Reserving a Book


The Man in White walked between white tents. Wind tugged at the corners of his robe. The brim of his hat hid his face in shadow.

He came to a stop in front of the bookseller. She looked up at him and smiled a crooked smile from behind crooked glasses. Books rose and fell behind her on mountains of rickety shelves: dusty paperbacks, worn leather, tattered jackets, yellowed pulp.

“Anything you’re after?” she asked. “Mystery? Science Fiction? Magical Realism?”

“I seek the Book of All Souls,” the Man in White replied. “It was entrusted to you. And now the hour has come for it to be claimed.”

The bookseller coughed. “Nobody ever gave specifics on who’d be picking it up. Only that they’d come today.”

“What are you saying?”

“I’m saying tough luck,” the bookseller replied. “I just sold it for twenty dollars to a girl with purple hair.”

Word Count: 149

This is for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thanks to Priceless Joy for running the challenge and Dorothy for providing the prompt photo!

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