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Authors note: this is my first story I'm posting on here. I'm not exactly sure if I'm going to finish it or not. I don't even know if anyone is  even reading this but I just felt like I should put that out there. It took a lot of courage to post this so please no hate. I'd appreciate any comments or constructive criticism. Please comment and vote. I'd love to hear your opinions. Thank you, I hope you enjoy it! :)



I walked through the crowded city square of Moscow, icy cold air filling my lungs and burning my nostrils as I scanned the crowd for my next target. Light, fluffy snow fell from the clouded sky and a hint of sun peaked through the small cracks in the clouds.

I scanned the crowd and quickly spotted my next target. He was quite possibly the biggest tourist I’d ever seen. You know the kind. He sported a Hawaiian shirt that peeked out from a large parka, sunglasses, horrendous khaki pants, clunky tennis shoes, and a straw hat. I mentally shivered at his disgusting taste in clothes. But in any case, he stood there looking around, completely oblivious to his surroundings; not to mention the fanny pack that was slightly unzipped and on the back of his right hip where he didn’t have a good view of it. Some people could be so dumb.

I pulled my long, straight blonde hair around my face and pulled up my hood on my jacket and made my move. As I approached him, someone above must have been looking out for me because a passerby bumped into my prey, leaving him disoriented for just the right amount of time. I closed in and skillfully extracted the roll of rubles. I walked off quickly to count my earnings. I took a quick look back to see if he'd noticed anything, which he didn't. He simply stood up straight and walked away as if nothing had just happened.

Turning my attention back to my earnings, I sighed in disappointment when I saw there were only thirty rubles in the roll. I needed to eat and thirty rubles wouldn’t get much at all. Water alone could be fifteen rubles or more and bread, for half a kilo loaf, was more or less twenty rubles.

I sighed and wondered what would have happened if my parents would have actually loved me and didn't leave me when I was six years old, without a word, alone with my abusive uncle who moved us here to Russia when I was twelve. It started off as simple hits and slaps when I would do something wrong. I was used to that. My parents were at best distant, and when I did something wrong, they punished me. Then a few years later when I was eight, my uncle, Tom, started to viciously attack me. He'd punch, kick, cut, and bite me, among other things, when he had been drinking or had a bad day. Eventually people started to notice and wonder why the once sweet child was covered in bruises constantly and was rather skittish. However, when I say eventually, I mean four years later, which brings us to Russia. Apparently he thought that moving a world away would be a good way to get away from the questioning eyes and tongues of neighbors and parents of other children in my school back in the states. However, about two months after moving here, my uncle kicked me out, packed up, and moved away. It was his way of ensuring I wouldn’t find him. It was my only thirteenth birthday gift; or only birthday gift in my life’s short history up until that point for that matter. That was four years ago.

With no money and no name, I was forced to live on the streets. It was hard and I learned quickly, that under no circumstances, could I trust anyone. Ever. One day, about three months after being kicked out, I met a boy who taught me everything I now know. He must have seen something in me, or, at the very least pitied me and I thank God he did. He was five years older than me, at eighteen, and he took me under his wing; and taught me how to survive on the streets, and most importantly, pickpocket. He became my best friend and mentor. However, the day he was killed in front of my eyes was the last day I believed in humanity and goodness. I was only fifteen.

It started to heavily snow, which broke me from my daze of memories, and I spotted my next target. This one was unlike the super tourist from before. Though I could only see him from behind and a distance away, I could tell he’d be worth my time. When this is your job, you become good at seeing people. I mean really seeing people; noticing things that others don’t about people’s posture, clothes, body language, and so on. It becomes a sixth sense. It also becomes like a second nature to notice these things from a distance and to blend into the crowd to become almost invisible.

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