29 – Who Let This Happen?

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I sat at my table for what was at least another hour. I eventually got around to eating what I had made, but it was cold and my appetite was not what it had been previously. I ended up throwing away at least half of the meal.

I returned to my living room, and sat upon my sofa. There was nothing else to do that day, and I had no intention of finding something to do. I just wanted to sit and rest, without anything to interrupt me. I had a lot of thoughts on my mind, and I needed to ignore them.

Despite that, only another hour later, there was a knock on the door. I got up from the couch, and went to see who it was.

“Hello, Renegade. How are you?” It was Claire.

“I’m exhausted. What do you need?” I replied.

“We’re going to be taking down another home tonight. It was kind of a last minute decision by Famine. We haven’t seen any sort of media attention for a while, and she decided it was time to change that.” She stepped away from the door, and motioned for me to follow her.

“I’m feeling a bit antsy,” She continued, “I haven’t picked a lock since the last time you saw me do it. I haven’t needed to steal anything for a while, or break into anywhere.”

“Looks like that’s changing tonight,” I replied.

She laughed, “Yeah. This will be a refreshing change.”

“I haven’t seen you in a while either, Ren. What have you been up to?” She asked.

“I don’t know. Mostly just work. We haven’t had any horsemen related tasks in a while.” I wasn’t going to tell her that I was having an existential crisis over the idea of people enjoying me.

“Fair point. I guess I’m just glad we’re doing something tonight,” She finished.

We didn’t talk about much else as we walked. I think Claire could tell I was purposefully being distant, and she gave me space. This was another incident of people caring about me.

Eventually, we made it to the area where we were supposed to be. Everyone who was there was preparing for things. Well, except for Vince, Claire, Famine, and myself.

“Famine,” I greeted the woman.

“Ren. Good to see you here. You know your job. Everyone else is already doing theirs,” Famine said.

“Good, then let’s get this done.” I replied.

“We have to wait for a few more people to show up,” Famine informed me. “We don’t need you to take shots in the dark and give us away before we even get a chance to do anything.”

Vince approached me. “Ren. It’s been a while,” he said. I nodded in return. “Not long enough,” he finished.

“At least Claire is happy to see me,” I replied. Claire smiled up at me.

“Hmph,” Vince replied. “It doesn’t matter.”

We waited for just a little while, before eventually everyone arrived and finished their preparations. Once they did, Famine motioned for us to go.

“Let’s just make sure the place is clear,” Vince said.

At that, I hopped over the backyard fence. This yard was huge. This mansion was certainly secluded in comparison with everywhere else we had burned so far. When I thought about it, it took Claire and I an hour to walk to the location. I was glad I had the next day off.

Claire and Vince followed me over the fence. Vince helped Claire down, since she was shorter than either of us. We snuck through the empty yard, and up to the nearest backdoor.

“You know,” Claire whispered, “I never understood why these rich types use solid white fences. All it does is hide potential burglars better. Chain link is much better, especially topped with razor wire.”

“Whoever lives here obviously isn’t concerned about security, otherwise they would have dogs and such to keep us at bay. There is nothing out here,” I replied, also whispering.

We got to the backdoor, and Claire began to work on opening it. “This is a bit of a complex lock. It’s going to take me a second longer than normal.”

“That’s fine,” Vince said.

I took my gun out of its holster. “Draw your weapon,” I told Vince. He glared at me, but did as such.

Vince and I waited for a few minutes while Claire picked at the door. Sometimes she would sing of hum parts of songs to herself. Vince and I stayed silent.

“There. I think I’ve got it.” Claire stood up, twisted the knob, and pushed. The door opened. Vince clapped her on the back. “Good going, kid. Let’s go.” Vince turned to walk in. I put my hand on his shoulder.

“I hear something. A high pitched ringing,” I whispered to him. He cocked his head. “It might be an alarm, Vince.”

At that moment, I heard footsteps rushing, likely to our location. “Run!” I exclaimed in hushed tones.

Vince took off. Claire and I were behind him. Vince leapt over the fence before Claire and I got there. I tossed Claire over the fence to Vince, then hopped over it myself. The door was still open after we fled.

“What happened?” Famine asked us.

“Go!” Vince made panicked motions to flee..

Famine told everyone to get going, and waited for us to catch up.

“What. Happened.” Famine demanded.

“Alarm. Door opened, went off,” I said.

“Fuck!” Famine exclaimed, running with us.

We ran for a long while. I was actually worn out by the time that we stopped. I didn’t think anyone had been caught, as the only people who had gone over the fence were Vince, Claire, and I. Nobody else even had the chance of being seen.

As I caught my breath, I noticed that the only people who were still with me were Claire and Famine. It looks as if everyone had separated when we left.

“Famine, why didn’t we know about those alarms?” I demanded, after catching my breath.

Once Famine had caught hers, she answered. “The family was out of town for the night. I had just found out from a scout.” She still panted after speaking.

I clenched my fists. “So why didn’t someone do a more thorough scouting mission before we came here to set up?”

“Because they would only be gone for tonight! It was now or never, Ren!” Famine screamed at me.

“Yes, and because of your rash and uninformed decision, you could’ve had people killed, and who knows how many arrested!”

“They know the risks involved, and so do you!” She took a step toward me, her brow furrowed.

“We shouldn’t be taking risks when we don’t know what those risks consist of!” I followed suit.

“Okay, so then let’s just sit on our asses and let these rich assholes keep stepping on us!” Famine took another step forward.

“If we have to stall before we can make a stronger decision, then we should!” I took one more step, and closed the distance

“Yeah? And who appointed you as honorary horsemen of the month?” Famine shouted.

“You and everyone else did when you decided that I was going to figure out what the fuck Death is up to!” I shouted back.

Famine’s face showed nothing but pure anger. I’m assuming mine was similar, because I was shaking everywhere imaginable. We stared at each other, both panting. I could see Famine’s shoulder’s bouncing

“Hey guys, sorry to interrupt, but we’re still out in public. Someone’s going to notice us,” Claire said, breaking the tense silence between Famine and me.

“I’m going home. Don’t make any poor choices,” I told Famine.

“Fuck off. Claire, you need someone to walk with you?” Famine asked her.

I left before hearing the rest of the conversation. It didn’t matter at that point. This night had been a waste and an utter failure.

Next Chapter

Author: Kay Walker

I write short stories, and post them to my site justmynarratives.com

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