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“You’re home early, love?”

She threw herself down onto the sofa next to her mother with a sigh.

“Yeah, well, he’s a jerk.”

Her mother looked over the top of her glasses at her.

“Sorry, mum, but he is. He spent half the film whispering to Jake about which one is better, Venom or Carnage.”

“How rude,” her mother said.

“I know,” she said. “Can you believe it? Jen and I gave up and came straight home when the film finished.”

Her mother stood up with a smile and went to make a cup of tea.

“Here you go, love,” she said, handing her daughter a mug. “So are you going to see him again?”

The girl nodded as she wrapped her fingers around the mug. “Have to. He’s giving me a lift to Hannah’s party tomorrow night, ’cause my bike’s got a puncture.”

Her mother sat down next to her on the sofa once more. “So you’re just taking advantage of the fact that he’s got a car?”

“Mother,” the girl said in an over-dramatic tone, “Would I do something like that?”

They looked at each other and giggled.

“No, seriously, I’m just giving him a chance.”

There was a pause, then mother turned to look at her daughter with a serious look on her face.

“So, he was arguing the case for Venom, right? After all, if you’re going to date a comics geek…”

© Kari Fay