A Prized Possession
The magic of seeing a top spinning across the floor is still something that fascinates my customers. That particular morning, I watched as a little boy fell under its spell. “They have a life of their own”, I said.
He wanted his mother to buy it but she was looking out of the shop window. She pulled a face when I mentioned the price. The boy looked at me, delight slowly fading.
I climbed the stairs that evening and made my meal. Coming to in the chair, I realised it was late and I must go to bed. I always check the shop at the end of the day. While I was locking the door, a sudden movement crossed my eye, and I saw the little boy at the window.
He was staring inside and looked lost. I opened the door and took his cold hand. He smiled as he entered and immediately ran to the top that he had seen that morning.
He reached in to his coat and produced a large, shiny stone with a hole through its centre which he handed to me. When his mother arrived, apologising for his behaviour, I insisted he keep the toy. It was a fair exchange.
The stone takes pride of place on my mantlepiece.