REPORTS from across the pond suggest a new spectral trend could be on its way to our shores. Not content with leaving romantic partners high and dry, the young folk have taken to “ghosting” their employers – that is, spiriting themselves away without so much as a cheerio.

According to The Washington Post, the rude health of the US labour market means loyalty has gone out of the window, and Scrooge-like bosses can no longer be sure their beleaguered workers will give notice, submit to an exit interview or even return their calls.

Naturally the response to this has been for companies to improve their pay, terms and conditions, listen to worker feedback and engage with trade unions.

Just kidding! They’ve instead taken to hiring two people for every role, to be on the safe side.

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon calls Theresa May a ‘lame duck leader’ after confidence vote

Of course, not everyone has the luxury of jumping before they are pushed, as Theresa May was pointedly reminded on Wednesday. She might have won the no-confidence vote, but minutes after the result was announced some colleagues were still baying for blood. With friends like these, who needs a visit from the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future?

As she fell into a slumber of relief after her latest stint at the Downing Street podium, she may have been quite comforted to cast her mind back to the good old days of Christmas 2016.

With Article 50 not yet triggered, the Prime Minister was focused on simpler matters, like selling arms to Saudi Arabia and reassuring everyone that she would be quite willing to kill 100,000 innocent civilians in a nuclear strike.

But who’s that lurking in the shadows of her consciousness?

Why, it’s a puppet version of her old chum David Cameron, sitting on a sun lounger with his trotters up. I say sitting, but on close inspection he’s actually bound to it by paper chains made out of Ukip campaign posters. This gives the very unsettling impression that migrants are queuing all the way up his arms.

“It’s not too late for you!” he calls out to May. “You can escape my fate! You will be visited by three spirits, the first of which will inconveniently appear five minutes before a crucial episode of The Apprentice is due to be broadcast!”

Startled awake, our Prime Minister leaps out of bed, slips on her furry leopard-print slippers and hurries downstairs to check the door of No 10 is locked. Not a creature is stirring, not even Larry.

“Just a dream,” she tells herself, turning back towards bed. But then she hears the door knocker clink – softly at first, then a little louder. “Hello?” she calls. “Who’s there?” A pause, then the sound of the letterbox creaking open, and then ... “STOP BREXTI!”

Rattled, the PM stumbles backwards and falls awkwardly to the ground. When she wakes, she’s in a barren, frosty field, and there’s a ghost child peering down at her. “Do you remember this place, Theresa?”

“Spirit, what’s happening? Where are we? Why have you brought me here?”

The National:

“Remember the wheat, Theresa? Remember the fun we used to have? Remember when the naughtiest thing you’d ever done didn’t involve dropping bombs, or ejecting migrants, or appoint a racist as Foreign Secretary?”

“I do remember. I remember making just the one farmer angry, rather than lots of them all over the country. Those were simpler times. It’s not as much fun any more.”

A small army of undead farmers suddenly materialises in the distance, staggering towards the Tory leader.

Show me no more, spirit!” she cries, and with a thump falls back into bed.

“Definitely just a dream,” she mutters, kicking off her frosty slippers and burrowing into the covers.

The next morning May wakes to a breakfast of mince pies, buck’s fizz and headlines declaring she will definitely be the leader who guides the UK through Brexit. She flicks through the papers – skimming past a story about a disabled young frog, I mean boy, visiting a food bank as his family await their Universal Credit payment – then shimmies down the stairs to a song from the Love Actually soundtrack.

Passport in hand, she confidently opens the door of No 10 and heads off towards Brussels with her overnight bag.

But who’s this sitting in the driver’s seat of her ministerial car? A terrifying wraith-like figure without a face, twiddling the knobs on the radio. A Conservative MP is talking to Jeremy Vine about a dead woman walking, a “zombie Prime Minister”.

To May’s alarm it seems they aren’t going to the airport at all, but instead to a nearby graveyard, which is inexplicably shrouded in fog. The car stops, and the figure goes to open May’s door.

Awkwardly, it is locked from the inside. The ghoul tries again. And again. “Damn and blast!” he says, in an exceedingly posh voice. May opens it from the inside.

“Jacob? Is that you?”

“Um, no, no, I am the ghost of Christmases yet to come!”

“Jacob, I can see your glasses glinting under that hood.”

The figure raises one arm and points towards a tombstone.

Ignoring him, May says: “Is that a smoke machine in the bushes? Isn’t this all a bit excessive?”

The figure stamps his foot, mutters to himself and stalks off furiously.

“The problem with this job,” says May to herself, “is that I’m surrounded by Muppets.”