In Memoriam: The Inkwell Prompt #23

Image by Artur Konakov

Under the orange glow of the evening sun, with the heat at its lowest and the breeze was cool on the skin. Edward put finishing touches to his arrangements and stepped back to admire his work.

"Yeah, right." He nodded.

The carpet grass was sparkling and clean, freshly mowed this morning. It smelled of clean grass and the fragrance of the hibiscus flower by the fence was also in the air. The combination of the two gave a homey atmosphere.

A blanket was spread out neatly over the grass, and stocked hampers were placed at the four corners to keep the blanket in place. He had taken out a bottle of Champagne and it was currently seating in ice.

He checked the time, Tina and Tommy should arrive anytime soon.

"Give me strength to do this, Mary." He muttered, kneeling so he could set out the wine glasses. "I can't do this alone."

Just as he placed the last glass, he heard the heavy footfall behind him. He turned and smiled, "Hello, Tommy."

"Hello, Edward," Tommy replied.

There was an awkward moment of silence, then the two of them hugged.

"It's good to see you again Tommy."

Tommy shrugged, looking around at the setting. He sighed sadly, "you didn't change anything. This is just how she liked it."

"Yes. This is how she likes it. I couldn't bear to change even the slightest detail."

Just then, a nine year old boy ran into view, waving his toy car about. He was closely followed by his mother, "be careful Junior."

She paused as she saw the two men.

And just as with Tommy, Edward was the first to greet, "hello Tina."

"Hi, Edward." She hugged him, then turned to Tommy. "Hello, brother."

"Hi sis," Tommy grinned as he pulled her into a hug.

In the ensuing silence, they listened to the songs of the bird and the whistle of the breeze. Edward handed them glasses and proceeded to pop the champagne.

"Thank you for inviting me, Edward. For inviting us." Tina muttered.

"It brings back so many memories." Tommy concurred.

"Yes, it does." Edward poured out drinks into their glasses and they raised them in toast. "To Mary."

They echoed his toast and clinked glasses.

Mary was Edward's wife and mother to Tina and Tommy. She had them before she had met Edward. Ten years later, she had died suddenly of a terminal illness, shocking everyone. After her death, the family had scattered somewhat. Each to his or her path to life. This went on for three years.

Edward had decided to fix it. And he did this by organizing a picnic. Something he knew for a fact Mary loved. He invited her children, his stepchildren.

"I miss her so much," Tina muttered, wiping a tear.

"I know," Edward replied, putting his arms around her shoulders. "So do we."

"We should have done this sooner," Tommy said, his hands deep in his pockets after finishing his drink.

"I know, son. But we're here now. What are we gonna do?"

Tommy smiled then, "I suggest we eat."

With laughter, they settled down for the sumptuous meal. In memory of the wife and mother that had been lost.

The End
This story is in response to this week's prompt Prompt do well to try it out.
Thank you for reading.

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