She hops from one square to the next on the grid, oblivious of the eyes, which, as dark as a sparrow’s, trace her every skip. Pert bunches, hair the colour of gingerbread, bob in the dappled sunshine. Through gappy teeth, girly giggles ripple across the playground. Together, apart. Together, apart, she diligently avoids the lines drawn in chalk. He’s been here before. Knows that the swing affords him the best vantage point. Above the hemline of her skirt the milky skin looks silken, and rounded limbs draw in his gaze. He eases himself off the swing, flicks his fag on the ground and inches over. 'Time to go, Katie,’ he shouts. ‘Mummy will be waiting.’


fiction by
Vicky Newham

image by
Jayne Morley