• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 05
Image by


George held Clare’s hair back from her face while she heaved ineffectually over the toilet, then helped her to her feet and gave her a warm flannel. She held it over her eyes just long enough for him to flush away the hair that had stuck to his hand.

Clare wiped her mouth and looked at him with stricken eyes. “Hardly what you signed up for three years ago, is it?”

“Nonsense,” George replied firmly, “You’re still my lovely wife.”

Shrugging off his attempt to hold her, Clare grimaced into the mirror. “You can’t possibly fancy me now,” she said, and that night she moved into the spare room.


When she lost all her hair Clare tried to make light of it. “There’s no need to hold my hair back when I throw up now,” she said, but that night George heard muffled sobbing and invaded her self-imposed exile. Gathering her into his arms, he ignored her feeble, “I look dreadful,” and began massaging her shoulders.

“One day I’ll be bald,” he said, “and mine won’t grow back.”

Despite herself, Clare giggled, and George moved down her body until she yielded and reached for him. Kissing her mouth he murmured, “I love you, you silly goose – now come back to our bed.”