The Pickpocket prolouge
Through some marvelous twist of fate, you had managed to land yourself an amazing opportunity. Your art university offered a four semester study abroad in Italy which you gladly accepted. Despite how excited you were to be going to Italy, the flight over had been brutal. Nothing, absolutely nothing, irritated you like the small child in the back of the plane screaming for three hours. And of course your assinged dorm was on the top floor. Even better? No elevator. You trudged up the stairs to what you could only imagine was a five star hotel room. Add jet-lag to all that, and let's just say you were not at all a happy person at the moment.
When you finally reached the door to your dorm, you noticed a note stuck to it with sloppy black ink scawled across it.
We regret to inform you that your dorm-mate, Jane Wilson, was unable to join you for your year abroad. We apologize for any inconvienience.
University Dorm Advisory Staff
You groaned and yanked the note off the door, crumpling it and throwing it over you shoulder. You struggled to pull the keys that ginger of a student advisor gave you out of your pocket. He had been absolutely rude and unfriendly. You practically juggled your suitcase and hand luggage as you extracted the key and missed the lock about seven times. By the time you opened the door, you were tired, upset, and irritated beyond belief. Plus your roommate had totally bailed on you too. You were supposed to stay with a buddy in such a dangerous city; at least that's what the university recommended.
"So much for that," you complained under your breath. You collapsed onto your bed without so much as removing the bags from your shoulders. A small chuckle escaped your mouth as you realized the irony of the situation. You were naturally shy and introverted, especially around strangers. The one time you were looking forward to meeting someone new, and they don't even show up. You quickly shook your head and with it, any negative thoughts about this "Jane Wilson" girl. Maybe her parents had cancer. Or worse, she had cancer. Or even worse still, her cat had cancer. That was just cruel. You shed a few tears for this imaginary cat's awful fate before your body forced itself into a deep and black sleep.
The next morning, you woke up late and had to rush out for your first class. It was on Italian history, one of the recquired courses for the program. Luckily for you though, you had always loved history and opted to take European history in high school, so the "class" was more like a review. You sat in the back and doodled the whole time and still passed with flying colors. You had opted to take your other classes at the begining of each semeseter as well, so you were done with your first semester classes within your first three weeks of the arriving in Rome. You had even gotten used to being alone in your dorm, and even begun to be excited about it. You spent most of your free time taking pictures of the scenes of Rome and using your laptop for surfing the web and drawing. All in all, your first few weeks were delightlyfully uneventful, but every once in a while, you would feel a small tinge of lonliness. But all that soon changed.
You gasped in awe at the beautiful alabaster fountain in front of you. You had seen pictures of the Trevy fountain, but they were nothing compared to seeing it person. In your state of sparkley-eyed fascination, a loud obnoxious group of tourists shoved you towards the fountain. You practiaclly toppled over the railing and fell down every single step to the lower platform at the base of the Trevy. 'How graceful,' you sarcastically commented to yourself as you brushed the dirt and cigarette butts off your clothes. Standing up, you re-adjusted the shoulder strap of your purse and then pushed your way through the crowd to the edge of the fountain.
You stood there for a while before you noticed it. First it was just a little tug on you purse. You let it go as paranoia. You had heard all the horror stories about Rome's pick-pockets, but you were sure that couldn't be it. You continued studying the configuration of the figures on the white marble face of the building. You made mental notes about the position and symmetry on each focus of the fountain. Your concentration was broken by the second tug. A third one followed quickly after. You slowly turned you head and were horrified to find a young brunette man with his hand in your purse. When he realized that you had noticed him, he froze. Neither of you moved for a good ten seconds, just staring at each other. You had completely forgotten what you were supposed to do. It finally came to you.
"P-Polizia! Polizia!" you began screaming. The thief snapped back into reality as your yells rang out. He quickly removed his hand and pushed through the crowd as quickly as he could. You continued screaming for the police and frantically searching through your purse to see if he had stolen anything. When the police finally reached you, they started speaking rapidly in Italian, which you didn't understand. You tried to think back to the minimal lessons you had tried a week before you left home.
"Parlare inglese?" You asked half-heartedly. One of the cops quickly answered.
"Yes, I do! Which way does he go? What does he look like?"
"U-Uh, He has brown hair and eyes, and was wearing a white dress-shirt. oh! And he had this weird curl sticking off his hair." The policeman's eyes took on what appeared to be annoyance upon your final remark.
"Romano, not again. Which way did he go?" you pointed out the direction, and the English-speaking policeman gave some orders to his subordinates who sprinted after the pickpocket. He returned his attention to you.
"Did he manage to take somethings from you?" You checked yor purse one final time before shaking your head no.
"That's a relief. We've had some issues with this guy recently," he said obliviously ignoring the anger in your eyes. Even if he had failed to take anything from you, the fact that he had tried made you very very angry.
"H-He's not a bad guy really, and it's a worse economy. Uh, but anyway, I'll need your contact information in case we manage to catch him."
You eagerly complied and wrote down the address of your dorm, which by the way, was still on the freaking top floor of the building, the building's phone number, and your email address. The police officer wished you a good, thief-free rest of your day, and then hurried off to aid his fellow poilce. After a few more minutes of steaming by the fountain, you decided that trying to take in it's beauty would be lost on you in this state. You pushed through the streets and made your way back to your dorm to message your best friend about the dumb jerk and let off some steam.