I have no idea what I am going to do. And so, I resort to what I normally do when I need to process information, running. I barely got past the front gate of my Aunt’s house when my hurt ankle gives out. I twist and crumple onto the rough pavement, letting out a string of words my father would probably spank me for using, well he would if he was still alive. I spot a bench next to a trash can across the street and stagger over to it. I sink onto the cool metal and lift my ankle up to examine it.
I probably shouldn’t have neglected it for so long. By this point, it has swelled about three times the size of my other ankle and is an ugly purple-blackish-yellowish color. I should probably go to the emergency room or something to get it checked out, but I really don’t have time for that. Plus, it’s way too expensive.
Well, I guess running is out of the question. I lay down on the bench, putting an arm over my eyes to shield them from the setting sun.
I lay there for a while, waiting for the pain to subside. When it becomes clear that the pain isn’t going to go away completely, I unleash the flood of thoughts I’ve been holding back.
How could this happen? I had this all planned out. I had purposely put myself in situations where I would have to face down Atlas and his Uncle, just so I could figure out their weaknesses. I subtly avoided Atlas like the plague at school, so he wouldn’t recognize me. I had plotted and planned for hours on end. I trained in combat, strength, and stealth for four hours a day, seven days a week for five years straight to be ready for this scheme. I had killed, stolen, deceived and made myself the most wanted villain in Astroria, for this opportunity, all for it to be ruined by a stupid boy and his stupid hormones.
If Atlas likes me, he’s going to pay attention to me. Shoot*. He has been since the beginning of the year. Attention is the worst thing that could possibly happen to me. If Atlas recognizes me as the Shade Assassin, I’m through. I’ll go to jail, for life. I wouldn’t even have the chance to avenge my father.
I want to kick something. So I do.
When I get through with the nearby trash can, it is on its side, with more than a few very decent sized dents, and me now with two hurting feet and yet, thoroughly satisfied.
If any of the neighbors have been watching me anytime in this last maybe half hour, they’ve probably made the assumption that I am either high, drunk, or a straight-up psycho. Shaking, I sit back down, pulling my knees into my chest, suddenly feeling vulnerable and unsure. Jeez! My mood swings are off the charts today. I’m not used to plans going wrong, and if I’m being honest with myself, not knowing what to do scares me.
There has to be a way to twist this around to work in my advantage. I sit there, barely moving, just thinking, for a good ten minutes.
Finally, I come up with a solution. But it’s not a happy solution.
I get up and kick the trash can again.
There are so many ways this plan could go horribly wrong. For starters, I would have to pretend that I actually like Atlas. That’s a challenge in of itself. Sure I’ve liked guys and I’ve had quite a few like me, but they’ve never gone anywhere. I’m a little out of practice. Then I would have to go with a much riskier, and more complicated murder plan than I had for his uncle before. Now I will have to get dirt on him through Atlas, publicly expose him, and then murder him and make it look like a suicide. ****, now I won’t get to use those tranquilizing darts. All that sacrifice for nothing.
I head back to Aunt Suzy’s house. With every slow, awkward, and excruciatingly painful step, one thought is going through my head. It will all be worth it. It will all be worth it. It will all be worth it when I finally avenge my father. It will all be worth it when I get rid of Captain Colossal for good. It will all be worth it when I can finally relax and be free. It will all be worth it.
It’s dark by the time I reach the house, and Aunt Suzy is thankfully asleep. I can’t wait until I graduate. Normally in this situation, I would try to live on my own, but as it Aunt Suzy who is paying the school tuition, I’m stuck. After graduation, I’m not sure what the future holds for me. I’m not going to college. I have no relatives and no money to buy a house. Nobody wants to hire the daughter of a convict. Maybe I’ll just pickpocket my way around the world, find a rich boyfriend and then steal his money when we break up. The possibilities are endless.
I plop down at my desk. I still haven’t done my homework, but I think it can wait. I pull a sheet of binder paper out of my notebook in my and take my favorite mechanical pencil out of my pencil pouch. I write: How to murder a beloved hero across the top. I then proceed to write down my plan; step by step. I don’t leave anything out because if I don’t write something down, more often than not I completely forget about it.
- Make Atlas think I’m interested in him.
- Get “close” to him.
- Get Atlas to spill some dirt about his uncle.
- Tip the press off.
- Watch as Captain Colossal’s life is (hopefully) ruined.
- Press Atlas about his uncle’s schedule.
- Use that schedule to find a date and location for murder.
- Assassinate the Captain and make it look like a suicide.
- Break up with Atlas
- Go on with your life and maybe retire from villainy.
There. 10 simple steps to avenge my father and maybe, just maybe, retire the Shade Assassin for good.