Bratslav, Ukraine
Fall 1889
Part 7

As the door swung open, the dust beneath it collected into an even pile. In its place stood a man who looked different than the other men in this town, and carried an expression of otherness in every step he took.

Humbly, he entered the workshop and approached the owner, who refused to move his eyes from the candlestick he was shaping. When he was finally done, he looked up at his customer through the thin frames of his glasses, and smiled brightly.

“I’ve been able to make most of the repairs myself,” the stranger began, “but there are still a few pieces I’m missing.” He held up a case in the shape of a fiddle. “I’ve heard you may be able to help.”

The owner did not say a word, but accepted the instrument gently and opened the case to inspect it. While he worked, the stranger gazed at the beautiful creations around his workshop, until he came upon a piece resting on the top shelf. He could barely look away.

“My name is Mottel, and all I have is my carriage, my horse, and the fiddle you’re holding,” he said, still staring. “But, I must ask. How much are you selling that kiddish cup for?”

The owner laughed.

“My friend,” he said, “I’ve never in my life been a good businessman. But even I know that you never sell something that cannot be replaced!”

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