If you take a trip through the looking glass, always buy a return ticket

Hilary Ayshford

You wake in a parallel universe, where the sun rises in the west and sets in the east, and your husband gets up first and brings you breakfast in bed. Your children are in the kitchen eating porridge, which they hate, and talking animatedly without bickering. They clean their teeth voluntarily and make their own packed lunches for school.

You enjoy a leisurely bath, read your long-neglected book, alert for sounds of trouble from downstairs, but all is harmonious and orderly.

In the evening, your changeling children do their homework unprotestingly, go to bed without fuss. Your husband pours wine with dinner, and later you make love with an unfamiliar tenderness.

The next days follow the same uneventful pattern, with added ‘thank yous’ and ‘we love yous’. After a week you go to bed hoping that tomorrow the sun will go back to rising in the east.


About the author: Hilary is a retired science journalist and editor, now exploring her creative side through micro and flash fiction and short stories.