‘I was taking her to school you see and…’ The teacher stopped her there, told her to calm down and tell the truth. ‘Well, it all started with the barbie…’

It began at the garden barbecue, the one we’d been setting up for some time, days, weeks, months. There was Sami with her mate Tommo and me, Dave and little Timey.  I was told Timey and me used to be lovers in a past life – maybe. But hey, that doesn’t count for much now. I conceived him in the back of our other garden. It wasn’t Dave then but Stevey. Anyway, Dave was pushing himself onto me the whole time and Timey was looking for constant attention. I was trying to cook the vegi-burgers and watch them both at the same time. Sami didn’t seem to be fully there, always on the mobile texting her boyfriend in Trinidad. She was downing the wine like we used to at school. No good having a lover the other side of the world I told her but she didn’t listen. She loved Sky. That was always the way with Sami, always had long distance ‘lovers’ so she never had a proper relationship.

It was hard trying to keep Dave at bay while I cooked and looked after Timey. He’s not that young, just 10, but they need looking after a lot all the same. He kept trying to wind me up, pulling my belt and catapulting slugs at my new jeans. I taught him how to do that when I was pissed off with Stevey. Eventually all the half dead slugs I threw at him killed off the relationship altogether. But that was my intention.

I’m not exactly a dab hand at relationships. They come and go and most stay until they’ve been mothered enough and I’m fed up with the whole mothering thing. But Timey stays with me through it all as if he’s my little guardian angel. He’s only 10 but somehow when Timey’s around things go ok in the end.

I eventually told Dave to ‘f off!’

‘What’s the matter with you, hen? Lost your sense of fun?’

‘I’m just not in the mood Dave. Know what I mean? I need to cook burgers and look after my son. You’re not helping much. What are you doing with that f’ing can of lager at your gob again? Can’t you cook the bloody burgers for once?’

He looked stunned and threw his can on the floor right by Sami’s black painted toe nails. She shrieked ‘ahh, what you doin’ Dave?’ She hated anything wet and ran inside to get the lager muck off her skin. I raised my arms up to heaven in despair (I’m not Catholic or any religion. Its just an expression). ‘I just need to look after Timey and cook burgers! Can’t you see I’m busy? When are you going to get off your backside and actually do some work for once Dave?’ He looked sheepishly the other way. Then he turned round in that Scorpionic fashion having worked out an answer under his slurred smelly breath, ‘Who do you think fucking goes out slamming bricks and concrete down all day long, every day just to bring home a bit of dough? Don’t call me an idler Kim. It’s my day off.’

He did his usual then; slammed down his mug of half brewed tea on the picnic table and walked off. I don’t know how long he was gone. We just got on without him and it was better, much better. Sammi came back and we sang songs and lit a fire. We remembered old times at school together and then baked our spuds in their cosy jackets and wrapped blankets around us. ‘I know, lets sing ‘Old Lang Syn’ she said, ‘just before the end,’

‘The end of what?’ I asked. 

‘The end of this racket. Just the end of what has been. Let’s make a pact that this is a new beginning. Let’s start again sis. Let’s do it all again.’

‘Yeah’ I said smashing my glass of wine right in front of my feet.

‘Why did you do that?’

‘Its just a pact sis. I want to give it up. I tell Dave off, but look at me, look at us! We just drank a whole bottle each. Can’t be good for us. We’re no better. Let’s give it up together. Start again. Make it all good again. Know what I mean?’ She said ‘yes’ she did know what I meant. WE would both make it better somehow. Dave was probably at the pub pissing up even more, then he’d amble into bed virtually unconscious and wake me up puking all night long. 

‘Don’t let him in tonight Kim. Just shut the door on him babe. Let’s make a pact to not let them in any more, not the bad ones. Let’s try and get better ones now. I’ll make it so they live in this country.’

‘But you love Sky!’

‘I know Sis, but I never see him. I’m giving up the ghost now. Going to bed alone for a while and then waiting to meet someone I can really be with. Know what I mean?’

‘Yes Sami. I’ll always be your mate and whenever you think to change your mind, whenever you feel weak phone me. Tell me how you’re feeling. Let’s stick by each other from now on.’

We did. We really stuck by each other through and through. I locked Dave out and he never really came back, just to collect his stuff. There wasn’t much of it anyway. For some reason Sami actually managed to split from Sky – even though they never saw each other anyway. We both stopped the booze altogether. It was something about that barbie. Or was it Timey’s influence again? He wasn’t around when we made our pacts and Sammie’s mate left early to get back to London. But somehow it seemed Timey was always watching us, observing everything that was going on at a deeper level and somehow he always made things change. I don’t know how. I don’t know how I gave up drinking just like that. It just made me sick after a while. Whenever I tried drinking after that barbie I just threw up straight away. I got over it. I got over the shock of not partaking in alcohol any more but it was strange at first, really strange, especially when all your mates drink.

It was like how I gave up meat. That was never a big issue with me before. It just happened. One day I looked at a lamb kebab and I said to Timey, ‘That’s a dead lamb you know. It was happily in a field one day and then they took it to some abattoir and they slit its throat and cut it up into a kebab.’ He just stared back nonchalantly and said ‘Yeah, I know’ as if it was obvious. But not every kid would know that. I never showed Timey pictures of dead animals or abattoirs, nothing like that. He’s strange like that, really strange.

We cooked lots of veggie stuff together. We roasted peppers and tomatoes on the barbie and made fresh salads with herbs and spices. We did all kinds of things like that and Timey was a natural. He became veggie straight away and so did I. Well, it took a while before I finally made it but once I’d given up the shrimps, bacon sandwiches and bags of muscles I really did give up meat. I never looked at another meat burger, kebab or sandwich again with any kind of feeling for it. And that was part of the problem with Dave. He was a heavy drinker and he ate meat. I figured I’d have to find a veggie non drinking boyfriend now.

‘You’ll have to find me a new boyfriend now chuck!’ I said to Timey one day, just before school. He kind of chuckled and I guessed he was up to something. The very next day he brought a new kid home for tea. And guess what? Her dad was a vegetarian teaching assistant who had lost his wife to cancer only 2 years before. I found out when he picked her up. We had tea and soya mince with spaghetti. It’s what I do. I can’t help offering people food when they turn up. I know I don’t have to, but it’s a kind of mothering instinct in me.

He lapped it up. I could tell he was really hungry. ‘Pleased to meet you Geoff! I really mean that. It’s good to meet my son’s friend’s parents. Usually they just go home on their own.’

‘Its good to meet you too Kim. I had a best friend at school a bit like you actually.’

‘Oh really. What was the similarity?’ He looked me up and down a bit. ‘Well, she was slim with very short dark hair. We were both 16 at the time. We went to discos and that kind of thing, just friends.’

‘Oh.’ I didn’t quite know what he was implying here, if anything. I wasn’t that clever with subconscious language. I poured us more tea wanting to prolong the conversation and find out more. The kids were upstairs playing some computer game. I’d really changed since Dave had gone. I got this spotty teapot from a charity shop, took up tai-chi and was drinking all herbal tea now and green juices. Geoff seemed relatively impressed.

‘Would you like to go for a walk sometime across the marshes?’ It came right out of the blue and I wasn’t expecting such an invitation! ‘That would be great Geoff. I’d love to. Why the marshes?’

‘Its just where I love to roam. If you’re free after school we could take a picnic and all four of us go together.’ I wondered whether he was deliberately choosing a time when the kids were around. Sounded less like a date then. I was a bit disappointed but then safety in numbers too. ‘Ok, when shall we go?’

It took me ages to get ready. I absolutely filled my small rucksack with cheese and tomato sandwiches, salad and humus. I had my big flask of chamomile tea and honey for the two of us and some binoculars and camera. I figured that admiring views and more intellectual pursuits might be more in line with Geoff’s interests. I had been with so many beer swigging, builder type, heavy caffeine consuming idiots I had forgotten or never even learnt how to be with more studious types. But Geoff didn’t seem that studious anyway.

We held hands on that walk. It seemed so natural and Timey and Claire were just playing right ahead of us, ignoring us most of the time. Geoff was a kind, gentle kind of guy. He loved his kids, loved his work and didn’t seem to do much else except walk on the marshes. It was great being outdoors, away from town. I felt breeze blowing over my skin, but a cleaner breeze than town breeze. We just smiled a lot at each other and somehow I felt extremely warm and safe in Geoff’s company. It wasn’t long before he just took my hand and squeezed it tight very naturally. After ignoring us for the whole walk Timey looked back suddenly and grinned when he saw us. I guessed he was up to his strange tricks again.

Well all that happened a while back now and sometimes I take Claire to school. We’re just a happy family that came together very quickly and suddenly. But it took quite a bit to make that happen all the same. It took the birth of little Timey and God did the rest. I found out that Timey is an Indigo kid. That means they come to Earth on a special mission. They try to help their parents out and make life better for them and everyone they know. They’re system breakers. That means they want to change the school system and lots of other systems. Claire’s Indigo too. I support what they’re doing. 

We took them out of school. I told the head that they didn’t want to be in school so we were going to home educate. She didn’t like it and didn’t understand. I told her that was what we’d decided to do. Geoff left his job and we started home educating together. We had a new set up, our own school. I taught cookery, tai chi and painting and Geoff did most of the other subjects. 

It was the day of the summer barbie that changed everything. That was the start. I never knew how exactly but now I do. Timey somehow influenced me to make vows and decisions about my life. Once I decided to change, everything else in my life did too. Sami changed too. We’ve all grown and transformed and the likes of Dave are never in my life now. But Timey has a lot to do with it all. He’s doing his magic all the time but no-one would ever know. They’re special kids the Indigos and I love my Timey so much. I’m writing this to thank him for being in my life and for being part of that Indigo tribe who are doing so much good in the world.. I really hope they win. I hope they make a difference in this world cos someone has to. Something has to change. I know Timey played a big part in making my life change for the better. 

Thank you Timey!