"I have news. Good news, people." I looked around to see everyone meddling in each other's miserable mundane work. None interested in what I had to say, except for Bumbleweed.
Now, who is Bumbleweed you ask? Bumbleweed is our goldfish. Very poofed up and golden(probably because no one feeds him regularly, and the poor soul has to live off the water which makes him round as it consumes more space). He looked at me with his wide eyes, flapping his fins in the little living space he had made for himself out of his droppings, leftover food, and dirt in a plastic container. Poor fish.
I looked away from our pet goldfish to my family cooped up in the living room.
"I DON'T WANT TO ROB ANYMORE!!", I yelled.
Each one of them looked up at me and gasped. My cousins put their hands against their mouths and my grandmother almost fainted. My parents glared at me angrily, with their furrowed eyebrows. I might have even seen Bumbleweed swim back a few millimeters in shock.
"What?! I think I must have heard you wrong.", my sister Lelia, said.
"You heard me right. I don't want to take up robbing as my job anymore." I repeated.
"What did you say?" My aunt asked, putting her ear forward.
Is there something wrong with everyone's ears today?!
I sighed and repeated, "I said, I. Don't. Want. To. Rob. Anymore. I don't want to break into people's houses and steal their things."
By this time my expression was revealing that of frustration and stress as if I were teaching a toddler the laws of thermodynamics.
My grandmother waved her parasol (yes, she still used such ancient objects) and squinted her eyes. "Bob? What happened to good ol' Bob, aye?"
I rubbed my palms against my face and groaned. "Bob's dead. He no longer lives with us. You shot a bullet at him while you had the crazy idea to rob the White House. Poor soul did all he could to contain you."
Bumbleweed looked at me and a trail of bubbles flew out of his little mouth as if he were encouraging me to go on. Good fish.
"Look, I know all of you have heard me, except for you, grandma. We can't do anything about the hearing issue of yours now."
Grandma looked at us, confusion etched on her face. "Tissue? I ain't have any tissue on me. Ask Bob. Haven't seen him in a while, aye."
I ignored her as she was a lost case and continued, "I don't want to be a robber. I have dreams! Goals! And robbing won't get me there."
"You have been part of the greatest and historic moments of all time! What are you going to do with a job?!", questioned my dumb cousin, Amanda. She loved chewing nails and sticking them all around the house.
I put a finger on my chin and rubbed it, feigning the deep thoughtful look on my face. "Hmmm. Let's see. Maybe I can...I don't know...earn money without the use of illegal methods maybe! And stealing the landlord's statue wasn't historic at all!"
"Jace, honey, I think you've got us all wrong.", Lelia cackled. "We don't rob. All we do is 'borrow' property from a person or place. Nothing wrong with that."
"Unlawfully." I deadpanned.
"Well, there are some things which do not quite agree with the law but people still do it."
"We gain. Common in the shares market too. Not unlawful."
"We present a false impression. Not against the law."
"Oh come on! I don't want to rob anymore, okay? I don't like it."
"What do you mean you don't want to partake in the family business?! Unacceptable!", my brother yelled, throwing his hands up in the air, resembling a dancing monkey.
Finally. I was beginning to get worried that Bumbleweed was the only one who genuinely worried about me.
"Did you all fail English in high school?! I mean that I don't want to assist all of you in robbing people of their goods. I-"
"But it's-", my sister started.
"I don't care if it's a family tradition or not. Have you all taken a look at the house?! Everything is so decaying and old, but, everyone has the latest model of the phone. Sometimes, I feel Bumbleweed is living a more lavish life than me!" I ended.
Bumbleweed swam back and forth, and I might have even seen him shake his head as a 'no'.
"Stop with the commotion already." The icy-cold words of my grandfather shook the whole room. The temperature might have even dropped a little.
He continued, "It's not like Jace even participated in the heist. All he did was sit and monitor for any cops."
"Hey! That was an important work too. What if you had got caught? It is all because of my look-out you all are not rotting in jail right now.", I said, appalled and offended by his words.
"Go do whatever you want to do. Quit robbing if you feel like it. We won't require your services." Grandfather said and reclined back on the sofa, back to reading that bloody newspaper.
I pondered for a moment. I was stuck between the devil and the deep blue sea. A choice between my pride and my dreams.
A very difficult decision.
I made the wisest decision in the history of making decisions.
I choose my pride.
After all, am I a human without my pride and ego?
"You know what, I will prove myself to all of you. I don't want to quit robbing. I will steal the most valued possession of the richest neighborhood. All alone." The words flew out of my gritted teeth before I realized what I had said.
Bumbleweed let out a fishy scream. The birds and the bees started buzzing about here and there. The ground shook. A volcano too might have erupted somewhere.
"I will prove that-"
"CUT!", the voice of the director echoed in the hall.
"Good work everybody!", he continued. "We are done for today. There will be a change of dialogues tomorrow. Nothing much. It won't be a trouble. Nolan, work on your facial expressions a little bit, yeah? Make it seem as if you are a teenage guy who does anything and everything to appear impressive. Cool?"
I nodded and said, "Yeah, cool!"
"Great! Well, pack up everyone! Be here tomorrow at six am sharp. Not a second late.", the director said sternly with a pointed finger.
Phew! This was tiring. I sat down and gurgled down a whole bottle of water while I waited for everyone to leave.
"Yo Nolan! Want a ride?", the cameraman, Dan yelled.
"Nah, man! I am all good. Thanks!"
He nodded and left.
Good riddance! The coast was all clear.
I dialed a number on my phone and said, "Operation 'Steal the most valued possession of the richest neighborhood' on the move."
The voice from the other side replied, "You sure you want to steal a fish? A pet fish?"
"Yes. That fish has more security than the mayor. I am sure there is something fishy going on."
I smirked. Guess I really was a teenage guy who did anything and everything to appear impressive.