Short Story Sunday Festive Special (Grand Finale):Proof of the Pudding By Anna Mazzola

Proof Of The PuddingIt’s the last Sunday before Advent – Stir up Sunday, the day when we make the Christmas plum-pudding. Everyone in the house must have the chance to stir the mixture and make a wish. What will my wish be this year? No one will guess.

First, I stone the raisins and cut them in halves. They’ve been steeped overnight in French Brandy and are plump as a baby’s thumb. I often think about babies these days. They come to me in my dreams, pale-skinned and milky-scented, nestled between layers of sheet.

I pop one of the raisins into my mouth and, as I bite, the moisture explodes onto my tongue. Of course, the cook shouldn’t eat the ingredients, but after all this time I think I’m entitled to take a few liberties. This is my thirty-first year with the Thornes; this the thirty-first Christmas pudding. It will be the best one.

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