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By Tony Clare

GENRE: Drama

A concerned mother turns to her sister for help with her worsening financial situation, but will the solution she offers do more harm than good?


BAGS (40's) sifts through piles of clothing when her phone rings. It's her (unheard) sister who asks if she has any part time work for her Son CHARLIE (18). Bags tell her she has a few hours work for him and the next day they set about distributing stolen charity bags and collecting them when they're filled. The following day they sell their quarry at car boot sales.

CHARLIE struggles with the guilt of what they are doing and questions his Aunt about how she deals with it. She explodes into a tirade about the situation she has found herself in and tells him he should not feel any guilt "and in any case, the Charities only provide 20% of what they take", she tells him. Somewhat reassured, Charlie continues buoyed by his ability to provide some money for his Mum, and, from his new-found sense of worth in the "work" he is doing. But his moral compass has not fully re-dialed and he struggles with the guilt.

The following day, he follows his aunt after work and to his surprise sees her go to a soup kitchen where she serves soup and hands out some of the items she has put aside for the people there - a coat for one person, a paperback book for another...

CHARLIE is furious he wasn't offered this opportunity to give something back and he storms in. He puts on an apron and serves soup. He watches his Aunt as she serves, recognising a punter she has put a coat aside for and then it hits him; a care for your class. He catches her eye as the last few bowls are served and a smile passes between them, but the tears aren't far behind as he ponders how it ever came to this.

Nathaniel Baker

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