She had vomited for the whole night. It was something like food poisoning, combined with the stress she accumulated in the last few weeks because of the projects that were so difficult to make happen. Nonetheless, she still had a brunch planned with her boyfriend’s great aunt – yes, despite her 70 years she was really ahead of the game – and she could not miss it.

And even though the little dragons were revolting her stomach in front of the cheese and bacon scones, horseradish latkes with avocado, gravadlax and poached eggs, fried egg Florentine toastie, and brioches baked with crispy bacon, she gave the old aunt Maurie a big smile and started eating.


They were all having a drink in Laura’s house. It was quite a long time since they did not all gather together, although, she and Maurice sometimes had the chance to meet over the last two years because they happened to work in the same street, two buildings far from each other, and so first occasionally, and then intentionally, in a French café in a side street.

“I always remembered me sliding away from big gatherings of people, but I didn’t remember you doing the same” she once confessed to him in front of a Cannel.

He avoided the question that time.

And that was true indeed, even at that party, there was something about him that looked so different from a few years ago. He did not really engage with people anymore, he kept himself distant, like if empathy was not in his range of emotions anymore, protecting his inner side with a thick layer of what it seemed distrust and bad experience.