Jason smiled a little uncertainly at her, and asked, “Are you all right?” His expression was kind and worried and, she would have sworn, entirely genuine and real.
She realised she had become introspective, and that perhaps her face had shown her thoughts. “I was far away, there,” she replied. “Sorry.”
“Oh well, that’s all right then. I didn’t …. I don’t … Keith is your friend too.” His expression was sincere, real.
“Friend?” she said wryly.
“And more,” he said with a slow, warm grin which made his eyes shine with humour and liking. All at once she was filled with affection for him.
She smiled back and for that moment it seemed as if there were just the two of them in the room.
My parents had a typical marriage, she thought, with a bitter burn in her heart. Fat lot of use it did them. Or me. Maybe doing things differently would be better. Maybe having Keith and Jason in her life was better than what her parents had. She wondered whether her mother had loved her father when they first married, or whether it had just seemed the thing to do, to get married and ‘settled’. He could be very charming. Like so many psychopaths.