{Two plates crashed to the floor during dinner, shattered white porcelain and tiny azure flowers, pressed in England, devastated by an unforgiving floor. Dinner sputtering angrily on the stove, edging towards burning, while the corn straws of the broom inadequately brushed the shards of pottery into streaks across the floor. Food seasoned with anger, topped with ketchup, eaten in silence.}

The little fist thudded into soft flesh, and my breath snagged in my chest. Dizzyingly fast, they were tied in a knot of freckled angry boy limbs, red faced gritted teeth copper hair balled firsts flailing. Shoving between them, pushing brother-fury, angry tear-smeared cheeks turning to glare not at each other, but at me, daring to stop them, to pull them apart, to insist, horrified, that no one will harm one born of me— even another born of me.

Pulled to either side, breathing hard, overflowing emotion with blotchy crimson faces and tears swiped with angry forearms.

They are best friends again by morning.

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