How She Missed Him – a Short Story by Caryn Warner

 

We are so pleased to bring you this delightful story. It is a first attempt from CARYN WARNER who tells us that as a retired nurse she has written non-fiction all her working life, in the form of reports, medical notes and her studies, but this is the first time she has attempted a short story. We are impressed. We hope you will be too…

 

image by cocoparisienne at Pixabay

 

She stood at the kitchen sink washing up the dishes. She looked at her garden – the weeds were getting the better of her now. Living alone made it difficult to keep up with all the jobs that needed doing. The list of jobs was never-ending. No sooner was one job done than another two appeared.  Her mind was on the phone call she had received from Rhys. She had not heard from him for a long while – thought he’d forgotten all about her in fact. Then out of the blue, with no warning, he had phoned.

“Can I come and see you? I’ve missed you,” he said. She had agreed straight away as she had missed him too.

She took a fresh cup of tea into the lounge and thought about the 25 years she had known Rhys: his captivating smile and the way he had won her over. “I will never leave you,” he’d told her, but of course he had left. Three years ago. The longest three years of her life.

She had missed him dreadfully.

“I can’t stay in Pembrokeshire,” he had told her. “I need to be where things are happening. It’s killing me staying here. I’ve no job and living in Goodwick is deadly boring.”

She hadn’t been able to believe what he had said. She had pleaded with him, reminding him of how much he loved it here. The beautiful beaches and coastal walks, friends, family; after all, he had grown up here, gone to school here.

“Your life is here,” she had told him. “I’m here.”

But she hadn’t been able to persuade him to stay. His mind was made up to leave.

”I’m sorry,” he had said. “It’s not you, it’s me. I can’t live here any longer.”

Over the course of the evening her mind kept returning to him. How much she loved him still. How with his first wage he had taken her out for a meal. A lovely fish and chip supper at Letterston.

She remembered how proud she was to be seen with him. He looked so smart and she had enjoyed him spoiling her.

Her mind went back to the last time he had been here for her birthday. He had got her some beautiful Welsh daffodils, her favourite flowers. She shut her eyes and could almost smell their scent.

She smiled to herself when she thought of him getting a motorcycle. His mother had been against it worrying about how safe they were and what might happen, but he had got her a helmet and she had got on the back holding on tight as he raced around the roads. She remembered that feeling now, how exhilarating it was, how he made her feel special and loved.

That night she made plans. The house needed cleaning. The garden needed work. She would cook all his favourite dishes. How long was he here for? Was it a visit or was he back for good? She needed to go shopping. Christmas wasn’t long away and she wasn’t even planning on getting a tree. I need to get the decorations out she thought and put up a tree.

Over the next few days she cleaned and cooked. She got the Christmas things out and decorated the tree. She couldn’t help but think how much Rhys used to  enjoy helping her decorate the tree and how much they had both laughed and danced to the Christmas music that they played. She found herself humming along to the same tunes and smiling as she reminisced over the past.

Again and again she thought about the past, all the happy memories that she had with Rhys. She hoped that he would stay and settle in Pembrokeshire again.

At last the day had come. She was as nervous as could be but she could do no more to make him feel welcome again in her life.

The bell rang. She checked her appearance in the mirror again and answered the door.

Rhys stood there as handsome as ever, but what was this? He was not alone. A tall, slim girl was with him clutching his arm. She looked happy and was obviously very attached to Rhys.

She invited them in unsure how to proceed. Rhys spoke: “This is Susie. I’m going to marry her and I wanted you to be the first to know.”

She couldn’t keep quiet any longer. “I thought you might be moving back here,” she said.

Rhys replied: “But, Gran, I am moving back here. Susie is a local girl and we’ve both had enough of city life and want to move back to Pembrokeshire to live and raise a family.”

She smiled. Her grandson was back where he should be and here to stay. What more could she ask for?

Not only was her grandson back but there was a wedding to plan and possibly great grandchildren in the future.

Life was looking up!

 

Caryn has  lived in Goodwick for seven years with her granddaughter who goes to the local school. She  worked as a nurse in a nursing home, then in Withybush Hospital. She is now semi-retired and has just taken up writing. 

Kitty Parsons

Kitty has forgotten how long she has been here now but she loves Pembrokeshire for its beauty and it's people. She spends her time searching out stories for pembrokeshire.online, swimming in the sea , drawing and painting as Snorkelfish and eating cake. She says "Pembrokeshire.online has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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