A stranger stands at the back of the village hall as the tally of the votes is read out. An odd-looking young man, Harriet thinks, if pleasant.
The jumble of his features fit together like a complete jigsaw, but she can’t understand the picture.
He looks straight at her, and normally she’d be flustered, embarrassed to be caught studying a complete stranger so intently, but he smiles crookedly, just as her share of the vote is announced and a huge cheer arises from her friends, campaigners.
Later, he comes up to her amidst the congratulations.
“I’m sorry, do I know you?” she asks, even though him knowing her name isn’t surprising. It has just been broadcast across the hall by Peter and his microphone and she is the MP, after all. Gosh, she’s the MP. Harriet Jones, MP for Flydale North.
“You deserved a second chance,” he says, and suddenly, unexpectedly, leans in to kiss her cheek.
He’s gone when she opens her eyes, though her mother’s teasing and the remarkably cool sensation of breath against her skin lingers on.
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