habits and hiding by phoenix.writing

10 Jan

It was a busy time of year with Christmas coming, and all Hammond could think was that it had been simpler when he had been married. Before the divorce, whenever their friends or his regulars received a gift for Christmas, they always assumed that Heather was the one who had done it. She had never really accepted what he did, but she hadn’t wanted to confess his secret, either, so she had allowed the error to stand, had allowed everyone to think that she was the one who did all the crocheting when she couldn’t even hold a hook properly, never mind making a half double crochet or a cluster stitch.

Now that they had separated, their gifts had as well, and while he might actually have considered letting her give them—he’d been without recognition for years, after all—she had made it clear that it was one of the things which she was delighted to be well shut of now that they weren’t together.

This left him to his own devices, and at forty-two, he hesitated to suddenly announce that he crocheted, nor did he particularly want to explain to anyone the subterfuge which had been employed for years. Plus there was the fact that his daughter was convinced he must be gay; she seemed to think this a plausible reason for the divorce. He didn’t have a queue of eligible women he could show off to naysay this—and it was probably not something that he should do even if he could, of course, since Anna was only twelve. He had spent years crocheting before she got up, after she’d gone to bed, or when she was at school; it seemed a shame to ruin it all now.

The problem was that even as a mailman, there was simply a limit to how many scarves, gloves, mittens, and hats he needed. And there were so many other options: sweaters and dish cloths and shawls and afghans…. He had been so excited when the wave of Amigurumi toys had become a big enough craze that they started appearing regularly in North America. Drop boxes and Christmas drives the city over were going to get all sorts of handmade creatures in addition to the clothing which he habitually left which would hopefully have lots of value for many underprivileged kids.

But it was getting to the point that he needed to decide what to do; Heather had custody, but Anna was likely to visit eventually, and the turnover for his projects wasn’t instantaneous. There was yarn and patterns and hooks and half-finished projects…. It was getting to be too much to hide in one box—even several boxes—and if he let it out in his own apartment, that would be the end of it. Everyone would know.

The Crocheting Mailman? He didn’t think he would ever live it down. But Anna had said the only important thing was that he was happy, and if he confessed, he could maintain the gifts that he gave to the regulars on his route. Plus Anna was still a growing girl, and that meant years of different-sized sweaters…. He would just make sure it wasn’t too frilly or too pink, and perhaps he would be able to convince Anna—and the world—that he was both straight and a man who crocheted.

This was the time of year to be making resolutions….

Decision made, Hammond continued on his route with a new bounce in his step.

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9 Responses to “habits and hiding by phoenix.writing”

  1. ingridfnl January 10, 2010 at 9:11 pm #

    Oh I’m so glad you joined! 🙂 This was great.

    • phoenix.writing January 16, 2010 at 8:43 pm #

      Thanks. I’m glad you enjoyed it. ^_^

  2. jadamthwaite January 10, 2010 at 9:47 pm #

    It’s nice to read a slightly happier Hammond ending! I love the idea of him donating his creations secretly.

    • phoenix.writing January 16, 2010 at 8:47 pm #

      Although we’ll have to see if I always do it in works this small, I generally feel a need to give my characters happy endings. There can be lots of angst to get there, but they need that happy ending. 😉

  3. typicalquirk January 10, 2010 at 11:26 pm #

    This was really well-written. I liked the donation idea as well. It is so interesting that all of us pegged him as divorced.

    • phoenix.writing January 16, 2010 at 8:48 pm #

      Thank you. Ingrid told us he was divorced, and we all ran away with that detail. ^_^

  4. eli January 11, 2010 at 7:05 am #

    Very clever, and good upbeat message.

    • phoenix.writing January 16, 2010 at 8:51 pm #

      Thanks. Upbeat tends to be me. 😉

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. subliminal salvation by phoenix.writing | the character project - May 9, 2010

    […] Link to Hammond: Habits and Hiding. […]

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