Sunday Roast

He slips sage leaves and lemon slices under the skin of the chicken, wipes his hands on a towel, and squints at the recipe book. Gas Mark 5, it says, but the numbers around the knob stretch into hundreds. He pulls his phone from his pocket and Googles, swiping salmonella over the screen. He should have taken his daughter up on the offer to eat with them, but that's not the way they do things. Sunday means a roast here in the family home, where the walls throb with memories of the girls as children, bickering over Barbies and scattering Lego bricks that later he would step on and have to bite his lip to avoid swearing. He chops an onion for the gravy, the way she did, just last week standing here in her yellow dress, only sixty-nine, heart thudding reliably. His eyes water.
Hannah Whiteoak
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