Standing at the kitchen window, she takes another sip of coffee and stares at the plastic bricks scattered across the patio. Sharp-cornered blocks of every shape and size have turned the paving slabs into a multi-coloured minefield. She can still hear the crash they made as Dylan hurled his latest creation out of the door.
‘What did you do that for?’ she’d shouted, startled from her calculations by the sound.
‘You weren’t looking!’ he’d shouted back, eyes bright with tears, anger mottling his cheeks.
She’d sighed. ‘Mummy was busy. I asked you to wait a minute.’
‘No you didn’t. You didn’t say anything. You just kept looking at the computer.’ With a fling of his arm, he’d knocked the papers she’d been holding out of her hand and onto the floor. ‘You’re always on the computer.’
‘Dylan! That’s enough. Go to your room.’
She turns away from the window and looks at the laptop on the table. Dylan’s face smiles back at her. Dylan at the beach. Dylan at the park. Dylan at the zoo. Dylan’s first tooth. Dylan’s first step. Dylan’s first day at school. The photos drift across the screen.
Turning back to the kitchen window, she takes a last sip of coffee, and after sweeping up the bills from the floor, she sits back down at the laptop and reopens her spreadsheet.
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