The Exchange

It was a dark and windy night. The heavy clouds had blanketed themselves over the stars. The wind was rattling the metal and the wood throughout the city. No one wanted to be outside tonight. Weather warnings had indicated the possibility of a severe thunderstorm. Some people were of the impression that the strong gusts would just push the rain clouds out of the city. They might have been right, because, at that very moment, an opening appeared in the sky. Some of the clouds cleared out to reveal a huge, bright, shiny moon. It was big enough to illuminate the whole world, but because everything was deserted, it could only focus itself on the hooded figure standing in the middle of the alleyway.

As the light shone on him, we could see that he was wearing a dark robe, with a veil covering his head. The edges of his dress seemed to be lined with a different color shade, almost brownish. This overall that had on covered his entire body. He could be fully naked in there and no one would ever know. As powerful as the moonlight was, his guise covered up his face incredibly well. There was no way to know who he was, but we were soon about to find out why he was there.

There was an urgent scurrying sound that erupted in the alleyway. It was as if a couple of rats or some other rodents got jumped, and in a panic, were trying to run away from something, or someone.

Two new characters emerged from the southern entrance of the alleyway. One of them was big and burly. He looked like he went to the gym a lot. His arms seemed as round and heavy as a street light pole; his torso even bigger. Dressed in a black suit, white shirt, and black tie, he could very well pass off as a professional body builder or Olympic weight lifter. Given the current environment, he could definitely pass as a typical strong “Bad Guy Body Guard” type.

The other person was definitely not as exciting as the first. Dressed in the same clothes, this one was roughly quarter the size of his comrade. He was holding a briefcase in his right hand. This simple image was enough to make it seem like he might be in a higher position than the other guy.

“How cliché”, the hooded figure thought. He raised up his hand, indicating the two figures to stop, approximately 10 feet away. Then he pointed at the briefcase, and without saying a word, he used his gestures to request that the attaché be opened and shown to him. They obliged. As the moon shown down on them brighter than before, it illuminated a whole bag full of cash. There was about 5 million in cash in there.

The hooded figure motioned for the guy with the briefcase to come forward. He took out a small sack from his pocket. This mysterious item gave some assurance to the person holding the money and prompted him to come forth and complete the exchange. Once it was done, he opened the sack. There was a sharp, glaring, intense, radiant light that shone out from inside. His face started to dazzle in it. The shine showed his lips move and his expression turned ecstatic. He felt like a child at Christmas getting their first bike; like a couple after their first true love’s kiss; like winning the lottery; like finding a gold mine. What could it be inside this tiny little bag that could be worth more than 5 million, so much more that it would lead to such a jubilant feeling?

Satisfied with the outcome, the thin paperweight figure went back to stand with his body guard, the smile, still ever present on his face. He looked up at the hooded man and they both nodded in content. He then opened the sack again. This time, he wanted to take out this object, feel it in his hands, experience its true beauty and power. His partner was looking at him and the bag in wonder. He too wanted to know what was inside it. He was just as curious as us.

That’s when clouds slowly started to rise up in front of the moon, and cover it up again. The world was back in utter darkness.

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