By Steven Herrick
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Additional resources for Cold Skin
Better to let the mine swallow me than stay in school without her. I decide to make the most of the time we got left before she gets too big for this small town. But I know she’s already stepping on that train and I’m waving from the platform, cursing under my breath . . the necklace still in my pocket. 50 Cold Skin PAGES 22/8/07 8:40 AM Page 51 Albert Holding Every Friday I stump work early so as to get to the pub with a few hours of drinking time left. The wife complains when I stagger home.
I’m very good at swimming. I reckon the river and the sunny day are worth the punishment I’m in for on Monday morning. 22 Cold Skin PAGES 22/8/07 8:40 AM Page 23 Larry My stupid brother can’t keep his mouth shut. Yeah, Butcher never told us about continents. In all the years pointing at that boring map. I know he never told us because, unlike Eddie, I remember everything I’m taught and I studied it in the library, tracing my finger over the world atlas, imagining how long it’ll take me to travel the distance from here to all those places.
Would I ever be ready? At school, when it comes to Friday games, like tug-of-war, I’m the first picked and the other side always asks for an extra player. When deliveries come in from the city they get me to unload the truck and I toss the boxes into the storeroom. Sometimes I lift three at a time just to see how much I can carry. I tell the driver this is better than school work. Nobody in school is stronger than me. But when Sally Holmes kissed me, I never felt so weak in all my life. 29 Cold Skin PAGES 22/8/07 8:40 AM Page 30 Eddie I do the washing up for Mum same as every night, because Larry says he has to study.
Cold Skin by Steven Herrick