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Prim walked down the crowded sidewalk with his hand clasp around the precious find, like he was afraid it might leap from his pocket and run away. He edged his way down the street to Mahari’s shop and entered. She sat behind the counter and was wearing a striped head scarf, her gold tooth shining as she spoke. “What do you have for me today, Mr. Prim?”
Without speaking he pulled the rose colored object from his pocket and handed it to her. She held it up to the light shining through the doorway with her thumb and index finger and looked at it. “What is it?” she asked.
“I don’t know,” he hesitated, fearing she might not see the potential value.
“I think it might be an ornament that sits on a coffee table,” she said.
“What’s an ornament?” Prim asked.
Without explaining, Mahari asked, “Did you steal it from a rich person?”
“Yes! Yes! I did, it was a rich man!” he shouted, as he hoped she saw true beauty in it. “What will you give me for it?”
Mahari scratched at her head scarf and let out a sigh. “Twenty rupees.”
That was almost a half a day’s work, he thought. He paused, then decided to go for the deal of his life. “Twenty rupees and a pair of gloves.”
“What kind of gloves?” she asked.
“Leather ones, not the cloth kind.”
She searched in her back room and came out with a brown pair of leather work gloves. “These are the only ones I have.”
They were obviously way too big for his tiny hands but he didn’t care, he figured he would grow into them.
Prim stuck out his worn, callused hand. “So it’s a deal then?”
She shook his hand. “It’s a deal.” Her gold tooth glistened as she smiled.
Prim left the shop and headed home. As he walked, he breathed in the smell of his new leather gloves.
Mahari cleaned up the rose colored object, put an 850 rupee sticker on it, and displayed it in her shop window.
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