The old lady stepped out into the street. Her back ached from the exertion of her recent thievery.
“Wait, wait!” cried the grocer as he sprinted after her. “Come back here with my mangos.”
The old lady tripped and the grocer heard a scream. But it was not the scream of the old lady. A Ford Taurus had run over the toes of a young boy named Jeremy on the other side of the street.
Jeremy yelled out in pain again.
Now recovered from her fall, the old lady approached the boy to comfort him. “Shh now, you’re going to be okay,” she said, giving him a hug and placing a mango in his shaking hands. A crowd of four or five had gathered. They applauded the old woman and asked the boy where his negligent parents were. The old woman offered her stolen mangos to the crowd, but they politely refused.
Watching from the middle of the road, the grocer kicked a rounded rock in frustration. The rock took flight and found its stop at the wrinkled cheek of the old woman.
“Did you see that?” cried one of the round men in the small crowd.
“He just assaulted this woman!” yelled another round man from the crowd.
The old lady began to cry. She wasn’t really hurt, but in a past life she had been a stage actress with a consistent ability to send tears down her cheeks. The moment took hold and she responded on que.
Exasperated, the grocer forgot about the rule that crying old lady heroes are always forgiven of their thieving actions once they come to the rescue of small boys with broken toes. In this forgetfulness, he whined to the crowd, “But she stole my mangos.”
No one from the crowd questioned the old lady. They did, however, spit on the grocer’s shoes. All four or five of them. And the two round men spat especially nasty loogies.
Publicly shamed, the grocer turned back to his store.
The old woman took hold of one of the mangos. She stretched her arm back and launched it towards the grocer, striking him between his shoulder blades.
The crowd cheered and the grocer hung his head before tripping on the curb himself.