by Virginia Ann Werner
A young woman sits on a bench in the foyer of a large Victorian boarding home, anxiously looking out the window. She wears a hat and a cape over her long dress. There is a carpet-bag at her feet.
A clock chimes six times. She unfolds a letter in her hand; a picture falls out and flutters to the floor. She picks it up, presses it to her heart and reads the letter; folds it up and looks out the window again, watching, waiting.
After a while, she looks across the foyer into a large room. She sees an old woman sitting behind a tapestry frame and looking back at her. The old woman looks away and resumes her stitching. The young woman looks out the window, and then glances back into the room. The old woman is watching her again.
The young woman gets up from the bench and crosses the foyer toward the room where the old woman sits. As she approaches, a crowd of people pass in front of her, blocking the doorway for a few seconds. When the path has cleared, she enters the room, but the old woman is gone.
Curious, she goes over to look at the tapestry. It is a partially finished picture of a man in an army uniform. His face, however, has not been filled in.
The young woman waits for the old woman to return. After a time, she sits down at the tapestry frame and picks up the needle.
An old woman looks up from her tapestry and sees a young woman sitting on a bench in the foyer looking anxiously out the window.
Unpublished work c 1997 by Virginia and Geoffrey Werner