Monday, October 4, 2010

My Sticky Fingers Don't Need To Be Washed

You may have already pegged me as a low-down crook who'd steal his grannie's dentures for a euro he couldn't spend. But that's not my style, slick. Why not convince the pawn-shop owner who's hiring you to grab the teeth to give you an advance payment and then steal the teeth from his own shop, come back tomorrow, and throw the man his teeth for an extra bit of cash? But see, it's goodhearted tricks like that which come back to bite you later in your smooth little career. In fact, I got a story ringin' through my head right now, that I'm just itchin' to tell.

Let's see, now, it all goes back to 2005, I think, when I was cruising through a small town in Ohio, Bellville I think, and I was sleeping in a tree outside of town. Now, that doesn't give a man in my line of work a good image, see, so I was itching to get my hands on some money so I could clean myself up a little. For a while, I couldn't see any easy marks that looked like they could deal with the loss. A few cozy banker, but not cozy enough to take a hit like the kind I was planning. See, I had been thinking up a scheme I'd been wanting to try for some time, one that had a bit of risk but a lot of fun in it, and it would leave the target.. Well, a little less set in their ways.

I'd been searching for days, and was getting a bit impatient by this time. I had been eying banks, and that's never a good sign. Banks live by the ol' rock star premise; live fast, die young. Huge payoff, quick capture. I've only heard of a few pulled off in the last ten years which ended well for all involved, and those robberies were planned, trained for, and executed with precision. Me, I was a smooth-talking smiler with a lucky streak. I'd never fired a gun. Who knows what would have happened had I acted on my impulses to try it. But, like I said, I must have a lucky star over my head or something, cause out of one of those banks came Mr. Scrooge. Wasn't his real name, of course, but I like giving my targets little nicknames. And this guy, he was a scrooge.

Wore a scowl like you wouldn't believe, with little wrinkles crisscrossing his face like he'd fallen asleep on a chain-link fence. Everybody who walked by him avoided his gaze, and the cane in his hands was unpainted metal with a sharp bottom that clinked as he walked along the cracked cement street. He also wore this long black coat, an old kind, even though it was right smack in the middle of summer, and I was hot in my stained gray suit. I was getting a bit smelly, and I hadn't brushed my hair in weeks. To my name I had nothing but this ruined appearance. I must have seemed like the most disgusting man in the universe, but after finding Mr. Scrooge, I had a grin worth more than I ever stole brightening up my face. In my mind, the plan had already come together.

First, I carefully followed Scrooge back to his house, a crumbling old place that still had a sort of mildewed dignity to it. Looking at it, I wondered whether Scrooge was rich at all, or if he was just an antisocial old man. My doubts were tossed out the window and into an oncoming train when he opened his front door and a complete staff of servants quickly bustled to bring the man inside. He wore a smug, satisfied grin that reminded me of a child who has stolen a toy from another and gotten away with it. The servants all had a stressed look that told me it was only money keeping them there. And it was then that I was sure I would be the one the knock that chip off Scrooge's shoulder.

I'll continue the story in a bit; I've got to go mess with some cameras.

An Introduction of Sorts

Hello, I'm Arcadi Tracer, and I'm a criminal. I won't lie to you and say I'm innocent, but that's no reason to spend my life behind bloody bars now, is it? The stories they tell are bad enough. Rape, murder, thievery.. And guys like me. Con-men, tricksters, the smooth-talking men in the suits who commit suicide a few days after they're sentenced. And why not? Nobody likes to be caged, especially when the cage is a place of mockery and misery.

No sir, I'm not going there, and that's a problem with the other men in suits. You know the ones. The guys who aren't there when you turn around, the ones that hunt you down and knock you out cold before dragging you to wherever they think you should be. Them. Call them what you want; The FBI, the men in the black, the secret service. I don't know, myself; I never bothered to ask. I was too busy running.

And I'm still running. I don't plan to stop. But I'm throwing this message out in a bottle. Why? Why not? Who doesn't want some attention now and then, hey? And we're the ones who work the real magic, the ones who pull the real schemes. Though we're not exactly an 'us', or a 'we' at all, I suppose. But I know there's more than one con-man out there, and I know I can't be the only one who plays the gullibility of the masses just for a lark.

I'm not the only trickster out there.