Her morning tea, a large pot of turmeric and aniseed, a slight diminution from the whiskey, important for digestion and tired liver inflammation.

She thinks about the mirror in the classifieds.

It could have been hers for a tenner, that round mahogany classic, deep set with a gold trim on a hard frame. Franklyn, the seller, was a doctor, and she knew him well. His practise was in the Greenock town centre, and she would take a bus to his surgery, through damp streets and cheap wine, a community of low earners.

He sometimes wore a deerstalker hat, and she remembered his rooms and the painting on the wall. It was marked with damp and mould. 70 years on that wall, above the fireplace, with green and white stains, faded in with an image of a gentleman with a shotgun and a nye of pheasants.

The mirror had seen many faces, including her fathers, and she felt unease, knowing that he would be there, looking back at her, in the hallway, in her alcoholic state, trembling hands and stains of sick and puke on her anorak. And that’s why she didn’t buy, forever watching and observing.

The Doctor was there for her father in the end, and he would be there for her also.

she waits for the call,
the liver donor program,
the back of the queue.