No one knew for sure what had happened to him in the war. There were only whispers from the neighbours, talk of his limp. He wanted to work back at the mill, but the loud noises made his head scream. He never went to the meetings or joined in the parades.
His daughter found the medals at the back of his sock drawer. They were heavy and the colours of Christmas ribbons. She asked him why he hid them. He closed the drawer, the medals clinking together like loose change. “A man shouldn’t be given an award just for being left alive.”
I took some creative liberty from someone else’s story in writing this piece. This time, from Catherine Mardon’s Curveballs. This research for my own writing project is taking over my life, and it is some of the most interesting stuff I’ve ever read. There will probably be similar pieces to come.