A Dash of This...

Her fingers were bony and thin, stained a permanent yellow gold from digging the tips in the turmeric paste. Her hair smelled of mint and cinnamon from the wash she made to cover her premature gray, her feet of rosemary from the soak she gave them at each sunset.

Loli pounded her fists into the dough, her knuckles working the sesame seeds into the mixture and cracking under the pressure. Sweat dripped over her face and down the brim of her nose, drops and beads falling unnoticed into the mix and disappearing under her working hands.

The boy at her feet was not hers. He played with the shackles wrapped around her ankles, tapping a wooden fork against their silver, laughing and singing over the tink of music it made.

She ignored him, as she usually did. Only when the wood slapped against her leg did she acknowledge his presence, giving a little kick to his side, hard enough to stun but soft enough to avoid marking. She wouldn’t be able to explain away any more bruises on his skin.

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