Poor old James Simmons was seventy eight and not a well man. A visit to the doctor and subsequently the hospital confirmed his worst fears. He was diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer and given six months to live at best.

He was quite calm and rational, grateful for the time he had left to get everything organised, after putting his life in order financially, he made his final will and wrote the following letters to his two estranged sons.



Hello Adam, I know it’s been some time since we conversed – proper civilised conversation anyway.


Are you still married to that awful woman? Do you have any children?  I hope not because any offspring from such as you both would be an unbearably spoilt and arrogant little brat.

Why couldn’t you have been like your brother and married a respectable girl, instead of that grasping greedy woman that you have picked up with.

Do you still live in that house that she convinced her aunt to sign over to her before she died, cutting everybody else in her family out of any inheritance. Why would you want a six bedroom mansion for just the two of you anyway? It was just pure greed which you seemed pleased to be a part of.

If you are interested, I am writing to you because I have reached the final chapter in my life. I have been diagnosed with cancer and have been given a maximum of six months to live.

I am not expecting a reply as the last I saw of you was when I disowned you and that woman and as far as I was concerned that was the end of our relationship for ever.

Don’t expect me to leave you anything when I go, you evil pair have more than enough of someone else’s money in the bank as it is.

I am extremely disappointed with you and your dear Mother would have been broken hearted with your behaviour. This has not been an easy letter to write but I feel that it had to be said before it is too late.

I have instructed my solicitor to inform you when I have gone.






Hello Paul, it’s been some time since we conversed but I realise how busy you must have been. How is Mary she was always a bonny girl and I was very happy when you two got married. When you went to live in Greece I was pleased for you both. How is the business, thriving I hope, that’s probably why I haven’t heard from you for a year or so. You are so busy I don’t suppose there is any chance of a baby yet, a pity because I am sure that he or she will be a credit to you. Still there’s plenty of time for you both.

I’m sorry to have to tell you both that I have been diagnosed with terminal cancer and can only expect six months left at best.

I would like to see you both again, but if you are too busy I understand. Rest assured that whatever is left when I am gone will come to you both. I hope you will use the money to expand your business.

Please don’t worry about me I had a good life with your dear mother and I accept my fate my mind is at peace and I will hopefully pass away in a hospice. I have instructed my solicitor to inform you both of my wishes.


Love to you both






Dear Mr Simmonds


Allow me to introduce myself I am the Accounts director of St Georges Medical Clinic in Thessaloniki Greece. Any post for Mr Paul Simmonds is re-directed here.

Mr Paul has been in our care in a coma for about a year after being found at his house by the police tied up and virtually starved to death.

He had been tortured and beaten extensively presumably to force him to transfer all of his money and business interests to his captors.

The house and the business have both been sold and his wife and his ex business partner have fled the country together.

Nobody knows where they are, probably South America.


There was nobody to contact with regard to payment for the treatment for Mr Paul so I am really glad to hear from you.

As you can imagine the medical costs have been mounting up over the past year, so any inheritance for Mr Paul will be gratefully received by the hospital.

I look forward to hearing from your solicitor after your death if you can arrange for the transfer of funds before the end I will be grateful.

Yours sincerely


Costas Fortunas




Hello Dad

We were both very surprised and saddened to hear your news. I am sorry that you regard our life style choice with such disdain. It really isn’t how you see it you know.

Carrie has converted the house into a hospice for patients with a terminal illness in accordance with the wishes of her aunt Betty. We have a dedicated staff during the day but the rest of the time we run it between us. As you can imagine twenty four hour care, seven days a week doesn’t leave us very much time for making babies.

Unfortunately the money that Carrie’s aunt Betty left us has proved to be insufficient. Once the conversion of the house was paid for, there was nothing left to enable us to run the hospice. We applied for government funding but as usual that turned out to be minimal. We have had to look for charitable donations and have a really willing and hard working band of fund raisers but as you would expect it is an uphill struggle.

When Carrie heard of your condition, she immediately put you at the head of the list for our hospice care. We will call you as soon as a place becomes available which hopefully will be soon.

Look after yourself Dad until then.


All our love


Adam and Carrie.


1019 words Michael White 2020

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