Mercy

They were in that half aware zone that comes from having been driving for five hours when the roo jumped out. It cannoned into them. Smashed the windscreen as it rolled over the car. They were in the midle of nowhere, steam hissing from under the hood.

‘What are we going to do?’ Adie said.

But Declan was already running back to the fallen animal. He returned, ashen-faced. ‘Go for a walk. That bridge we passed—see if there’s water.’ He tossed her the bag of water bottles.

When she returned, an hour later, the windscreen lay in a thousand glass cubes around the car. He was pushing some sort of putty into the radiator.

And where the roo had been was just a scatter of blood-stained sand and drag marks into the scrub. She asked no questions. A few that she had been contemplating herself in recent months seemed suddenly to have been answered. She handed him a bottle and told him to drink.

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