24th August /15
My very dear Cyril
It was a great relief to get your wire on Monday morning and hear that you are at Malta and getting on well; we are of course most anxious to get more particulars and much hope that your wound is not too serious and is of a nature that can be quite cured.
When we look at the casualty lists and see how scarcely your Battalion has suffered, we feel most thankful that your life has been spared, but I fear you must have gone through a terrible time the few days before you were wounded. When we look at the photograph of your fellow officers and think what a number of them have been killed or injured, it makes me feel very sad. Mela has been splendid, so brave and hopeful, she was very pleased to have May and Kath over one day last week, and she will be coming to us for next Sunday which is her day off. Aunt Edith and Marian are staying with us and pleased to think they will see her. We have had heaps of letters of sympathy about you and many kind messages to you, among them one from Aunt Fanny who sends her love and wants to know of any little delicacy you might like; she knows you are not a sucker.
Your little niece was born the day you were wounded, the 12th (at least that is the date given in the WO telegram), very likely you have not yet received our letters telling you that Arthur and Mary have a daughter, she and Mary are getting on well; Arthur hopes to get home this week but not quite sure yet. I wonder whether he will be sent back to Rouen or elsewhere.
Jack and the girls are very busy with the plums, they are a tremendous crop and there are heaps of apples and pears too. I had a few lines from Mrs Brown Constable today, very concerned about you and asking me to send news as soon as we had any. How are you off for papers or books in hospital? Would you like some sent? We shall look out eagerly for your first letter. Mela sent me on a very kind letter from Dr Baker, she had let him know that you had been wounded. Now dear Boo, I must end, you have many prayers for your recovery and future safety.
Very much love, dear, from your loving mother
Eugénie N Sladden
PS – Flora Orchard was married on 12th to Captain H Stebbing.