The dark is my friend. At night while the world sleeps, I come out to work – visiting the most affluent homes and liberating pieces of jewellery, mobile phones, iPods, iPads, and anything else I think I may be able to make money from. I don’t see it as wrong – I’m not physically harming the people I take from and they can claim the money back from the insurance companies who charge extortionate premiums. They are the real villains. Not me.
I have developed excellent night vision and I can spot an open window from the other end of an unlit street. Dressed in black, I have perfected the art of blending into shadows, slipping unseen and unheard into people’s houses. The dark is my friend.
Today is a new opportunity. A total eclipse of the sun. People are gathered in parks and town squares and on beaches. It’s a time of darkness in the middle of the day – a bonus for me.
I find a large group of office workers in one of the squares, chattering excitedly about what is to happen. They all wear special dark glasses to protect their eyes. I don’t need them. I won’t be looking at the sun. As the crowd oohs and aahs over the eclipse, I concentrate on slipping wallets out of pockets and dipping into handbags. When I have as much as I can carry, I leave.
But I’m curious. I can’t help raising my eyes to see what they’ve all been watching. It’s so beautiful – a perfect black circle with a perfect ring of light. I shouldn’t have looked. Even when almost completely blocked out, the sun’s light is too bright. My retinas burn, leaving me blind.
Unable to see, my job as a thief is over. The dark is no longer my friend.