We ordered the Special Wife Cake because it was called Special Wife Cake. Madam Squeeze tore it carefully in half, pausing mid operation to ensure the halves were even in size. The cake was tiny, flat and round like a raised biscuit made of pastry but in the centre something was lurking. At first glance the cake appeared to be filled with reconstituted apple-flavoured squid or half-dried superglue but it tasted much worse than either of those two things combined.
We tried turning it into a game, animal, mineral or vegetable but my mouth would not decipher the taste. The pastry flaked but tasted short and emitted a malodorous vapour detectable only once mastication had commenced. Madam Squeeze tried dipping her half in jasmine tea but claimed it did not in any way improve the flavour. I tried leaning back in my plastic chair and smoking a cigarette but that also had no effect.
I almost made it through my half of the Special Wife Cake, almost but not quite. Three bites worth of cake lay listless on the white square plate on the table between us. It felt important to me that we finish the cake because of its special and possibly mystical name. Try as I might I could not finish my half. Madam Squeeze, in an act of selfless bravery, attempted to finish my half of the cake but could not in the end stomach it.
I'm not sure that I want to be anyone's special wife but as I walked away that minuscule piece of cake taunted me, saying 'This will be the reason you rattle through the world alone'. Madam Squeeze asked me 'Who do you want to believe, rational thought or the imagined voice of an undelicious cake?' I said 'rational thought' but I was thinking 'cake'.