These are the letters from the seventh day of the Grading War. If you landed here by accident and don't know what you're reading, click here for the backstory.
11 December 2011, 9:09am
I know not whether this missive will find you, but I pray that, if it
does, it finds you well. The last report I heard, you were fighting
bravely on the front – as if that word retains any meaning now, with the
whole land submerged in this hopeless and savage war.
The chaos of the world around us is mirrored in the dissolution of my soul. I began this war full of hope, ideals, and convictions,
a sacrificial victim proceeding willingly to the altar of knowledge.
But now my will has been broken, and my hope of leaving the world a
better and wiser place is quickly fleeing. My only wish now is to see an
end to this war. Time should bring a resolution nearer, but it seems to
push it further away, as the enemy prays (if the godless can have
prayers) only for an extension.
What a savage beast we face! How
can he ever be tamed? I hear tell of those who live in squalor, denying
the comforts of repast and toilet so near to hand, only to display their
grit and depravity. Meanwhile, with no supplies in our own camp, and no
one brave enough to seek them out, we waste away pleading for those
provisions that the enemy cheerfully renounces. I am almost ready to
yield to them now, yet I fear the brutality with which my surrender will
I keep you in my prayers, as always, yet (God forgive me!) I know not whether they be heard.
Yours in truth,
Susan B. Satterfield
I take up my pen now, unexpectedly this mid-afternoon, only by virtue
of the blessed report that one of our company's most hard-fought
struggles has, at long last, arrived at an end. Just moments ago, we
put to rest our protracted battle with the opposition's Ethics Class
Company, a regiment that proved itself, over and again, no less brave
and determined and noble as ours.
Despite whatever reports may arrive in advance of this missive, you
should rest assured that ours was not a surrender. It was, rather, a
truce. We met the men and women of the Rebel Ethics Class Company with
the same celebrated determination and resolve that heretofore has
defined the men and women in our ranks. We engaged them with the
Courage and Commitment for which we have come to be known and honoured,
rightly, as soldiers in the Good Fight.
And yet, dear
Charles, we found them so well-equipped for this battle, and so
convincingly so, that we could not help but lay down our far-superior
Grading weapons in respect, in deference to their efforts, if not also
true and abiding admiration of them.
As you are no doubt aware,
we continue to endeavor in this Grading War on several erstwhile
fronts. As I write, even now, still standing at our gates, are the
Rebels from the Existentialism Class Company and, what may be
unimaginably worse, the Political Philosophy Company. i confess that
many in our regiment, including myself, can only pray for a resolution
with them as easy as that we found with the Ethics Class Company. We
pray for that, I confess, almost as desperately as we pray that we might
be spared the indignity of strapping up our boots for another day.
Continue to submit whatever pleas to the Almighty your men are able to
spare for us, dear Charles. We all continue to pray for you and yours.
Forgive me the perpetual hope that this all may soon come to its end,
as it must, in time, surely. In the interregnum I remain, yours in
friendship and, more importantly,
Yours in the Right,
Leigh M. Johnson
PS-I cannot be sure, of course, but I trust you also received the recent missive from our dear friend Susan Satterfield,
who finds herself deep in the trenches of this Grading War. She is so
very brave, so very noble and so very vulnerable, dear Charles. I hope
you can find it within yourself to reply to her post haste, even as that
effort, God forbid, may prevent your reply to me.
Click here to proceed to DAY EIGHT of the Grading War Letters