January 16, 1923
Dearest old Fredibus,
Didn’t I swear up an down to you that I absolutely would NOT (underscored heavily) write you again until I heard from you. I’m just wondering whether you’ve forgotten I’m living thru the day – except when I – like the absolute (pardon the word!) fool that I am – remind you of the fact. And that’s the reason that I didn’t call you or let you know that I was out there this afternoon. I felt that I had been out there Thursday – Sunday, then today.
You’ve told me lots of time, Fredibus, that you enjoy them. Of course you would say that. You’ve always been sweet to me. (more or less, mostly more) and I’ve believed you – but you know, old pal, there’s a strange, very strange, voice that keeps saying to me “You’re running things into the ground + there’s a limit to all things and faster then you realize you’re reaching yours.” I don’t know whether that strange voice is meant just that way – and while I write this, I think. The limits almost here with the letter writing, too. And I promised myself I wouldn’t write. I’ve lived up to it for 5 days and here’s the resolution I made.
They were a lot of empty words anyway. I didn’t mean them as such but, well, it’s funny how bitter one can get at times and I’m awful bitter tonite.
I don’t forget for a moment how wonderfully kind + attentive and sweet you’ve been to me and I adore you for it. The other nite when I was rather out of patience with you, I went upstairs + looked at myself and wondered how it happened that you were the boy to whom I gave my name that nite + why it happened that way. Then I thought of several of the things that you have taught me – mostly how valuable and wonderful a real pal + brother can be to a girl. Then, more of less (I guess you’ll laugh at this) what a little study can do for a blockhead. Then I think of the wonderful times I’ve had with you – That’s when I get sentimental. When I’m really rather blue and bitter, sort of like tonite, well, the eyes in that picture seem to bore holes into my mind + I wonder if you’re thinking of me or perhaps boring holes into some interesting physics book or some engineering stuff. Then I thank my lucky stars you haven’t a picture of me that will bore holed thru you. Oh, but that’s rather taking things for granted. Of course, a boy of your disposition wouldn’t let the mere memory of a few things – said or done – affect you like that.
I don’t know what I started out to say to you or why I wrote this trash. I guess next you’ll be taking back what you said about my letters for I hardly think you’ll find this sort of junk interesting.
Now (pardon the impertinence of this next) I’m wondering how many girls ever told you the things I have said to you in this letter. And how many things you’ve said to me that perhaps they hard, too. Will you ever forgive me for saying that?
Really, I’ll tell you something I’ve never told a boy. and the really way I feel. There’s not another Fred in the world like you. There’s not another boy I’ve ever liked as I like you and perhaps that’s the biggest reason that I’ve done the few things I have for you. And the reason I like you so is because you’re so sweet and absolutely free from that jelly bean mush and the other reasons I’ll tell you some other time.
There has lots of nice things been said about you to me and I’ve realized then that the Fredibus I knew was the kind of boy I’ve always wanted to know. That any girl would be glad to know and I just adore you for what you said to Jack R. + how wonderfully you guarded me – And to me that’s the meaning of a De Molay – a boy a girl can trust. One that you are safe with. Altho my knowlege of De Molay is somewhat limited, that’s what I think it means. And that’s why a De Molay pin should be so valued by a boy. It’s my standby and I’m glad as everything that you are one.
Oh – Fredibus – why am I saying all this to you. One minute I’ll be horribly bitter then I’ll say something real nice. But I’ll tell you sometime when I see you. just why I really like you and all that sort of boredom.
Forgive this letter. I’ve gotten all this out of my system, and I truly feel better. I wonder if you do.
Do you suppose that you will ever read this letter? If you can read, then forget you may, but I wonder if you can.
I’ll have to stop + start in on the studying.
Yours till my pencil points, dearest of the De Molay boys –
I like you heaps!
* DeMolay International and more about it can be found here