Pay Day

Fort Riley, Kans.
Sept. 30, 1942

Darling:

Got your letter yesterday, but didn’t have a chance to answer it last nite, and am doing this during study hall tonite.

We were out on the range all day today, and it was just a bit warm and breezy. I must have put away a gallon of water today, and my lips are all dry and burning again. Wish your lips were near to cool them.

Today was payday, and I’m going to send you at least $75°° as soon as I can get to the post office for a money order. If I can’t get to the post office tomorrow or the next day, I’ll send it to you by telegraph. My total pay check, after deductions for bonds, insurance and laundry, was $121.55, so don’t worry about my shorting myself. I don’t really need much in the way of spending money, but I may do a little bit of uniform buying between now and Nov. 1st. Inasmuch as I don’t intend to do very much buying, I thought it would be best to send you as much as possible this month, and not so much next month. You can very likely get your wedding debts squared around this month, and then it won’t be so hard for you to save a little. The way I have it figured now, at the present rate of pay, and considering the cost of uniform, etc., I’ll draw enough to pay for my uniform, send you in the neighborhood of $100°°, and leave enough for us to live on until the next payday. On that basis, do you think we can get together immediately after graduation? I sure hope we can, darling, because I miss you terribly, really I do, and it will be worse if we can’t be together soon after Nov. 28th. I probably will be able to get credit on part of my uniform, so as to give us a bit more margin on our first  month.

I’m glad you got to go to hear Henry Busse. Wish we could have gone together. Am also glad that you are enjoying staying with Ida. Please, darling, have as much fun as you can, but please, please don’t forget that there’s a certain fellow in Fort Riley who is very much in love with you, and likes to hear from you often. Please think of him often. And though he isn’t worthy of you, please don’t let anyone steal you away from him.

Darling, I have the utmost confidence in the success of our marriage, no matter what others may say. Remember, above all, that I love you with my whole heart and soul; that my love can never change; that no matter what happens, what people say, our love will make our marriage a success. So please, darling, don’t even feel otherwise. I think you love me as much as I do you, at least I hope so. There is no other person in the world for me, darling, remember that. If ever I should lose you now, life wouldn’t have any flavor for me. From then on, nothing would be worthwhile, there wouldn’t be anything left for me. From that time on, nothing could ever mean anything. I’ve given you my heart and soul, completely, absolutely. So please, please don’t feel that anything will ever come between us, that our marriage will ever be anything but a complete success.

If I could only hold you close again and tell you how much in love with you your husband is, I’m sure you’d not fear for our happiness. Together, we’ve always been completely happy and content, haven’t we? It is only when we’re apart that we feel blue and depressed. So please say that we will be able to be together immediately after Nov. 28th. The only time I’m completely happy is when I’m with you, when you are in my arms, responding to my kisses, holding me as close and as tightly as I do you. Each night I talk to your picture and after I go to bed, I carry on the conversation, telling you how much I love you and miss you. I recall sweet incidents in our good times together, how we waded in Silver Creek, how we watched the moon from the hotel window in Seattle, how we walked in the moonlight along the shore at Seaside, ad and dozens of other little incidents. If it were not for thoughts like those, there would be nothing but loneliness in my life here. Being away from you is pure misery except when I think of those moments, or when the thought comes that we will soon be back together.

There’s a test in the morning, so I must close for now. Good night, darling. Your husband loves you terribly, and misses you terribly. Write as soon and as often as possible.

Lovingly, your
Jim

Ed. Note—This letter has a bit of shorthand at the end. If you can read Gregg shorthand and you’d like to take a stab at what it says, please do type it out in the Comments!

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