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(A short story of 1552 words)

Piri-piri Sauce

Literary

by Adrienne Silcock


Paulo is determined to start a book business in the old Portuguese market, but it looks as though the odds are stacked against him. That is, until a stranger arrives in the village.


Eyes turned and lips unseamed when Paulo first walked into the covered market carrying what looked like a large suitcase and a fishing stool. He unclipped and opened the trestle table and unfolded the little canvas chair. He set them at the edge of fish stalls slithery with sardines, bream, horse-mackerel and eel, by stalls piled high with the season’s oranges and lemons. Noses peered from behind mountains of bright green cabbage and golden squash, craned over bunches of red radishes the size of golf balls.

Some ridiculed him directly as he unpacked his bags of books and began to lay them in neat rows upon the table. Others stood in small groups, muttering, heads nodding in his direction. Unperturbed, Paulo continued to arrange his wares...
 

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