She smiles apologetically when they meet in the communal hallway each morning.
‘Sorry about the noise,’ she’d said when they first met, her son lurking behind a haircut in the doorway. ‘It’s my thing.’
Her thing, is vacuuming her flat at 6am. Every day. He lies in bed, staring at the ceiling. She’s careful at least, never hits the skirting boards.
One day, she vacuums at 5am and a black car takes her away. Later, there are visitors and whispered eulogies seep through the floorboards.

She doesn’t wake him with the vacuum anymore and when they meet, he smiles apologetically.