Ebenezer Scrooge's younger sister, Fan, and his one true love, Belle, both appear in stave 2, "The First of the Three Sprits," of Charles Dickens's classic novella A Christmas Carol.
Fan appears early in stave 2, to rescue young Ebenezer from the cold, forbidding, and desolate boarding school where he was sent by his father, who, according to Fan, "is so much kinder than he used to be, that home’s like Heaven!" The reader can only imagine what young Ebenezer's home life was like and what sort of family discord ruled the home that caused his father to send him off to boarding school.
Fan finds Ebenezer sitting alone at a desk near a feeble fire in a dark, dirty, deserted classroom. She bursts into the room, throws her arms around his neck, kisses him repeatedly, and shouts, "I have come to bring you home, dear brother!"
Ebenezer can hardly believe it, but Fan reassures him. "Home, for ever and ever," she says, clapping her hands and laughing, "and are never to come back here; but first, we're to be together all the Christmas long, and have the merriest time in all the world."
Dickens's own older sister, Frances Elizabeth Dickens, was called "Fanny." To keep even more of the characters in A Christmas Carol in the Dickens family, Charles Dickens's youngest brother was called "Tiny Fred"—Scrooge's nephew is named Fred—and Fanny's disabled, invalid son, Henry, is believed to be the inspiration for Tiny Tim.
Belle appears in stave 2 shortly following the boisterous Christmas Eve party given by kindly, jovial Mr. Fezziwig, to whom young Ebenezer was apprenticed as a young man. After the party, the Ghost of Christmas Present leads Scrooge into the open air, where he sees himself as a young man—this time with a look of care and avarice in his face and "an eager, greedy, restless motion in the eye"—sitting next to "a fair young woman... in whose eyes were tears," which is quite a contrast to the recent festivities in Fezziwig's warehouse.
Belle (whose name doesn't appear in the scene and isn't spoken by Scrooge) is meeting with Ebenezer to tell him that she's decided to end their engagement. "Another idol has displaced me," she says. "A golden one."
Ebenezer tries to explain that the world has made him the way he is. He says, "There is nothing on which it is so hard as poverty," and this is why he's devoted himself to making sure that he'll never be poor again, so the world never takes advantage of him.
Belle responds that Ebenezer has taken his fear of the world to extremes and that now, the only thing he truly cares about is money. She reminds him, "Our contract is an old one. It was made when we were both poor and content to be so," but she says that he's changed so much since then that he's like another man. For these reasons, she releases him from his promise to marry her, "With a full heart, for the love of him you once were."
"May you be happy in the life you have chosen," Belle says, and she leaves him sitting alone, in much the same way that Fan found him, although older now, sitting alone and forlorn in the boarding-school classroom.