If anything should happen to me I’d like you to do a few things that while I was here I didn’t seem to be able (or for that matter, had no point in saying) to tell. Or ask, of you.
Above all, I don’t want you to blow the old top! I expect you to be upset – that is human enough.
But these are the things I want you to do. I couldn’t tell you them – it would sound all so silly and melodramatic.
Go for a trip or something. Don’t hang around the house we lived in. Wipe all the half-wits you and I know are half-wits. Get rid of Molly. And for Christ’s sake don’t finish up the widow Vi. Get married.
Don’t panic. You’ll be getting more money than even you know what to do with. What with office compensation, my insurance, remains of my mother’s property, and your own people’s estate, you will be worth about £5,000. You don’t have to let a cheap hick get hold of you. I would hate the guts of that. Don’t sell your mother’s house. Don’t sell my property. Lend £1,000 to Jack at 5% – he could use it. All in all you should be able to get about £5 to £6 per week without doing a tap.
Please always be a little bit in love with me. Within my pretty lousy way I have loved you. Unspectacularly maybe – but there has been no other.
Please don’t lose that little baby. Perhaps I’m sloppy – but I’d like to leave something behind to justify the old existence.
I love you – at times, wildly, deliriously, and without reason. I have loved you.
Too bad I think that there is nothing after all this. I’d have liked to have seen you.
[This letter was probably never revealed to Jess till later. It may have been in a sealed envelope, or it may have been given to an associate to give to her in case Bill was killed whilst overseas.]
Note: Bill left for Townsville on 9 January 1944 (Ref: DVA File No. X336636)