Made in Chertsey. The Story. Part Two.
Rosy, for once was the listener, now leaning over her friend’s chair, holding her hand, the tears falling freely from her eyes.
She had known that hollow feeling, just a moment when all your hopes and dreams were swept away.
That young policeman, PC Reynolds—now the sergeant—handing her that dreadful telegram.
Doctor Ward, sitting in front of Ethel, ready to support her, as he stumbled on his words.
“Ethel, there’s been an accident.”
He looked up at Rosy, as if for help, trying to find the words to soften the blow, but only three words could he find.
“Charlie has died.”
“I’m very sorry my dear, he would not have suffered, it would have been so sudden.”
A deep breath, and then silence, as she tried to understand those three little words.
Young Donald, with the sense that a child of four has, knowing when to find shelter in a storm, climbed up closer till their faces touched.
Rosy, looking through the still open front door, saw Mrs. Phillips standing at her garden gate from across the road. Drying her hands on her apron—today is everyone’s wash-day, she is joined by Mrs. Hyde, they stand and wonder.
First a policeman, followed by the doctor, it could only be one thing.
Soon there are three or four friends now gathering around Ethel’s front garden, all with the same question in their eyes, who could it be? Surely not young Bernard.
The noise of children running helter-skelter down the road, was heard before they were seen, with the headmistress, Miss Slaughter and Miss Payne trying to keep up.
Dierdre, Iris, Bernard and Christine, all holding hands, to stop them-selves stumbling, ran around the corner, calling for their mum.
The friends and neighbours, now more than ten in number, tearfully looked at each other, it must be Charlie.