"It was a little insect, about an inch long and covered with dirt. It had six legs, two long antennae on its head and what seemed to be a pair of wings folded on its back. Holding his discovery as carefully as his fingers could, Mario lifted the insect up and rested him in the palm of his hand.
"A cricket!", he exclaimed.
Keeping his cupped hand very steady, Mario walked back to the newstand. The cricket didn't move. And he didn't make that little musical sound any more. He just lay perfectly still--as if he were sleeping, or frightened to death.
Mario pulled out a tissue of Kleenex and laid the cricket on it. Then he took another and started to dust him off. Ever so softly he tapped the hard black shell, and the antennae, and legs, and wings. Gradually the dirt that had collected on the insect fell away. His true color was still black, but now it had a bright, glossy sheen.
When Mario had cleaned off the cricket as much as he could, he hunted around the floor of the station for a matchbox. In a minute he'd found one and knocked out one end. Then he folded a sheet of Kleenex, tucked it in the box and put the cricket in. It made a perfect bed. The cricket seemed to like his new home. He moved around a few times and settled himself comfortably.
Mario sat for a time, just looking. He was so happy and excited that when anyone walked around the station, he forgot to shout, "Newspapers!" and "Magazines!"