He and the nurse exchanged glances, and he looked distressed. He seemed to expect me to go off into a fit or a faint, and looked surprised because I stayed so calm. I was surprised myself. I seemed to be in a dream and moved and acted quite automatically.
Sherry did not know me; he had been struck on the head while swimming for a lifeboat, and had been insensible for hours. The doctors said his skull was fractured. They had done everything they could; there was nothing to do now but wait until the end came.
I had had nothing to eat all day, because I had been too nervous to eat on the train. But I stayed by his bedside all that night watching. He was still living in the morning and I left him at times to help look after other patients, because the nurses simply couldn’t get around fast enough.
One of the men I waited on was a friend of Sherry’s, a Y.M.C.A. man. He said that Sherry was being sent back to America to give a series of lectures. Just think! to have come safely through those awful months in the trenches, and then to perish when so near home!
For three days he lay in a stupor and all that time I never slept a wink because they said the end would come any minute without warning. But instead of that he opened his eyes without warning this morning, recognized me, and said, “Hello, Elizabeth,” as casually as if we hadn’t been separated for a year.
He’s been awake now for five hours and the doctor says he’s out of danger. I sort of let go then when the tension was over, but I’ve slept a bit since and have got a grip on myself again. I’m so happy that I feel like dancing a jig up and down the wards, and it is only with great difficulty that I can restrain myself.
I must stop now, because Sherry is clamoring for refreshments.
Your blissful, too-thankful-to-live
P.S. The soap is in the closet under
the kitchen stairs. I forgot to
tell you before I went away.
A chorus of glad cries greeted the reading of the letter. “Sherry’s going to get well! Isn’t it wonderful?”
Hinpoha and Migwan flung their arms around each other in an exuberance of feeling just at the same moment that Sahwah and Gladys did the same thing, and they all laughed and hugged each other for joy.
“Dear Nyoda! Think of her, going without sleep for three nights and keeping up through it all!”
“And helping to take care of the other injured ones! Isn’t that Nyoda all over, though—Give Service, no matter how badly she might feel herself!”
“But, she never said a word about Veronica,” said Sahwah in a puzzled tone, when the first excitement had subsided. “I can’t understand it.”
“She probably forgot it, she was so thankful about Sherry,” said Gladys.
“Not she,” replied Sahwah positively. “She couldn’t have gotten our letter. I’m going to write again.”