Tuesday, 10 April 2012

April A-Z blogging challenge 2012 I is for Ivy

The ninth of 26 short stories – 250 words or fewer - about Alice’s life and times is about Ivy.

I is for Ivy

Alice’s mother Ivy had withstood the privations of war and shown immense strength when news came of Edward’s loss and Charles’ death. She knew Edward was dead but a part of her clung to the hope that he would return one day. Miracles sometimes happened. In her bleaker moments she wondered at the wisdom of such hope. Daniel had returned maimed in body and spirit. He had learnt to walk on artificial legs but his mind remained caught in the horrors of war.

When Daniel was discharged from hospital he and Ruth moved into a small house nearby. Ivy protested that he should come home to his family where everyone could look after him but Ruth insisted he needed peace and quiet. Ivy had not argued but she and Ruth were no longer as close as they had been. 

Alice knew Ruth was right. Her mother hovered over Daniel and made him uneasy. Her artificial brightness and attempts to jolly him along irritated him. Ruth’s quieter manner soothed him. Alice learnt from Ruth and moderated her behaviour when she visited. She wished her mother would do likewise. She couldn’t bear the sadness in Ivy’s eyes when Daniel brushed her away. She hated the despair etching lines ever deeper on Ruth’s face. Most of all she couldn’t accept that Daniel was broken beyond repair.

In 1950 Alice introduced her boyfriend to her family. Norman had seen three years’ action in the war. Ivy was elated.  Meeting Norman might help Daniel.


  1. It must be hard for a mother to step back and let her son cope on his own after something so horrible. :(

  2. Oh, interesting and intriguing. I do hope meeting Norman helps Daniel!

  3. Such difficult times for people to cope with and nobody knew how to help the wounded or indeed their families.

  4. This really came to life for me. I've missed too many, though. Need to do a spot of catching up.

  5. My heart is just breaking for this brave young man who probably felt like his life was to all accounts, over.

  6. Hmmm, I am beginning to think that perhaps Edward WILL be coming home. He is 'lost' and not 'dead.' I hope so!

  7. How interesting. War does things to people that you don't expect.

  8. lovely ivy
    cool post

    do check out my letters at GAC a-z

  9. How sad. I hope Daniel will be okay.

  10. Great way to do the A-Z! Looking forward to
    reading some more :-)
    thanks for visiting my blog LindaK

  11. sounds like an interesting story! i wonder what happens next...
    Happy A-Zing!

  12. A heart tendering tale Janice, very well told. You write a wonderful story that keeps me focused from beginning to end.

  13. I'm loving this web you're weaving around Alice.

    ---Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

    Twitter: @AprilA2Z

  14. Fun challenge--I can't wait for the next installment brought by the Letter J.

  15. I was only going to read a couple of chapters tonight but you have hooked me, I had to keep reading.

  16. When I was in the hospital I found visitors to be a distraction. It's nice of people to want to assist, but fawning all over me actually exacerbates my woes. I can therefore easily identify with your character.

  17. Poor Daniel. Poor Ruth and poor Ivy. Your piece shows so well that war has no winners.


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