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“That father?”

The woman turned her head. She wore a black, calf-length fur coat, matching hat and high-heeled black boots. Her skin was pink, unlined, and age defying. Dazzling ice-blue eyes were accented by heavy black liner along the upper eyelids. Her lipstick looks the color of cabernet, Amy thought.

“You didn’t know?” she said, her voice a monotone. Amy wondered if her lack of intonation was intentional or if it simply reflected a personality that was rather dull. Well, that would be the antithesis of mom, she thought.

The woman held red roses that looked excessively melodramatic against the midday snow. The bouquet was poised somewhat away from her body and Amy wondered if she was confused about whether to place it down on the grave marker, here, now, in front of her lover’s ignorant daughter, or whether to abandon the idea altogether. Amy laughed, a singular note, too loud, too sharp.

“You and my father?” she asked, yanking at her scarf, not realizing she kept pulling at it even as it tightened around her neck.“You and my father,” she said again, stating it, waiting for her brain and comprehension to work in tandem.

She gave up on the damn scarf and flung her hands to her sides. “My name is Amy.”

“I know,” the woman said. “My name is Mrs. Landry.”

Mrs. Landry, Amy thought. Really, no first name? Not even for your lover’s daughter? Her mind sneered, adjusted, scrambled, and fumbled.

“My father worked for you?”

“Yes,” Mrs. Landry said, her voice suddenly softer, almost kind, this side of gentle.

“Just the once,” Mrs. Landry continued and ended.

Amy stamped her feet, trying to beat off the pinpricks from wearing too-light boots and standing too still in several inches of snow. She was also trying to rein in her anger, increasingly annoyed by this woman’s clipped words, a body half-turned away.

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