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She found it in a suitcase. Drew it out and lay it on the duvet. Its lace was plum, a filigree of looping leaves that cupped as fingers. She knew it wasn’t hers.

She left it there and went downstairs. Turned the percolator on and let the gurgles fill her head. Mahogany drops fell and splashed on top of each other.

In the living room she took down a bottle and held it up to the light. It glistened the same gold as the ring she wore. She twisted it open. It crackled.

She made an Irish coffee. It was more Irish than coffee. Over at the window the sun came out. The grass swayed in a dance.

The phone rang. She watched it and sipped. Her throat was warm, her stomach curled in knots.

His voice rang out. “Hi honey. I’m in the airport. The plane was delayed as usual. I’m just gonna jump in a cab and make my way home. See you soon.”

She downed the cup in one. She made another. With jaded eyes she looked around and moved from room to room.

She took everything in. Let photographs rouse memories cast aside. She sat in his chair and inhaled.

In careful steps she climbed the stairs. Her body was alight with tingles. She closed her eyes and wished.

It was still there. She put the cup down and stared again. She had never owned anything that nice.

She went into the bathroom and searched. Through drawers, through cupboards. She found a scissors in the medicine cabinet.

By the clasp she picked it up. It dangled in anticipation of a body. She focused on a leaf and cut. It split apart. She laughed.

Each cut made confetti at her feet. She imagined they were cherry blossoms. She gathered them in a bag.

She went outside and found a trowel. Beside the daffodils she dug. The bag dropped into the hole with a clunk. She covered it with earth.

Washing the dirt from her hands she looked. She didn’t recognise the person staring back. She gurgled with mouthwash.

In the kitchen she flicked on the radio. She opened the fridge and took out some bacon. Slicing open the packet she laid the pieces out in rows and smiled. She knew what he needed.

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