Excerpt from MOTHER TONGUE by Karen Stephen
The moment over, I grabbed the edge of my seat as Scafani barreled ahead, lurching to a stop at a building identified by a sign reading Les Halles Corses. Its façade of stone traveled two feet up white stucco walls and crept around a stout door, propped open to catch the breeze. Two shields, nailed on each side of the entrance, marked it as both a boucherie and a charcuterie.
Scafani opened his door and leapt out. “I’ll be right back.”
I refused to be left behind and reached for my door handle. “I’ll go with.”
He stuck his hand out like a school crossing guard. “No.”
After enduring a terrorizing ride, I sure as hell wasn’t going to be ordered to sit and stay like a friggin’ cocker spaniel. I swung open my door and followed him into the market. He joined a group of grizzled old men seated around a pickle barrel. I headed for the opposite side of the store and busied myself browsing through shelves of canned meat products. I watched out of the corner of my eye as the men greeted him with rounds of kisses on both cheeks and hearty claps on the back.