He watched the baptism from the furthest pew, eating peanuts from the bag hidden in his pockets. His niece, his sister’s kid, screaming and red, as the priest dropped a handful of water on her forehead and mumbled in Latin. At least he guessed it was Latin.

Afterwards, when they got home and set out the platters of little sandwich triangles, his mother would pull him aside and whisper how disappointed she was they baptised the baby. That his sister’s husband’s family was practically a cult.

She’d ask for a cigarette and they’d sneak out to the garage and smoke.


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