Charles had made it through the briefing, lunch, an afternoon’s close quarter battle training and was now drinking an after dinner brandy, slowly, on his own in the officers mess. He wanted to continue to drink on his own. The mess sergeant behind the bar could see that and was leaving him alone, the drunk captain sat next to him, was not so astute.
“Come on old chap, cheer up, it can’t be all that bad can it?”
“I have told you already that I’d rather not talk to you about it. Now please leave me in peace captain.”
“Let me buy you another drink?”
Charles turned to the officer, handed him his unfinished drink and stood up.
“My wife is dead. I had a very small amount of love for this world, caused by my great love of her and what she had taught me. I wished to spend this evening, quietly remembering her in a way that she would have approved of. You sir have made that quite impossible. Good night.”
Charles walked from the mess, leaving the drunk officer reeling in his wake. He had a bottle in his quarters, he would continue his solemn remembrance there.