No copyright infringement intended. The author neither profits nor claims any rights to the character's names or other proprietary property.
I don't clearly remember the journey to Aunt Esme's new house. Nor do I really remember the illness that brought me there. But I will, as certain as snow in the mountains, remember the events of the fall after I recovered. They were equal parts horrible and wonderful and led to where I am now.
The early new year of 1923 I was twenty-two years old, almost twenty-three, a veteran of the Great War, a law student and the son of loving parents. Against my mother's wishes I had enlisted in the army five days after my eighteenth birthday. My father, behind my mother's back, was proud but concerned. They both worried needlessly. My war effort was well away from any action. I think my father's influence was in play as I was stationed in England and assigned to a quartermaster. I spent my war counting inventory and shipping much needed supplies to the fighting men. My tour of duty was only four and a half months.
At first I was sorely disappointed but was taken down a notch by a heavily scarred corporal who described in vivid detail just how lucky I was. I was also set to work with several of the fund and supply raising efforts. They told me they needed a fresh face to encourage those left behind to work harder to support the troops. I was a reminder of the boys who were lost yet, whole and handsome in my pristine uniform. I charmed rich widows and danced with sobbing socialites in an effort to help fund the war. I didn't mind this work as much. I had long been the object of female curiosity and admiration although I hadn't fallen prey to any of them yet. My mind was on more important things like the war rather than losing my senses over a paramour. The girls at home were nice but none of them had caught my eye.
But I digress.
When the armistice was signed I wasn't needed anymore. I got my ship assignment and was home by Christmas. I started law school at Loyola with a giant class of returning soldiers. I graduated within the top ten percent of the class, which had greatly diminished over the three year course. I was in the process of securing a judicial clerkship when I fell ill. It was horrible and I prayed for death to take me. Typhoid fever. Coughing, bowel flux, vomiting, high fever and pain; lots and lots of pain. After over a month of illness, I was a shadow of my former self. I had never been a man of great physical stature. I was tall but always slim. My illness left me dangerously thin to the point of emaciation. It was decided by my parents and doctors that a Chicago summer with its high heats and threats of drought would be very detrimental. Also that my health would not be improved enough by winter to survive that season either. Therefore, while still suffering the effects of sickness but on the mend and accompanied by a newly graduated Doctor and matron nurse, I was sent to stay with my Aunt Esme, my mother's sister, to a lovely small New England town to recover.
To protect the families, the townsfolk and everyone else involved, I won't tell you exactly where I stayed. Imagine quaint, picturesque but rugged with charm. Clapboard houses and maple trees should be brought to mind.
The student doctor I don't remember, not either the train or saying goodbye to my parents. I don't remember arriving and being greeted by my Aunt and Uncle. I do, however, have a few memories of the Matron. Or rather, I have memories of a certain part of her anatomy. She had the most voluminous breasts I had ever seen. I recall only one conversation with her. She had been leaning over me, wiping my brow with her tremendous breasts in my field of vision. In actuality, there were my sole focus that afternoon. She had turned to re-moisten the cloth and noticed where my eyes were drawn to and she laughed. She then looked down the length of my body and lean down to whisper in my ear.
"If you can pitch a tent like that, my boy, I know you're on the mend. And I pity the poor virgin you deflower with that tool."
Then, as she pulled back, she winked at me. I had never encountered a woman so crass before. The rest of the trip was a blur and that was my only outstanding recollection, mortifying as it is. My body may have kept me in an unconscious state to prevent further stimulation. It had been a long time since my little soldier had saluted.
My next memory was of my aunt Esme tending to me. I have brief glimpses of her kind face hovering over me, of warm washcloths and spoonfuls of broth. As sick as I was, I remember the feeling of love she gave me while she took care of me. She was a naturally nurturing person. She volunteered as a nursing aide during the war to help care for the returning wounded. When a great explosion in nearby Halifax devastated the city, she spent days helping to organize the relief effort. She also helped tend the orphans left by the Spanish Flu when it ravished the country. They were living in Boston then, so it was before they moved further north to the small town in which they now lived. The town in which I came to stay during my convalescence and subsequently became embroiled in its mystery. The town I came to love and hate all at the same time. The town that gave me her.
AN: I know I need to finish Uncredited but this came to me and would not leave. The chapters are short but the story will update every other day.
Writtenbyabdex has a gorgeous story called Lost Loves of Meadow Lane. It is is progress and well worth the wait between chapters. She also had lots of other stories to read. And she is a sweetheart who is very giving of her time and knowledge.
IpsitaC77 read this before it posted. For her, for beachomberlc, for Lunabev, and for my other friends, I thank you.
This story has not been beta'ed so there will be mistakes. I'm human therefore I make plenty mistakes. Please be kind if you feel you have to point them out. I use Canadian spelling and phrases. I am taking poetic license with Edward's legal education, go with it.
Thank you for reading.