you know that.

We wouldn't be out here in the freezing cold lighting these stupid candles if it wasn't for you.

Okay, well, can you explain it to me because I really don't understand why you have to sell the bookstore.

Ever since my folks died, the bookstore has consumed my life.

I don't travel, I don't date.

I mean I'd like to start a family some day.

Look at what Luke and Erin are doing, I'm thinking why can't that be me?

Well yeah, I mean everybody deserves their dreams.

Just, I don't wanna fix broken pipes anymore.

I wanna do blacksmithing full-time.

Maybe open up my own shop.

But I can't do that with the bookstore hanging over my head. I just...

I need a clean break so I can just focus on my life for a change.

Yeah, I mean I get it.

It's complicated.

Alright, that's all of them so let's get some more.

Okay.

Great?

As much as it pains me to say this, I should've listened to you.

I was not expecting you to say that.

I have a news crew coming from Burlington.

They wanna do a report, Christmas Return To Glastenbury After The Flood.

That's good news for the new owner of Fortenbury's.

You know?

Look, I'll take good care of the place alright?

You have nothing to worry about.

Excuse me.

Excuse me, I'm Alicia's mom.

Delores.

It's so nice to meet you!

We love having your daughter at the bookstore.

She talks about you all the time.

You know she's really stepped up to the plate.

We're very proud of her.

You know, she told me she wanted to be a writer.

I mean we were talking about NYU.

Last summer she told everyone she wanted to be a veterinarian.

A writer, that's all fine and good for someone like you, but she's gonna need to earn a living.

During the off-season, we have Alicia working at the Christmas tree farm after school.

Yeah, she told me that business has been slow.

I'm really sorry to hear that.

There's not a lot of opportunity for a girl like her in a place like Glastenbury.

Well with all do respect, I actually grew up a lot like your daughter.

And she's a feracious reader.

She observes the world with a keen eye, she's just really really talented.

Training her to take over the family business is very important to us.

Right, of course.

I have to be realistic.

Well you know, I've been trying to listen to my gut more, and my gut is telling me that Alicia is a very special girl with a very bright future.

There's a family tradition here.

I'm sorry, I did not mean to...

You're on vacation here, correct?

Enjoy your stay at Glastenbury but I need Alicia back.


I'm so sorry, she wants you to be at the Christmas tree farm after school.

Always messing with my life.

I hate it.

I know, I know it feels like that.

But there's gonna be so many other opportunities.

No there won't.

You're going back to New York.

The bookstore's been sold...

What happens to me?

You know, I was an independent kid just like you.

And I'm telling you, there's gonna be so much time in your life for you to do whatever you want.

What about now?

Now you just have to read every book you can get your hands on and keep writing your short stories.

Okay?

Okay?

I know you can feel stuck here in Glastenbury, but I promise you, you can get out of here one day.

I'm so sorry honey.

Claire, you have to let this go.

What was that?

Oh my god.

Oh my god, oh my god, what can I do?

Grab a bucket, grab a bucket!

Are you okay?

Yes, yes. Here, come on down.

I'm just a bit soggy.

Okay, can you turn off the main waterline?

Yes.

Are we gonna be able to open tomorrow?

'Cause it's Midnight Madness and we have the open mic and I've got a guest list of people like three pages long.

I mean, I can fix the pipe, that's easy.

It's just predicting when the rest of this old place is gonna fall apart.

That's a little harder.

I'm gonna leave you two to figure this all out.

There's much too much excitement for an old gal like me.

Okay, I'll lock up.

Thank you. Night.

Just leave it til tomorrow.

No, I wanna get it cleaned up so, you know...

See, this is why I want out Claire.

Running this place is someone else's dream.

Not mine.

I was just thinking of telling people that Santa couldn't get down the chimney so he cut a hole in the ceiling.

That's very cute.

I've been looking at the train schedule and I think I might go back early.

Claire, don't give up on us.

I know, I just don't know what I'm doing here anymore. Well I do.

You have a job to do, do it.

Bucket brigade to the rescue!

The what?

We heard there was a flooding of epic proportions.

Where shall we start?

No, no, no.

Oh my gosh, Barb.

No, no, I can't ask you to do that.

Too late, we're here!

Oh my gosh, I don't even know some of you.

Well they know who you are.

You're the lady who brought Christmas back to Main Street.

Barb, you're so sweet.

Honestly, I don't even know what to say.

"I will honor Christmas in my heart

"and try to keep it all the year.

"I will live in the past, present, and the future.

"The spirits of all three shall strive within me.

"I will not shut out the lessons that they teach."

Before I open up the mic I just wanted to say a few words.

The past three weeks have been amazing.

You've all welcomed me to your community like I was family.

And I just want you to know, I'm so grateful for that.

You know, I find it truly inspiring that despite everything that you've gone through you've still come together to celebrate the most wonderful time of year.

Thanks to you.

And I'm gonna miss you all so much when I leave tomorrow.

I think my mother really captured the magic of Glastenbury in her painting.

And I'm just so thankful that I was able to experience it through my own eyes.

So thank you.

Merry Christmas.

No you can stay.

You can join our choir.


Hey. Hey!

Could you believe the crowds last night?

Best Midnight Madness since 02.

Well, if you build it they will come right?

I feel like I'm leaving this place better than I found it.

Well that's an understatement.

We need another box of photos at the bookstore and I'm not gonna be here, so?

I'm on it.

Listen, I've gotta run down the hall for a sec, could you stick around?

Yeah, sure, why?

Well we're considering a new marketing campaign for next Christmas that I'd like to run by you.

For someone who isn't from here, you sure have a keen sense for the marketplace.

You know your stuff.

Thank you.


Andrew, he lied to you.

Putnam's not going to keep the bookstore.

I saw the plans in his office.

He's gonna subdivide the space and rent it out.

He's not even gonna keep the Fortenbury sign on the building. No that's impossible.

He gave me his word. No, I know, but that might have been the original deal but since business has been picking up he can rent it out and get three times the rent.

You're gonna cancel the contract right?

Andrew, if you sell there's gonna be no more Fortenbury's.

Look, don't tell me what I can and can't do.

I'm not.

I'm just trying to help.

It's not to late, I can call my sister-

What is it with you?

Was coming up here a way of escaping your problems in New York?

Is that what you think?

I don't know what to think.

I do know that I have to get on with my life.

Just don't sell.

It's my decision okay.

I'll deal with the regret.

So you work on fixing your life Claire, not mine.

You know, coming out here made me realize that I need to find my own family and start my own traditions.

And I'm not gonna sit here and watch you give up yours.

Why are you so invested in this place?

It's not this place Andrew!

I am invested in you.

And what this might turn into.

We're going in different directions Claire.

But we don't have to.

I don't know how to make that work.

Okay.

Then it's best that I go.

I really wish you'd reconsider.

I know, I just can't.

You know, I never got to know my own grandmother.

But, in the last three weeks, you've kinda given me a glimpse.

Did I make a mess of everything?

No, no, you have been my anchor.

My nephew is stubborn and proud and he likes to do things his way.

A little bit like you.

There's only three days til Christmas, why don't you stay?

Finish out the season.

I just can't.

I can't do it.

Would you give this to Alicia for me if she comes by?

Of course.

I just don't want her to think that I left without saying goodbye.

Don't forget about us.

That would be impossible.

Hey.

Hey. Claire.

I was sorry to hear that you were leaving so soon.

I know, I know, I've just gotta get back to the city.

Hey, hey Dash.

Are you gonna take care of all my new friends for me while I'm gone?

Yeah?

You have the best Christmas ever okay?

Claire, you don't need to go.

I think you can maybe stay around another couple days?

Yeah.

I gotta go.

I'm gonna miss you.

Yeah.

You really blew that one didn't ya?

Can't you just put a red or a green or like even a blue?

Are you still in culture shock after Glastenbury?

I have no idea.

You miss it all, huh?

Here's the last of them.

Thank you.

I really appreciate you coming in Alicia.

Are you kidding?

I was so excited.

I'm so happy to be back.

I can't believe my mother said yes.

Well, I told her we couldn't manage the final days of the bookstore without you.

Come on, no sad faces.

We're all gonna be better off for this, right?

Is Claire here?

Nope.

She helped me last week and I found the most perfect gift for my daughter.

She went back to New York.

I thought she was part of the family.

That's too bad.

I really liked her.

We did too.

Is there anything I can help you with?

Yes.

Where are you going?

I've got one last batch of bells to finish up and try out some new signs.

Claire would have loved to have seen those.

Can we not talk about her please?

Alright, it's finished!

Let's take a selfie and post it. I don't wanna do that.

No, come on, we're doing it.

Come, come!

Smile, come on, real smile.

Yeah?

Cheese.

Stop.

It's cute, no stop it.

I don't wanna do it anymore.

I did one!

My gosh. I'm just doing me.

Stop.

It's a great book.

Mrs. T, could you get me some more ribbon and some of that striped wrapping paper please?

Yes of course dear. Thank you.


This is not much of a Christmas Eve dinner.

No, it's gonna be great.

And when the guys get here we can watch It's A Wonderful Life.

Hey Suz, come here.

Look.

That's moms handwriting.

Where'd you get that?

Mrs. T and Alicia sent it to me.

Mom's right.

If I have dream, I have to go after it.

What do you mean?

Suz I could barely get through the day today.

You're gonna get back into the swing of it okay?

No, no, I know.

But that's exactly the problem.

I don't wanna get back into the swing of things.

I just wanna do something that matters to me.

Okay, like what?

I don't know, I don't know.

Something with books, and kids, and helping them fulfill their dreams.

That's what makes me happy.

Suz, Suz, say something.

Are you appalled?

Am I about to get the big sister lecture?

Mom found her bliss there.

Why can't you?

Okay.

Okay, I'm gonna go back.

I mean it's the right thing to do and I just have to put away my pride and my hurt feelings.

I just can't walk out on them.

You mean you can't walk out on him?

Oh my god, I miss him so much!

Is that totally crazy? Not at all.

Morning sweetheart.

Hey!

I'm sorry to get you up so early.

I just, I took the last train out of New York, I promise.

Anything for you Claire.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.


Ernie what happened around here?

It's...

You.


Mrs. T.

Claire?

Andrew, I had to come back because...

I missed you.

Oh my god I've been so miserable.

I'm sorry I let you leave.

I'm sorry I left.

You know, someone once told me that Christmas let's us see the things that we really care about.

And I care about this town, and I care about this bookstore, most of all, I care about you.

So, does that mean we get to keep the bookstore though?

We can't sell this place.

I am gonna need someone to run it though.

You know anyone?

I don't know, I'm gonna have to check.

Okay, well you let me know.

I'll send out some texts.

I'll let you know.

Okay.

Okay, okay, come on.

We are gonna be late.

Late? Yup.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas. It's nice to see you.

Merry Christmas, lots of room.

Hi Merry Christmas.

Your back's all better, great.

Hey.

Thank you, thank you.

Claire, welcome back.

Don't ever leave again.

I know, I promise I won't.

I knew you'd be back.

Looks like you finally got what you really wanted.

Yeah.

You know what, I think I had it all along.