Me: Why are you looking at me like that?
Nell: You know why.
Me: I haven’t eaten a biscuit if that’s what you think. Not even the savoury kind with cheese.
Nell: Savoury biscuits are still biscuits you know.
Me: Well, I haven’t eaten one.
Nell: This is not about biscuits.
Me: It isn’t?
Nell: Why are you packing your case?
Me: Oh dear.
Nell: You haven’t packed a case in nearly 2 years.
Me: It’s nothing to worry about.
Nell: Why was it hidden in the guest bedroom then?
Me: I didn’t want muddy paws on my clothes.
Nell: We all wipe our paws on the mat.
Me: You so don’t.
Nell: Stop dancing around the bowl and tell me where you’re going.
Me: I’m just off on a writing retreat for a few days.
Nell: I understand Timothy’s need to hide but who are you retreating from?
Me: The world in general.
Nell: Here we go. Where are you going?
Me: The Cottage Hotel.
Nell: My favourite place?
Nell: Without me?
Me: Without any of you.
Nell: To be on your own?
Me: Well, there’ll be a few other writers there.
Nell: I knew it.
Me: It’s good for me to be with other writers.
Nell: If you say so.
Me: It’s only for a few days and we can keep in touch.
Nell: I shall expect regular updates.
Me: So will I. I need to know what’s going on.
Nell: You might want to steer clear of scones by the way.
Me: Don’t say that.
Nell: Maybe just the one.
Me: I’d take you with me if I could.
Nell: Don’t be silly. I have far too much to do here. I’ll be with you in spirit. You and Me. Always. Remember?
Me: Yes. Sorry.