Oh my, this one was seriously intense! I don’t think we’ve ever had a week where there was no clear favorite or at least two clear contenders. It could have been anyone at so many points this afternoon. What fantastic entries!
But, as always, there is only one winner. I had to sit on the poll and make sure it cut off properly this week because it was too close not to be cautious. But with all said and done, the winner is:
Here is this incredible woman’s winning entry. Congratulations!
The stones and glass cutting into her knees were the least of her concerns. Sydney held her hands over her ears as if it would block out the words just spoken to her. The tears were instantaneous, they welled in her eyes and began to spill down her cheeks before he finished his sentence.
“I’m sorry, Ma’am, we regret to inform you of your husband’s…”
She knew as soon as she opened the door. A uniformed officer on her door step, a uniformed officer at her home, a uniformed officer-the most feared thing for the war wives to see when they look through the peephole.
Even through her sobs she could hear him, “The incident happened…” she wailed, “friendly fire…” What does that mean? she thought. “Unknown explosive.”
“Unknown?” she muttered.
“Dead,” she sighed.
It didn’t matter anymore.
Nothing mattered anymore.
The worst part was she’d lost Danny long before this moment. She’d lost him when he’d driven away without looking back. She’d lost him when the world became cloaked in fear and he felt he needed to defend his country. Even though she wanted to, even though she knew she should have, she hadn’t been able to stand behind him. He left her. He took his crooked smile and piercing blue eyes and went to war, leaving her alone.
She’d lost him then. Before the incident. Before his death.
As her emotions drained out of her onto the pavement, her tears and snot mixing with the concrete, and the uniformed officer, looking miserable for doing this for the tenth time that day, shifted uncomfortably, Sydney remembered when Danny had come home last Christmas. It wasn’t him. His eyes were empty. And the hardest part of everything, was she remembererd what he was like before. What he was like before the war turned him bitter and took the light from his eyes.
She remember his soft kisses; the way he shook her hand when they first met; the smell of his cologne. And now all she had was memories. And an incident.