“Make it quick,” he uttered dismissively.
Held tightly in hand, his nails seemed to penetrate through his deeply creased palms. I felt the air brush across my rough surface as I was carelessly tossed onto the wooden table.
The chair gave a yelp, and the table quivered as the man sat down. With a lighter and a pipe in hand, he began to smoke. There was a pillow of fumes swirling through the empty space that seemed to suffocate any living thing in contact with it.
The young lady from the counter approached the table and placed his plate of medium-rare steak and his cup of black perculated coffee.
“Enjoy your meal,” she said, with a slight cough.
With his knife and fork, the man pulled the cooked meat apart and crammed it in thick and fast. With each bite, his teeth gnawed violently and scraps fell from both sides of his thin lips.
His short arms reached towards me as his eyes took notice of my tarnished and worn face. He held me in between his fingers that were wrapped heavily with golden rings encrusted with diamonds and small emerald stones. They felt heavy and cold against my thin rim. The silver bracelets that covered his plump wrists rattled as I was flipped and tossed into the air. He held me close against his rounded face and the wrinkles around his eyes deepened as he struggled to examine my faded details and the almost unreadable letters written across the top.
The man scoffed and snickered as he looked in disgust and disbelief. He placed me in the kerchief pocket of his black suit; I clattered and jingled with other coins as he stood to leave the room.
The sound of his shoes against the gravel was suddenly interrupted as a frail voice spoke. Through the thin silk of my owner’s clothing, I caught a glimpse of an old man. He was dressed in untold layers of fragmented wool with greasy hair tied back in a clump.
“Spare some change, mister?” The old man asked, barely audible. His arm was extended and his palms trembled in the cold wind.
“People like you deserve no wealth, let along a coin,” my owner sneered and continued to walk the narrow path.
A sudden shriek brought a slight tingle across my surface as my owner stumbled, then tumbled onto the concrete ground. I rolled out from the dark depths of his silken pocket with my edges scratching against the pavement. I jumped and came to a stop as he hammered his fists onto the ground.
“Thief!” he roared with eyes wide and red with fury. He staggered on his feet and hauled himself to run after a figure dressed in black.
From the seas of stilettos, leather boots and sneakers, a pair of tattered brown shoes trotted towards me. Calloused fingers gently picked me up from the ground. It belonged to the old man in frayed wool. His eyes glistened and his long grey whiskers that protruded from his upper lip as he softly stroked my rough rim and uneven edges.
The old man gave a short chuckle. And a smile was painted across his weathered face as he held this small piece of copper.