Monday, September 29, 2008
Jasfoup was just pulling bread out of the oven when Lucy came running in, her summer dress soaked with water* and blood dripping from the palm of her chubby hand.
“Uncle J!” she cried. “I cut myself.”
“Let me see.” Jasfoup licked the corner of his pinny and wiped away the blood to reveal a jagged tear across her palm, two inches long. “Let me get the first aid kit,” he said. “I think we can get away without stitches today.”
Lucy’s face crinkled at the thought of more stitches.
Jasfoup smiled and dabbed the cut with anti-sceptic ointment, wishing he could protect her from all the little miseries of life. “How did this happen?” he asked, dropping the cotton-wool into the bin and manoeuvring a plaster from its protective shielding.*
“Brambles,” said Lucy. She was four now but, unlike most children her age, still had the Sight. She would be starting school in the autumn and would lose it then. There was no space on the curriculum for ‘talking to your dead mother and her pet werewolf.’
“Brambles?” Jasfoup repeated. “Were you picking blackberries?”
“Brambles the cat,” sighed Lucy. She pulled her hand away before the demon could seal the plaster with a kiss. “I was giving him a bath and he scratched me.”
“Ah.” Jasfoup began to put the first aid kit away. “Cats don’t like baths, then?”
“It’s not the bath he was averse to,” said Lucy. “It was the bikini line trim with Daddy’s electric razor.”
*He hoped it was just water
**Much easier when someone else does it. Plasters are designed to be opened with two hands, much to the disgruntlement of every single person with a cut finger.