Millie placed the serving dish on the white linen.

Margaret smiled. Edmund frowned.

“What is this, Margaret?”

“Pot roast.”

“What’s today?”


“What day has my family always eaten pot roast?”

“Sunday,” Margaret calmly answered, filling her plate with juicy meat, savory carrots, nicely browned potatoes and onions.

“Tuesday is lamb chops.”

“Well, it’s time for a change. We both love pot roast, so why wait until Sunday?” Margaret happily helped herself to seconds. After a slight hesitation, Edmund joined her. He had to admit the Tuesday pot roast was a special treat. Why not? He secretly admired his new bride’s tendency to disregard age-old traditions.

Millie finally cleared the table and brought in their favourite raspberry tarts.

“No pudding?” Edmund was starting to appreciate the unexpected.

“A topsy-turvy day!” Margaret’s voice bubbled with laughter.

“Upset established routines,” Margaret had told the ladies. “Introduce variety and change.”

Edmund noticed something different about Margaret this evening.

“New dress?” He was proud of her beauty and sense of style, happy he could provide her with food, a home, lovely clothes.

“Three new dresses, actually. One for me and two for my less fortunate friends.”

Edmund stared at her. But again, why not? It wouldn’t hurt him to help struggling women. He had more money than he would ever need, and he loved making Margaret happy.

“Notice the colors?”

She stood up, turning this way and that to show off the white dress with its rows of delicate ruffles down the back and tucks down the front. Each ruffle was tinged in purple, each tuck displayed a fold of green.

“Suffragette colors, Edmund.”

“Wear the colors. Feel your strength. Women can accomplish anything,” Margaret encouraged her ladies.

“No!” Here he must draw the line. “Those lawbreaking, window-smashing harpies …”

“Not my troops, Edmund. We’re committed to peaceful changes. But we need your help!”

Edmund and his cronies made the laws. He looked thoughtful.

“Financial autonomy. Education. Running for office. Voting. Not much to ask, Edmund.”

“You know, my dear, I need a new cravat. White, green and purple would look good on me.”

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1 year ago

A well-wrought depiction of life at a particular time and place, with a universal truth at its heart. A story of the good news of persuasion and the opening of minds rendered with spirit and wit.  

Greene M Wills
Greene M Wills(@greene-m-wills)
1 year ago

Very nicely done, Fuji! Lady Windermere’s fan meets Mrs Pankhurst and a new order that changed life forever for women! Maybe we need to be recognised again…

Allan Neil
Allan Neil(@allan-neil)
1 year ago

Gentle persuasion. Beats throwing oneself in front of a horse. I wonder how close to the truth this story is, Fuji. Quiet, drawing room discussion versus sensational headlines. Very British and bang on the truth. Well done, Fuji!

Allan Neil
Allan Neil(@allan-neil)
Reply to  Fuji
1 year ago

Pleasure, Fuji. I try to be ‘internationale’ in outlook, being more Scottish than British, which, to a not so lowly American is a bit like saying I’m more Iroquois than Apache! All that aside, your story is a cracker which deserves to be among the front runners.

Christer Norrlof
Christer Norrlof(@christer-norrlof)
1 year ago

Beautiful “scenes from a marriage,” Fuji. Margaret is a modern and bold young lady, and her husband turns out to be, although traditional, open and flexible. Their mutual love and respect for each other seems to be what makes the “upsetting of established routines” work without causing war within the family. The fact that women like Margaret succeeded in getting men like Edmund as “recruits,” agreeing with the suffragettes, certainly was good… Read more »

Margarida Brei
Margarida Brei(@margarida-brei)
1 year ago

Oh yes, Margaret has as much spirit as Emmeline Pankhurst. They both “shook society into a new pattern…”

Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
1 year ago

I did enjoy this story, Fuji, a nice uplifting suffragette tale. I did love that she managed to engage her more traditionalist husband in her activities. Well done.

Marianna Pieterse
Marianna Pieterse(@marianna-pieterse)
1 year ago

Fuji, I enjoyed how Margaret just did what she felt was right, whether it was tradition or not. I am glad that Edmund was open to her new ideas. I’m grateful to the women in the past who made things easier for us today.

Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
1 year ago

This scene in a marriage is enviable. A husband who knows how to understand and respect his woman’s decision and not throw bad words or yell at his wife is admirable. I also like how Margarets handles her traditionalist husband. Well done.

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