A/N: Welcome to another new story! It's time for another emotional roller coaster. I will warn you, Peeta is not going to appear for a couple of chapters and there is some Katniss and Gale at the start. But you should see from this chapter that Katniss and Gale are far from happy and please believe that Everlark is very much end game.

Hope you enjoy!

Chapter 1

June 2018

I stare at the small digital clock on my work computer. I will it to change to 12:00pm marking my release from my chain to the doctor's reception desk. I've had my fair share of irate patients this week and my tolerance for them has reached its limit.

After what seems likes an age the little clock finally changes to 12:00 and I push back my chair abruptly. I swipe my handbag and turn to leave quickly. But Glimmer, one of the other girls that works on reception with me, halts my exit.

"I'm always so jealous of you getting out early. Part time work is the dream!" she exclaims.

I sigh as she catches my attention. I won't even bother explaining that the only reason I took this job at this Edinburgh doctor's surgery is because they let me finish before the schools let out. I work part time only so I can pick up my nine-year-old son every day from school.

I hate this job. It's boring and requires very few braincells. Ten years ago I had dreams of working for one of the world's leading sustainability companies and actually help to protect our wonderful Earth. But after a night with too many shots and not enough condoms, I fell pregnant during my final year of uni. Hunter was born two weeks before my final exams and I never graduated. I have less options without a university degree.

I try to make my exit again but Glimmer pulls me back with further questions.

"Any big plans this weekend?" she asks. "My own weekend is hectic. Some friend is holding a charity ceilidh tonight and I still don't know what I'm going to wear. And then my boyfriend is playing rugby sevens tomorrow so I'm going down to the borders to support him and hopefully celebrate afterwards. And then did I tell you that me and my friend have signed up for pole dancing lessons? I know it sounds a bit cheap but I really need to work on my core."

It's the same every weekend. Glimmer is only twenty-four and every weekend is filled with parties, sporting events and some sort of class. Her plans are normally so different from mine. My weekends revolve around shuttling Hunter to his next activity. She must think my life is so dull.

"Hunter has got a party tomorrow but I'm meeting two school friends for dinner at The Italian Kitchen tonight," I say.

"The Italian Kitchen is definitely the best restaurant in the area. But there's nowhere to drink afterwards!" Glimmer replies.

I nod my head but I never stay out late anymore. Someone always has a babysitter to get back to and when you have to wake up to a nine-year-old the next morning, you don't want to drink too much.

"But have you met the owner of it? He's a total hottie. Blonds aren't normally my type but he is the stuff of masturbation dreams!" she adds.

I turn quickly away from Glimmer and step towards the door. There are some things about Glimmer I don't want to know.

"Okay, Glimmer. Goodbye. Have a good weekend!" I call as I rush out the door.

I sigh in relief once I'm outside. The sun is actually shining in Edinburgh today and I need to go straight to my son's school just down the road.

As I walk towards the school I contemplate Glimmer's weekend plans. She may not be my cup of tea but I'm a little jealous of how vibrant her life is. I used to be like that. Every weekend going on some sort of adventure but that all stopped when I was twenty-two and had Hunter. Don't get me wrong. I love him more than anything but I wish I had him later in life.

I get to his school five minutes before the bell goes and check my phone while I wait for him to get out. I don't get on with most of the other mums in the playground. In the area we live in now most of the mums are at least ten years older than me and I've always felt a bit intimidated of them. They just seem to have so much more life experience than me and I always struggle to think of things to say.

I read a message from Rue, confirming plans for tonight and I'm not disturbed by anyone before the bell goes. As soon as it does I stuff my phone away and crane my neck to lookout for my son.

The children stream down the steps and it isn't long before I spot Hunter's familiar mop of dark hair. He walks beside his friend, Ben, both their heads bent as they read a comic book. They look up once they've reached the bottom of the steps and Hunter smiles as he sees me. He gives me a little wave before making his way over to me. Ben follows and Hunter looks up excitedly when he reaches me.

"Ben and I made the Avengers Tower out of Lego in Golden Time! Mrs Lyme took a picture of it and said she will print it out so we can show you," Hunter says.

I beam down at him as I put my arm around his shoulder.

"That's sounds awesome. What was the hardest part to make?" I ask.

Hunter pauses for a second and turns to Ben. After a moment he turns back to me.

"Probably the balcony. We couldn't get it to stay up," he replies.

I nod my head as we turn to walk out the school gates. Ben is coming home with us today so follows us out.

"I can't wait to see the picture of it. I better find room on the fridge," I say.

Hunter nods his head and begins to talk about the construction of the tower in more detail. He's very methodical as he talks me through all the steps and I love hearing him talk about something he is passionate about. I may have never known anything about superheroes before he was born but I don't mind having an encyclopaedic knowledge on them now.

"I finally got the paint needed for your Captain America shield. You can paint it this weekend," I say.

Both Ben and Hunter fist pump at this news.

"We can finally have our adventures with your shield and my Thor hammer!" Ben exclaims.

"It's going to be so cool. It's the only thing missing from my Captain America costume," Hunter replies.

I smile as we get closer to the house. The boys forget about me as they become too busy discussing all the superhero stories they know.

We eventually reach the four bedroom house complete with apple trees in the front garden and real wood burning fire place in the living room. I still have to pinch myself that we live in a house like this. Only four years ago we were living in a crummy flat in the Leith docks. But then Gale got offered a big promotion at the bank and even though he hated the job he took it so we could afford this house in Morningside and get Hunter into a better school. It's the type of house I dreamed of growing up in as a kid.

The boys dump their school bags on the wooden floor in the hallway before dashing off to play with their superhero figures. I manage to get them to stop long enough to have some lunch and then suggest we got to Blackford Hill so we can make the most of the sunshine.

Hunter goes off to find his magnifying glass and bug tins while Ben pulls out a notebook and pencil.

"The stream is the best place to find bugs. I want to find the biggest one yet," Ben says.

Hunter nods his head as he falls into step with me.

"Remember last time we found that really big flying beetle, Mum? I wish we had got a picture. Dad didn't believe us," Hunter says.

I put my hand around his shoulder and give him a little squeeze.

"I like that it was our secret. You don't tell me enough of your secrets now," I say with a smile.

Hunter smiles back at me and shakes his head.

"I don't keep secrets from you, Mum," he says.

I smile back at him and place a kiss on top of his head.

"Good. You can always tell me anything," I say.

Hunter nods his head but we soon reach the foot of the hill and head towards the stream at the bottom. The boys take off their socks and shoes so they can wade in the water and use their magnifying glasses to get a closer look at the creatures they find.

I sit on a rock bathed in sunshine and watch over them as they play. I'm glad that Hunter has such a good friend as Ben. My son is a quiet thinker and I sometimes feel guilty that he doesn't have a sibling to play with at home. Prim and I would always get up to mischief when she was alive and I think Hunter misses out on that. But I have no desire to have another child. Having one was disruptive enough on my life.

As they continue to explore I hear a small croak from beside me. I turn to look at it and smile when I see a frog sitting contently beside me. I turn back to look at the boys and gesture for them to come quietly over.

They creep over and Hunter looks at me curiously.

"What is it, Mum?" he asks.

I put my finger to my lips and point down. They peer over my shoulder and a look of delight fills my son's face.

"You found a frog, Mum!" he whispers.

I nod my head and grin.

"Do you think we should name it?" I ask.

Hunter nods his head.

"He should be called Bob," he says.

"You name everything Bob," I say, raising my eyebrow.

Every stuffed toy Hunter has ever gotten has been called Bob and so was the goldfish we kept for a week before it died. I'm not sure where the love for the name came from.

"I like the name. And it's easy to spell," he replies.

I laugh and stroke the top of his head.

"You're the boss," I say, before placing a kiss on his head.

Hunter nods and then Ben turns to him.

"Let's make him a house," Ben suggests. "I'll go and get some sticks and leaves."

Hunter nods his head in agreement and then moves away from me.

"I saw some dead flies we can give him for tea," he says.

I let them go with a smile and they spend the rest of the afternoon debating all the things Bob would need for his house.

I make them both wash their hands when we get back and then let them choose the toppings they want for the pizzas we are making. I pull the pizzas out the oven and the boys sit up straighter as I bring them over.

"Thank you, Mum," Hunter says before tucking it.

"Thank you, Katniss," Ben says. "You're such a cool mum. My mum never lets me make my own pizza and would have screamed if she had seen that frog!"

"Thank you, Ben. That's the nicest thing someone had said to me all week," I reply.

"You're welcome," Ben says.

At least someone still thinks I'm fun and interesting.

As soon as dinner is finished the boys get changed into their Cubs uniform and I take them to the local church hall where the group takes place. The boys walk in, now talking about making campfires instead of superheroes, and I wave before turning back to get ready for my night out.

I open my wardrobe and sigh when I realise all of my clothes are at least two years old. I flick through the coat hangers, desperately seeking for inspiration and finding none.

"Why is everything I own black?" I sigh as I take out a black top with an embellished neckline that I have worn a hundred times before.

I tug it on over my head and let my hair hang loose before sweeping some make-up on. Once I'm finished I send a quick message to Gale.

Remember I'm out for dinner so you need to pick up Hunter from Cubs. It finishes at 7.30.

I hit send and sort out my bag before I get a reply alert on my phone.

I have picked him up from Cubs before. I don't need you to remind me the time.

The message is curt but all our messages have been like that for the last few years. We may still be married but part of me is glad that I won't have to force small talk with him this evening.

I don't bother replying to his message. I don't want to start an argument just before I go out and I finish gathering up my things. I check myself once more in the mirror, deciding I don't look as old as I feel and duck out the door to meet my friends.

It is only a short walk to The Italian Kitchen. Nowadays I pick restaurants on the ease of getting back home at the end of the night and this restaurant in one of my favourites in Edinburgh. It has large glass windows that mean during the summertime it is flooded with light and there are always fresh flowers on the table. The menu is different every time I come here and the food always uses the freshest ingredients. It wouldn't surprise me if the owner was actually Italian as the dishes seem more authentic than your regular chain Italian restaurants.

Rue is already seated at the table and looking at the wine list when I arrive. She puts it down to smile warmly at me and give me a hug.

"You look great!" I exclaim as I return the hug.

Rue looks a little embarrassed as she tugs up the neckline of her lacey blouse. She had a baby just under a year ago and has been self-conscious about the weight she hasn't managed to shift ever since. But the red lacey top and good-fitting black jeans really compliment her new figure.

"Thank you. Thom said the same thing before I went out but I didn't believe him," she replies.

"Thom would think you were beautiful wearing a potato sack. How are he and Lucas?" I ask.

Rue smiles gratefully as we take our seats. She tucks her curly black hair behind her ear and a warmth appears in her eyes as she talks about her husband and son.

"Thom is convinced Lucas said Dada the other day but I'm not sure it was more than a gurgle. And if Lucas' first word isn't Mama I will be disappointed!" she replies.

"Well Hunter's first word was blankie so both Gale and I were beaten by a blue rag," I say.

Rue laughs.

"Trust the kids to remind us of our place in their lives," she says before looking at her watch. "And trust Madge to be late."

I smile as I shake my head.

"The best time was when she was so late that Gale's birthday party had actually ended by the time she arrived," I reply.

Rue nods her head.

"If she ever gets married I feel for the poor guy sweating over waiting for her to arrive," she says.

I laugh before we both pick up the menu. My mouth begins to water at the sight of a pancetta pasta on the menu and Rue and I have both decided what we'll order by the time Madge breezes through the door.

"So sorry I'm late. I had a mascara emergency where it all ended up on the new cream carpet. I'm praying the carpet cleaner with get rid of it all!" she exclaims.

Rue and I share a look and shake our heads as Madge bends down to give Rue a hug and then sit down in the seat next to me.

"Though I'm disappointed you haven't ordered a bottle of prosecco yet," Madge says.

"You know we always wait for you to arrive before we toast," Rue says.

Madge smiles and then turns to grab the waiter's attention. Within moments he is back pouring us glasses of golden bubbles.

"Cheers!" I say raising our glasses. "To an evening where we pretend we're young again!"

Rue laughs as we clink our glasses together and take a sip of our drinks. We've all known each other since the start of high school. Our high school was unusual in that the catchment area for it was very varied. While both Rue and I came from slightly rougher parts of the city, Madge came from the posher Stockbridge area. We all went to different primary schools and had very different backgrounds but bonded in our first year due to our quiet and shy natures. We've been there for every major event in each other's lives in the last twenty years and even though we're in different points of our lives now we still make the effort to get together at least once a month.

I put my glass down and turn to Madge. I haven't seen her since my birthday last month and haven't heard much from her since.

"How are you? I feel like we haven't spoken in ages," I say.

Madge doesn't quite meet my eye as she tries to casually shrug her shoulder.

"I've just been really busy with work. It seems everyone wants a big event right now. Plus I've been organising this charity walk for mum's MS," she says.

I wait for her to expand more but she just twirls the end of her napkin around and stays silent. I frown confused by her reaction. It's been strange not talking to her every day and she normally has a hundred stories about clients at work or the events that she goes to.

"How's the dating going? You normally have loads of stories to tell us," Rue tries.

Another shrug of the shoulder.

"Like I said, I've been busy. There's nothing new to tell," she says.

Rue and I share a surprised look as Madge begins tearing at the napkin.

"I'm gutted," Rue says. "Now we are married and boring, I've been living my romantic fantasies through you."

Madge scoffs.

"You don't know how lucky you both are to be married," she says.

Rue and I share another look but decide not to push the matter further. Maybe her mum's MS has taken a bad turn recently and she's had a bad day. I trust Madge to tell us if something was seriously wrong.

I turn to Rue instead to ask about her work.

"So have you found out what class you've got next year?" I ask.

Rue is a primary school teacher but has been on maternity leave for the last year. She's finally going back part time at the start of the new school year and I know she had a meeting with the head teacher this week to discuss it.

"Yes. I've got primary 4 which I like because they can do a lot but are still quite cute," she replies.

Madge seems to relax as the conversation turns away from her and she leans in closer to Rue.

"That's good. I've missed your school stories this year," she says.

"And I can stop boring you with stories about Lucas all the time," Rue adds.

We all laugh and I relax back into my chair.

"At least your stories about Lucas don't make me feel so bad for talking about Hunter all the time," I reply.

"I know. Who are we? Remember when we would just sit quoting Friends to each other?" Rue says.

"I don't even have time to watch anything that doesn't have superheroes in it," I reply with a grin.

"At least that's better than Peppa Pig!" Rue reclaims.

We all laugh just as the waiter comes over to take our orders. Conversation flows freely after that but I still get a sense that Madge is holding something back. She keeps her attention on Rue for most of the night and I can't help but feel I have done something wrong.

I groan as I lean back in my chair after dessert and put a hand on my belly.

"I promised I would go on a diet before our holiday to Portugal in three weeks," I say.

Rue sighs as she puts her spoon down.

"You'll just run it all off tomorrow. I envy how quick you got back into shape after you had Hunter," she says.

I shake my head at her, trying to say she looks great as well. Madge licks the spoon before turning to Rue.

"Did you and Thom book a holiday yet?" she asks.

Ru scrunches her nose.

"Yes. We've rented a cottage up in Ullapool," she says.

"It's really lovely up there. Some of the beaches wouldn't look out of place in the Caribbean," I say.

"I know. But it's hardly Bali or Brazil. Hell, even Spain would be better, but we just can't afford it," she says.

Madge puts a sympathetic hand on her arm.

"It will still be great. Holidays are more about the people you go with than the places you go," she says.

"Maybe. I just always get regretful whenever we book a holiday. I sometimes wish I had just gone on that around the world trip after uni," she says.

"But it would have been quite scary on your own," I say.

Rue was supposed to go travelling around the world with her then boyfriend, Thresh, just after they graduated. But Thresh dumped her out the blue two weeks before and she didn't end up going.

"Yeah, it would have been but I would have met people on my travels. I just feel like I haven't lived my life to the fullest," she says.

That's something I can understand. I feel like I have wasted a lot of opportunities in my life since I've had Hunter. It's sometimes too easy to think about what if?

"Everyone has regrets in their life," I say. "I know I wonder what my life would be like if it wasn't for Hunter."

Rue smiles at my sympathetically.

"How are things with you and Gale? Has it improved?" she asks.

I let out a heavy sigh as I run a hand through my hair.

"No. I don't feel like we are even a couple. We're just two people that live in the same house. The only time we really talk is when we're with Hunter," I say.

"Have you tried talking about it? You guys have gone through so much together and I remember how in love you guys were before," Rue replies.

"I don't even really know where to start. We're just both unhappy with our jobs and I think partly blame the other for that. Hunter forced us to grow up too fast and all the passion is just gone. We haven't slept together for four months. We didn't even bother trying on my birthday," I say.

I look to Madge for advice because she's been quiet so far.

"What do you think?" I ask.

Madge looks startled to be asked and pauses for a long time before speaking.

"I think Gale is a good guy and you're lucky to have him," she says.

She doesn't offer anything else and I find myself disappointed. She's always been there to dish out advice when I need it and I'm fast running out of energy to even try with Gale.

The waiter comes with the bill a moment later and it isn't long before we gather our things to leave. Madge gives us hugs before jumping into a taxi and heading towards her flat in the New Town while Rue and I walk together to our homes. I get to mine first and there is another hug before I wave her off.

I sigh as I enter back into reality and slip off my shoes. I hear the TV on in the living room and find Gale slumped in a chair with a beer watching some repeat of a comedy on Channel 4. He doesn't acknowledge me as I take a seat on the sofa and I wait for a moment before speaking.

"Aren't you going to ask how my evening was?" I ask.

Gale takes a sip of his beer.

"Let me guess. You reminisced about the old days and talked about Hunter and Lucas," he says.

"You don't have to make it sound so boring," I say, sitting back into the cushions in a huff.

Gale shrugs his shoulder.

"At least you got out the house," he says.

I exhale loudly and then we both sit in silence as the TV plays. I grow bored of the comedy quickly and scan the room for mess. I spy Hunter's newly painted Captain America shield and smile.

"I see you helped Hunter with the shield. How excited was he?" I ask.

Gale puts down the beer to turn to me with a smile.

"I had to basically strap him down to stop him using it before the paint dried. His imagination is just so great. I couldn't come up with half the stuff he did when I was his age," he replies.

I smile back at him. Hunter is our safe topic. Something we are both proud of.

"Thank you. It will finally get him off my back. He's been nagging at me for ages to help him finish it," I say.

Gale nods his head.

"I enjoy doing that stuff with him. It's good to see him happy," he says.

We share a smile before Gale turns back to the TV. I decide to head to the kitchen to get a glass of water but when I enter, it is a bombsite. Pots of blue, white and red paint still lie on the table, with splashes of it all over the counters. A cup of dirty water has been knocked over and spills down the sides, leaving a puddle on the floor. It doesn't take long for my temper to boil. I storm through to confront Gale.

"You could have cleaned up the mess you made!" I hiss.

Gale snaps his attention away from the TV to scowl at me.

"I was going to before I go to bed. It doesn't have to be done right away," he replies tersely.

"The paint could stain! And the dirty water could ruin the floor! You don't get to do all the fun stuff without the responsibility of cleaning up after," I say.

"I said I will clean it up. You don't need to be aggressive about it!" he says.

"I'm not being aggressive! I just expect to come home to a clean house when I get back from a night out!" I exclaim.

"I worked until seven o'clock tonight, Katniss. I don't think it's unreasonable for me to have some relaxing time before I do chores," he says.

"And yet you would expect me to have all my chores done in time for you. You're a hypocrite!" I say.

"No offence, Katniss but you don't work eleven hours a day to make sure we have everything we need!" he replies.

"That's only because you were stupid enough to knock me up before I could finish my uni exams!" I snap.

Gale stands up abruptly and pushes past me.

"I'm not talking to you when you are being this unfair," he growls.

He then storms out the room and charges into the kitchen. I hear him banging pots and pans in there as I am left fuming in the living room. I'm angry at him for not listening to me but also angry at myself for getting into another fight with him. It's becoming a far too frequent occurrence between us.

I take a few deep breaths and shake out my limbs to try and rid the tension in my body. When I feel calmer I step out the room and head up the stairs. I peek my head around Hunter's door and let out a sigh of relief to see that he is still sleeping peacefully. I quietly creep into his room and bend down to brush some hair off his face. Watching him sleep rids the last of the anger out of my body and my heart fills with love. I gently lean down to place a kiss on his head before sneaking out the room.

I change into some ratty pyjamas and crawl into bed. I'm still awake when Gale comes back up but I keep my back to him as I pretend to sleep. The mattress dips as he climbs into bed next to me and neither of us attempt to touch the other before we fall asleep.

Hunter wakes me in the morning with his footsteps outside the door. I roll out of bed to shower not even bothering to check if Gale is awake or not. I don't see him until I'm cleaning up Hunter's breakfast and we don't exchange more than two words before he takes Hunter to his Saturday morning swimming lesson.

I'm left alone and I spend my Saturday morning scrubbing the bathroom clean. My only respite is a text message from Madge.

Hey. Can I still borrow that sleeping bag for the charity walk? Not sure where I put mine! X

Madge's mum has MS and she does a lot to raise money and awareness for it. Her latest scheme is a sponsored walk of the West Highland Way and she's been doing lots of training for it and hopes to finish it in five days. I quickly type out a reply.

Of course! You can come and pick it up whenever you want. X

You're a life saver! I'll be round in half an hour. X

I smile as I put my phone down. Of course Madge's half an hour is lot longer than everyone else's and Hunter and Gale are back before she has come round. In fact she is so late that I have to leave to take Hunter to his trampolining party. I tell Gale that Madge might pop round for the sleeping bag but he just grunts as he turns the TV on.

I lean over to give Hunter a hug before he hops out the car for the party.

"Remember to listen to all the safety instructions the people give you," I say.

Hunter nods his head as he give me a hug.

"I will, Mum. I've done it before," he replies.

"Good. I love you. Have fun," I say as I stroke some hair back.

"I will. I love you too, Mum," he says.

I smile at him as he walks to join his friends. I keep watching until I've made sure he's got there safely and then turn the key in the ignition to go home.

I think about cutting the grass when I get back. I'm still pissed off with Gale from last night and at least that way I can keep out his way.

I turn the key in the lock, still thinking about all the things I still need to do this weekend. If I work quickly and don't get distracted I should manage some time for myself later in the afternoon.

But when I enter, Gale's standing in the hallway. Except he's not alone. He holds a blonde head tenderly in his hands as his lips sweep over hers. A soft moan escapes from the woman's mouth and it takes my brain a moment to fully comprehend what it's seeing. Gale and Madge. Kissing. In my hallway.

I'm frozen in shock but the sound of the door has alerted my presence to them. They spring apart and Madge has at least the decency to look ashamed. She moves as far away from my husband as possible and then begins shaking her head.

"Oh, Katniss! I'm so sorry. I didn't mean for this to happen. It's stupid. I've been so stupid," she says.

I stare at her in silence for a long moment as she keeps on apologising. But I don't want to hear it. Not when her hair is still mussed and lips red from my husband's kisses. I didn't think anyone could betray me in this way.

"Get out," I state.

Madge opens her mouth to apologise again but I shake my head fiercely.

"Get out. Now," I repeat.

She ducks her head and sniffles as she nods in agreement. I'm glad she doesn't look back at Gale before she walks out.

Once the door is closed I focus all my attention on Gale. The anger simmers in my body, reaching further and further up, ready to explode.

"Are you even going to try and explain what I just saw?" I state.

"I didn't sleep with her," he replies.

I scoff as I shake my head.

"Do you want a gold star for that? Kissing my best friend is just as bad," I reply.

Gale ducks his head.

"How many times?" I ask.

He pauses for a long moment before answering.

"Twice. The first time was at your birthday," he replies.

My heart falls to the bottom of my chest and I let out a strangled cry. I have to lean on the wall to balance myself.

All of Madge's behaviour the past month makes sense. Why she hasn't messaged me. Her refusal to talk about her love life last night. The whole time she has been feeling guilty for kissing my husband.

Gale waits for me to react and I take a deep breath before pushing off the wall and charging at him.

"How could you? My best friend! On my birthday!" I yell as I bang my hands against his chest.

Gale grabs my wrists to stop my movements and forces me to look up at him.

"I know. It's bad. But we were drunk and we haven't had sex in ages," he says.

"So it's my fault? I'm so sorry that I haven't been sucking your dick these past few months," I say bitterly.

"It's not just about the sex. Madge listens to me," he replies.

"I must be a really bad wife then," I say. "Are you even sorry?"

There is a pause as Gale takes a moment to answer. I scoff again as I throw his hands off me.

"There's my answer," I say as I turn my back to him.

I hastily rub at the tears at the corners of my eyes and sniff loudly.

"I think it's best you go and stay with your parents tonight. I don't want you here," I say.

I wrap my arms around myself and try to hold myself together. I'll want more answers later but I can't bear to look at him now. My brain needs time to comprehend what is happening.

There is a long silence and for a moment I think that neither of us will move. But eventually Gale steps forward and grabs his coat.

"We'll talk once you've calmed down," he says.

The comment makes my blood boil and I can't contain my scream.

"Get out! Get out! Get out! You're just a lying piece of shit and I don't want you near me again!" I yell.

Gale shakes his head and I slam the door behind him. I don't move until I hear the car leave the driveway. Only then do I let myself slide down to the floor and cry.

I sit, curled up on the floor and cry my eyes out for way too long. My phone buzzes with messages from Madge but I just throw it into a corner of the living room. The betrayal stings every nerve in my body and I'm not sure how I'm every going to pull myself up.

But eventually I have to go and pick Hunter up from his party so I spend half an hour in the bathroom trying to make it look like I haven't been crying.

I take deep breaths as I pull up at the trampoline place and try to push the image of Gale and Madge out of my head. It makes me feel physically sick to think about it and I didn't think it was possible to feel this much hatred towards a person.

Hunter is at least happy and chatting with his friends as I approach. He greets me with a bright smile.

"Hey, Mum! Callum had a Spiderman cake and we pretended to be Spiderman swinging in New York on the trampolines," he says.

The ache in my heart lessens a little a seeing him again and I bend down to speak to him.

"Sounds like you had a good time. Are you ready to leave?" I ask.

"Just one more minute, Mum," he asks.

I smile as I stroke some of his hair back.

"Sure, munchkin," I say.

I can let him have a few more moments of normalcy.

I explain that his dad has gone to stay with Granny tonight and I can tell he is a little confused about why we haven't gone with him. I'm not ready to tell him the truth, particularly as I'm not sure where this leaves Gale and I now. For now I want to focus on my son. I can figure out the rest later.

We build a wizard's castle on Minecraft and make ice-cream sundaes after dinner. I let Hunter choose the film and let him stay up later than normal because I don't want to be left up alone. After three chapters of Harry Potter I kiss him goodnight and then tidy up the mess we made. Without Hunter to distract me all the hurt feelings come roaring back and I get teary as I picture Gale and Madge kissing again and again.

I decide to crawl into bed and hope sleep makes me forget what I witnessed today. I screw my eyes tight shut to stop the tears from falling. I can't help but think of all the things that have led to this point. I know things have been bad for a while and I've always blamed it on Hunter being born when we were too young and that resulted in the passion fading. Maybe if I hadn't fallen pregnant at twenty-one I wouldn't be feeling this pain right now.

I must somehow fall asleep because the next thing I know I am being woken by some thumping outside the door. I groan and screw my eyes shut, not wanting to wake to the reality of my husband cheating on me.

The thumping continues and it's louder than Hunter normally is. I turn over to place a pillow over my head but my hand bangs onto something solid. Confused, I slowly open my eyes to find myself staring at a purple wall. I sit up abruptly and shake my head as I try to figure out what I'm seeing. I'm not in my double bed. The sheets are a green floral pattern I used to have as a teenager. I whip my head round to spy another single bed pushed against the wall on the other side of the room. There are posters of Brad Pitt and Harry Potter on the walls. School and university textbooks line the selves. This looks just like the room Prim and I shared when we were growing up.

A moment later the door opens and a smiley blonde enters and I freeze from my spot on the bed.

"Hey! I thought with it being your day off you would have slept in longer," my sister says.

Primrose. My sister. My little sister. My little sister who has been dead for the last nine years.

Where the hell am I?