Emerging Writers. Historical Fiction by Mary Ann DiLorenzo
Journeying Back to What Used to Be. Part 19.
“My, my, my,” Sam kept muttering after reading the letter from Johnny’s father.
“You know,” Johnny told Sam, “I knew he would do it to me again, disappoint me again, just like all those years ago before the war when he left me and Ma, yup, just like it.”
“Well, you could still go, meet him in Mexico, couldn’t you?” Sam offered. “It seems like he does want to see you again.”
Johnny looked at Sam and couldn’t help himself. Stuck between crying and laughing, laughing won out and Sam looked at him, not sure what to make of it. But Johnny was far away, remembering Vicksburg and the war. He had struck up an acquaintance with a Yank then, across the trenches from him during the siege. His name was Benjamin, from New York, and he would give Johnny the Northern newspapers and Johnny would swap him tobacco. During the long days in the trenches they would have conversations of home and family and Johnny, like some of the Southern boys who were able to look beyond their fanaticism for the cause, grew in understanding of how they were all the same inside, had the same dreams, the same fears, the Northern boys and the Southern ones alike. Johnny and Benjamin had planned to meet up after the war. Johnny was going to go to New York to meet Benjamin’s wife and young children and visit the bank where Benjamin worked. Or maybe Benjamin would come down to Georgia and see Johnny’s old stomping ground. Then Benjamin would laugh and say, “Someday Johnny Reb!” Then Johnny would laugh along with him and reply, “Someday Billy Yank!”
“Johnny, you okay?” Sam asked.
“Hmm, oh, sorry, just remembering the war and that Yankee Benjamin. Remember we were going to meet up again, after the war.”
“You did tell me about him, I remember. So why don’t you go see him? You could sure use some time away from here.”
“I reckon I can’t,” Johnny countered. “He threw himself down to block a shell headed right for me. It hit him straight on and killed him.”
Journeying Back to What Used to Be. Original historical fiction that follows a Confederate soldier back from War. Delivered in brief vignettes, the series depicts this defining time in the history of our nation. Follow this Civil War Story About Going Home.
Journeying Back to What Used to Be, Part 19 (This one)