Copyright© 2012 Angharad
All Rights Reserved.
House-warming, Washington Style, courtesy of the British Government 1814. (A painting by Tom Freeman).
It’s true that I often do things that I want to do, but as an adult, I also have to lots of things because others want me to do them.”
“I’m not an adult,” announced Trish.
“I know that, Trish; if you were I’d not be having this conversation with you.”
“So why are you havin’ it with me?”
“Because I want to help you learn to be the best you there is.”
“That doesn’t make sense, Mummy.”
“If I were to say, to make you the best girl you could be, would that make sense?”
“A bit more.”
“Okay, let’s stick with that then.”
“How did you beat me with the light?”
“I asked the universe to help me shine a light in the darkness.”
“It’s not dark—not yet, Mummy.”
“It was allegorical.” I never learn do I?
“What’s that supposed to mean?”
“It doesn’t matter. Look, I’m bigger than you, have more strength and experience. That’s why I won.”
“That’s not fair, you always win.” She pouted like an eight year old—unsurprising seeing as that’s what she is, I keep forgetting.
“Not always, and your time will come.”
“So you keep telling me.”
“It’s true, a while ago you couldn’t have helped heal my chest like that could you?”
“No, I s’pose not.”
“It’s a bit like conducting electricity, little wires can only cope with low currents, and to transport huge currents you need huge wires, like we see on pylons.”
“Because the strength of the current of electricity would destroy a small wire if we tried to run the large voltage we use on pylons through the wire that feeds your laptop. So the blue light needs to stay within the tolerances of your body size.”
“So when I’m as big as you, I’ll be able to do the things you do?”
“Possibly, there are other provisos, but I would think so.”
“So why can’t Daddy give more power than you, he’s bigger than you?”
“I don’t know, Trish. All I know is the energy seeks out those it wants to use it, so you should feel yourself very special to be chosen by it.”
“Are we unique?” she asked.
“We are as individuals, but as healers, no there are probably many worldwide.”
“Like how many?”
“I don’t know, Trish.”
“Huh, you don’t know much about it at all, do you?” She dismissed me.
“No, I probably don’t—but then, I’m not that interested in knowing too much about it, except that it will always let me know when it wants me to help it.”
“How does it do that, on the Bat phone?”
“Trish, please don’t be so cheeky.”
“Well, you tell me silly things.”
“In which case, this conversation is over. Go and wash your face and hands.”
“Unless you do, you won’t have any dinner.”
“I don’t care.”
“Right, well you can stay up here just for that impudence, I’m also confiscating your laptop.”
“Hey, that’s mine, you can't take my stuff, that’s stealing.”
“No it’s confiscation, and as your mother I’m entitled to do so.”
“I don’t want you as my mother anymore.”
“Fine, we’ll go and see the judge again and you can return to the children’s home.”
“Fine,” she said and sat with her arms folded.
“I’ll be sorry to lose you, but if it’s what you want, then you can go back to the home. Of course, we’ll have to keep all the stuff you have now in case it makes the other children nasty towards you.”
“Why should it do that?” her bottom lip trembled a little as she spoke.
“Because you’ll have so much of everything, clothes, computers, mobile phone and so on. I’ll ask them what most of the kids have, and you can have the same. You’ll need a new school uniform, but they can buy you that.”
“Why will I need a new uniform, Mummy?”
“I’m not your mummy anymore, am I?”
“Who are you, then?” she now began to look a bit anxious.
“I’m Lady Catherine Cameron and you’re Miss Trish Watts. You won’t need your school uniform any longer because you won’t be going to your private school any longer. I pay for that, so unless you can get the home to pay for it, you won’t need it will you, you can go back to the council school.”
“But they used to beat me up.”
“Sorry, Miss Watts, that’s no longer my problem—you’ll have to take it up with the home, won’t you?”
“You mean I can’t stay here?”
“You can tonight, tomorrow first thing I’ll take the others to school and you to the social services office—we can pack the case now if you like.”
“I don’t want to go to the council school.”
“Sorry, Trish, that’s what other children do. If you’re no longer my daughter you’ll have to do the same.” This was tearing me apart inside but she had to learn this lesson.
“I hate you,” she said.
“You’re entitled to feel whatever you like, kiddo. Which nightie or pyjamas do you want to pack?”
“I don’t want to pack.”
“Okay, we’ll do it tomorrow. You’d better think what you’re going to say to the others, apart from goodbye.”
“The others?” A huge tear ran down her face.
“Yes, you’ll have to tell them why you’re leaving, won’t you?”
“Why have I got to leave?”
“We had an understanding.”
“An agreement. I said that as long as you wanted to be my daughter, I would love you as one. However, you just told me that you no longer wanted me as your mother, which means you no longer want to be my daughter. I can’t let you run loose on the streets, so it means the council will have to find somewhere for you to live, which will be a children’s home until they reassess you. That means you’ll be leaving and the others will want to know why. It was your choice.”
Suddenly the huge tear was joined by several equally large blobs of salty water as she burst into tears and clung onto me. “I want you to be my mummy, for always,” she said in a voice which was riven by emotion.
“Are you sure?” I asked quietly of the sobbing mess on my lap.
She nodded and sniffed, “Yes please, Mummy. I’m sorry I was nasty to you.”
“Okay, shall we start again?” I asked but what I was thinking was, I was sorry too, for calling your bluff, but sometimes we have to pull rank.
“Yes, please, Mummy,” she said and I hugged her. I felt my own eyes moisten as I thought I wouldn’t get away with that brinkmanship when she’s a teenager, so if I can knock it on the head now, it might not happen then—yeah, like hell.
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