‘I’ll see you later Mum,’ Laura whispered to the wind. She pulled her coat around her shoulders. Strode away. Fred braked in front of her with a wide smile spread across his face.
‘Laura love, it’s been ages.’
‘It has Fred, how’s the arthritis?’
Fred roared with laughter. ‘Not killed me yet.’
‘Nothing much will kill you Fred.’
‘You seeing your mum today then?’ He said.
He never remembered the argument, which caused her to leave home. There were times when he still thought Laura was the same awkward teenager on an errand for her mum. The other neighbours ignored her in the street. That didn’t matter. She ignored them too.
‘No, I’ve got a job interview today.’
‘Well good luck then to you girl. I reckon they would be stupid not to give you the job.’
Laura had been looking forward to her first interview since giving up her job when Tabitha was a baby. They didn’t need the money, but Martin understood her need for independence.
There was another reason why she wanted to work in the library. Laura and her mum had often taken refuge within its quiet walls. They could be themselves there. To laugh and giggle at the world without any repercussions. Their voices were louder in the library than they ever were at home.
It was the only place Laura felt safe and close to her mum. If she closed her eyes, the past could be forgotten – for a little while at least – and the present could grow.