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Good Moral Stories
The Gift of the Magi Part 3

The Gift of the Magi Part 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

 

Jim was never late coming home from work. Della held the silver chain in her hand and sat near the door. Then she heard his footsteps and she turned white for just a minute.
She had a way of saying a little silent prayer about the simplest everyday things, and now she whispered, "Please God, make him think I am still pretty."

The door opened and Jim stepped in. He looked thin and very serious. Poor man, he was only twenty-two and he had to care for a wife. He needed a new coat and gloves to keep his hands warm.

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Jim stopped inside the door and froze. His eyes were fixed upon Della. There was an expression in them that she could not read and it frightened her. It was not anger, nor surprise, nor fear, nor any of the feelings that she had been prepared for. He simply looked at her with a strange expression on his face. Della went to him.

"Jim, my love," she cried,
"Do not look at me that way. I had my hair cut and sold because I could not have lived through Christmas without giving you a gift. My hair will grow out again. I just had to do it. My hair grows very fast. Say ‘Merry Christmas! Jim, and let us be happy. You do not know what a nice and beautiful gift I have for you."
"You cut off your hair?" asked Jim slowly, as if he had not processed the information even after his mind had worked very hard to understand what had happened.
"Cut it off and sold it," said Della.
"Do you not like me just as well? I am the same person without my hair, right?”
Jim looked around the room as if he were looking for something.
"You said that your hair is gone?" he asked.
"You need not look for it," said Della.

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"It is sold, I tell you - sold and gone too. It is Christmas Eve, boy. Be good to me for it was cut for you. Maybe the hairs of my head were numbered," she went on with sudden serious sweetness,
"but nobody could ever count my love for you. Shall I put the meat on, Jim?"
Jim seemed to awake from his daze quickly and put his arms around Della. Then he took a package from his coat and threw it on the table.
"Do not make any mistake about me, Dell," he said.
"I do not think there is any haircut that could make me like my girl any less. But if you will open that package you may see why you had me frightened at first."

The Gift of the Magi Part 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

 

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