Today’s snippet continues on from my novel-in-progress, A Handful of Wishes, about a kid, Zeke, who gets a wish-granting genie, Paribanu. One afternoon when the school bullies were chasing him, he ran into a second-hand store owned by the eccentric Cornelius Zwyklychski (pronounced Zwick-lich-ski – from the Polish word for ordinary), who offered him after-school safety in exchange for working around the shop. Zeke, of course, has been lording it over the school bullies, who finally catch up with him, beat the crap out of him, and leave him lying next to some knocked-over trash cans.
(BTW, this particular chapter takes place in 1953.)
Zeke lay back on the ground, hurting so badly he couldn’t move, couldn’t think, could only lay there amid the old newspapers and coffee grounds, staring up at the sky.
After a while a shadow fell across him. He looked over and saw Cornelius standing above him, regarding him with a studious expression on his wizened face.
“Odd place to be lying.”
Zeke blinked. He hoped it was a good enough response.
“Come into my shop. I have something for you.”
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