The A-Z story: installment P
It's what cushions are really for!
Echo explains she has finished by tipping her plate upside down. Claire scoops up leftover clumps of sandwich, stacks the plates, crunches her last wedge of apple while she whisks into the kitchen. Echo climbs up onto the un-cushioned sofa, hollers triumphantly. Claire can’t help but laugh. She returns to the living room and re-poses the cushions; makes a wall to hide behind. Echo slides herself, legs first, to investigate. The wall tumbles. They cheer, and rebuild; cheer, and rebuild. The cheers magnify, the rebuilds wobble, flimsier each time. Laughter swallows them up. Claire lies on the floor, chest heaving, eyes overflowing: strange noises squeeze from her bagpipe lungs. The more hopeless she is, the funnier it becomes. Echo’s giggles reach an explosive frequency. She does a sort of hiccup and sighs.
‘I think,’ Claire says, recovering her breath, looking at the lowing sunlight on the wall; ‘we shall get you scrubbed up, then put a fire in.’