Angie McLeod has never really known her father and his death is just one of the events in a week where she seems to lose everything. But he has left her a house in the village she lived in as a child. She meets, for the first time in years, her half-brother Tom. She's just getting to know him when she has a freak accident and everything changes.
WARNING, BAD LANGUAGE
If someone had said to me a year ago that I would be living in a house in the middle of nowhere with two half-brothers (sort of), a collection of mad animals and doing the job I now do, I would have laughed in their faces. For starters, this time last year I was living in a perfectly nice flat with my boyfriend Caleb and our cat. I was working in a place that packed greetings cards, and whilst the job was crappy, it paid a reasonable wage. My life was settled and ordered and I liked it that way. At twenty-five I was just about ready to consider getting married, having a couple of kids, doing the whole adult thing. It didn't work out that way.
My life was turned upsidedown in less than a week. The first Big Event happened two days before Halloween and by the time Bonfire Night hit, nothing was ever going to be the same again.
Caleb and I weren't doing much for Halloween, we'd been invited to some parties over the weekend but I had a serious case of the snots and Caleb was doing his usual "I'm too old to be dressing up as a vampire" schtick. We didn't row exactly, I told him he was a miserable bastard and he told me I had the mentality of a twelve year old. I countered with an accusation of him being a middle-aged giffer at the grand old age of thirty and he told me in no uncertain terms that I was immature and childish. I felt he was cheating, this was the same point he'd made on his first salvo and telling me twice didn't make it true. So ner. He gave up at this point and went back to his computer. If I had left the discussion there, maybe things would have been different, but he'd annoyed me, not least because I'd not managed a satisfactory argument before he'd cut me off. My ire was poked and I demanded a resolution. And I got one, but not what I expected.
I asked Caleb why he thought I was immature.
He ignored me.
I stood behind him and prodded him in the back, demanding answers and threatening to hold my breath until I got them. His silence far outlasted my puny attempts at not breathing.
He still ignored me.
I can't stick being ignored. Argue with me, shout at me or reason with me. It's not a good idea to sulk, it just makes me want to irritate you into action. So I kept prodding him, and asking him questions and still he managed to block me out. Until I took drastic action and licked his ear.
Caleb hates to be touched. He especially hates being licked. It's not a phobia or anything, and he certainly doesn't object if we're both naked at the time of the licking, but he really really detests me coming up to him and randomly licking his earhole. He went ballistic. He jumped up out of the chair like a fox with an arse full of buckshot and started yelling.
Apparently, not only was I immature, but I was also untidy, too loud, full of disgusting habits, whiny, clingy, attention seeking and he hated my cat.
"It's our cat," I said.
"Well, you can keep it." He got his coat, and left.