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It was the bacon that caused this.

Alex woke up, the smell invading all corners of the Vauxhall flat. He could hear Danny padding across the kitchen floor, utensils clattering in the sink as he went. Rubbing the sleep from his eyes, Alex rose from the bed and followed the sounds.

"Morning!" Danny's grin illuminated his face as he rushed over to Alex, kissing a second greeting against Alex's lips. Alex reciprocated, though his mind seemed miles away. Not kilometers, miles.



"Miles away, you are." She crossed the kitchen, clanging a metal spatula against the sink basin before rinsing it.

Alex looked up, realizing he hadn't uttered a word in over seventeen minutes. He had been taking apart a math puzzle, picturing the numbers in his mind collapsing out as he fit and fumbled 'the pieces' that made them whole. He took the lone strip of streaky bacon from his untouched plate, and tore it in half.

"I apologize, I'm.."

"Yes," she replied," you're working on something. Busiest twelve year old in the country."

He allowed himself to laugh at her comment, because he knew she'd laugh with him. He giggled through a mouthful of food, which made her laugh even more.

He'll miss this. Christmas holidays felt shorter with every passing year.

Alex went back to his puzzle.




"Let's go away for the weekend," Danny suggested.

He let himself enjoy the memory for a few seconds longer, and then replied, "Sure."

Thinking of the future, Alex soon lost his appetite.