Happy Fiction Inspirational

As the sun set outside the Foxglove Inn, a young woman was seated at a small desk writing a letter. 

Her name was Mollie, Mollie Dunlop in full. And the letter she was penning was, well, one of great importance to her.

Mollie sighed and raked her fingers through her long chestnut hair. This letter was hard for her to write, that was for sure. 

This is a good start, she reminded herself. You’re getting somewhere, at least.

Indeed she was; the letter Mollie was writing was to the agency for women in need or distress, the WA for short. Those letters stood for Women’s Agency, because it was easier to mash seven words together and sum them up in two. 

So it was the Women’s Agency Mollie was writing to on a cold evening in November.

Winter was coming, and Mollie was running out of money. Her parents had passed away the previous year, leaving her an orphan. They had, however, left Mollie quite a bit of money in their will so she could keep living happily. 

Now the funds were running out, leaving Mollie with no other choice but to ask for help.

Her proud heart could barely take the humiliation, but she chastised herself constantly, telling herself that her sanity and health was more important than her pride.

Still, though, Mollie was having a hard time accepting the fact that she needed help in the financial department.

Hence the embarrassing letter-writing of November thirtieth.

Mollie shook her head. Focus, she berated.

She was working on her letter, which entailed making sure it sounded polite and not at all like she was begging for help. 

No, that was the last thing Mollie wanted. For people to think she was poor and beggarly.

Breaking Mollie’s train of thought, someone knocked sharply on the door. 

“Come in,” Mollie called, slightly miffed. Did they really have to interrupt her in the middle of something extremely important?

But her mood changed as soon as the door to the hall cracked open.

Her landlady, Mrs. Thompson, pushed the door further with her foot and stepped into the room.

“Hello, dear,” she smiled. Mrs. Thompson always seemed to be very jolly and smiley, one of the things Mollie liked about the landlady of the Foxglove Inn. “Would you like a pot of tea? I have some peppermint steeping downstairs just now.”

Spotting a large package in the woman’s arms, Mollie raised her brows suspiciously. “What are you holding, Mrs. Thompson?”

The landlady followed Mollie’s gaze down to the cardboard box in her arms, then reacted as if she hadn’t noticed it. 

“Oh, this thing?” she clarified,  glancing at the package then back at Mollie. “It came in the mail for you. Couldn’t fit in the box, so the mailman put it beside.”

“Really?” Mollie asked happily. It could be something interesting, and mail-unboxing had always been fun for her, even as an adult now. It was like Christmas in July, or whenever a package arrived in the mail for her. “Let me see it!”

She reached out as if to take the box from Mrs. Thompson, but the elderly woman held back.

“Ah, ah, ah,” she teased, her watery blue eyes twinkling with a spark of humour. “Be patient, now.” 

Mollie sighed. “Please, Mrs. Thompson?”

The two women were almost like family now, as Mollie had been boarding at the inn for six months to date.

So Mrs. Thompson could afford to be a little cheeky to her darling houseguest. Mollie never minded, but today she was intrigued at the prospect of the package and its contents. 

“Oh, all right,” Mrs. Thompson yielded. “Come and get it.”

Mollie pumped her fist. “Yes!” 

She scurried over to the landlady, plucking the package excitedly from her plump arms. Mollie plopped down on her simple desk chair, a furnishing of the room offered to her at the beginning of her stay at the inn.

Mrs. Thompson watched intently as the younger woman slit the box flaps with some scissors that had been resting on the desk. She was just as interested as Mollie, for Mrs. Thompson never intruded on her tenants’ private lives. It wasn’t her business, and she knew that everyone wished to be on their own once in a while.

However, this package of Mollie’s was too intriguing for the old woman to exit the room now. And besides, Mollie hadn’t asked Mrs. Thompson to leave yet, so the woman would stay so long as Mollie didn’t mind.

Mollie was much too busy to notice; she was easily opening the cardboard and extracting the smaller items encased in protective wrappings. 

It wouldn’t have been an easy trip from wherever the package had departed, and since it would be most unfortunate if the contents of the box had been damaged in any way, bubble wrap was necessary.

When all the items were unwrapped and the box set aside, Mollie surveyed the materials the bubble wrap had hidden. 

Mrs. Thompson leant forward as well, to better glimpse the contents of the package she had delivered to her boarder.

The first thing Mollie picked up to examine was a shape which, now uncovered, Mrs. Thompson recognised as a sewing machine. A Singer, in fact.

Mollie gasped. The anonymous gift giver clearly knew the girl quite well, and the sewing machine, as Mrs. Thompson observed, seemed to be a much more sentimental gift to Mollie than the elderly woman could have believed possible.

“I can be a seamstress!” Mollie turned to face her landlady, eyes shining like stars. “It was my dream as a child. Now, finally, that dream can come to life, now that I have this!” She gestured ecstatically to the Singer machine.

“Well, that’s wonderful, dear,” Mrs. Thompson congratulated Mollie sweetly. “Good for you.”

“No, Mrs. Thompson, you don’t understand,” Mollie said. “Now I don’t need to write this stupid letter, either!”

She crumpled up the paper on her desk and tossed the spiky ball into the fireplace, where the flames ate away at the now-unneeded letter until there were only ashes left of the dreaded confession.

Mrs. Thompson looked on in shock. She couldn’t comprehend what had taken place in the past ten seconds. 

Had her young tenant just, very suddenly, thrown an important-seeming letter in the crackling fire? Why on earth had Mollie done that?

But Mrs. Thompson’s question would always go unanswered, for Mollie’s pride had returned. Now that she didn’t have to write any embarrassing messages to any sort of agency in any way, shape or form, Mollie felt like a free woman. 

With this new opportunity, this new sewing machine, Mollie Dunlop could turn her whole life around. She could start an all-serving business, or apply to be hired by some wealthy merchant. Either way, the possibilities were endless with the Singer. 

Who knew where Mollie would go next?

Not her, that’s for sure. She was going to wait and see where the sewing machine took her, rather than the other way around.

And maybe something spectacular would happen. But only time would tell.

November 30, 2021 00:38

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By the way, Mollie Dunlop- Really?


Serena Johnston
11:54 Jan 06, 2022

Yes, really. It's different though.


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Ruth Porritt
09:06 Dec 01, 2021

Hello Vivian, This story is marvelous! This story reminds me of Dickens, and it also reminds me of wonderful romance stories I've read. (Am I right in thinking that this story will have romance? If I am wrong, this is okay. I am intrigued by this tale, and can't wait to read more.) Many thanks, Ruth


Serena Johnston
23:05 Dec 01, 2021

Thank you so much, Ruth! I really appreciate feedback. I was planning on making a part two, but it wasn't going to have romance in it. But, now that you bring up that point, I honestly think it would be great to have some romance in the sequel. Thanks for the idea!


Ruth Porritt
00:30 Dec 02, 2021

Hello Vivian, It's my pleasure, and awesome!! :) Can't wait to read part 2, and thanks so much. Gotta go, and catch you later, Ruth


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