Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

Free copy left
You can read our best books
Irina M. Gudkowna would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Only the Song Remains

By Irina M. Gudkowna All Rights Reserved ©

Other / Drama

P r o l o g u e

H e whistled a melancholic song about the Northern Heath, his home, as he strode out through the dew-fresh grass at the edge of the forest. He and his colleagues had sung that song many times during the war when marching along the dusty roads in Italy.

The war.

As the memories flooded back and the pain became unbearable, he stopped. On his shoulder was a bundle of twigs to construct a broom for his mother. He eased the bundle down and let the twigs collapse on the path. Then he removed his black beret and ran his fingers through his dark hair. He had been so young, only 19 years, when, because of his good education, he had been summoned to take charge of 180 men as a lieutenant. Good men were becoming sparse in 1942. Somehow he had coped. Probably not very well, he thought, but who cares? It was 1949 and life was back to normal. Or so it should have been. So many of those men under his command had died… comrades, friends, fellow soldiers. He felt responsible somehow, guilty, unhappy, and the ones that lived to tell the tale would remember a struggling young lieutenant, more eager to make friends than war. Two of his younger brothers had been killed during the conflict, and he had seen many men wounded and dying, not all of them Germans. They could have been friends with whom to share a bottle of wine, a few cigarettes and a hearty laugh. Instead they had to be regarded as enemies. He was good at making friends, carefree and jovial as he was, and he had loathed the open hostility of the war. He rubbed his forehead as if to wipe away those painful thoughts.

Mustn’t think about it anymore, must try and remember the good bits, there were good bits too… His agile mind combed through the memories when suddenly his lean face lit up with a smile. Ah yes, the olive tree, that was a good one. He and his comrades had mistaken it for a plum tree, and charging towards it, hungry and in expectation of a rare treat, they found themselves with mouthfuls of harsh tasting fruit bearing no resemblance to plums at all. Disappointed, they spat the unpalatable fruit in all directions. He could still feel the harshness

of those olives on his tongue. Wasn’t much of a laugh at the time, but in hindsight he could see the funny side of it. Couldn’t talk about it of course, people didn’t want to talk about the war, or anything connected with the war, let alone listen. Forget it, it’s finished, life goes on. That’s where the problem lay: he couldn’t. “Find yourself a Deern, a nice girl, and settle down, Wilhelm. That’ll keep you occupied,” his mother’s advice had been. Well, he wouldn’t find her here in the dew-damp grass at the edge of the forest. He sighed. Replacing his beret and picking up his bundle again, he headed for home.

As he strode down the narrow path through the meadow, he noticed a figure in the distance, bending down to pick something up. Screwing up his eyes against the morning sun, he discerned a young woman with thick auburn hair glowing fiercely in the brightness of the summer morning. Wilhelm stood in amazement for a moment or two. Who was she? What was she doing here? He slowed his pace. Noiselessly, keeping a close eye on the young woman, he walked towards her. His heart beat faster and his mind raced to think up the perfect thing to say. She looked up and let out a startled little gasp, clinging the bunch of harebells she had been picking to her ample bosom. Staring at him wide-eyed, she blushed and took a few steps backwards.

“Hello.” He smiled at her, heart pounding. “Nice, those harebells. One of my favourites they are. Lovely shade of blue, don’t you think?” He nodded toward the flowers in her tight grip. She relaxed her fingers and giggled, lowering her eyes.

“Yes, yes they are… very dainty.” Her voice trailed away, and looking up again she met his inquisitive gaze. She was mesmerised by the intensity of his look, as he was bewitched by the vibrant sparkle in her clear green eyes. So they stood knee-deep in the summer meadow gazing at each other in amazement, utterly lost for words, the only sound being the cheerful song of the lark, soaring in the uninterrupted blue of the summer morning sky.

Get Free Copy
Free copy left
You can read our best books
Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

Angel S. Adames Corraliza: Sensational! As a fan of superheroes, I have to say, you have a real winner of a story so far. I like that you made Allison a Wonder Woman expy, but kept her likable and relate-able in this first chapter. You showed us the Mother while also glancing at the Superhero, which I think is important to...

rajastreet: I enjoyed this piece! I loved the treatment of time and the premise! Some of the wording seemed a little out of place, but easily overlooked for a good a plot.

Melderise: This is just an amazing novel that teaches you how to break the bonds of reality. It shows how the most fascinating story can start from the most regular environment and then leading the reader to the dream destinations...

Ben Gauger: Kudos go to Liz Aguilar, author of To Have And to Hold a fast-paced, gripping, adrenaline rush from start to finish, one of perhaps the finest pieces of writing I've ever read, in particular because of its' telenovela-like feel, May she continually find success as an author. Bravo my dear, bravo!

ernbelle: When I first started this story I was a little unsettled by all of the information that appears in the prologue, and wasn't sure if I would continue. However, I am very glad I did. The plot was very well thought out and really interesting. There were not any page breaks or markers to acknowledge ...

Janaki Sundararaman: The frame of the story has a beautiful structure on which the narration is spun with twists and turns tolook forward with lots of expectations about the coming chapters.There are many characters in the story line,all woven into intricate style to speak the story in its own way.The protagonist is ...

ianwatson: The comedy is original and genuinely funny, I have laughed out loud many times reading this book. But the story and the plot are also really engaging. The opening two or three chapters seem quite character-dense but they all soon come to life and there is no padding, filling or wasted time readin...

M.L. Bull: Hello, Aalia!Your story compelled the emotional pain and struggle of a teenage girl very well.. The imagery was also convincing and well-written, showing the different personalities of your characters and their actions. However, I do think that many of your sentences are too lengthy and could use...

aeratheninja: Interestingly enough, this story touches on different psychological states and was very informing, on top of being a solid story. Although somewhat predictable, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this; I could feel the fear and the frustration of the characters, and was happy when they were happy.Even ...

More Recommendations

mrh: This interesting take on the Harry Potter series fascinated me from line one on. I am in love with this tale and its characters and cannot wait to read the next chapter. I look forward to more soon.When can I expect the next chapter? I am so excited to read it!

Jessie: I wrote a review on fanfiction but I thought it would be fitting to write on on here too :) This story was honestly stunning. I am a budding writer myself and to read this- to FEEL this- reminded me of why I am honoured to have this passion and drive for a craft that is just so raw and beautiful.

Ashley Stryker: So I'm writing this review, keeping in mind that this is a work in progress and it's part of National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), so my "deeper" critiques will be saved until it's all finished up.+ Chapter One: A stewardess would not talk to anyone quite like that, particularly a clear minor...

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral stories!

FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"

The Cyneweard

Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral story!

Ro-Ange Olson: "Loved it and couldn't put it down. I really hope there is a sequel. Well written and the plot really moves forward."