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She had just settled down with her book when it began.

It was a dull throbbing at first; subtle, barely noticeable. Not particularly distracting. But then, either the song kicked in or somebody turned the volume up, because all of a sudden the walls were vibrating.

Drums, guitars, and angry sounding German lyrics shook the house to its foundations.

She tried to ignore it, but inevitably gave up. With a sigh, she marked her place and put her book down.

It wouldn’t be so bad if they were just housemates, she reflected. At least then there could be a discussion about keeping the music down or moving out. It’s different when it’s family though – aside from the fact that moving out wasn’t an option.

She stomped down the stairs and stood in the doorway. The music was so loud, she felt like her hair ought to be streaming backwards from the force of it, cartoon style. She didn’t want to shout, so she waited for a quieter part of the song. It didn’t come – apparently it was all loud, all the time. She gave up, took a deep breath and shouted.

“Can you turn it down, please? I’m trying to read. Mum? MUM! Can you turn it down, please!”

Eventually her mother realised she was there and stopped the CD with a smile.

“Sorry,” she said. “It doesn’t sound right quiet!”

© Kari Fay

(Author’s Note: It’s Mother’s Day today (here in the UK, anyway) so naturally I find myself thinking about my mother. She was an incredible woman – an artist and a scientist, who put her children above everything else, and liked her music Loud. I miss her every day, but days like this the most.)