These Seven

Nimmi’s Wall

“It was the first good day after a long, dank winter so she got out of the house early before the sun could run out on her. Nimmi was going to do what she’d been longing to do since she arrived in Nottingham — explore the long garden that disappeared in a cloud at the bottom. The empty red brick house she had moved into four months ago was now furnished to her taste and felt like home. But the garden in these months of incessant, icy rain and a cold, buffeting wind had been impossible to get to know. It had taken on an aura of mystery and become doubly alluring in the time she’d spent looking at it from inside the protective warmth of her new home. “A hardier soul would have been out there exploring it already!” she reminded herself almost every day while looking out the tall glass windows of her living room, past her steadily swelling reflection, into the dripping garden beyond. But it had had little effect. If she scolded herself often about it, she also made excuses on the grounds that she was a tropical animal, only recently arrived from sweltering Kolkata and exceedingly cowardly when it came to cold like she’d never known before.”