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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

Live, Love, Lose - 58. Chapter 58

Today was a special day. What they called “Christmas”, and he believed it was the equivalent of their Danish Jul.

Mr. and Mrs. Hopkins had accepted his decision to go to war. But they had agreed with him that he wouldn’t leave until New Year’s Day was over. It was their only condition and he had no problem with it. He could still wait for a few more days. He was aware he didn’t know when he would see them again.

They were all gathered in the dining room for a nice meal. George hadn’t left yet. They had been avoiding each other, pretending the other didn’t exist, and this time Carl wouldn’t try to make a move, to make things better. It seemed that what had been broken between them could never be fixed.

“This will be the last time we are all together, so I want it to be a good memory for every one of us.”

Her words came from the bottom of her heart, but they weren’t enough to soothe the souls of those who had suffered so much already, lost, endured, broke down.

The tension was everywhere, filling the air and stifling everyone, ruining that peaceful moment that should have been only theirs. They should have been happy to be all together, but no one was smiling, no one was laughing, no one was talking. Yes, war wasn’t over, the bombings didn’t stop either. They were alive, in good health, unharmed; thanks to whatever miracle.

He just wished he could see them happy at least once before he left. He didn’t want to remember them being concerned and sad like his parents.

But the more he thought about it the more he felt they could never be happy again as long as the war wasn’t over. And even when it was finally over, he was sure it would take time to heal from all this violence for the city and its people. Maybe things would never be the same again.

They ate in silence. It was almost eerie. It seemed that small and casual talk had become meaningless and pointless. That there was just nothing left to be said as if they had already said everything they could say.

Karl could only hear the sound of his own breathing, but there was nothing soothing in it. And it wasn’t the first time it had happened.

That day seemed to be endless. It just ended up being like every normal day, one filled with doubts, hopelessness, and fear.

He hated the Germans with a burning passion for that.

As it was now late afternoon, George went upstairs, Paul and his grandfather moved into the living room to play chess while his grandmother went into the kitchen to make some tea. There were only him, Mr. and Mrs. Hopkins left.

“I’m sorry, Carl… I wish it could have been a much better day… one made of sweetness and warmth, one exception in all this madness and brutality.”

He didn’t want her to see her like that. Not again.

“Do not be sorry. It’s okay. It’s not easy.”

But he felt his words wouldn’t be enough. He moved from his seat and went to hug her. She engulfed him into her arms and held him tightly.

“This is the worst Christmas Day we have ever had…” she paused before she spoke again. “I just hope it won’t be the last,” she whispered.

There it was again…this awkward silence…he couldn’t stand it anymore.

He instinctively held her more tightly.

“I am sorry we did not make any effort. You deserve so much better.”

“Please, keep your mouth shut. I do not like it when you say such things. If you had forced yourself it would have not been natural, and I think it would have been worse than this oppressive silence.”

Mrs. Hopkins didn’t reply.

“Come,” his wife said after a few moments of silence.

Next thing he knew he was hugging them both. Karl really liked these kinds of hugs. It was like saying ‘as long as I’m here, I’ll protect you’. It felt good. It seemed he hadn’t been hugged like that in ages. Yet, he felt that there was something missing. Something he needed.

“Oh my…” he heard Mrs. Hopkins’s mother say.

She called Paul and her husband. And quickly after he could hear footsteps getting near.

“This is so heart-warming; a real family picture.”

Her husband hummed in agreement.

It was silent afterwards. He presumed they were still observing them.

“This is such a shame he will not be staying here with us.”

“Mother, he can hear and understand what you say.”

“I was talking to your father.”

They pulled away after a while, and Karl felt he didn’t have the strength or will to say or do anything. He could only look down in concern.

“Oh, wait! Before I forget, there is something I want to give to you,” Mrs. Hopkins suddenly said before she stood up from her seat and left the room. To go where? He had no idea.

She came back after a little while with something in her hands. It looked like a package. Yes, it was.

“This is not much, but it was made with love.”

She handed it to him, and he observed it carefully, wondering what it could be.

“Look at him, he is so intrigued,” Mrs. Hopkins’s mother sounded somehow amused as he said that.

He ended up taking it after a few more seconds and unwrapped it. He smiled as he discovered what it was. It was a knitted jumper, made of a nice dark blue colour. It looked thick and warm.

“This isn’t what you wear in the RAF, Mum. I don’t think he will need it there.”

“But they do not wear a uniform all the time, do they?”

Karl really loved it. It was just a mere piece of clothing, but it meant so much more to him.

“Thank you.”

She smiled at him, that soft and warm smile that he liked so much. He hugged her again, and of course, she hugged him back.

“I am glad that you like it.”

He could feel his eyes were starting to get a bit wet.

He remembered that soon he would be gone. It would be the same again, he would be far from a familiar environment with people he wouldn’t know, not as far as the first time, but still. No, at least one of them was Paul’s friend, so this would be much less bad.

He wasn’t afraid. The blood of his Viking ancestors ran through his veins.

He was ready to face the destiny that was awaiting him.

Hey everyone! :) 

So this is the last chapter for this first part!!

I'd just like to thank all of you for sticking to this story so far! It really means the whole world to me and every known planet of this galaxy 🥰💕

Please don't hesitate to review and recommend this first part if you've been enjoying it :) 

Take care ❤️

Copyright © 2021 LittleCherryBlossom26; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
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Chapter Comments

Not the happiest Christmas, but definitely filled with the family's love for Karl.  George is still being a butt, but I suspect he will be filled with regret when Karl leaves. Well written chapter!

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At least the people were honest and those that truly cared for Carl showed him they cared. What a sad meal !  George is being so distant and hard. His behavior should enable Carl to separate emotionally from George and know they are truly over. George has lost two lovers now.

Carl still was thinking sad thoughts :

"But the more he thought about it the more he felt they could never be happy again as long as the war wasn’t over. And even when it was finally over, he was sure it would take time to heal from all this violence for the city and its people. Maybe things would never be the same again._

He can have a better remembrance of the Hopkins. Carl will be able to think fondly of the gracious, heart-felt hugs and the hand-made sweater ( a jumper). It might well be cold in his military quarters and he probably could use a boost to his civilian clothing assortment for winter. Carl was loved . After all the Hopkins took him in and gave him a home when he was lost and in need. He can be lifted up by his memories of them when things get tough or dire in the future.

Now Carl is going to another new "home" with all but one strange person. He will need to find friends and train hard and successfully learn his job in order to survive in combat or where he is placed. He is going once again into a great unknown far far away from home. He wants to fight and stop the Germans and is motivated. It is helpful in a wonderful. innocent way that he considers his Viking blood gives him courage.

This ending ties things up and sets up Carl's future in part 2. I hope he survives and grows and heals and finds love.

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Karl is one of most genuine, kind, amazing people out there.  I worry so much for him when he heads to war.  Why couldn’t he just fall in love with Paul and stay home 😭😭😭     I still hope George swallows a bomb hahaha

can’t wait for the continuing story!  Love this series!!

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Not a happy ending, not because of George’s immaturity, but more because of Karl’s imminent departure into danger.

George is an ass, no doubt, but we only have a limited perspective. Having my own immature moments in history, I can rejoice that while I hurt my first love terribly, it was not ever so ruthless and stabbing at him personally. I wasn’t ready and able to see where in life I could fit and that made for decisions not truly of and for myself…but what I thought I had to do; it was a big error that gave me, and my love, much different lifes. The good news is that we are still very much friends after a little healing and growth from both of us.

There’s much revealed in Paul’s compassionate plea with Richard, it seems Paul has much in common with his cousin…which in turn means Richard and Karl may too have much in common before they ever have their introduction. It’s reassuring that Paul does think so strongly for Karl, but that he also made contact with Richard somewhat begging forgiveness enough that Richard would agree to look after someone he would not so lightly entrust to anyone…it’s a matter of life and death.

Which direction will the heart pull? Paul’s relationship with Karl could grow as he follows his progress and development; distance makes the heart grow fonder?? But likewise, Paul would have to improve his relationship with Richard to get such updates.

As Karl enjoys the heartfelt hugs and warmth that seem different from his upbringing, his attachment to the Hopkins would seem to be something of a lifetime. No doubt his Danish family loves him, but they seemed to be less affectionate. This familiar bond and common history now with Richard and with Karl should be an interesting dynamic of personal sorts as Karl prepares for war.

@LittleCherryBlossom26, I do hope there is a book two in store for us; there is so much left to tell in Karl’s journey in life.

Edited by Philippe
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12 hours ago, Philippe said:

Not a happy ending, not because of George’s immaturity, but more because of Karl’s imminent departure into danger.

George is an ass, no doubt, but we only have a limited perspective. Having my own immature moments in history, I can rejoice that while I hurt my first love terribly, it was not ever so ruthless and stabbing at him personally. I wasn’t ready and able to see where in life I could fit and that made for decisions not truly of and for myself…but what I thought I had to do; it was a big error that gave me, and my love, much different lifes. The good news is that we are still very much friends after a little healing and growth from both of us.

There’s much revealed in Paul’s compassionate plea with Richard, it seems Paul has much in common with his cousin…which in turn means Richard and Karl may too have much in common before they ever have their introduction. It’s reassuring that Paul does think so strongly for Karl, but that he also made contact with Richard somewhat begging forgiveness enough that Richard would agree to look after someone he would not so lightly entrust to anyone…it’s a matter of life and death.

Which direction will the heart pull? Paul’s relationship with Karl could grow as he follows his progress and development; distance makes the heart grow fonder?? But likewise, Paul would have to improve his relationship with Richard to get such updates.

As Karl enjoys the heartfelt hugs and warmth that seem different from his upbringing, his attachment to the Hopkins would seem to be something of a lifetime. No doubt his Danish family loves him, but they seemed to be less affectionate. This familiar bond and common history now with Richard and with Karl should be an interesting dynamic of personal sorts as Karl prepares for war.

@LittleCherryBlossom26, I do hope there is a book two in store for us; there is so much left to tell in Karl’s journey in life.

@Philippe Richard? You mean Arthur?

Yes, of course, there is a second book coming :) I should start publishing it soon enough :)

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22 hours ago, raven1 said:

Not the happiest Christmas, but definitely filled with the family's love for Karl.  George is still being a butt, but I suspect he will be filled with regret when Karl leaves. Well written chapter!

@raven1Thank you so much for the nice review and recommendation ❤️

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15 minutes ago, LittleCherryBlossom26 said:

@Philippe Richard? You mean Arthur?

Yes, of course, there is a second book coming :) I should start publishing it soon enough :)

Oops, yes, Arthur! 😂 My mind is like an ant mound kicked about, it’s continuously reconstructing from assorted disturbances…but it’s not destroyed yet. 😝 

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