The Great Toy Swindler

Feb 06  |  Brandon Pretty

Frank was the slowest limousine driver on his company’s payroll, though you wouldn’t know that with how far the police sirens were behind him. His eyes bounced between the passenger freaking in the backseat and the upward-winding road, climbing higher and higher to the top of a mountain. Trees whipped by at an alarming pace, threatening to push them off into a gaping maw below the mountainside.

“Sir please, calm down in the back,” Frank said, “I’ll get you to your destination safely.”

“The cops are already on us, I better make this deal! You got a wire, huh?” the passengers hand reached through the partition. Frank smacked it away and grabbed the wheel again before they tumbled off the road.

“Hey! No touching! We’ll be there in five, I’ve got the pedal to the metal!”

The road curved into a straight-away, headfirst into a two way tunnel that went inside the mountain. Sirens still sung in Frank’s ears, a phantom tune playing to his paranoia. But nothing except the roar of his engines bounced off of the tunnel walls.

“Stop, stop stop! You’ll hit the buyer,” the passenger screamed. At the end of the tunnel were two cars blocking the road, lights flashed in their direction. A man in a pinstripe suit basked himself in the glow of two Honda Civic headlights.

Frank skidded to a stop and the passenger popped out. His beanie draped over his wild eyes, the disheveled clothing a world of difference from the buyer. The buyer said no words, simply sticking out his hand and wiggling his fingers.

The seller nodded, tossing a duffel bag out of substantial weight. It thwacked onto the ground before the buyer waved over an attendant to open it up.

“Hurry up, hurry up,” Frank whispered under baited breath. The sirens were getting closer, and he didn’t want to be caught with the stuff.

The buyer’s eyes widened as he opened the bag, the headlights reflecting off of it’s contents. Was it gold? Silver? Stolen jewels? Frank had no idea. The buyer placed another bag next to it with a grin.

“There’s your money. Now go! Police are coming, we have to dip!”

The impromptu marketplace broke up in multiple directions. Frank stepped on the gas, flying out of the tunnel and out of the other side. Frank sighed and smiled with relief as he drove down the winding roads, back down the mountain-side and towards his drop off location. That relief was shattered by cackling in the backseat, which sounded as if a banshee had it’s toes stepped on.

“What are you laughing at,” Frank quizzed. Tears were nearly welling out of the scrawny passenger’s eyes. He smacked his knee and began throwing around the money from the bag into the air.

The passenger howled, “I sold them knock-off beanie babies, and they’ll never know!”