That evening, while I'm trying to get Seb to eat dinner, I realise that I was so interested in Trish's eyes that I forgot to look what she was wearing. I shake my head at myself.
Seb walks into the kitchen and I hear a plate smash. When I go in, he's just staring at the shards of porcelain like he's never seen a broken plate before.
His dinner, of which he's eaten about two mouthfuls, is covering the floor.
"I dropped it," he says absently.
I groan and clean up the mess, and he just watched silently.
"Seb, I'm going to bed now," I tell him, locking the back door. "Turn the lights off when you come upstairs."
And I go to my room, where I am Lola, and scream into my pillow.
I will never tell Seb how stressed he makes me.
The Easter holidays have started and I'm absolutely dreading it.
We have to spend ten whole days in our house, with pretty much nowhere else to go.
School holidays are when our mother decides to show herself, and she's never sober when she does. She does everything she can to let herself think she's a good parent, but nothing to actually be one.
The last time she said something to me that wasn't an insult, an order, or nonsensical drunken slur was about seven months ago.
The only good thing about the holidays is that Nannie comes down to our house to look after us. I once asked her why only in the holidays.
She said, "Lola, when you have school, you are out of the house for eight hours a day, and your mother doesn't emerge from her room. In the holidays you have nowhere to escape from. Besides, she's the one who needs to be taught, not you."