A.A. Laporte Payne letter to Muriel 26 April 1917.
April 26th 1917
My own Dearest,
Thank you so very much for your two letters and the enclosed photos and letters which I am returning to you. I hope you have received my letter by now.
The photos were very good but I am very sorry that the others did not come out. I should have liked to have one of you and me together – you must tell Mrs Lowe (or may I call her ‘Tom’?) that she can’t take photos – please thank her for the photo of the baby – it is an excellent one – and he looks very fine & jolly.
I do hope your cold is better. You must get rid of it soon. It was my fault rushing you about such a lot.
I was much amused at Mrs. Gardner’s letter what a wonderfully clever woman she must be to have known it for “months & months & months”. No wonder the dear lady hated me. Please, what is a woman’s intuition?
The time is going fast isn’t it? the lovely time I had at home was all too short, which was probably a good thing for you for I am sure you would have been too tired to go on at that pace. Now we are in the midst of the move I expected to take place when I was away. I am going forward to do the billeting for the Brigade – it is much better than travelling with the guns at a walk.
I, too, am finding it awfully difficult to settle down – but I must or things are bound to go wrong. I can hardly realise now that it was all true that glorious time – perhaps you can because you are in the same surroundings – but mine are absolutely different. I am living now for the next leave. I wonder when it will be and whether I shall be as nervous next time as I was when I called on you first last leave.
I hear you are sitting in the Vicarage pew again last Sunday. I am so sorry for you having to face alone all the congratulatory creatures of Finchley. I feel an awful coward. It is very nice being congratulated about you but unless the people are very nice I always want to say “What do you know about her or me”.
I hope you will have a really successful concert the day after tomorrow, mind you tell me all about it. I am glad Mrs Cross & mother are going together. It will do mother good to get away for a bit from the parish.
I suppose you & Mrs Cross are alone now. You will have a quiet time recovering from last week and getting ready for your work on the land.
Is the weather still bad with you? It is very cold & dull here to-day. The weather is cold and dull here. Awful trouble this morning the Colonel’s horse broke loose from the stalls overnight and can’t be found. I have dozens of men out looking for the beastly thing. The old boy is in an awful rage – of course it is my fault!! He will probably be as quiet as a lamb until this evening he sees his mess bill, which I have just made up.
Well, darling mine, I do wish I could have that week all over again. It seems such ages ago & ages since I saw you. I must console myself with thoughts of you and your precious letters. When are you going to discuss things with me. I remember you saying that you used to do so with another man – why not me? You know how jealous I am and how much I long to possess all of you – body, mind and soul. I shall not be satisfied until I do.
I am writing this in my bedroom to avoid interruptions & the noise of telephones. The Colonel has just come in, and one of my search party has returned to say that the missing horse has been found – which has put him in a good temper.
I will write more this evening if I return in time. I am just off now on a ride round the batteries I am just off to ride round the batteries, which are at present scattered. I don’t suppose I shall be back until dark.
The Boche had started shelling the place again, but he has not done much damage. The news is not very exciting yet, but I don’t suppose it will be uninteresting long.
How is the “Mountain” behaving? She seemed very nice I thought. My servant is a treasure and he keeps my things very well indeed.
Please give my love to Mrs Cross & with all my fondest love to you darling and my kisses – though paper ones