When I was five I distinctly remember my dad sneaking in from the garage at midnight, he shone the torch and whispered "Sian, quiet, come see this." I was gleeful to go into daddy's garage and share a secret. He helped me down the step and the light of the torch bounced into my eyes, it bounced again and at first it was like a pool of water so shiny that I saw myself and my daddy reflected in the black surface. It was a car. Daddy ran his hand along the sleek hard edges like it was a dog, chrome jaws lined the front of this monster and I knew deep inside that it was special. Daddy lifted me up, (he used to be a giant) and he sat me on the hood.
"Do you know what this is? It's a Dodge Charger." The way he said it made my eyes widen, but back then a seven and half litre V8 meant nothing to me, but the roar of those horses under the hood did. My dad let me sit behind the wheel, and even though my feet didnt touch the pedals I would forever hold in my memory that I drove an american muscule car. That was the first time I saw stolen goods.
I was fourteen when I rode the back of Dad's Harley with him. I was told me to wait with the bike, but I didn't. I followed my dad around the back of the house, I waited and waited for so long and then I heard the sirens and I knew something had gone wrong, it was me that ran back to the bike, I barely managed to straddle its thick and hard seat and grip the bars, it was me that kicked the bike into life and me that he threw the bag to. I ran. I hid. I waited.
Dad took off on the bike I'd started for him, I knew he'd come back for me, and he did. He wasnt the hugging loving type my dad, he just said "good girl." it was the best praise. That was the first time I assisted a robbery.
Really I should have known...dad always wore black nothing else, he still does just incase a prime oppurtunity turns up I guess. I picked up habits from him, I carry a torch in my bag, I have a fake name and address memorized for no good reason. I never spoke about dad's side line job in or out of the house, and theif was a word we didnt use. I often wondered my brothers werent in on the secret...i asked my father once and he said "Because only you have the nerve for it."
I listened at the door to my parents arguing
"She shouldnt be involved" my mother was grinding out through her teeth
"Sian's got the spirit for it, she turns her head at the right time, she distracts who needs luring away, she ducks when they shoot, she hides when they look, she's just a natural."
I smiled from behind the wall.
My dad has long since retired, well, in so many words...you see theres this look we have, sometimes theres a new robbery film out, or my dad see's the perfect heist and I know his mind is ticking over the job. I do it too, it's second to breathing. One day, dad will give me the nod and i'll follow, I know theres still the big one we have yet to pull off. There's a diamond, a boat, a painting with our name on it somewhere. Dad's always joked around "I grew up as a jewel thief...I was a cat burglar once" I roll my eyes and laugh at the right moment. But it's all a lie. Most people don't believe the unbelievable because they cant imagine anything so amazing is real. Most people refuse to let entry into their minds that which they cant understand or comprehend. It's a lie, it's all a lie.
Is it? are you sure? Is it really so hard to believe that I'm a girl who's dad was a thief? It's all a lie, really. none of this is true....or is it?