The Cedarville Review 2024

48 FICTION “Two dollars,” she said. “Right.” I fl ashed her another smile as I rummaged in my pockets (she was actually real pretty, Jeffey, frown and all). Well, I realized really quick that I didn’t have enough. All my spare change only came to a whopping dollar-ninety. I thought I had more, but I guess I spent most of it on food. Besides, you know how hard it is to save money back home. Anyhow, I got nervous real fast. “I hate to say it, miss, but I’m just a little short, just a little you know…” She wasn’t looking too friendly by this point. “Well see it’s like this; I’ve only got a dollar-ninety cause I’m real poor and…” She just looked at me all stone-faced like some dead scarecrow. “Couldn’t you just… you know?” There was a weighty pause. Boy, did she scare me. “I really couldn’t.” “But it’s not for me, honest! It’s for this poor little kid and his dad beats—” “No.” “He’s really hungry and sad, miss. He needs something happy, you know? Just a reason to smile is all.” She sighed and reached for a coat hanging behind her. “I can’t make any exceptions and I’m sorry, but I’ve got to close for the night.” “Wait! Wait miss.” She set her coat down. “What about one of those little chocolate ones?” “One dollar.” “Right, I’ll do that one please.” “Alright.” She pulled that one out instead and put the white one back. Boy, was I sorry. I really wanted to get that kid something special, but