As soon as they turned into the end of the long driveway, Merry McKenzie recognised her Aunt Ava’s cottage from the photos the older woman had posted to her. Over the last few weeks she’d memorised the picturesque blue-grey double-fronted building with its curved thatched roof and sky-blue front door, framed by meandering Scottish hills.
The taxi driver edged cautiously along the snow-laden track and Merry pressed her nose against the icy passenger window, feeling bubbles of apprehension as she spotted the various animal enclosers, a large greenhouse and what was probably a complex allotment area blanketed in pretty pillows of sparkly white.
“I’m only on the brink of liking someone right now, and it already feels overwhelming. It feels like it takes so much to reach the point of loving someone. And if you get there — if you find a person worthy of the magnitude of the word love — how are you supposed to give that up?”