PRINCELESS by Cam Jace Storykiller
Copyright©by Cameron Jace
January 15 2019
Her ankle almost tore up as she landed on the metallic bars of the fire escape. She had clearly missed the balcony, and hadn’t planned this, but she was alive.
Ahead of her lay an open window with a fluttering curtain. No time to think. She crawled inside with two guns ready to shoot. Time wasn’t on her side, neither were the two people inside the room.
Not policemen working for the paycheck, but two cute boys. French. One blonde, the other with black hair. Both were about ten years old.
One stood with an open mouth, the other with a cell phone in his hand.
A brief, silent moment froze the three of them. It felt like decades of moral ambiguity to Venus.
She could clearly hear her own palpitating heartbeat. That, and the sound of some girl chirping in French from the speaker out of the cell phone the boy held, pestering him to tell her about what just happened with the helicopter on top of their building.
“Are you going to shoot us?” asked the blonde boy with the cell phone.
The black-haired one had lost speech—and mobility, his hands stiffened in the air.
“No,” Venus said. “But I have to shoot the phone.”
Which she did with her silencer.
The boy didn't move his hand. He hadn't the time to react or fully comprehend what just happened. His eyes widened and he slightly drool. “You’re good at this ,” he shrugged, staring at his intact hand.
“The best,” Venus admired his reaction. He was scared shitless, but funny.
Outside, all hell broke loose. Soon that hell would find her in this children's room in a foreign European town she’d only visited for the first time.
“Video games made you this good?” asked the black-haired boy asked.
Venus couldn’t think of an answer. The comical-tinted tension in the room reminded her of Tarantino movies. Nothing made sense. Anything could happen. Someone will die.
But she was surprised at her own concerns about the situation. With all that happened so far, she cared about not to traumatize the boys with the same experience she had as a child.
“Mostly, yes,” she nodded nonchalantly, wondering how long she could keep her cool. She glanced at the room’s closed door behind them and imagined their parents, or police, busting through that door anytime soon.
“Which game?” said the blonde boy. “Teach me.”
“The one you were just playing,” she motioned at the game controller on the bed.
“Scooter Shooter?” His eyes flung open. “You serious? Which Level?”
“Five,” Venus said, advancing toward the door, wonderin if it was actually her way out of the building. “What’s behind this door?”
“Mom and dad?” answered the blonde as she'd just asked the stupidest question.
“Why aren’t they here checking on you?”
“They told us to lock ourselves inside until they figure out if it’s a terrorist attack,” the black-haired boy said.
Venus wondered how mom and dad didn't guide their kids outside of the building for safety instead of locking them inside. A goddamn helicopter crash on top of the building.
“Is it a terrorist attack?” the boy continued.
“No, dipshit,” said the blonde boy. Venus almost smiled at his French-accent dipshit. Why did they speak English? Because she asked them in English? “It’s a movie.”
“Movie?” said the black-haired.
“This shit doesn’t happen in real life.”
“Mom said not to swear.”
“Mom said not to swear when she was around.”
“STOP IT!” Venus hissed between gritted teeth. “Which side of the house overlooks La Canebiere street?”
“Dad’s study,” said the blonde boy. “Where he secretly watches porn.”
Venus didn't care for the add-on fact. “Take me there.”
Two minutes later, the police, and the parents, barged into the house, looking for Venus. She had already climbed out of the window and jumped into the other building on La Canebiere street.
When mom knocked on the boys' door, they looked nonchalant and easy going. Her mother hugged them and told them how she loved them and would never divorce their father though he watched porn all the time.
The boy asked if she knew what the police were looking for.
“The terrorist who killed Etienne Bissot,” she said.
“The filmmaker?” The blonde boy frowned at his brother then mouthed told you it was a movie.
The black-haired pointed at his mother and rolled his eyes, mouthing ‘Parents just don’t get it. They think everything is evil and everyone is a threat.’
“Are you boys going to be okay?” The mother said. “I have to go and check on the neighbors and damages of the aftermath.”
“Never been better,” the blonde boy mumbled,waiting for her to leave.
Once she did, they high-fived each and played Scooter Shooter, and aimed to reach level five.