"But how do they know we'll pay for it?"
""If we don't the fairies will take you away in the night as payment," I hummed, calculating the cost of the groceries resting in my basket.
Valentine leaned into my peripheral view, adding a handful of plump peaches amongst the flour and salt as deftly as a bull in a china shop.
I pretended not to notice as I added an extra coin to the total.
"Do fairies run the store?"
"They sure do." I took his hand in mine as we made our way down the dusty trail towards home. The midday sun seared our skin, and Valentine's hand soon became an anchor in my own.
My back broke at the thought of carrying him, so instead I steered us off the road to the shade of a nearby tree.
"I saw the fairies once," I rested against the tree, pulling the knife from my belt to cut into one of the peaches. The flesh yielded like warm butter.
"On a day not unlike this one. They bounced through the grass like crickets, though with a song far more beautiful. Do you know why they came to visit me?"
"Why, papa?" "Because grandpa didn't leave exact change."
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