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with me. I bring him out, show him how we have evolved, what his

theory proves. He agrees with me, he admires the marble statues,

reads with me about the gods. ‘Very worthwhile’, I say to him.

I come home, no dinner made, the kids in their rooms, David

back from Jerusalem.

‘Where were you?’ he asks. I notice that his grey hairs have grown

in number.

‘With Darwin,’ I say shortly, placing the little picture on my own

beside table, not David’s. I do not look at him, I do not ask about his

trip. I can feel his gaze on my back as I change. I imagine him studying

me, willing me to turn around and come to him. But I refuse.

The following dayDavid hands the girls their presents. I am turning to

leave; Darwin stuffed at the bottom of my bag, when he calls me over.

He’s frowning, struggling to comprehend my behaviour.

‘Where are you going?’

‘Out,’ I say lightly. ‘Don’t know where yet.’ I proceed to flounce

away, but he catches me by the hand.

‘Wait, I have something for you,’ he declares urgently.

He brings out a long, woollen blue scarf, very similar to the one

that Nadia often wears. My heart begins to sink, but then I feel

Darwin’s frame poking me from inside my bag and the pain leaves

immediately. I then think, of course, in all of Jerusalem, he finds the

one shop that sells plain woollen scarves in the middle of summer. I

smile casually, waltz out and dump the scarf in the neighbour’s bin.

The next day, I’m sitting on a low wall outside a theatre, a banner

advertising ‘Oedipus’ fluttering above, Darwin standing proudly

beside me. My phone rings. It is my boss, Richard. He sounds tired

and worried. His researcher has had to resign due to family issues. He

needs someone to go to Athens to write a paper on the influence of

Pericles, and could I, please, please do it?

I hesitate, wondering if I should call David before glancing down

at Darwin. We must evolve, he tells me.

Which is true, I think, and you cannot argue with Darwin. He

cannot be destroyed, I must remember that.

I smile and turn my attention back to Richard, wondering

whether my husband would enjoy Greece, the museums, the

tavernas, the ouzo, the real Athena. Always forward, never back.

The Theory Of