Saturday Short: Goblin Eggs

photograph of a bunch of egg-shaped squash

“They call ’em goblin’s eggs, you know,” Brian said as he dumped another bushel of the egg-shaped squash into the crate. They tumbled and rolled like eggs, but didn’t crack as they settled into a lopsided pyramid.

Sarah rolled her eyes as she spread out the squash so they wouldn’t come tumbling down on some unsuspecting buyer. “You know only the children still call them that.”

“Then what would you call them?” Brian asked as he lifted the picking basket and placed it on his shoulder. It made him look as if his head was the size of a giant pumpkin as she looked up at his silhouette backlit by the sun.

“I call them egg squash, just like the sign says.”

He shook his head. “They’re goblin’s eggs. That’s why they aren’t selling.”

“We sold a whole crate of ’em last week.” Sarah stepped back as a woman began sorting through the squash, intent on selecting the best ones. Sarah looked up at Brian and raised an eyebrow.

He shrugged and walked back to the fields. Sarah lost him in the market crowds as she turned her attention back to the woman who wanted help selecting squash for her meal tonight.

Sarah didn’t believe in child’s tales about goblin’s eggs, but she didn’t take any squash home either. And she pretended not to notice that a few of the squash were cracked and empty as if they were simply shells when she pulled back the tarp from the crate to prepare for the first buyers of the next morning. Only children believed in such things.

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