Title: Handwritten Letters
Characters: Tosh, Tosh’s mother.
Summary: Tosh and her mother exchange handwritten letters.
Word Count: 403
Written For: My own prompt ‘Torchwood, Tosh, She writes to her mother in Japanese,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
On thick, heavy white paper, Tosh writes letters to her mother in Japanese, telling her of the normal, everyday things while avoiding any mention of Torchwood. It’s her escape from the life she lives, a way of focussing on the ordinary and pushing work to the back of her mind.
Writing is soothing; it calms her after even the hardest, most terrible of days. No matter how on edge she feels, when she picks up her brush and dips it in the pot of ink, her trembling hands steady and she breathes more easily, the tightness in her chest melting away. The scent of ink and paper are a balm to her raw nerves, and when she concentrates her attention on the kanji flowing from the tip of her brush, everything else ceases to exist.
She writes about the weather, the way the buds are bursting on the trees, unfurling fresh green leaves and colourful blossoms, delicate and fragile-seeming in the chill spring air. She tells of how her neighbour came to her assistance when her washing machine flooded the kitchen while she was out, and of the stray kitten she’s been feeding. Shopping trips, the new skirt she bought, the lamentable quality of the tea she was served in a café last week, and what she watched on television the night before; all of the minutiae of a single woman’s life find their way into her letters, reminding her that life isn’t all hostile aliens, dangerous technology, and working long hours.
When the ink is dry, she seals her letters in crisp, white envelopes, addresses them in her neat, careful handwriting, and posts them on her way to work the next day, feeling lighter and happier, as if a weight has been lifted from her heart. In a week or two, she’ll arrive home to find a letter on her doormat, her address written in handwriting as familiar to her as her own. She’ll shower, change into comfortable clothes, fix herself something to eat and put on some music. Then she’ll curl up on the sofa, slit open the envelope with a knife from the kitchen, and immerse herself in reading about recent events in her mother’s life.
No matter how far apart they may be, the letters bridge the miles between mother and daughter, forming an unbreakable connection; they’re Tosh’s lifeline, and she treasures them more than anything else she owns.