Mick was about to step inside when Cath called from the kitchen. ‘Not in those overalls.’ She was sick of the plaster powder that covered everything since he’d moved in. It was one of the many things they should have talked about. But they’d fallen into living together too quickly for that. His lease ran out just as she was looking for a housemate. Suddenly they were a step further up the boyfriend/girlfriend ladder.

Mick grumbled. ‘Not here on the porch.’

‘Go ‘round the back. No one’ll see you. Then come in the kitchen. I’ve got something to tell you.’

That’s how he found out—standing in the kitchen in his jocks with an unopened beer. ‘You’re kidding. I mean. Wow. That’s great. Isn’t it?’

She told him it was, which was a relief, then said they ought to chat about a few things. She talked about birthing options and breast-feeding and turning the spare room into a nursery. He talked about choosing football teams and how many more they should have and mucking around in a big backyard. And he said ‘amazing’ fifteen times.

Their first daughter was born eight months later.

They called her Dusty.

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