Everyone said those from shelter 15 were the best. I’d worked hard, got my promotions and saved every single penny from working as many extra shifts as I could. I knew I deserved the best, so only one from Shelter 15 would be good enough for me.
A lot of those on my shift, first when I was just another worker, and then as I rose up the supervisor ranks said I was a fool waiting so long. Others though, those who knew, said I was doing the right thing and one from Shelter 15 would be ideal for me.
Then I heard market day had been put back for a month. Even when I had the money and I could afford – finally – one from Shelter 15, it seemed the fates conspired against me.
I thought maybe those who prayed to the old gods were right and maybe I should learn how to pray too. But they didn’t seem to have better, or worse luck, than those of us who never prayed. Anyway, I’m not sure if their god would approve me praying for one from Shelter 15. From what I can see that god doesn’t approve of much and wouldn’t approve of anyone trying to buy some happiness.
Anyway, eventually the storms cleared and the word came down from the administrators that the Shelters had all agreed the next market day.
So, a week before the market day, I withdrew all my money from the bank, to smiles all around and people wishing me luck, I set off for the market green.
It took a few days for me to get there across the Nowheres.
It still amazed me to see all the stalls from all the shelters spread out across the valley under the bright purple sky.
Once in the market itself, I took a deep breath, took a tight grip on my money belt and strode straight over to Shelter 15’s stall.
‘Yes?’ the stallholder said, smiling because he knew why I was there.
‘I’d like to buy a wife please.’ I dropped my moneybag onto the table.