Amelia wilted down the beach, bored with herself. She needed a change. She was sulky, sludgy. Perhaps, she thought, she should change her hair. She was almost positive her hair hurt. Yes, that would help. She stopped and looked out to sea, shading her eyes against the glitter on the water. Did she see…was that something moving towards her? A black spot on the horizon was steadily flinging itself in Amelia’s direction. As it grew closer, she could almost make out…it was! It was a man’s bowler hat! It was so sharply black that it looked like a hole in the air. As it sailed closer, straight and true towards Amelia’s shapely head, she could feel her future changing. Everything would be different now! She would be dapper, instead of diaphanous. She would be decisive, incisive; she would snap her fingers at people and they would take notice. She would take charge, she would – suddenly there was a flash of golden fur and Amelia got a faceful of damp sand. Henry flung himself in front of her, and snapped the hat out of the air right in front of her. Landing on the sand with a soft plop! he tossed the hat in the air, and tapped it into place on his head with one jaunty paw. Damn that dog! His sartorial greed, his elastic hind legs.

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