Friday, July 12, 2013

A Carte de Amour (Day 12: Ultimate Blog Challenge)

“Wish you were here,’ it said, and her hackles were immediately raised. Who could have sent it?

The postcard had a 3D image of two lovers, rushing into each other’s arms. Held at a certain angle, it showed the lovers apart. Tilt it slightly, and they were together.

The handwriting was neat and precise. She imagined what the woman must be like. Very tidy in her ways, no doubt. A place for everything and everything in its place.

The postcard was sent from Prague and dated five days earlier. ‘My darling dollop,’ it said. Was that a salutation of illicit romance?

Old Horace – a dollop?

She shook her head, and read. ‘I long to hold you in my arms. To feel you near me. But that is not to be. Here I am, living the good life with my friends, and there you are, miserable with that old coot. Not for long. I will send you another postcard from Rome.’

Ought she to show Horace the postcard and watch his face for signs of guilt? No, that would never do. Horace would not reveal his emotions. She would glean nothing from his face. She would have to bide her time. Wait for the second postcard to incriminate him further. And then it would be Showtime!

Waiting, however, was no easy task for someone of her sensibilities. Wait for how long?

How much time did it take to reach Rome from Prague? She anxiously scanned the calendar, expecting it to reveal the deceit of the human heart. The calendar, unwilling to have anything to do with such matters, flapped its pages vigorously, intending to convey the action of throwing up its hands.

When Emma had suspected her husband of hanky panky, she had hired a detective to follow him and keep her posted about his whereabouts and activities. But that recourse was not available to her. She could not afford to get professional help.

She sat down to think. Did a postcard necessarily mean that Horace was cheating on her? The woman could be a friend, couldn’t she? Of course, she could be.

But do friends address friends as their darling dollops?

She would have to get to the bottom of this. She owed it to the kids. It was her responsibility to ensure that the relationship remained unaffected by fancy women who referred to other people’s husbands as dollops.

All day she watched him, a wild look in her eyes. At first it was anger. How dare some brazen hussy make eyes at my man? She would fight for her marriage.

But it quickly changed. How dare this faithless creature cheat on me?

One day went by.

She kept an eye out for the arrival of the mailman. The postcard should not fall into the wrong hands. It would make her the laughing stock of the neighbourhood. She wondered if she ought to tell Emma about this. After all, Emma had made no secret about her husband’s fling. She decided against it.

The second day went by. The mailman looked at her quizzically, wondering why the old girl was suddenly watching his movements with such interest.

The third day went by and still no postcard. She controlled herself with an effort. She was angry with the mysterious sender for sending a carte de amour through ordinary mail. On a postcard, of all the things? Just because it could be bought with a 10 pence coin. How cheap! No lover of hers would be that cheap, she felt sure.

When that hussy came, she'd make Horace pay. She'd take the house, the car and the securities in the bank. And she’d get a new lover. In return, the hussy could keep her dollop.

She was quite pleased with herself. In any case, the marriage was over. But the house was good. The car was new. And the securities would spell security for the rest of her life.

It was on the fourth day that the other postcard came.

'Plans changed. I’m not coming. I’ve found someone else. I wish you years of happiness with Gladys.’

She sat down and sobbed.

The mailman looked at her quizzically.

(This post is an entry to the contest on Write Tribe.)


  1. The end was so different. Didn't expect it. nice post.

  2. wow! this was wonderful.The end was simply great.

  3. I simply love the way that you always narrate a story. For me, I am not sure the tears in the end were relief or guilt...What dya say?

  4. I didn't expect this ending. Your story was amazing and kept me entranced from beginning to end!


  5. didn't think it would end this way :(... unexpected.. nice story..kept me hooked :)

  6. Ouch! :-) Lovely story, Cynthia. Always enjoy your writing!

  7. Interesting as always Cynthia. Was engaged till the end. Suspicion, confusion, sorrow. How well U bring all emotions Cynth !
    am a fan of ur stories

  8. how we jump to conclusions isn't it? the frail side of human emotions....superbly brought out!

  9. Uh oh... but why the tears? For not getting the chance to find herself a new lover? That her husband cheated on her? Or could it be because her name was not Gladys at all :P
    Lovely story Cynthia :)

  10. Oh wow, you weave a nice tale. Weeping over a cheating dollop just not worth it or were they tears of joy?

  11. Cynthia a masterpiece. So well you have woven the tale. And the end! my god how lovely!


  12. Cynthia.. what just happened.. I mean I know..I am just dazed.. I..unexpected.. but on a real scale.. I think people should separate off than cheating or lying..or just holding on and making each other miserable

  13. Good story, and an unexpected ending :)

  14. Oops!! Liked the end though! A cool one for the prompt, Cynthia :)

  15. You drew me right into your cunning trap, Cynthia! :)



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