>X for Xenophobia

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A contribution to Kerrie´s alphabet meme, written by a not very famous writer.

She stretches out her hand towards the tomatoes. Her sleeve brushes gaudy, tropical fruit and her nose twitches at the exotic scents. She checks her shopping list. Baked beans and toast. That was it. She sighs with relief.

She steers towards the shortest queue until she sees the black scarf behind the counter. She changes her direction and aims for a fat, British-looking check-out assistant in a bulging smock.

Then she sees the next one. Right behind her, emitting wafts of strange spices. But a man this time. Brown eyes and dark hands with those weird, white palms. For a second the thought hits her, what would it be like to be touched by those hands?

She almost runs towards the exit with her fruit and veggies. Why did she go shopping so late? Her heels clacking on the pavement, she walks home as fast as she can without looking desperate.

A few minutes later she turns into the gateway back home. Finally safe! The bulb has fused again so it is pitch dark, but never mind, she knows the last steps like the back of her own hand. Her feet tread confidently on the cobblestones until he jumps out of the shadows and puts a strong arm around her neck.

A drunken voice hisses in her ear, “where´s your money?”

Her knees buckle and a taste of blood and bile rises in her throat.

“Let her go.”

“Wha´?”

In a daze of nausea she realizes there are two of them! And then comes the muted whisper which will haunt her for the rest of her life.

“Can´t you see it´s your sister. Let her go.”

About Dorte Hummelshøj Jakobsen

I am a Danish teacher. In my spare time I read, write and review crime fiction.
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