This is a true story of the first day or two of a sailors return after the second world war….
The sun came through the window. A new day had begun and it was the first day of Bills life after war.
He rolled a cigarette and struck a match. He climbed out of bed and headed towards the window and peeped through the blind as the sun shone upon him. He looked out at a quiet peaceful scene he was no longer used to.
A young woman with long dark brown hair entered into the room wearing a dress.
Morning Bill said the woman.
Bill: morning Emma
He remained fixed on looking out of the window.
Emma: we can relax now and be happy. This is the first day of the rest of our lives. War is over and we can live in peace.
Smoke hung a little in the air as Bill smoked. He remained almost motionless in the morning sunshine.
Emma looked and smiled.
Emma: how I have missed them bright blue eyes.
Bill: feels strange after everywhere I have been and now I am in this little room in this little house in the north of England.
Emma put some slippers next to the bed and tidied up the side cupboard.
Emma: I am so glad to have my handsome man back. You are alive and well. Which is what cannot be said for most.
Bill: am I still the same man I was before the war? I dont feel the same. War kills everyone in some way.
Emma began making the bed and tucking the duvet under the pillows.
Emma: well I will accept you just as you are. You are my Bill.
Bill continued puffing on his cigarette.
Emma came over and hugged him and he put his arm round her.
Emma: love you
Bill: I love you too my darling.
Emma: now there are two young daughters of yours who you need to be re-aquinted with. They need their father still. They are lucky they still have you. You are blessed.
Bill smiled and hugged her closer.
Within him he was glad to be home but struggled to show it on the surface.
Bill looked at Emma and smiled.
Bill: I am glad to be home again. Glad to be home…with you.
Emma: I really missed you. Now today is the first day of the rest of our lives so lets enjoy being alive and well and being a family again.
Bill nodded and continued to smoke a cigarette while gazing out of the window.
Bill: what will I do with myself now?
Emma looked at him and smiled.
Emma: There are many paths to take for war heroes like you. You are my hero. Whatever happens we will get through it together.
Bill grinned and kept his arm round her and pulled her closer.
Bill: I dont know what I would do without you. I am glad you love me. I wouldnt of got through the war without the inspiration and incentive of returning home to you.
Emma: I love you so much. Thats why I wrote to you every single day. I knew in my heart of hearts you would return safe to me. The Royal Navy couldnt keep you forever. You belong to me not them silly sods.
Bill smiled and looked round the room at a bedroom he had seen nothing of for almost five years. He was home and safe and away from the dark depth of the seas.
Bill: I dont really want to mention the war again. May it be a distant past memory to those who was scarred by this evil we endured.
Emma kissed him on the cheek.
Emma: hate lost to love in the end. Now lets focus on the love of this family and its future. We are very fortunate.
They remain quiet and together in a moment of solidarity.
Emma: now lets get a nice cooked breakfast down you. I know you loved a nice breakfast before. I will treat you to what ingredients I can get my hands on for a nice start to the day.
She let go of the hug and he continued to smoke. He sat on the end of the bed. He was home and he was free and he was alive.
Emma headed down the stairs to make breakfast. A military plane flew over and Bill instantly looked which had now become instinctive to him. He then fought his gaze and tried to remind himself it is now peacetime.
He stumped out his cigarette.
He spoke to himself.
Bill: Silence, the sound of silence. You are unfamiliar to me and make me nervous. Within you is when the memories return. The silence is going to haunt me.
He rubbed his hands on his face and stood up.
Unknown to Bill a little girls face peeped through a gap in the doorway watching him….