‘Good Christmas?’ I say.

’Fairytale,’ the book says. ‘Grimm.’

’Are you here all week?’

’Unlike some of us.’

’It was a few days!’ I say. ‘And now it’s over.’

’And now it’s over,’ the book says.

’I’ve seen you sounding happier.’

’It wasn’t Christmas. It wasn’t even being on my own. It was my fear of missing out.’

The book and I regard each other.

’Can’t help you there,’ I say eventually. ‘Only you can do that.’

The book gives a slight gulp. ‘So, what did I miss? Any good brussel sprout stories? Did the oven break?’

’There was a lot of laughter,’ I say. ‘And ordinariness. And a bit more champagne than usual for a Tuesday. And presents. It was lovely. Really, really lovely. But you know what, I woke up today in my own bed. Coming home. There’s nothing like it.’

’So I needn’t have worried?’

’I got given a Joni Mitchell CD.’

’Here we go,’ the book says.

’What?’ I say.

’Nothing,’ the book says. ‘It’s good to have you back.’