“Are things great?” Marc asked.

“Yeah.” If he’d known my first thought to his follow up question was spiders then he might have had a clue.

“Can we expect the pitter-patter of tiny feet?” asked Marc and I thought of spiders.


We were gazing at Lou Lou who was sat on the wall in a yoga pose. “Is she okay?”

“Yeah, she just needs to take time out. You know, centre herself. She’s creative.”

We’d been married for a year but I guess it started when SpaceX crashed. It had been on the news and while watching it Lou Lou had trumped. Sounded like a duck’s quack. I’d tried to ignore it. Tried to keep my breathing normal although my heart began racing.

Lou Lou rewound the TV for the 8th time. “Did you hear that?” she asked.


“I did a pet!” she said, in her delightful French accent.

“I didn’t notice.”

Her face had turned to a sort of snarl. Half her face tensed and she did another one. Her face relaxed into a smile.

“Wow!” I said, masking my horror.

She’d farted a lot after that. She bought us the huge flat when her YouTube career took off. The number one role model for girls aged 16–32, apparently. Bought me a Volvo. And then there were the cats. We had a room absolutely rammed with cats. She used them as props. I don’t mind cats but she’d feed them spiders and sometimes the spiders got out.

So, yeah. Things were great compared to being in Aleppo but they weren’t perfect.

“Well, you’re a lucky man!” said Marc, clapping me on the back. He then went off to get more lager from the bar which was set up outside the patio windows. I went over to Lou Lou.

“Is everybody looking at me?” asked Lou Lou.


“Good. You have taken a picture for instagram?”

“Oh wait there.” I took a few steps back and took a picture. Then returned to her.

“My arse is killing me,” she said. “I get down now.” As she was twisting herself around she did a trump. “Oof!” she exclaimed. “That was a corker.” She then grabbed me around the neck and sort of started pulling my head down. She’s strong but I resisted. “You like that?” she asked.

“No, I really don’t,” I gasped.

“Oh, look at those two!” cooed Marc from the bar.