“She wants to go into tennis?”

“That’s what she told me. Showed me this glossy brochure about the camp they’re having–“

“But–” and here she, the wife, the woman, the mother, Kaylee, whatever society had decided on calling her, narrowed her hands together until they almost touched to indicate her daughter’s size.

“Don’t shame her like that.” Kaylee’s husband crossed his arms. “How’d you like it if someone at the firm gestured like that.” It didn’t come out as a question, even though it was worded like one.

“That’s not what I was intending to show. I’m only being realistic.”

“It’s realistic to believe she could play a sport. Even tennis.”

Kaylee’s eyes bugged. “You’re not ser–“

“I mean, someday, anyway.”

Kaylee exhaled. In her imagination she tore up the words she’d spoken and unspoken like they were so many paper planes flying off and poking people’s eyes and making a general nuisance of themselves.

Extended metaphors were her fuel, Kaylee believed.

“Someday,” she said, trying to sound collected, “you could discover a pristine bar of platinum at the end of the frigging driveway.”

He looked at her with cocked eyebrows.

Sighing, Kaylee turned in her chair so that she sat a right angle to his line of sight. Her eyes, she knew, were starting to snap. Keeping her anger quiet and invisible had never been her forte, although lately she’d begun to question if she should even do so.

“It’s those movies we make her watch,” she said. “They make her delude herself into imagining she could be a tennis player, dancing all over those courts with a racket between her hands.”

“I know what a tennis player does.”

She closed her eyes. “It’s not just those movies, though. It’s us.”

He swallowed loud enough for hear and make note of.

“Us,” he echoed.

“We need to make her stop dreaming,” she said, nodding. “We should all stop dreaming.”

“Don’t be preachy.”

She jutted her lower lip out to show that she was doing her best not to show she had taken any offense at this remark. Kaylee waited for her husband to rise and make a dramatic exit from the dining room, but he stayed where he sat.

Then, to her surprise, he spoke.

“You didn’t dream when you were little, did you?”