Stella and Vic

February 8th, 1997:

The phone rang and Caroline ran to answer it.

"Ms. Duffy?"

"Yes?"

"I am calling to inform you that Stella Dawson passed away early this morning."

"I'm sorry to hear that, but why are you calling to tell me?"

"You are mentioned in her will."

February 9th, 1997:

Caroline walked into the attorney's office and was surprised to see that only one other person was there. She understood when the will simply stated: "To Caroline Duffy I leave my husband's pocket watch and my diary. Everything else goes to the Johnson Fund for Young Writers."

Back at her apartment Caroline opened the diary and started to read:

April 15th, 1944:

I started work today and I'll be working with the most horrible man, his name is Vic Stansky and I absolutely cannot stand him.

August 21st, 1944:

Vic looked at me across the desk this morning and asked me, "You wanna do it?" Well what could I say? I agreed, and the next thing you know, on the desk. I think… I think I'm falling in love with him.

April 15th, 1946:

Vic proposed to me today! Me, plain ol' Stella Dawson with the bow in her hair. I couldn't think straight, I told him I'd think about it. I'll have to do something great to make up for it. I know, I'll get a pocket watch engraved with my answer.

April 19th, 1946:

I couldn't do it, I wrapped up the watch and put it in that sticky drawer in the desk. I'll retrieve it when I'm ready.

October 10th, 1946:

I got married today. A part of me hoped that Vic would come running into the church and object, but he stayed away. I have sold the desk. It's over between us, no more co-writing, no more loving, and no more booty calls.

January 11th, 1995:

My husband died. Ah well, all he really did was keep me from freezing in the winter and from going broke. Vic's single again, for practically the thousandth time, perhaps I'll look him up.

June 1st, 1955:

Vic and I eloped today. The only people who would object are long dead. I feel like such a fool for waiting so long, if only I had told him sooner, we could have had children and a house somewhere. At least we will get to spend what's left of our lives making up for lost time.

February 1st, 1996:

A lovely couple came by today, Caroline and Richard they said their names were. Apparently, she had bought the desk and found the watch inside. The two of them insist that they are just friends but they remind me so much of Vic and I at their ages. I expect someday they will realize they are in love. I just hope she doesn't wait as long as I did. We convinced them to let us borrow the desk and let me tell you, it's as good as ever.

The next entry was so blurred with tears that Caroline could barely make it out.

October 28th, 1996:

Vic died this morning. Of a heart attack of all things. Isn't that just like him? To go suddenly and not give me a chance to prepare myself. I loved that idiot! I can't even say how much I did. Perhaps the words that dear girl, Caroline, said were right "Sincere Amour" or something like that? Well whatever it was I only wish I'd had more time with him. His last words to me were "I love you Stella." Oh Vic.

February 7th, 1997:

I know the end is coming. I'll be with my darling Vic soon. I am not afraid, as long as I will see Vic again. Caroline honey, I am leaving you this book and the watch in the hopes that you will not make the same mistakes I did, being so foolish cost me almost a lifetime of happiness. Take care of yourself and Richard my dear, and things will be all right. I know you love him the way I loved my beloved husband Vic. Your friend—Stella Dawson.