Tina knew she shouldn’t have gone to that party with Robert . . .
I gave you my own name, and we shared it for fourteen days . . .
The Mayfair was over, the lights turned off, the bran tub emptied, the decorations taken down and locked in cupboards safely. The bouncy castle stood still, awaiting the workmen who would remove it tomorrow. The gates to the schoolyard were shut, and the sentry assumed duty. No one saw the boy in black . . .
My son saw women peel their skin from their bones and burn their bodies out like cane fire before bed . . .
Naga raced across the floor. She knew if she crawled, the pebbles would dig into her skin and make her sore. She made for the nearest pole and climbed to the highest rafter, where she curled up and watched the man on the crocus-sack mattress, grunting and writhing . . .
The rain stops now and I shake my head to fling the last drop off my big straw hat. It have a freezing trickle of water running down my arm, a silver ball escaping down to the tip of my finger. Forest rain does be like that: cold in the humidity, shining like hell when the light touch it . . .
It was hard to resist the lure of Miss Chantal. Her silky-smooth waist-length hair was as dark as her haunting round eyes, set a little too far apart in her heart-shaped face . . .
At night you lie awake, kept up by the sounds of running feet and children’s eerie laughter . . .