“A dozen eggs, Mr. Sudteen,” said Mrs. Thorndike. She plopped a large basket upon the counter.
“Right away, Mrs. Thorndike,” said Mr. Sudteen. He decided to try charm. “Would that be a baker’s dozen?” Wink.
She bristled. “I have no time for games,” she said, curt tone and furrowed brow. “Mrs. Lutton will be over at three and I need the pie ready. A dozen eggs, right away.”
“Would you like the cheap ones? Only a dozen left.”
“Of course, I always have the cheap ones. Now stop wasting time!” she said.
Mr. Sudteen carefully placed one dozen eggs into her basket. She threw the coins down in front of him and stormed out.
Thorndike harrumphed crossly down the road, lugging the basket along, muttering. She turned the corner and promptly collided with little Jackson from number four, riding too fast on his bicycle. The basket went flying.
“You little ratbag!” she screamed at the hastily fleeing child. “I shall tell your mother!”
Eggs lay all over the road, tiny fragments of shell among yolk that glittered in the sun as it ran between the stones. She grabbed the basket and seethed back to the shop.
“Mr. Sudteen!” she yelled. “Another dozen eggs right away!”
“We’ve only got the expensive sort left.”
“Fine!” she spat. “Bring them here!” Many more coins hit the counter.
When she had gone, Sudteen went out the back of his shop. Little Jackson was sitting there on his bicycle. Sudteen tossed him a shilling.