by J.P. Fischer
The peace of the home at night is disturbed by a thief.
A RUDE INTERRUPTION
The fireplace crackled merrily,
casting a warm orange glow over the room. A squashy armchair sat
comfortably near the fire, a large pile of books stacked haphazardly
on it. The remains of a hot dinner lay beside the chair, gravy
smeared across a painterly plate. In the corner, a small bed sat
cramped up against the wall, its occupant snoring lightly. On the
wall adjacent to the fire, there was a small round window, which was
opened ever so slightly.
As the clock's chimes signaled one 'o clock in the morning, a shadow passed over the window, as a dark figure slunk across the wall outside. With a scarily quiet creak, the window was opened fully, allowing a strong wind to enter the room. The figure stared warily at the man sleeping in the bed, but he was still snoring and very much asleep. Cautiously, the figure slinked through the open window slowly but surely. As it went to enter the room completely, the figure bumped their head on the top of the window, and fell onto the floor with a painful crash. The hearth's light had illuminated the figure, and it was now clear that she was a girl. She was wearing a dark black tunic and trousers, and had curly blonde hair which fell messily over her round face, which was bright with fear as she stared at the man in the corner. He was, however, still asleep. He snorted sleepily and shifted slightly, but failed to awaken.
Rubbing her head gingerly, she tiptoed her way over to the window and closed it slowly, then went to the armchair, where she looked through the pile of books, checking the titles.
Teachings of the Fifth Deity of Vvarden
A Study of Religion in the Outer Provinces
Myths of the Sunscape, and Other Tales
Akevanish Values and Society
All the books had strange and nonsensical titles like this. Most of the books she lay back down carefully, but occasionally she would take one and put it in a small bag, which was strapped around her waist.
Next, she moved onto a small cabinet pushed up against the wall opposite the window. She rifled through the drawers a bit noisily, once again occasionally pocketing something. She mustn't have found what she was looking for however, because she shut the drawers and looked capriciously around the room, until her eyes came to rest on the bed in the corner.
Slung over the corner of the bedhead pushed up against the wall, gleaming in the fireplace's glow, was a large golden amulet. Its chain was so fine that it could've been made of silk, and the fine golden pendent was embedded with stones of dazzling reds and greens that shined with an ethereal glow in the light.
For a moment she stood there, pondering the risk of reaching over him and snatching the amulet. The bed, despite being rather short, was quite wide, and the girl didn't like her chances of being able to reach it. She could climb on the bed, but would the man wake from the mattress shifting?
Biting her lip nervously, she searched through her bag, counting up the amount of objects she'd stolen. While it certainly wasn't empty, it mustn't have been enough, because slowly, steeling her courage, she snuck towards the bed. Sticking her feet upon the mattress and pulling herself up, she stretched her arm out towards the amulet, barely centimetres away. Slightly, ever so slightly, she shifted further onto the bed. She was within reach of the amulet now, just a little bit further and it would be hers! Just as her fingers closed around the cool metal chain, a look of great success upon her face, the mattress gave way under her toes, an ear splitting ripping noise filled the room and she tumbled painfully onto the sleeping man, the amulet clattering to the ground.