“Dad couldn’t even remember me,” Clare cried out.
Amy rose slowly. She walked around the sofa until she stood in front of Clare. “Clare, I’m so sorry you have to find out this way.”
Amy stepped forward and wanted to hug Clare but Clare shrunk back.
Clare said, “You don’t have to pretend to be sorry.”
“Oh, come on, Clare,” said Amy. “When are you going to grow up?”
“There you go again,” said Clare. “Always treating me like a baby.”
“You are behaving like a baby!”
“If you don’t want me to behave like one, then stop treating me like one!” Clare cried out.
Amy threw her hands up in the air. “I give up. I really don’t know what to say to you.”
Amy turned and walked back to sit down, the back of her head facing Clare.
Clare said, “There are many things you don’t know.”
Derrick suddenly jerked his head to look at Clare. Clare ignored him. In time, she would tell her sister about what happened on the kitchen table. Would this be the right time?
Amy snorted. “What is it that I don’t know? I know everything. It’s just that I don’t want to talk about it.”
Clare noticed Derrick shaking his head slightly, almost unnoticeable.
Clare laughed. “Are you sure? Are you very sure?”
Derrick frowned a little.
Amy snorted again. “Then tell me. Tell me what you think I don’t know.”
Derrick looked pale.
Clare said, “Well, do you know who was the woman Dad left us for?”
Still with the back of her head facing Clare, Amy said, “I don’t know. And I don’t care.”
Derek let out a sigh of relief. It was subtle, but again, Clare noticed it.
Clare laughed. “So you don’t really know at all. You would never have guessed, would you?”
Amy swung her head around. “What? You mean it’s her?”
Derek leant back. The colour on his face had returned.
“I should have guessed,” Amy said. “I’d seen them misbehaving a couple of times. They didn’t know I was looking.”
“You saw them misbehaving?” Clare said. “Why didn’t you tell me all these years?”
“Clare, you were only four years old. You were too young to understand anything.”
Maybe Amy was right. Was Clare able to understand all these things at that young age?
“Anyway,” Amy said, “I was not surprised when Mum fired her.”
“Fired her?” said Clare, puzzled. “Who are you talking about?”
“That woman. I can’t recall her name now. You know? The woman who used to babysit us?”
“Babysitter?” said Clare. She could not recall them having any babysitter at all.
“I think mum found out too. That’s why she was fired.”
Clare could not remember having any babysitter. So their dad had been sleeping with the babysitter too.
Why was Clare not surprised?
Clare said, “I am not referring to the babysitter.”
“No?” Amy asked, “Then who are you referring to?”
So there were things that Amy did not know.
Clare smiled. She said, slowly and deliberately, “It’s Aunt Sara.”
(Number contracted HIV AIDS in Bluesocksville: 76)