A Ducting Detente 
A Ducting Detente 

A Ducting Detente 

I crawled out from under my house, spitting out dirt and dust and wiping the cobwebs from my hair.

‘Well?’ Jared asked me nervously. ‘What’s the issue?’

‘Apart from the small spider sanctuary that we’ve apparently been harbouring?’ I groaned, getting to my feet. ‘I think the ducted part of the ducted heating is going.’

‘Well,’ he sighed. ‘That’s not good.’

‘Not traditionally, no,’ I said, dusting off my beard. Jared stepped forward to help, taking a cobweb off my shoulder that I’d missed. ‘We’re gonna need to find a professional.’

‘A professional?’

‘Someone who can do ducted heating services and repairs in the Canberra area,’ I said. ‘I thought I’d be able to have a crack, but I didn’t have the first clue what I was looking at.’

‘Sounds expensive,’ Jared grimaced. ‘We could always–‘

‘Nope,’ I cut him off. ‘Not happening.’

‘You didn’t even know what I was about to say!’

‘Oh?’ I raised an eyebrow. ‘Are you sure? Your next three words weren’t going to be “ask your dad?”’

‘No,’ Jared tucked his hands in his pockets sheepishly. ‘I was going to say “ask your father”.’

‘Ah. Totally different then.’

I turned and began to walk back to the house for a shower.

‘You know he could help!’

‘I don’t care that he can help!’ I growled, turning around to frown at Jared. ‘I don’t care if he offers the best heating services and repairs around Canberra – it’s not enough! Not after what he did!’

Jared nodded in the silence of our backyard, and I took a deep breath.

‘I’m sorry,’ I said eventually. ‘I shouldn’t be yelling at you. You know how this topic makes me…’

‘Angry?’ Jared offered. ‘Irritable? Irrational? Hard to live with? Slightly bloated—’

‘Alright!’ I stopped him with an annoyed smile. ‘Message received.’

‘So…?’ Jared asked me, stepping forward to run his hands over my chest. ‘Are you going to call him?’

I sighed and dropped my head on his shoulder.

‘I’ll think about it,’ I relented. ‘I’ll think about it.’