Short Story – Mum – Part Eight

It was dark by the time Audrey stood up and decided she would like a cup of tea. The entire contents of the bureau, the letters – which fell like confetti on the carpet – and the suit, all went into the kitchen dustbin, covering the remains of last night’s chicken noodle soup. Sometimes Audrey recycled her food waste, and at other times, she just chucked it. Now, she was particularly grateful for the congealing saucy mess that smeared all over these precious letters. Recycle paper? Not this time.

With a rage, a fury that she had never felt before, Audrey collected every scrap of paper, every peeling corner of envelope and tape and threw them in the rubbish. The suit, so unworn and old-fashioned, went out. The suitcase would have gone too, but Audrey, disinclined to waste, at the last minute, left it where someone would find it and take it home. Look what I found sitting on the curb, Amanda. A lovely retro briefcase…

Pamela came for afternoon tea the following weekend, and noticed that the bureau was missing.

“How are you, Mum?” she asked, glimpsing care in her mother’s eyes.

“I’m fine love, really. Glad to get the clearing finished, to be honest. I think it’s about time we took a holiday, actually. Dad’s pension has been collecting and I think it’s time we spent some of it, don’t you?”

As her daughter nodded in agreement, enthused about hiring a small house for maybe a weekend and taking the whole family, Audrey pulled her into her arms for a hug. “Thank you for being such a wonderful daughter to me.”

My daughter she thought, with pride.


The End


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