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‘Do you want some more tea?’ her sister asked, ‘might sober you up a bit more’

She had already had two and they had not done what tea is supposed to do.

‘No, no more.’ Exhaling slowly to quench the sick feeling rising from her stomach, she looked at her sister in despair. ‘I think I should have called the police’

Her sister met her desperate stare with agitation. ‘Don’t be stupid. I’m sure it was a dog. The police don’t need to be called. Especially if you’re still drunk.’

‘How do you know it was a dog?’ The panic was palpable and as she fumbled with her phone once more to check the local news reports, she searched her memory for the breathing exercises she had learned last year. None came.

‘Do you want to get into trouble for ringing the police about nothing? That’s a serious crime you know. Let’s leave it until tomorrow. When it’s brighter we can go out and check. Ok?’

She nodded passively.

The kitchen was expansive. No heat came from the large crimson cooker in the centre and the tiles echoed the coldness the house held, especially tonight.

The two woman sat at the table a while longer, the truth heavy in the night air.



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