Hero! (or How I Got Run Over by a Moped)

“Hello there, Audience; it’s me, Thatcher, again. As if you had any doubts; you probably read the title and knew right away that I was back at my old shenanigans again. It’s been a while since our last adventure. There is a damn good reason for that, too. I kind of wound up in the hospital.

“You see, not long after my last bit of excitement, I was in need of a little cash. You know what, this story is much better if The Narrator tells it; he saw the whole thing. Narrator, take it away.”

Thank you, Thatch. Now, as he told you, Thatcher was in need of some money. Believe it or not, he is not able to steal electricity or heat, so naturally, he has to pay for those things. Also naturally (this is Thatcher the Great and Terrible we’re talking about), he didn’t want to spend his own money on these things. He finds it is much more rewarding to steal the money. Or as he puts it, to “have some kind soul pay my bills.”

So he went out and started turning out people’s pockets. Pickpocketing is a difficult business these days; you can’t just steal someone’s watch and pawn it anymore. The police have gotten wise, and go straight to the pawn shops, pulling the records of any items that fit the description of the thing that was reported stolen. And since pawn shops keep meticulous records of items bought and sold, as well as buyers and sellers, pawning stolen items is pretty much a no-go.

That leaves just cash. I mean, he could use someone’s credit card, but that would get him caught even faster, and Thatcher very much enjoys his ridiculous life outside of prison. So he steals cold, hard cash. the day in question had been going quite well. He was up several hundred dollars after just a couple of hours. People really are oblivious to what is going on around them; some of his picks were so blatantly obvious that he should be ashamed of himself. yet, the people continued on with their day, completely unaware that he had just robbed them blind. (That reminds me; I should really tell you about the time Thatch pretended to be blind while getting away from a crime scene. He wound up playing piano at an elementary school talent show; it was a real fiasco.)

Anyway, so there he was, making one hell of a living in a very dishonest manner, when he saw what should have been a very easy mark. An elderly lady was crossing the street, and her purse was hanging onto her shoulder by only one strap. It was flopping around, wide open, just asking for him to put his sticky little fingers into it. I mean that in a very literal manner; his hands are very petite (they make for great piano playing, apparently), and he had just lifted a cinnamon roll off of a street cart several minutes before. He had literal little, sticky fingers…but, again, I digress…

Thatch saw the opportunity before him, and walked up to the woman.

“Ma’am, woud you like some help crossing the street?” he asked her.

A wide smile grew on her face, and she replied, “Oh, yes; you are so kind.”

Thatcher took her arm and supported her as she crossed the street (yes, he actually helped her; he’s a thief, not a monster.) As they neared the curb on the other side, he slipped his hand into her purse and grabbed her wallet. At that moment, he heard a high-pitched sound, and suddenly, he was lying in the street.

A moped slid to a stop several feet away, and his arm hurt like hell. Looking down at it, he understood why.

“Well, I’m pretty sure it’s not supposed to bend that direction,” he said to himself.

People poured out into the street, with several helping the old lady to her feet. One of them called an ambulance. A police squad rolled up seconds later, and the police propped Thatch up against the front tire.

“What happened here?” the officer asked.

The old woman stepped forward, clearly shaken. “That young man there was helping me cross the street, when that MANIAC on the scooter tried to run us down. He pushed me to safety, but the driver still hit him.”

Someone in the crowd chimed in. “Yeah, he’s a HERO!”

“Crap,” Thatcher thought to himself. “The last thing I needed was a reputation as a hero. I can’t have people recognizing me; I’ll starve. Or I’ll have to get a real job…yeah, I’m gonna starve.”

Thatch attempted to stand, and the officer held him down.

“You’d better stay seated til the ambulance gets here, son.”

Thatch shook his head. “No, I’m fine. I’ll just walk it off.”

The people around him laughed.

“Not only is he a hero, he’s tough as nails, too! What a guy!” someone said.

With his good arm, Thatcher waved off the statement.

“I’m not a hero; I just got hit by a moped. It’s no big deal, really.”

Thatcher was suddenly struck with a thought. “Are ALL the heroes on the news just small-time criminals who got hurt doing something illegal? Man, there really are no good people left in the world. What scoundrels.”

“I wasn’t pushing her out of the way, I was st…oh, yeah, that’s what I was doing. I was helping her across the street, and then I pushed her out of the crazy driver’s way,” he said aloud.

He shook his head and cursed himself. He had actually almost said, out loud, that he was a thief. What an idiot. He had to be more mindful of the things coming forth from his mouth. Haha. He loved a good double entendre.

Suddenly, right in the middle of the story, Thatcher interrupted the Narrator; rather rudely, I might add.

“Thanks, dude. I’ll take it from here. No need to tell the Audience that I was running my mouth at the hospital, and they gave me a surprise prostate exam. So, anyway, I wound up in the hospital for a few days. Haven’t been able to use my arm much lately. Thankfully, I snagged enough money that day to pay my bills for a couple months.

“That’s pretty much it. I get the cast off in a few days. After that, I’ll be back to normal.”

Now, Thatcher; don’t you want to tell them about the T.V. interview you did?

“Oh, yeah, that’s right. So, after my surgery, the news crew came to my hospital room and did an interview with me for the story. I was still REALLY high on the pain meds, so I said a lot of things. They never aired it, though. Apparently, they frown on lots of swearing and dirty jokes being played during the nightly news. I didn’t really tell them anything about the incident; I was just real obnoxious.

“One good thing did come out of this, though. When they did the story, they showed my picture on the news. One of the guys from one of the Families in the city saw it and recognized me. I guess I pulled a heist and accidentally botched an operation of theirs. I thought they would be angry and would want revenge, but that’s not the case at all. They said I impressed them, and they invited me to a dinner party where the local crime bosses get together and plan stuff out. They said they want to avoid having different jobs intersect like that. We’ll have to go together; you can be my plus one. You can come too, Narrator.”

Thank you. I enjoy a good dinner party.

“Yeah, don’t mention it. I figure they will either try to kill me, or this will be absolutely hilarious. Either way, it should be entertaining. But that’s not for a while. I need to get some rest; I’ve been playing Mario Cart all day, and I’m all tuckered out.”

And so Thatcher went to sleep, leaving the Narrator to awkwardly end the story with the Audience. He couldn’t think of anything else to say, so he simply bid them good day, and faded away.

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