I crouched behind the car, trying not to make a sound. I knew that if I moved now, I would blow it, I would blow everything. The wind hissed all around, shielding the burning rays of the sun that summer morning. This was it. Any minute now. Dusty soil seeped from the bottom of the flowerpot as he lifted it for just a second, dropping the house key down and setting the pot right back on top of it. He looked around as he did so, a paranoid look growing on his face. Maybe he felt somebody was watching him. Maybe because there was. I’d been watching him every day for the past couple of months. Everything I’d seen, everything I’d been planning, all came down to this one moment. Today was the day. Now before you start judging me, I’m not a bad person, and I’m certainly not a thief, but when your father leaves you and your mother dies and you’re forced to look after your brother with no home, food or money, you change. You start to think differently. You start to get desperate.
“15, 14, 13...” I whispered the numbers ever so softly, reassuring myself that I was still there, I was focused. This was happening. His polished leather boots twinkled as his heels hit the ground, perfectly in time with my counting. He lifted his arm ever so slightly, pressing just a single button to unlock his luxurious car. Lucky for some.
“7, 6, 5...” He tossed his briefcase onto the passenger seat and slammed the door. As soon as the engine started, I would scamper to the back of the car, staying pressed to the ground, out of sight of any of the perfectly polished mirrors that could give me away. If I was caught now, well, better not to mention that.
And just like that, the smoke exploded from the back of the car, the roar of the engine triggering me, launching me towards the house. I had plastered my body to the floor, my breath locked up inside of me. Stay still, I pleaded with myself. It took about 2.5 seconds for the car to leave the driveway and, as the dust of the road was painted across the air, I climbed up towards the flowerpot, lifting it and grabbing the key as swiftly as possible. I found myself glancing around just as he did, suspicious of a hidden gaze watching my every move. There was no time to doubt. I had the key now and I slipped it into the lock, twisting it to the side and gently pushing the door open. I was in.