Ripples - one
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'He should be here by now.' Annette glanced at her watch for the fifth time in as many minutes. She glanced at Amelia and shrugged ruefully, lips pursed. 'It would be just like your dad, to forget about us totally; you know what he's like about his work.' Amelia nodded. Her father was passionate about what he did. An auto-body specialist, specializing in the restoration of antique cars, Mathew Brooking spent a lot of time away from home, traveling. As his reputation had grown, so had the demands upon his time. So, when the job offer had arrived, from a prestigious antique car dealer and restorer in the nearby town of Poulton, to replace a retiring refurbisher, he had jumped at the chance of working with people of the same mindset as himself. 'He won't forget about us.' Amelia stated with assurance. Her mother nodded, but managed to still look doubtful. 'Who won't forget about who?' a familiar voice demanded, from somewhere beyond the privet hedge. Amelia and her mother jumped at the sound, and Amelia squealed. Moments later, her father appeared, sticking his head around the pillar, a broad grin spread across his thin face. 'Boo?' His voice was high, and comical. 'Daddy!' Amelia released her mother's hand and leapt towards the entrance. Moments later, she was caught up in her father's embrace. 'You scared me,' she admonished, through her giggles. 'Sorry princess.' Her father tried to show remorse. The twinkle in his eye betrayed him, however, and Amelia was not to be fooled. 'No you aren't.' She twisted and looked at her mother. 'Mummy, can we get a better daddy?' She asked innocently. Her mother pretended to consider for a moment. 'Hmm; I think we'll have to look into that.' She said. 'Unless of course; he promises to mend his ways.' Amelia nodded. 'I promise, I promise.' Her father held up his hands in mock surrender. 'So; do you want to go in?' He asked. 'I've been having a look around the outside. The garden's huge.' He took Amelia's hand and led her along the cobbled pathway towards the front door. 'There's an absolutely massive tree at the bottom. It's easily big enough for a tree house, if you want one.'