‘Thanks,’ Grace said when the barman slid the glass of red across the bar. A drink while she waited for her brother … What an inspired idea.
Six drinks later and with still no sign of Tim, the idea didn’t feel so inspired.
As Grace stared at herself in the bathroom mirror, she swiped at the tears, not sure whether to laugh or cry. Firmly into her fourth decade, she’d driven the big white bus for the first time in her life. And ruined her favourite silk blouse in the process.
She washed her hands, splashing cold water onto her face. After dabbing at the splotches on her blouse with a paper towel, Grace looked at herself in the mirror again and groaned. No matter how expensive the mascara, it always ran when you added water.
Closing her eyes, Grace braced herself on the edge of the handbasin, swallowing against a sour wave of nausea. Her eyes snapped open when a pack-a-day voice enquired, ‘You all right there, darl?’
Hovering behind her was a slim, weathered woman of indeterminate age. Brittle, copper-coloured hair was swept into a bird’s nest above her angular features.