"Lottie," said the dark man. "You're up."

"Yes," I said, my voice a lot better now. Lottie was my name.

"You look bemused," he said.

I must've been studying him closely. "What's your name?" I asked.

He laughed. "Jeremy," he said.

I nodded. But it didn't seem to fit in. "What happened to Midnight?" I queried.

Jeremy frowned. "Midnight, your cat," he said in low tones. "Don't you remember? She died nine years ago, a month before Wolfgang was born."

"Oh." There was a lump in my throat. "And Lizzie, and Minnie? What about them?"

This time Jeremy shot me a funny look.

"Married. Are you okay, Lark? You've seemed a bit confused this morning."

I longed to pour everything out, but I didn't know what to say.

"I'm not very up to date," I said. "Not with it today."

He smiled.

"Can I ask you something, Jeremy?" I said.

He nodded, raising his eyebrows.

"How old am I?"

He bit the inside of his cheek. "A year younger than me, right? I'm thirty-two, so that makes you thirty-one, okay?"

"And how old was I when married?" I said. This was a guess. Surely we were married, though. Just surely.

He murmured a date under his breath and did some quick calculations. Evidently he hadn't thought about it in a while. These things aren't as important to men as they are to women.

"Ten years ago. You were twenty-one."

This took me by surprise. "Twenty-one's quite young, isn't it?"

"Well, I don't know. You were only twenty-two the July before Wolfgang arrived," he said. "Maybe that is young."

I did some quick calculations of my own. "Does that make Wolfgang nine?" I asked.

"Yes, and Wanda is eight, remember?"

I nodded doubtfully. "Okay, okay."

There was a pause.

"I'm going to get dressed now, Jeremy," I said.

I turned to the wardrobe. Goodness know what I'd find in there.

"One thing," said Jeremy before he left.

I turned my head.

"My name's Eric."

The End

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