FFfAW 4-8-2015 – The Letter

Oddly enough, a letter came to Fanny Williams fifty years after it was sent. The letter was from her husband Buddy, when he was in the war in Vietnam.

June 11, 1965

Da Nang, Vietnam

Battalion 22410

My Dearest Fanny,

They are moving our regiment back to the north where there is heavy fighting. I don't know when I will be able to write to you again, but I wanted to tell you how much I love you and miss you and dream of us being together again. I will be coming home in 5 1/2 months darling, I promise. I'm coming home to you.

With All My Love, Buddy

Buddy came home in a pine box on September 25, 1965.

Fanny wiped away the tears, folded the letter and put it in the pocket of her apron. She couldn't help but wonder,

“Would it have made any difference if I had received this letter on time? Would that have changed fate or tamed that horrible monster they call, war?”

(172 words)

Thank you to Dawn M. Miller for the photo prompt today.

This is my submission for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers week of April 8, 2015. This challenge gives us a photo prompt and 100-150 words (give or take 25) to write a story based on the photo.

Everyone is invited to participate in this challenge. If you are interested, click HERE.


71 thoughts on “FFfAW 4-8-2015 – The Letter

  1. Wow! Fifty years is a very long time, but people can not help thinking …what if, etc. You move on, but never get over the loss. You feel her sadness and despair in this story. Well done Joy!

  2. Great story imagine getting that letter 50 yrs later. Personally, I think it meant more to her now then 50 yrs ago like a memory coming alive after all this time, perhaps at just the right time.

  3. so bittersweet. I think a letter like that would be such a gift after I got over being mad for it being 50yrs late!! But I always believe things happen just as they are meant to happen.

  4. What a beautiful story! It’s so heartbreaking that many cases like these exist and you’ve captured every moment of it very well. I feel for her loss and we will always wonder what difference a second, a moment, or in her case a letter would’ve made. Those what if’s are always the ones that eat us up. Great story, loved it! πŸ™‚

  5. Nicely done! I see that there are so many of these photo fiction challenges going on, i wish i could be a part of all these but the experiments take a lot of my time! I have a small suggestion:
    “Buddy came home……..” After this sentence, I’d have loved to read “Just as he promised.”

  6. So sad she didn’t get the letter sooner. Such a long time to wait. The letter was so lovely and then the harsh reality of the pine box made me stop and refocus.

    • Thank you so much Rachel for reading and commenting. Fifty years was a long time, and I have heard of this actually happening. (Not necessarily from a dead loved one). Sadly, that harsh reality happens too often when there are wars. Again, thank you!!

    • Thank you for your kind comment! Yes, it is sad for her to have all those memories come back along with the letter. But the letter is also a blessing because she has something special for her dead husband that was meant only for her.

  7. Good story, PJ. Poor Fanny. Maybe receiving the letter will give her some comfort once she realises that receiving it 50 years earlier wouldn’t have changed anything at all.. πŸ™‚

    • That’s so true – it would not have changed anything. Getting the letter 50 years later should be a great comfort to her. I was so happy to see that you submitted a story for FFfAW and I can’t wait to get into InLinkz and read it!

  8. A very sad story, PJ. I’ve heard of other incidents of this happening and it must be so heartrending for those involved. I don’t think anything will ever stop the ‘monster they call war’. You told the story really well, and I enjoyed reading it. πŸ™‚

  9. This is a beautiful piece, PJ. It shows what so many of us went through during those Viet Nam years – and before those years and even now. It seems “that horrible monster they call, war” isn’t easily won over.

    • Thank you so much Ellespeth. I’m glad you understand where I’m coming from. Thank you for the sweet comment about my post. I wonder if war will ever stop. Someone said it wouldn’t. I believe someday it will because everyone will be killed off. So sad. 😦

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