His Great Uncle's Spirit (1912)
Drama, Short · 8 March 1912
A young sleight-of-hand performer found that he was also "sleight" of audience. Business was very bad, although the show was good and his troubles came to a climax in a country town when the village magnate seized his props and scenery for debt. The performer begged for a chance to make good, telling of the big advance sales of other towns, but the magnate was obdurate. He wanted his pound of flesh and it was a matter of indifference to him whether any blood came with it or not. With plenty of time on his hands, the young magician's thoughts naturally turned to revenge. He knew the reputation of his enemy, miserly and grasping, a man who could never keep a clerk because he paid very little, so the magician decided to take an office position with him. He made a hit with the magnate because he only wanted a dollar a week and his board, and was engaged. Thus be was able to prepare for his tricks without fear of detection. He found that his employer was as bad as he had been painted and his heart was steeled against him. Soon the magnate found that new and novel interests had entered into his life. Mysterious messages came to him through the air that the spirit of his great uncle was displeased with him. Then the spirit began to get really busy. He took away the magnate's gold, his stocks, bonds, and securities, even food and drink was denied to him. It took some time for the miser to realize that the spirit meant business, and that he insisted upon fair business dealings and generosity. To please his great uncle the magnate completely reformed, and was afraid ever to go wrong again, because he believed it would mean another visitation. Through the liberality of his unsuspecting employer, the magician was enabled to get back to Broadway, and as he told many friends he met there, "This was one season where I didn't mind being closed up by the sheriff."
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