#1.5: Kid Thieves and The Request

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic

Bill Portman is the Kid Thieves' library station. He watched them spend their first day distributing leaflets to students, and on the second he collects the first request of the year.

#1.5: The Request

Two minutes after lunch began, William "Bill" Portman squashed his bag into the alcove beneath the library printer and knocked on the office door. In the back, Mrs Clohessy was making a cup of tea with the beautiful blonde, Nina. Bill flashed them both a smile and entered.
'Hi,' Nina said pleasantly.
Bill didn't flush red, but suddenly felt flustered.
'Ah, Bill, superb,' Mrs Clohessy said. 'Would you like a tea?'
'Yes, please.'
Mrs Clohessy busied herself with the kettle as Bill sat down. There were only two small, grey armchairs in the office, and a counter for the kettle: the rest of this miniscule cupboard was filled with shelves topped with boxes of paper and stationery.
Nina, her own tea cupped in her delicate hands, blew her drink gently and smiled again at Bill. Her teeth were a dazzling white, and this time Bill blushed. Nina really was beautiful ...
'Hello?' said an inquisitive voice.
It came from outside: a young student looking for some help. Mrs Clohessy barked at Nina to go, and Bill couldn't resist having a peek at her bum as she sauntered out.
'Here you go, Bill,' Mrs Clohessy smiled, handing him his cuppa.
He snapped his eyes round abruptly.
'Thank you,' he said, a little too quickly.
Bill took the burning mug and sipped it carefully as the aged librarian, who didn't seem to have noticed his fixation with Nina, sunk into the seat Nina had just vacated.
'It is really excellent to have you back, Bill,' Mrs Clohessy said. 'I was glad for your help last year, but I must say, I did often wonder if I shouldn't send you back to your friends. Perhaps I was selfish.'
'Not at all,' Bill said alertly. 'I enjoy the responsibility.'
'You are an odd duck in that regard,' Mrs Clohessy said. 'And I am surprised you've returned. You can't wish to spend the rest of your school years cooped up in a library? What about your friends?'
Bill thought he knew where the conversation was going, and hid his panic. Jake would kill him if he lost his position in the library. He was going to have to convince Mrs Clohessy he wanted to be here.
'I really do not mind at all,' he said sweetly.
'Are you sure, dear?' Mrs Clohessy said doubtfully. 'You could be running around a football pitch with your little friends rather than be here in this stuffy library.'
'I enjoy it here,' Bill repeated, adding strength and conviction to his voice. 'I don't like football and I prefer to think of my future, which I know will be helped by my working here with you. And I must say, I couldn't do this without you.'
Mrs Clohessy was flattered.
'Well, all right then, Bill,' she said, chuckling. 'If you insist on staying ...'
'I do,' Bill said.
Mrs Clohessy cleared her throat and stood up.
'Well, then, would you mind printing a few sheets out for me?' she asked. 'I have to meet a delivery of new A-Level textbooks and Nina could use your experience.'
'I won't move,' Bill told her.
The old librarian chuckled, patted him on the shoulder and gave him a crumpled-up sheet of paper. Bill stepped out of the office and watched her leave. He sat down at the computer and unscrunched the sheet Mrs Clohessy gave him: it had on it file names for documents she needed printing. As Bill opened the first one (and longingly watched Nina examine the various kids on the recreational computers), somebody wandered up.
'Excuse me,' the boy coughed. 'I would like to make an appointment to see the sheriff?'
Bill turned away from the computer, stared hard at the boy. He looked like a Year Nine. A Year Nine who had remembered one of the code phrases after a lengthy summer. Bill scanned the room to make sure they would not be overheard, especially by Nina.
'And your name is ...?' Bill asked, snapping up a secret notebook and clicking a pen.
'Eddie Brosnan,' the boy said. 'To target Jeff Collins. Five pounds.'
'Won't get you much,' Bill warned.
'Don't need much,' Eddie said.
'OK, then. Any specific request?' Bill checked.
'Um ... his lunchbox. Steal his lunchbox!' Eddie grinned.
'No probs,' Bill said. 'The sheriff or one of the merry men will see you when it's been done.'
Eddie winked gratefully and bounded off. Bill tore the sheet from his notebook and placed it in his breast pocket. He allowed himself a smile: first request of the year taken. It was good to be back.

Submitted: November 09, 2016

© Copyright 2022 Sam Pinson. All rights reserved.

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