Lalitha wanted to trust his commitment to their relationship. But Sanj had a habit of shoehorning truisms like nothing lasts forever into their conversations.

They were still learning things about each other. Things that cemented what they had, and others that required them to fine-tune their expectations. She didn’t mind all that. She’d had long-term partners before. She knew the score.

All she wanted was honesty. And he wasn’t dishonest. But he said things that held hidden meanings.

They’d seen a great flat but he’d insisted on applying for just a one year lease. ‘No point getting ahead of ourselves,’ he’d said. It made her so angry. The place went to a family who signed a two-year lease.

She’d also noticed he didn’t relinquish information readily. Little things—he didn’t want Lalitha collecting his mail.

They were due out for dinner. He was in the bathroom when the phone rang and without thinking she picked it up. ‘Lalitha here.’

‘Ah Lalitha,’ said a professional sounding woman. ‘Sanj has told me about you of course.’

A small chill of uncertainty rippled through her. ‘He can’t come to the phone at the moment.’

‘Just tell him please to call Doctor Thorpe,’ the woman said. ‘The test results are in.’

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