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Super 8

Page 5

“Oh dear,” said Mary, “We don’t want to watch this.” But they did, for a few seconds longer. On the beach, adults arrived and separated the two boys, walking them off in different directions, out of screen. The boys craned their necks back at each other; David shouted something and then they both disappeared out of shot. The sequence stopped, and resumed again with children round a small bonfire.

Mary smiled brightly. 

“There I am with Jenny by the fire. She’s out there in the garden now. Isn’t it strange? We all kept in touch through the years. They do say that as you get older you need the friends you had when you were young. Dad died two years ago, sadly. It was George who rediscovered all the Super 8 films and transferred them to DVD.”

They had not mentioned the fight on the beach. Judy thought perhaps she should. It had been disturbing. She decided to take an oblique approach.

“I just met David, who was fighting there with Philip. Was his family Indian?”

“No, you wouldn’t have …” Mary’s eyes wandered vaguely across the crowd.

“Why was he so angry? On the beach, I mean.”

Mary’s eyes came back sharply to Judy’s.

“Oh, that wasn’t David fighting with Philip. It was his brother Maurice. Yes, David is here today. He’s a sweetie. I can see why you thought . . .” she hesitated. But David isn’t in any of those movies. He wasn’t really around then; I suppose he was a little younger. It was Maurice who was one of us. Their father worked with Dad. Only . . . he had a chip on his shoulder, you know. And Maurice inherited it.”

“A chip on his shoulder?”

“Come on, let’s go outside. Isn’t it a glorious day? We don’t want to spend it inside.”

They turned towards the French windows and walked down into the garden. David the liar was standing out there on at the heart of a circle of his laughing friends, beneath the tree, beside the buffet table. He waved and gave a radiant smile.

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