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Her daughter, like most teenagers these days, had been obsessed with her mobile phone for years. She had upgraded regularly, always desperate to be in possession of the highest status handset possible. She had an app for everything. Everything she did was, within moments, updated to social networking sites or her blog. She called her mother, without fail, every evening to say she was on her way home.

Then suddenly, it all went quiet.

She had been texting a friend as she crossed the road. Her phone had flown across the street to land in the gutter. Her body had been thrown even further.

She had cried uncontrollably when they returned the phone to her, along with the clothes her only daughter had been wearing and the things she had been carrying in her bag. She was still crying as she placed the phone in her daughter’s coffin; it had been her favourite possession, after all, it was only right it should stay with her.

Hallowe’en was just a couple of weeks after the funeral. It had always been her daughter’s favourite holiday, and she had tried to carry on in her memory, just as they had planned. Carved pumpkins sat on the doorstep with battery powered fake candles flickering inside them. Cut-out ghosts hung in the windows. On a side table in the hallway there was a big bowl full of sweets, ready for the inevitable horde of trick or treaters.

She was sitting in the lounge, crying over the witches costume she had made the previous year for her daughter, when the phone rang. She dried her eyes quickly, took a deep breath and answered it.

“Hello?”

The phone crackled briefly, then a familiar voice spoke. “Hi Mum. I’ll be home soon. Happy Hallowe’en!”

© Kari Fay

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