At the wedding, Doctor Stelzenmuller said, “Tessa, do you know Michael refused to try the prosthetic legs until he learned about your divorce. Then he acted like a ’49er on his way to the gold rush, racing to become proficient so he could get back home.”

Tessa laughed, embarrassed by the truth. “I’ve heard it was your hounding that made him accept them.”

“My efforts were a small factor. Please come along next time I invite him to D.C. Let my soldiers see that they can accomplish normalcy.”

“I’d love to. It would help me understand his achievements better.”

Note: Doctor Claire Stelzenmuller was Michael’s physical therapist while healing at Walter Reed Hospital. Her patients called her Clarice Alphabet because she didn’t accept no for an answer.

Written in response to Charli Mills January 31, 2022, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story about “the ’49ers.”