6. The Tragic Lamppost
The Tragic Lamppost
I looked up, its height was something truly amazing; towering above us it stood creating a sense of dominance, of power leaving the staring tourists out of breath as if they were helpless infants gawking at a strange shape which seemed right. Who wouldn't gawk at the Eiffel Tower? A huge crowd gathered around it and although people kept moving on to see other attractions it never really tended to lessen. The metal beams intertwined from head to toe in a black latticework with a cloudy grey background. The sun, slowly setting into the blackening horizon, seeped through the gaps in the clouds and beams creating shapes of light against the concrete roads and any staring faces. It was a sight one would not exactly want to forget. Me? Well, I really couldn't care less.
The first step? Get past any willing onlookers. That was easy, the old throwing a stone was all one required, and a lot of noise near the place it lands. That required something more like a fire cracker. Something buried somewhere in either of my boots. I bent down as if to tie my shoelaces but my fingers dug deep in search for the distraction.
I found it, the cylindrical object. Now there were the matches to be found. I was holding both objects, one in each hand. The glossy paper and short string of the firecracker clenched in my left hand and the rough paper surface held lightly in my right.
The box slid, almost silently, open and a match was drawn and held in my nimble fingers. The next thing to do was to swipe it against either rough side of the box and light it.
In any direction, I thought, It doesn't matter where it goes it just needs to be far away.
I threw it. A success. it flew through the air and landed far enough for it not to ruin our ears but still far enough to get most people away. With a loud popping sort of bang the firecracker exploded and a great number of people scattered around. I couldn't say they were any further away than before but the distraction was good enough. I motioned to Marietta to join me as I stepped onto a bar and grabbed another with my hands, hoisting myself up.
"No," she said
"Please!" I begged her,
She shook her head
"Well don't expect any sympathy when you get hungry." I tricked her, she still had the one she stole this morning. But it was enough. The grabbed the same bars I had and followed me up to the second floor.
"You know, you do still have one in your pocket."
Silence came next.
We sat up there for a while, watching the sky darken and the windows brighten. When people slowly left in small groups and we finished all three croissants, rain started to fall down soaking the streets below. The bars were starting to get slippery and, undoubtedly, slightly rustier. We began our descent, our hands loosening quickly and our feet slipped a couple of times. But we made it down safely enough.
I have to say the streets of Paris look best in the rain, as if everything was diluted ink on a canvas dripping down as if to run off the page completely.
As we walked along to our hideout, I couldn't help steal a few glances at the tower. It stood there dominant and tall, as if it could touch the clouds, as if it was high enough to stir the clouds and bring rain upon us.
The Tragic Lamppost, a name that suited.