Wednesday, 11 April 2012

April A-Z blogging challenge 2012 J is for John


Continuing 26 short stories – 250 words or fewer - about Alice’s life and times, we arrive at J.

John’s job in the police force often involved danger and he had seen more of the dark side of human nature than he felt anyone should have to experience.  His overriding instinct was to protect his family.

When war was declared he felt a dull ache in the pit of his stomach that remained with him throughout its duration. He knew his sons would be called up eventually but when all three enlisted within a few months he knew a mixture of pride and fear.

He watched as worry consumed his wife and extinguished joy. He felt the loss of their sons as keenly as she but held no false hopes for Edward, grieving for him as he did for Charles. Though he would never have confessed it, in his heart he thought it would have been kinder for everyone if Daniel had died too - his torment continued and increased. His bitterness drained the life and energy from Ruth. She maintained a facade of optimism but John glimpsed the despair in her eyes when she thought no-one was looking.

Alice was the only one who had escaped relatively unscathed. She mourned the loss of her brothers and did her best to encourage Daniel, yet was able to move on and anticipate the future. John was delighted when she introduced Norman. It was refreshing to share the company of an optimistic young man who had survived the horrors of war and felt no need to dwell on them.

12 comments:

  1. That dull ache in the pit of his stomach for the duration of the war - that says it all.

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  2. I'm not so sure that anyone who came through a war could come out of it without any residual effect. I'll wait and see about Norman.

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  3. Honesty really shone through in this. Great job!

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  4. You still have me wondering what happened to Edward. :))

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  5. Your blog keeps disappearing from my reader so I have missed this series of posts - now I know they are here I will keep coming back.

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  6. Wars devastate many lives. The loss of even one person in a family is so hard to bear. And poor Daniel. He needs some kind of hope.

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  7. Nice little piece of a story. I'm trying to visit all the A-Z Challenge Blogs this month.

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  8. Yes, it is interesting to think about whether it would have been kinder if Daniel had died. What is his quality of life now? His wife's? What will future bring? People don't generally verbalized these questions though, do they? And I keep wondering why oh why did all three sons enlist?

    I continue to think Edward WILL reappear, even moreso after reading this segment.

    I look forward to learning about Norman.

    You have a page-turner here, Janice. I am hooked.

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  9. Just dropped in from A-Z blogging site. Nice theme you have going here. Thanks for sharing.
    Patricia, Sugar & Spice & All Things ? Nice

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  10. Oh my every Mother's fear and heartache. What tales you are sharing!
    Hugs~

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  11. John sounds like a good man. It is good to see he is happy for Alice and her new beau.

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  12. Hi Janice .. I'm working backwards .. so have a feel of the ahead .. it's a great story ..

    Cheers Hilary

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