April A-Z blogging challenge 2012
O is for the fifteenth of 26 short stories - 250 words or fewer - about the life and times of a fictional character called Alice.
In October 1957 Alice’s first child was born. When Ivy visited her in hospital she gazed at the pleated face of her grandson. He yawned and opened his fathomless navy blue eyes.
‘Have you thought of any names?’ Ivy asked.
‘Norman and I decided on Edward John,’ said Alice. Her mother blinked back tears and looked down at the baby.
‘He has a look of Edward about him,’ she said softly as the baby grasped her finger.
As Edward John grew into a sturdy toddler his resemblance to his late uncle intensified. Even Norman’s parents, who had only ever seen photographs of Edward as a young man, remarked on the likeness.
Daniel’s perpetual gloom lifted whenever he saw his nephew. The lines of pain scored on his face softened and Ruth, watching him, glimpsed a shadow of the young man she had married. Not for the first time she wondered if her marriage would have been happier if there had been children. The little boy was quieter when he was with Daniel, as though he sensed an unquiet soul.
For Ivy, he was her lost son returned. His temperament was exactly that of Edward’s. He was a mischievous, loving child, often in scrapes and full of smiles. His infectious giggle made everybody laugh, particularly Ivy, whose face lit up every time she saw him. The years of sorrow dropped away and she became again the spirited woman she had been before the war.