Since I had volunteered to use myself as bait, I did feel a bit scared of what could happen to me. But since these pickpockets haven’t caused any serious harm, I think I’ll be alright. So after my embarrassing first impression to the mayor, we all gathered in the mayor’s office where he placed a map of the city in front of us on his desk that had some circles drawn on certain spots.
“This the map of our city” he announced “And all of these circles are where the pickpockets happen the most often. Now we’ve been thinking that the pickpockets have some kind of secret entrance that allows them to sneak around without getting caught, but we haven’t been able to find anything.”
“Well,” I began, “I think you might be right. If I was a pickpocket, I would definitely have a secret entrance at certain spots of the city. I wanna take a look at all of these spots so I can try to find a secret entrance.”
“What happens if you can’t find a secret entrance?” Aria asked.
“Then I’ll have to lure them out. I did say I was going to offer myself as the bait.”
“Um... actually Jesse” Aria put in, “I think I should be the bait.”
“I mean, I am the princess, and that means I’m rich. Pickpockets are gonna do anything to get their hands on my riches.”
“How?” I doubted “They wouldn’t expect a princess to be walking around alone. They would expect her to be surrounded by guards so that it would be hard to reach her.”
“Oh,” she dropped her shoulders “Right.”
“So can we all agree that I’m gonna be the bait?”
“Agree” Hazel and Dale both nodded.
“And you sure you can do this?” Aria questioned.
“I got attacked by goblins when I was outside alone at night, how can pickpockets be any worse?”
Like really? Unless they’re armed then I will really be scared shitless.
“Alright then” she claimed, “So how are you gonna do this?”
“As much as I hate to say this, I’m gonna have to be outside alone at night. I’m gonna be carrying some bags of money with me.”
“Seriously?” Hazel frowned “You’re gonna risk having your money getting taken?”
“I’m not gonna fill it with money. Just something that sounds like money so that it will trick the pickpockets into taking it.”
“And then what? You’re gonna chase after them?”
“I’m hoping not to because the money bags will be tied to my belt.”
“Oh...” Dale pointed with a grin “And that way you can catch them in the act.”
“Exactly” I grinned back.
“And what exactly do you plan on using as a money substitute?” Hazel questioned.
“I was actually hoping you guys might have something.”
“As a matter of fact” Cliff held up his finger, “I think I do have something.”
He went over to a shelf and took down a rusty metal box where he placed it in front of us.
“During my times in the real world, I used to be obsessed with collecting arcade tokens.”
He opened the box, and just as he said, it was filled with golden arcade tokens. Boy, I don’t remember the last time I’ve been to an arcade, these are really bringing back memories.
“These are perfect” Cliff remarked while scooping up a handful and shaking them “They sound just like money.”
“Excellent” I commented with a smile “And you don’t mind me using them?”
“Hey, if it will catch these pickpockets, I’ll do anything.”
As soon as it was nighttime, I decided to go ahead and begin my plan to see if it will work. And who knows, maybe if I happen to spot one of these guys they can lead me to their hideout.
“Okay, Jesse” Aria spoke as we all stood outside the mayor’s office “We all will be hiding in different spots in case anything happens.”
“Got it” I assured as I placed the bags of ‘money’ in my pockets with the strings tied to my belt.
“Oo!” Dale suddenly held up a finger “You know what I think you do? You should pretend to be drunk so that way the pickpockets will really be wanting to rob you.”
“Um... I don’t think I can pretend to be drunk for hours.”
“You won’t have to, drunks are every thieves’ targets. Once they see you, they’ll be coming after you. You can even just lay down on the ground, you don’t have to walk.”
“I think I’ll walk” I declared “But I will carry a bottle if that can cause them to at least sneak up on me.”
“I got it” Hazel smirked while picking up an empty beer bottle off the street “Take this, it’s empty, but it’ll do.”
“Good enough” I shrugged while taking the bottle “Alright then, let’s get on it.”
Once everyone split up, I began to stroll down the empty streets with lanterns guiding my way as I swung the bottle back and forth. I might as well pretend to be slightly drunk, so I began to walk with a bit of a limp while letting out a low whistle. Honestly, I’ve never gotten drunk before, I was never one of those people. I do drink on special occasions, but not to the point where I get drunk, thank goodness.