This is a continuing story, if you would like to read the from the beginning, the letter A : Aces and Eights But... each letter/story stands alone as well. Enjoy:)
Ben stood with his men as they listened to the final address given to the men departing service. It had been a long four years since he had seen his family. He tried to stand proud in his uniform; in his heart, he was tired of blood and battle.
This would be the final time he would dress in this uniform, march with his men, or salute the flag. It was time to put away all of these reminders of war and raise cattle and plant corn.
He shifted his feet, like an anxious private on his first day in camp until the General gave his final word.
With a sigh of great relief, he shifted to attention and gave one last salute. The General released them from their service and Ben turned toward the stables. His horse was already packed and ready to go. As he walked, he let his mind wander through the last five years of his life.
When he had enlisted, he felt sure of the cause and his country. With each march, each battle confidence in standing on the right side became muddied. He didn’t care any more who won or lost, only that he was going home.
He stood next to his horse and took off the blue coat, removed the saber from his side. It felt as though a weight had been lifted from him. He plucked his new hat on his head and thumbed the rim bending it a bit more over his eyes before he mounted.
Ben took a final look as he rode out the gates. He had peaceful future ahead of him he hoped. He pulled the portrait from his pocket and grinned softly. It had been months since he had gotten a letter from his wife.
He pushed back that inner voice telling him to worry and caressed the worn edge of the frame with his thumb as he slipped it back into his pocket. “I’m coming home, Ellen. Finally coming home.”