The worst part is when he cocks his head so that their eyes meet and he wonders, even before she answers him, if he has already asked. For a moment, an illusory burst of hope seizing her naive heart, she thinks that maybe it is reversible; maybe he is going to snap out of it.
Then she snaps out of it instead, just in time to hear him ask, for the eleventh time, “So, are you teaching the kids German?”
“Yes, Dad, as much as possible,” she says.
“Well good,” he nods approvingly, “good.”
And though she feels it acutely, like a dagger permanently lodged in her soul, he does not; he has no recollection of what he has lost.