there's a price

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
justa short story I created long ago.

Submitted: March 24, 2017

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Submitted: March 24, 2017



There's a price

KK RRKK the beefy man's neck makes a horrible crunching noise on the wall. When the boat starts to tip, Jake and I put our lifejackets on. When we go on deck there are people screaming, fighting and shoving. The titanic is sinking. This, however, was not the case three days ago.

My name is Jack, and I am on the grand titanic, but not for for the most honorable reason. I am here to pickpocket. I came from a beautiful pickpocketing excursion in France. I had made a lot of money And I could afford many new things when I got back to America. Although my family disowned me for pickpocketing, I still do it like there is no tomorrow. I was born in the U.S. and I am on my way back home. I have one secret however, that I have never told anyone. This is a secret that nobody expects from me, especially because of my profession. That secret is that I am absolutely terrified of death. When I was younger I had watched my brother gruesomely die after falling off of a high building. He had simply tripped and flipped over the railing. It still haunts me to this day. Although pickpocketing is wrong, I only pickpocket because the rich people are always stuck up snobs and they definitely deserve it. Anyway, all I need is a few big hits and I can retire! Just coming home on the huge titanic in my second class life, is not too bad. The boat is absolutely magnificent, and the people on the ship think that so much, they  hardly notice me stealing their wallets and jewelry.  The boat is a wonder of wood, metal, and carpet. This boat is pretty amazing! There is flush carpet and beautiful wood railings I make my entrance onto this great ship on April 10th at 6:50 PM.

I have a productive first day on the ship; I go to bed with over $2,000 via my pickpocketing skills, that's the average salary for a regular person in a year!

When I wake, I go out to work again but, this time something changes. A man tries to pickpocket me, but, because of my career I have a string to attach my wallet to my coat pocket. I waste no time grabbing the running man and hurling him to the ground.

“Who do you think you are?” I ask the man angrily, even though I do the same thing for a living.

“Someone you shouldn't mess with with,” he answers as he attempts to kick me in the gut. I quickly side step, grab his leg, and throw him into a wall.

“I mess with who I want,” I answer “now, who are you?” I grunt as I step on him.

“The name is Jake.”

After a short conversation that involves a lot of shouting we decide to team up. We plan to meet at six in his room every night to split the money we make after each day. Although we are a bit suspicious.

“See you at six,” I say with a sly  smile.

After that, I go to breakfast and make a haul!  I decide to go swimming and then hit the lunch crowd. While this is happening I see Jake.

We exchange hellos and tell each other about how the day is going.

After picking a few more pockets I  use some of the cash I found in the wallets to get a snack. After my sub, I go and put all the wallets, cards, and cash in my room safe.

I relax the rest of the day and then I head over to Jake's room at six.

When I come in with my bulging suitcase I see Jake sitting atop a huge pile of wallets. He’s smiling like a six year old with a bunch of presents on Christmas morning.

“Hey,” I say with a grin.

“You ready?” he asks me as he slides down his big pile of wallets.

“I was born ready for this,” I answer as I open my suitcase and all the wallets explode out of it.

“Alright let's get to work” He says with a grin.

Later, we start counting and doing the math. We whiz by wallets at amazing speeds yet still we take hours upon hours taking what isn’t ours. At one point in the evening we decide we are incredibly tired and need a break. We end up getting drinks and watching some of the black and white TV before getting back to work. Midway through the night I get into a rhythm; I just don't even want to stop. At the end of the “day” it's actually tomorrow.

“Let's take the day off.” I croak.

“Agreed, after making $11,198 I think we deserve it” Jake responds.

I go to my room;  I sleep, and sleep, and sleep. Then, I have a very strange dream. It is about my parents. I just think about things we used to do. Like go to the park, or go on hikes. However,  they're out of my life now.

After the dream, I can't fall back asleep so I stroll into the hall to find a surprise, it's the next day! I quickly run up to room 237 and wake up Jake.

I go to work again, this time being even more cautious knowing that people have probably reported their missing wallets. I pick the morning crowd clean and go back to my room and put all the wallets in the safe. When I hit the lunch rush I see a big crowd gathering around a man in a charcoal suit. The man is blowing money like nobody's business. I see him drop $800 in a few minutes. The man is tall and well built; I decide stealing his wallet is a two man job. The concept is fairly simple, one guy bumps into him, while the other makes the lift, usually there is a third person to pass the wallet of to but we'll  be okay.

Later, I go to Jake's room and I tell him about the beefy rich man.

“What are we waiting for?” he asks with a grin.

A few minutes later, we come out of Jake’s room dressed in fancy suits that we had stolen from the laundry room. I take this moment in, knowing that I just need a few more like this to retire. I can feel  the soft carpet under me, the long hallway ahead of me. I can hear the soft splashing of the waves outside the boat. We head down to the gambling rooms on an educated guess. Sure enough, the beefy man is blowing hundreds again. We walk over to see that the man is playing blackjack. For whatever reason, many people have a worried look on their faces. I look around to see if I notice anything, but everything seems to be in order.

“Alright, I'm done,” the man said in a deep voice.

“Hey sir, wanna drink?” I ask the man.

“Sure,” he slurs back.

Right on point, Jake comes in and knocks into the man, none to gently. Immediately after, I lift the mans very thick wallet out of his pocket without him noticing. The wallet greets its new home in my pocket.

But the man was very perceptive, he immediately checked his pockets and, noticing his wallet was gone, he started to walk towards Jake. Jake is backing up like a frightened gazelle.

“Sir, I'm really sorry, can we solve this in a professional manner?” Jake asks as he backs up.

“Right after you fork over my wallet,” the man says gruffly.

“Wait, your wallet?” Jake asks, playing it perfectly, stopping and looking utterly bewildered.

Then he figures it out; he turns and looks at me. Luckily, I have already put the wallet on the ground. As the man is turning around, I kick the wallet to Jake. Unfortunately the man saw, Jake drops the wallet and we both bust our butts to get out of there.

“I'm going to get you two scoundrels!” Rages the 260 pound man behind us.

We’re running down a large hallway and we are almost to the end. Jake and I  don't even need to communicate to know to split. I go right he goes left. KK RRKK the beefy man's neck makes a horrible crunching noise on the wall. I turn to see what happened, but I feel it, the titanic is on it’s side, in the process of going down.

“Well, see you up there,” I say to Jake.

Jake and I both grab lifejackets and sprint to the top deck. When we arrive, there is a scene of chaos. People are shoving, fighting, and clamouring to get on the lifeboats. It smells like smoke, the ground beneath me is firm, but tipping. Kids are screaming and adults are yelling.  The strange thing is, I see boats in the water with no more than 30 people in them, they are built to hold 65!  The boat had hit the iceberg two and a half hours ago, and it was going down within another twenty minutes.Soon all the boats are gone, Jake gives me a pale face that can only mean one thing, were done.

“We’re going to need to jump!” I scream over the top of all the noise.

“Then we can try to get onto one of the lifeboats without many people,” Jake responds with a curt nod.

He jumps immediately. I wait a few seconds, using them to think about my family. All the good times, the hard ones too, if I survive I am going to go and find them.

Then I plunge into the freezing water. When I'm down there I see a face, Jakes face. I can't swim down because of the life jacket, he's dead as a door nail.

I surface and scream, “hey, over here!”

Then I realize there are hundreds of people doing the same thing and I start to swim. The first lifeboat I come to has about 30 people in it.

“Can you make room for one more?” I ask.

Two men quickly yank me aboard and get me a blanket.

“We should be okay ….

That's all I hear before I pass out. In my dreams all I could think about was my family. I hadn't seen them for years, and it was driving me slightly mad. I dreamt of fond memories and things we hadn't done yet. I wanted my family back, and I wasn't going to stop until I had them back.

When I woke up I was in the hull of another boat. This time, the Carpathia. We were saved! People around me noticed me getting up and asked if I was okay. Everyone looked especially eerie, exactly what I expected I guess.

“Yeah, how long was I out for?” I  ask.

“Well, the Titanic sunk about one, so a day give or take,” a women tells me.

“Geez, thanks, when are we going to be at…?” I ask, realizing I don't know where we're going.
“Were going to be at New York tomorrow afternoon,” she answers.

As I ponder this, I walk around the room and say some his and hellos. All I can think about now is the unsinkable ship, sinking on its maiden voyage. But, I put that in the past and get to work trying to find my parents. I go around asking anybody if they know a Julie or Hank Witten. Eventually I find a man. He tells me last he heard, they were settling down in New York and the whole family had good jobs and that they were getting on okay. When the man asks why I was looking for them I just tell him that they were some old friends.

Later, I go around just looking at people, young people, old people, boys, girls, men, women. They all look gaunt and terrified. They look like ghosts, sunken, gray, hollow, and lifeless. When I head over to the poker tables not a single person is playing. Most of the men have bit the dust. Then I just head over to my cot, knowing I'll be home by tomorrow afternoon.

I wake up to the same women shaking me to and fro.

“We made it! We made it! We.. we made it, “ she screams then whispers.

I just smile. But that smile is soon wiped off my face when two men with badges come after me. I quickly stand up and put my hands behind my back. The men come and say my rights to me. I know I'm going to the slammer for a while, but I'll eventually get out and find my family!

In my court hearing I was given two years under thievery; though I wasn't happy with it, I realized that I deserved it and would be okay.  

Jail was rough, and I got a little beat up, but I made it.705 people survived the titanic, and I was one of them. No sooner than I got out I was asked for a interview for $600. I said yes just because I needed some money to get started again.

After the interview, people are waiting outside wanting a movie with me for even more! I say yes and now I am on set. The movie is boring, but I am paid highly for it. I got offered another movie as soon as I came out of the doors. I turn this one down so that I can focus on finding my family. I lost all the money I made on the titanic, but that's okay, I would give all that money and much more to find my family.

Turns out there was not much work involved in finding my family.

“Hey son,” my dad whispers behind my back.

“DAD!” I yell as I hug him.

We catch up, he tells me about my siblings and how the family is doing. As we sit there, I think about how I watched 1,503 people die on the Titanic. I tell him about how I'm never going to pickpocket again and about jail. I tell him about Jake and all the stuff we did. He smiles, and we just sit at the park. Together.

“Come home son, please?” my dad asks.

“Of course,” I answer.

We get in the buick and head home. Home. Not just a place, a memory.



After everything, I took a job as a stockbroker. On most days I simply work or catch up with my family. I moved to the country with my family. I simply did not follow up on jake's family. My dad suggested that I find his family and tell them what happened on the titanic, but I didn't.


Sources ssui=on q=what+was+the+time+time+difference+of+the+titanic+going+down+and+it+hitting+the+iceberg survived%20the%20 titanic &rlz=1CAACAR_enUS712US713&oq=how%20many%20people%20 survi &aqs=chrome.0.69i59j69i57j0l3j5.4892j0j1 sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&safe=active ssui=on died%20on%20the%20 titanic &rlz=1CAACAR_enUS712US713&oq=how%20many%20people &aqs=chrome.2.69i59l3j69i57j0l2.4820j0j1 sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&safe=active ssui=on h?q=how%20much%20did%20the%20 average%20person%20make% 201930&rlz=1CAACAR_enUS712US713&oq=how%20much%20 &aqs=chrome.1.69i57j69i59l3j0l 2.7711j0j1 sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&safe=active ssui=o n/2011/11/les-francais-embarques-a-cherbourg


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