Green Oranges

Greens filled the barrow, piling high in an overflowing mound of pitted balls, drenching the air with citrus.

Funny, that they shouldn’t really be called greens, but oranges, when it was not until their native flesh was cut away that the true colour be revealed. These greens were not for trade, nor for sale to far off lands, where the sight of a green orange would frighten away the buyers from the stalls. These greens had not been treated, not coloured, not bred until their insides bled to their outsides and turned their skin to sunsets.

The barrow rested upon pavement that would have been white but for the film of dust that coated it. The tile sent the sunlight bounding back and striking everything, until all was white. All but the greens.

The temple rose behind the barrow that was destined for nowhere, keeping astute watch over it and all else. Its pale walls and golden onion tops shone in the brilliance from the yellow in the sky, creating a silhouette known the world over.

A green rolled from the barrow, nudged by the gentlest gust of air as a small boy raced past. He did not stop to examine the barrow, or the temple. He reached out his dark skinned hand and plucked a green from the pile, racing away with his stolen treasure, the prospect of the prize too valuable to be put off by the unnatural natural colour.

The green he had dislodged hit the pavement, bounced twice, and began to roll, gaining momentum as it reached a small slope in the tile. A streak of green that should have been orange, would have been orange, if this barrow were meant for anywhere else.

The green left the white tile that surrounded the golden temple and barreled into brown grass. It ploughed through the dry turf until bumping into a surface not so different from itself.

The book was large and heavy, its pages thick and yellowed, their rippled and ragged edges visible between the sturdy covers of green Moroccan leather. The orange that was green reached the book and stopped, its hide a perfect match for the tome it lay beside.

Brown feet moved through brown grass. The light from the yellow was blocked as a shadow fell over the green and the green book. The boy reached down and plucked the orb from the grass. He dug a thumb into it and deftly worked it open, peeling back the skin and revealing its secret heart.

Shards of green tumbled to the ground. Torn strips that told a lie, a pitted mound on top of green leather.


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