Kevin was upset when it dawned on him that he probably wouldn’t see Molly for a long, long time. Molly also cried bitterly. She had been eight when he was born and she had helped her mother bring him up. Though he was a nuisance at times, as little brothers go he wasn’t bad, and she loved him to bits.
‘I will be working next year, Kevin,’ she told the child. ‘I will come back when I am sixteen and we will be together again, you’ll see’.
‘Do you promise?’ Kevin said.
Molly looked at Kevin’s eyes, sparkling with tears, and said firmly,
‘Course I do’.
‘What if our grandmother don’t let you?’
‘She won’t be able to stop me when I’m sixteen,’ Molly declared. ‘Anyroad, she can just go boil her head.’ She saw the ghost of a smile at the corners of Kevin’s mouth. ‘Look,’ she said, and she licked her index finger and chanted, ‘See it wet, see it dry,’ then drew the finger across her neck, ‘cut my throat if I tell a lie.’ She saw Kevin sigh with relief. ‘Three years, that’s all, Kevin,’ Molly said. ‘And I promise we will be a family again.’