“You know that place off of South 8th? That convenience store? Some little Korean family owns it or something. The son. He’s probably 20. I went in there this one time. He rings me up. I’m getting a pack of smokes and a couple of Coors Light. The tall cans. He ring’s me up and it’s $10.87 thanks to the mark ups on their stuff. I got a ten dollar bill. And this damn kid. He’s probably seen me in there a thousand times. God knows how many thousands of dollars I spent at his parents’ store. But he won’t front me the eighty seven cents. He says he’s gotta void the sale. I end up putting back one of the beers. So now I got one tall boy which ain’t gonna even get me buzzed.
Anyway, what happened was this. About a week ago, I saw this thing on the news. Some guy’s putting on a fake beard, a ball cap, and a hoody and running around robbing convenience stores. He just runs in, points a gun at them, and grabbing the cash from the register. He’s done it like seven times and he’s still on the loose.
So I got to thinking, “Y’know, it’d be kinda great if that kid got robbed by this guy.” I got a chuckle out of the idea. I mean this place is in my neighborhood, but they ain’t too neighborly. It’d be nice if they paid for their rudeness. I mean who isn’t going to front a regular customer eighty seven damn cents?
Days go by. The guy robs another store right in the neighborhood, but the Koreans on 8th are doing just fine. And then I get this idea in my head. I could go in and rob the place dressed up like that guy the cops are looking for. I’ll just dress up as him and rob the place and they’ll think it’s the guy.
And so yes, Officer, you did catch me running out of the Korean Convenience Store with a wad of cash in one hand and a gun in the other. I get that I’m going down for that. But those others weren’t me. Honest.”
“Yeah right, pal. Tell it to the judge.”
Words by Jack Cameron
Illustration by Ossaín Ávila Cárdenas
About 15 Minute Stories
It’s good for writers to write every day, but it’s easy for life to get in the way of that. One solution I read about recently was to write a 15 minute piece of short fiction every single day for a month. You may not have time to do NaNoWriMo every month, but if you like writing, you can always find 15 minutes.
So for the month of January, I’ll be writing and posting pieces of very short fiction that I took 15 minutes to write. I’ve asked that my friend, Ossaín Ávila Cárdenas join me by taking 15 minutes to draw an accompanying image for each story. Ossaín is one of the owners of a local zine shop in Tacoma called The Nearsighted Narwhal.