“Behind the door,” was what they wanted to say, when people asked where they’d been when they learned of it. “We heard his first breath, first gurgle, first hiccup, first splutter. We heard first, because we were behind the door.”

Only they hadn’t been, had they? The odds hadn’t been too bad. Six young couples, six stables or similarly purposed shelters. Six wise trios to stride across sands, after some star or other; six huddles with farmyard creatures around soon-to-be-new mothers, staring, waiting, making them more nervous than was strictly necessary. And who’d got it right? Only sodding Caspar, again.

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