LAST WILL AND TESTAMENT OF
BERNADETTE CYNTHIA HEALY
'Grandma, you're late!' Sonia laughs in surprise as she reaches out to hug me and plants a kiss on my cheek. She's known as our last-minute-Annie so no doubt she is enjoying it being me this time.
'Yes, yes. It can happen to anyone you know. Now give me a hug and a kiss and I'll see you on your way. I suppose I can't tempt you to be late for college...'
'Or work?' Clare interjects. 'Sorry Grandmum, no such luck for me. I love you, but I really have to go.' She too places a kiss on my cheek, but neglects to give me a hug and manages to pass by me without doing so.
'Sorry girls. I'll try and see you both another time, maybe this weekend?'
They nod and rush away, their lives far more interesting than spending time with their old Grandmother.
I enter the house, hearing that Polly is in the kitchen and allow myself a moment of composure. I'm not sure why I as so eager to share all the information I have found. Won't this while debacle bring up some traumatic memories that my children had to live through all over again?
'Mum?' Polly's voice interrupts my panicked thoughts and I respond with a quick 'coming dear'.
Polly is sitting at the kitchen counter, croissants and jams lie atop the wooden surface, beckoning me to enter.
'Oh I am sorry I was so late Polly. Traffic was dreadful and I completely forgot what it was like at this time in the morning. The girls won't be too disappointed will they?' I do feel terrible.
'I wouldn't worry about it mum. They see you all the time, and we'll probably be around this weekend if you're not off sleuthing your heart out. Have a croissant. They're the ones you like from the market. Dan got them for me yesterday. I notice that you didn't manage to bring any cakes of your own?'
'That was lovely of him. Yes, apologies, it seems I'm not quite all there today.' I frown, wondering if there's anything else I've forgotten in my old age.
Polly rummages with her back to me in silence. I pick up a plate and begin to butter a croissant, waiting to see how my daughter will react. Eventually she turns and places a tea tray in between us on the counter, next to the jams.
'I suppose it was only ever going to turn out this way,' she states rather matter-of-factly.
'Meaning?' and I feel sure I've somehow lost the thread of this already convoluted conversation.