Epilogue 39

She sat engrossed in a world of tactile colours, interlocking blocks and cuddly toys. I approached cautiously, not wanting a repeat of the other night, but she did not appear to notice me, and was fully absorbed in the construction of a tower. She used her soft, pudgy fingers to place the blocks with careful, deliberate precision, all the while chattering to herself.

I sat down opposite her, watching her play. The wintery sun shone through the window, glinting off her soft, golden locks, forming a perfectly angelic picture, so much like Liesel when she was that age. I longed to pick her up, my beautiful granddaughter.

Then, suddenly, looking directly at me as if I had been there all along playing with her, she held out a block, her bright eyes enquiring and her mouth moving as if to say, “Ta?”

Transfixed I reached out and took the block. It stayed in my hand for a fraction of a second, feeling almost like a wet sponge, before falling to the floor. She leaned forward, picked up the block and gave it to me a second time. Again I took it, this time concentrating like never before, and watched as it hovered shakily, inches above the ground. She seemed to squeal with glee and pointed to the tower. Slowly I willed the little block towards the tower and watched as it settled, almost miraculously in place on top of the other blocks.

She shook her arms with scarcely contained excitement, and picked up another block to give me.