The little boy lay there sobbing. His hair was a startling black and his eyes a piercing blue. His skin was pale, with bruises here and there and his eyes were red rimmed from crying. After a while he stopped sobbing, but carried on sniffing now and then. He looked up. She was there. His eyes lit up and he mustered up a tender, heart-wrenching smile. She smiled back and held out her arms for a cuddle. Then winced when he ran and jumped into her embrace. She hid the fact her own bruises were so painful from the little boy. Then the door slammed. His grip tightened and he clung to her. She flinched, but didn't remove him. A drink-slurred voice came from the hall, "I'm home,"