Wartime at Woolworths!
‘I’m sorry, Maisie, but I’m putting my foot down over this. You’re not taking our daughter up to the East End of London and putting her in danger,’ David said, slamming his newspaper down by the side of his armchair. ‘I thought we’d already discussed this?’
Maisie sighed. She’d cooked her husband a decent meal, although the small piece of steak was as tough as old boots and could possibly have been horsemeat. She’d hoped that after a long day at his desk in London doing God knows what for the RAF she could put him in a good frame of mind before breaking her news.
‘I mean it, Maisie, so don’t look at me like that. I will not be changing my mind over this,’ David fumed.
David raised his hand. ‘I’ll not be swayed on this. What if there’s an air raid? Where will you go with a pram and a young baby? It’s sheer lunacy. I’m amazed you’re even considering taking our child into danger.’
‘I want her to meet my parents and for them ter know I’m happily married and settled,’ she said quietly, feeling the sting of tears threatening to fall. She wasn’t one for crying but David’s words had really hurt. She held her head high but her chin started to quiver uncontrollably. ‘I’m sorry you think so badly of me,’ she gulped before turning to walk away.
David leapt from his chair as he saw how distressed his wife was. ‘Oh my darling, please don’t cry,’ he said, pulling her into his arms. ‘I don’t wish to see either of you in danger. How do you think I’d feel if I waved you off only to hear that the Luftwaffe had taken you from me?’
He caressed her hair as she clung to him and sobbed. ‘I’m sorry, David. I’m a bloody fool,’ she said when at last she could speak. ‘I just had this longing to see my mum and show her our baby. I wanted to tell her how I’d made good . . . and I wanted her to say she’s proud of me.’
Wartime at Woolworths by Elaine Everest is published on 3rd May by Pan Mac (available in paperback and ebook, price £6.99)