And what if we’d been utterly open? Made jokes about the first wife? What if we’d been that kind of family? Well, I would have been different, surely. But not because I knew the secret. For it wasn’t the secret—the secret that wasn’t a secret anyway—that led to the austerity in our lives. It was the austerity that led to the secret. And what I had been marked by, probably most of all, was the austerity. It had made secrets in my life too. Or silences, anyway, that became secrets. That became lies.