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  • 18
    December

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    Write 500 words about a character who is not the main protagonist.

    The first time I broke the law was several months after I discovered I was no longer a normal girl.  The revelation of my abilities, while they did not directly contribute to my felonious actions, they did facilitate.   Life in an English boarding school is routinely boring and I had become something of a deft hand at relieving boredom.  However, for some ungodly reason, my parents, most likely my father, decided Japanese should be added to my curriculum.  For the twelfth time in my thirteen years I was plucked from a school with a name I do not recall, and deposited without ceremony in a new school begun by the Japanese to give their children experience in European culture.  For the life of me I never quite understood how such an experience would be possible considering the school was a virtual prison.  That, combined with a rather interesting automobile driven by the principal of the school led to my peccadillo.

    I first noticed the auto on a Sunday when the principal, one Miss Sakamoto, returned from a trip to Paris.  It was not a roar or squeal of tires but a gentle purring that captured my attention.  From my third floor window I observed a small silver roadster roll to a stop in Miss Sakamoto’s parking space.  Though it was a convertible, and the day was clear and warm, the driver had not seen fit to enjoy the obvious possibilities of a top-down drive through the Alsace countryside.  When Miss Sakamoto extracted her petite frame from within, I realized that it was unlikely a Japanese woman would race about France in a convertible.  It left me to wonder why Miss Sakamoto should even consider such a vehicle.

    For the following three weeks, the small auto set ignored and quietly rusting away in despair.  It was such a waste, like stabling a thoroughbred and never allowing it to run free.  It was obvious to me that I was to be the one to rescue this fine beast from the lassitude enforce upon it by an uncaring and negligent human.  As I had no experience with causing an auto to start without a proper key, I knew my single option was to acquire said keys.  This would require that I determined where Miss Sakamoto kept her keys, contrive to be in that area long enough to retrieve these keys, and most likely, institute some form of distraction to allow my theft to be unobserved.

    Determination of the keys’ location proved to be simple as I overheard a classmate discussing with another the possibility of action very similar to my own.  They had discovered that our principal simply hung her keys in the same lock box as the school’s vehicle, that being located just inside the door of her office.  The second step required that I live up to the reputation that had proceeded me from my previous school where I had mysteriously disappeared during the late evening only to be found in my bed the next morning.  Honestly I could not see how such rumors could migrate from England to France without malice of forethought.

    Of course, it was all true.  I did it for no other reason then that it was within my power to escape my room no matter the floor I was assigned.  The expeditions were purely innocent but salacious details of my exploits in local bars and back alleys abound.  It was true only in the wicked minds of evil little girls with nothing better to do than spread malicious gossip.  Not that I cared.  History had proven that within a few months I would be gone and names, if ever known, would be forgotten.  There were just times when I found the crushing sameness of boarding school life required a change of scenery even if it might be for but a few hours in the dead of night.  At such times I would wander through nearby woods, and there were always nearby woods, in hope of something exciting, such as a Gypsy caravan.  The closest I ever got was a wild sow and her piglets whose sleep I interrupted.

    That reputation had placed me, as most often, on the top floor of the dormitory building.  Three floors above the ground, a mere eight meters or so.  A matter of a few seconds decent and I was away.   This time, however, I wished to be caught and so selected a moment when I knew the house mother would be out and about.  As expected, I had barely made it halfway across the courtyard when an authoritative voice spoke from a shadow.

    “Miss Collins, where do you think you are going?”  The words were in Japanese but the fact I had an ear for languages coupled with the fact I expected some such challenge caused me to turn and face my captor.

    There was little I could say in my defense and chose to remain silent.  The house mother merely pointed to my dorm.

    “We shall see you in Miss Sakamoto’s office as six in the morning,” she said and justly chastened, I returned to my room.

    At 5:59 a.m. I arrived at the outer office and studied the area.  Desk, computer, books … a copy machine.   Capturing the machine in my mind, I knocked on the door and entered.  Miss Sakamoto sat behind her desk looking very disapproving while the house mother and a girl I knew to be my student representative stood to one side.

    “Miss Collins,” began Miss Sakamoto in heavily accented French, “Your exploits have been forwarded to us and we will not tolerate such activities.  You are restricted to your room except for classes and meals for the next week.  Should something of this nature reoccur, we will be forced to contact your parents.”

    The door of the key case was slightly ajar I noted.  It was time.

    When I had entered the room but before I closed the door, I had removed the gravity that held the weighty copy machine in place.  The natural rotation of the Earth took over and before Miss Sakamoto had completed her judgement, the machine had reached the height of about meter.  She rose, placed her splayed hands on the desktop and glared at me sternly.

    “Do you understand?” she actually growled the words.  I thought it very cute but solemnly nodded.

    When the copy machine crashed to the floor I reacted as I was expected to and joined the rush for the door, keeping back just enough to be last.  As exclamations of amazement and outrage erupted, I deftly slipped my hand into the key case and removed the only set of keys there.  In the ensuing chaos, I made my obeisances to Miss Sakamoto and meekly headed for my room.

    As I started across the courtyard, I changed direction and approached the silver creature unnoticed and unchallenged.  The door was not locked and I slipped into the soft leather of a bucket seat.  The key fit perfectly but before I turned it, I unclipped the front of the convertible top and pushed it back over my head and down into its niche.  The engine roared briefly in anticipation of the freedom to come.  For a moment I considered just slipping away quietly but I know that wasn’t my style.  Gunning the small car and throwing up huge plumes of gravel, I fishtailed out of the courtyard and twisted the wheel over onto the main road.  I was climbing past 100 kph before anyone realized I was gone.

    One thing the EU had done that suited me at that moment was open all the borders so I was in Germany in a matter of minutes and on the autobahn very shortly after that.  Downshifting I let the auto have her head and we blew passed 200 kph with plenty of room left on the speedometer.  The wind whipped my hair and I slipped Miss Sakamoto’s sunglasses on and settled in to enjoy the day.

    When your father is an international action movie star and your mother is the top supermodel, stealing a car gets swept under the carpet, even if you are only thirteen.  It was a glorious run of over six hours, from the French-German border, across Germany and into Poland but the Poles have no sense of humor.  Rather than risk the slightest damage to my marvelous silver steed, I stopped at the first sign of police pursuit.  They were gentle with me, nothing like you see American police reacting on those American police shows.  It was all very polite and I was completely cooperative.  It goes without saying I was back in England by the week’s end.

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