Hullo! I know I promised to review "Yello" but this caught my attention almost as soon as my eyes fell on it and since I am such a die hard fan of sad, angsty stories I couldn't pass the opportunity of reading this :)
This was a truly sad story. Not the incredibly heart wrenching kind of sad but the more settled, composed and yet deeply scarred kind of sad. I think this is due to the character you chose to portray as living these events because we all know that Molly is a very strong, stout woman.
I loved the mix feelings this story transmitted. On one side you have the heart breaking upcoming death of her husband and her painful recollections of Fred when she tries and fails to prepare his bed for Arthur, and on the other side you have hope. Her other memories, the happier ones of the pregnant girls, her joyous pas moments with Arthur and how they waltzed in the living room laughing, enjoying each others presence and love helped shed the light of hope on the dark events that she was currently living. I can't even begin to imagine what someone must feel to have a loved one forget who you are, what his or her life has been like...that they have a loving family who hurt every time they have to bear his/her question of "Who are you?". I never had anyone close live this dreadful experience but I know of someone who did and it's just terrible.
Molly's characterization was very spot on in my opinion. You can feel how strained she is, how very tired and exhausted her body and mind feels and yet, despite all of this, you can still see her struggling, grabbing hold of the bull as one would say and wrestling it. She has lived through too much even during the time the books unfolded (her brother murdered as well as her son, the constant danger they were in) and you can see that that took it's toll on her. Every time she pushed her dark thoughts to the back of her mind she reminded me of Scarlett O'Hara from "Gone with the Wind" because she too used to say something along the lines of "I'll think about this tomorrow", which in itself is a very useful defense mechanism.
All in all, a very sad (in the good way) piece. As always, I love your stories :)
Author's Response: Hey, no worries! Thanks for reviewing :)
I really wanted to put Molly's strength to the test in this story, in terms of her having to deal with the coming end of her life and the loss of the memories she holds so dear. I thought it would be incredibly difficult for her to witness this happening to Arthur, not only because she loves him so much but also because it's almost like foreshadowing for her. I couldn't give her a tragic end, though, because Molly just seems so resilient. Instead, I focused on her pulling together and continuing to press on for Arthur's sake.
The thing that bothers me most about death, on a deeply personal level, is having to lose everything I've gained from life and not being able to spend one more moment enjoying it. Molly's sense of panic stems from my own, which is why I don't think about it very often! Of course, on top of that, as you mentioned, she has to deal with Arthur barely remembering her and their children and grandchildren. Maybe she needs to hold tight to those memories for both herself and him. It's great that you found her to be in character. I'd wanted to write her and Arthur for some time, but they're so iconic and important that I wanted them to be perfect.
Thanks again for this truly lovely review :)