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— Why are you so late, baby, and why did you turn off your mobile once again?, Oh, why do you have ground under your fingernails? — asked the mother, looking warily at the pale thirty-year-old woman.

— I was buring a dove. — answered Vera, and went to her room.

It was late evening of a cold autumn day, the rain was pitter-pattering against the window, and she had a heavy heart.

«Go and wash your hands at least,» Elena Vasilievna begged, «pigeons spread all kinds of infection, in case you get sick, you’ll give us one more problem. And in addition you can infect me and your father.

— Well, mom, you’re right, I’m going to the bathroom.

— Oh, Vanya-Vanya, our Vera is in trouble one more time. Looks like her autumn aggravation has been flaring up again. She buried a pigeon today, when she came home, her hands were all dirty with ground. Can you believe it?

— I really can, and, more than that, I can also imagine, Lenusik, that if it were not for your maternal super-love, and hyper-care, our Vera would not be an old maid at her thirty; and instead of arranging funerals for pigeons, she would look after her children and her husband.

— Who needs her besides you and me, Vanya? Shame on you, saying that.

By the age of thirty, Vera Nikiforova’s life gradually turned into a gray series of everyday events. In the morning she went to work, in the evening she came back home to her parents, on weekends she visited her grandparents. She did all that out of self-interest but wishing to please her poor sick mother, who had given her the best years of her life.

Elena Vasilievna, who suffered from congenital heart disease, since the very birth of her daughter, by whom this ailment had been inherited, literally wrapped her beloved little girl in cotton wool, in turn, keeping every step of her childhood life under her vigilant and strict control.

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