“How are you feeling now?” she said, as she sat on the bed beside him, soothing his head with a cool flannel.
“Not very well, Mummy.” He shifted around, uncomfortable in his sweaty pyjamas.
“What can I get you for your dinner?” she knew she had to get some food inside him. ‘Feed a cold, starve a fever.’ She remembered what her mother had told her.
“I don’t want anything. I’m NOT hungry.” Was ALL he said.
“You’ll have to have something. Build you up.” she got up and straightened her pinafore.
“That soup.” He shouted after her, as she disappeared into the kitchen.
He would eat something, for the first time in days. So she allowed herself a smile as she reached for the tin from the cupboard.
She knew that he would eat this, his favourite. The chip pan was already bubbling away and they would be ready soon.
“Would you like a few chips in it as well?” She didn’t wait for his affirmation, for she knew he would. She smiled again. Continue reading
He was white as he lay there. As white as he had ever been in his life, which was now as ebbed away as a life could be.
The small crowd that had formed was starting to drift away. Nothing more to be seen here.
For nothing was going to happen now, as the paramedics began to wrap up their gear and load the body onto the collapsible gurney one of them had fetched from the ambulance. Continue reading
The song came clearly on the breeze. That soft breeze you get in the tropics that brushes away the heat and humidity just enough.
You can hear it now, pitifully meandering up and down the scale as though it’s lost something and struggles to find it.
And you are taken away, to another time, in another place, where you heard it before. You were much younger then and you knew then, you would come to this.
A lonely beach, across the seas, so in the love that the song describes. Undulating and intense. Lost, yet found.
And you cry again.
Slowly, the earth moved and as it did, Emily flinched slightly. It was only the slightest of movements, but a twitch of her eyebrow and the tiniest of tremblings at one side of the mouth was visible.
She had been waiting for that movement for several hours already, yet even when it came, and despite her having tensed most of the movable parts of her body for much of that time, she still could not help be a little surprised.
Even though it was closer now, she resisted the temptation to run, despite her fear of what might happen. Her tender age and all that she had been through in her moderately short life, had prepared her for this. Continue reading