“Big boys don’t cry,” they’d said. Dad was pretty big, wasn’t he? So why was he crying?
“Oh, it’s only a little scratch, Ben,” they said when the tears came.
“If they see you crying they’ll do it all the more.”
“It’s not the end of the world. You’ll do better in your next arithmetic test.”
Dad was looking at the picture of him and Mum they’d taken just before she became so ill. Dad would probably rather not know he’d seen him crying. Ben crept back to his room but then something jabbed into the bottom of his foot. He yelled. And the tears came.
“Oh, Ben, it’s just Lego brick. What are you doing out of bed? Anyway big boys don’t cry.”
Ben couldn’t see any tears on his dad’s face. Perhaps big boys don’t cry after all.