Christmas with Friends is the twenty-fifth episode of the first volume.
|Christmas with Friends|
|Season X, Episode 25|
|Air date||22 December 2019|
Emily and Molly
It was Christmastime on the Island of Sodor. The engines kept busy with passengers and goods.
Thomas was still helping out on Edward's Branch Line.
One day, he was waiting at Edward's station when the Stationmaster came up.
"From what I've heard, they are now starting the final tests on Edward to make sure he was repaired properly."
"Will he be back in time for Christmas?" asked Thomas.
"If all goes well, yes."
"You know, I kind of want to spend Christmas here."
"It'd be one of the few times that we don't celebrate it at Ffarquhar," remarked the Driver.
"That's the thing. I do miss Percy, Toby, Daisy, and especially Annie and Clarabel. But if weren't for Edward, I wouldn't even have my own branch line. And, I haven't spent Christmas with him in an even longer time."
Over at the Works, things were looking up for Edward.
"The workmen say you passed all the tests," said Victor.
"Indeed it is. Now, we just have to give you a fresh coat of paint."
"Yes!" put in Kevin. "It's our Christmas gift to you. I'll go fetch the paint!"
"Not yet," reminded Victor.
"Oh right. First the workmen have to remove your old coat of paint."
"Exactly. And at the moment, we have Wilfred awaiting some new tubes, and Oliver in for a check-up."
"I would like to get back before Christmas," said Edward.
"I understand. But don't worry, you'll be ready by then."
Just then, Molly arrived.
"Hullo my friend. What can I do for you?"
"Well, I brought coal trucks and I do need more sand."
"No problem. Kevin, go get the sand!"
"On it boss!"
"He'll be back although I would stand back in case he drops it."
"Some of us have learned that the hard way," chuckled a workman.
Kevin came back and dropped the pallet of sand-bags onto the ground.
"Whoa. I think that made an echo," said Kevin.
"Yeah, you really need to lower things slower," replied Victor.
"At least none of the sand spilled."
"Anyways, how are you doing Edward?" asked Molly.
"I'm fine. Just a new coat of paint and I'll be back. How is everyone back at my Branch Line."
"From what I've heard, everything is running smoothly. The Twins are in order, and I don't know if you heard, they got the fright of their life a couple months ago."
"Yes I heard!"
"Everyone is looking forward to seeing you again."
"I'll be back in time for Christmas."
"That's great to hear. It's nice to celebrate Christmas with your closest friends. Do you think Thomas will stick around?"
"I don't know. He usually resides at Ffarquhar."
"But you two used to celebrate together."
"Indeed," remembered Edward, "way back when we first arrived. We had both arrived on Sodor, unexpectadely perhaps, but we became firm friends."
"We have to go now," called Molly's Driver.
"I'll tell you another time," said Edward.
"Okay. See you later!" called Molly, and she puffed away.
Molly continued along the line making her usual deliveries of coal. Presently, she stopped at Edward's station. Thomas was at the platform.
"Thanks for bringing the coal," said Thomas. "It's going to get pretty chilly."
"Lucky for you, no snow," replied Molly.
"So have you any plans for Christmas?"
"Now that you ask, its a bit difficult this year. In the past, I've always been at Ffarquhar. But with Edward returning, I just don't know."
"You used to spend Christmas with him."
"Back when we first arrived. I'll never forget our first Christmas. The railway had just been finished and we were ready for our new life. What's funny is we both didn't exactly know how we ended up on Sodor." Thomas chuckled, remembering. "He had a lot more experience than me and I learned a great deal from him."
"I think your friends at Ffarquhar would understand if you wanted to spend Christmas here."
"Do you really think so?"
"Well. I'll think about it. I've still time before Edward returns."
"All right then. I'm off."
Molly steamed away. She was soon at the Junction where Percy was waiting.
"Hullo Molly. Nice day isn't it."
"Indeed. Not too cold."
"Yeah. How is your day so far?"
"Very good. I saw Edward at the Works."
"Oh, is he almost ready to return?"
"Yes. He's going to be back before Christmas."
"That's great to hear. Then that means Thomas can come back. A lot has happened since he left."
"So I've heard," grinned Molly. "The thing is that because Thomas is on Edward's line, it might make sense for him to spend Christmas over there."
"Edward has always been a very good friend to Thomas. They used to celebrate Christmas together."
"So you think Thomas will spend Christmas over there?"
"He hasn't decided yet."
Percy didn't say anything.
Molly saw Percy was a bit upset.
"Look, if Thomas chooses to Christmas with Edward, that doesn't mean you're not his friend anymore. Thomas looks up to Edward and respects him."
"So do I," peeped Percy, quietly.
"Thomas attributes getting his branch line largely to what Edward taught him."
"And Edward taught me a great deal when I first arrived."
Percy thought about it for a moment. "I won't be mad if he decides to spend Christmas over there. I understand. But I still wish we could spend it together. Along with Toby and Daisy too."
"Well, why don't you join him at Edward's station," suggested Molly. "You could have them start the party then join them."
"That's a great idea! I just hope everything works out."
"It'll be great."
"In the meantime, don't tell Thomas."
Molly puffed away.
The following week, Molly came into the Works. It was now only two days before Christmas.
"Hullo Molly," said Edward. "What brings you here?"
"I wanted to tell you something."
Molly told Edward about the Christmas party.
"That sounds lovely. And it'll be great to have Percy, Toby and Daisy too."
"I'm glad you're all right with that."
Later, Molly spoke to Thomas.
"I've decided I want to spend Christmas here. But I'm not sure if the others will like that."
"Thomas, it will be fine," comforted Molly. "You've been friends with them for a long time now. Even after the coal incident, you made up and remained firm friends with Percy."
"Do you really think they'll be okay with that?"
"Of course. In fact, you are good friends with them that they would like you to spend it with someone who you look up to."
"Thanks Molly. That helps."
The two engines went back to work.
The following day was Christmas Eve and everyone was busy. Finally, after a long day of work, everyone headed home to spend Christmas with their friends and family.
Molly was heading to Vicarstown. She stopped at the Works to take on water and saw Edward waiting.
"Good evening Edward. You look great. Nice to see you out and about again."
"Thanks Molly. Heading to Vicarstown, I presume."
"Yeah, it's always a blast with Dodger and David."
"Merry Christmas Molly."
"Mery Christmas Edward! And tell Thomas, Percy and everyone I wish them a happy Christmas!"
Molly steamed away.
Soon, it was time for Edward to go. He was soon puffing down the line with green signal lights as he passed. He descended the hill and was soon at the station but found everything dark.
The lights came on and then were all his friends.
"Merry Christmas! Welcome home!" everyone cheered.
"Thanks everyone! It is great to see you guys again."
"Yeah," said Bill.
"You at least let us play one trick a month," added Ben.
"Your Christmas gift to all of us is no tricks," chuckled BoCo.
"I reckon you missed those two," said Thomas to Edward.
"Definitely," replied Edward. "Thanks for taking care of my Branch Line, Thomas."
"It was no problem at all."
"Let's start the party already," groaned Bill.
"I don't know why make such a fuss, it's not like you can move your chassis around or anything," teased Ben.
"True. But I do like music. Come on, Carol of the Bells!"
"I suppose so," grinned Edward.
Everyone sang, people ate, and the engines talked.
"I'm glad you spend Christmas here," smiled Edward. "And once again, I appreciate you staying here and looking after my line."
"It is worth repeating. I'm just returning the favour," replied Thomas. "And whilst it is great to be here, I do feel something else is missing . . ."
"I know the engines on your branch are also very close to you."
"Yes . . ."
Just then, they heard some whistles and horns.
"Is it carollers?" wondered Ben.
"Don't be silly. They would still be at the hospital right now."
"I recognise those sounds," said Thomas.
It was Toby, Percy, Daisy and Mavis.
"You guys came here?"
"Yes indeed," said Daisy.
"Well come on in," said Edward.
Percy spoke to Thomas.
"Look, I realised that you look up to Edward. And so do I, so I don't mind that you chose to spend it here."
"Thanks Percy. But having all of you here is even better. Merry Christmas everyone!"
Everyone had a wonderful time. The engines talked and laughed till slowly, their crews left for the night.
Late into the night, everyone fell asleep knowing that it had been Christmas well spent.
- Bill and Ben
- Toby (does not speak)
- Oliver (does not speak)
- Wilfred (does not speak)
- Mavis (does not speak)
- Annie and Clarabel (do not speak)
- Dodger (mentioned)
- David (mentioned)
- The events of The Monster of Brendam are mentioned by Molly.
- This episode concludes an arc of episodes beginning with Saving Edward, The Trouble with the Enthusiasts, and The Monster of Brendam. The Writer has mentioned that this was not originally the case, but some comments and thinking led him to make this take place parallel to the events of Thomas and the Twins. As such, these stories take place around 1987-88.
- Originally, the Writer had thought of a re-write of series seven episode, Edward's Brass Band to bring Edward home. It was never written out although it would have been Christmas themed. Eventually, the idea for this episode surfaced and the Edward's Brass Band re-write was shelved. Another reason is that the Writer quite likes Edward's Brass Band. However, Edward's Brass Band did eventually re-surface and was released in the second volume.