• Part 1 

    Hartwood beamed with so much life, as the sun smiled on the city and the people went on with their busy lives. The window panes redirected the sun’s rays and focused them directly at Rhythm and Melody in a dark room. They opened their eyes slowly, trying to figure out why the building was so dark.
    A deep voice brought them back to reality “I don’t joke with my money. How dare you steal from Gazzuzz?”
    The statement jogged their memory, as they slowly pieced up how they came to be in that terrible predicament.

    Rhythm and Melody are two orphans from Hartwood who started dating a while ago. Interestingly, they possess similar abilities – while Rhythm can create any type of sound and use this to gain psychological control over the people around him, Melody can inspire and hype up the crowd with her powers. Together, they run an underground club where they make their money.
    “Rhythm?” Melody called affectionately.
    “Yes, babe.” Rhythm answered half-awake with the back of his hands rubbing his eyes.
    “What’s up tonight?” Melody asked.
    “What do you mean what’s up?”
    “The club is going to open, right?”
    “Babe, I told you we need to have some days off. I need time to work on my stuff.”
    “Do you? It’s not like you’re talented or anything. Your powers are doing the job just fine.” Melody persisted.
    “It doesn’t work that way. I’m only able to do what I do to people when my music sounds good. If the beat or the lyrics is trash, it would not have a strong effect on the hood.” Rhythm explained.
    “Well, I just think we should open the club as often as possible. We have bills to pay, you know.”
    At this point, Rhythm was close to getting infuriated.
    “I know…but didn’t we make some money last night? We could use that to offset some bills, right?”
    “Ok. How about we go out tonight and do some solo stuff? We could be lucky enough to find victims with heavy pockets.” Melody suggested.
    “Alright, but we’re not going to stay out too late. If we’re unable to find good prey within thirty minutes, we’ll head back home. Agreed?”
    “Alright. I have a place in mind. There’s a guy who just moved into town. He’s single, loaded, and likes some fun. He goes to that bar that’s close to Dusty Clamp restaurant every evening. We could target him tonight and snake some coins off him.” Melody bragged on with so much excitement in her eyes.
    “How do you know so much about a guy who just moved into town?” Rhythm became curious.
    “Well, people talk. A lady came by the club some time ago and she mentioned it to her friend. Apparently, she likes the guy. I just happened to be there when she was talking about him.” Melody explained.
    “Hmmm. I see.” Rhythm said looking disturbed.
    “What? You don’t believe me? Come on, Rhythm, you’re not jealous, are you? The guy doesn’t even sound like my type.
    “Really? So, what’s your type huh? Describe him.”
    “Well, handsome, ability to make good music; someone who prioritizes me and always wants to do stuff with me… and the list goes on.”
    Rhythm arched a smile on his face when he heard his girlfriend’s words. She just described him and it made him grin.
    “You just described me, didn’t you?”
    “Yeah, and what are you going to do about it?” Melody said in a sexy voice.
    “I’ll do this.” Rhythm responded and pulled her in for a deep kiss.
    They continued for a while and then Rhythm suddenly stopped.
    “Sorry babe. We can’t go on.”
    “—why? What’s wrong?”
    “We won’t be able to stop if we continue. We have a small mission to plan.”
    Melody groaned in disappointment but she knew Rhythm was right; they had to strategize for the upcoming job.
    “Let’s talk about the plan over breakfast.” Rhythm said.
    They made breakfast and sat down to eat.
    “So, what time does he leave Dusty Clamp?” Rhythm asked.
    “Huh, around 9 pm.”
    “Ok, that’s perfect. Since we’re not very familiar with the area, we should go check it out this morning. We need to know what route he takes on his way back home, too.” He spurred.
    “True. Let’s hurry up.”
    The duo finished their breakfast and headed to the location. They surveyed the entire place and found a perfect spot to carry out their mission in the evening. After Rhythm had gone over the plan several times, and he was finally satisfied, they went into the restaurant to kill time. Soon, it was evening, and they went on to hide in the shadows. They watched as their mark entered the bar, met with a couple of friends, and had some glasses of drinks. After a while, he came out of the bar. Judging from the way he walked, one could easily tell he was very much drunk. He didn’t come in his car, so he was just going to walk home. He had only taken a few steps when he heard a nice music beat behind him.
    “That sounds good.” He thought within himself. Almost immediately, he heard a very beautiful voice accompanying the beat. Before he knew it, he had lost control over his senses and he couldn’t explain why his body was moving the way it was. Melody continued singing and dancing while Rhythm came out of the shadows, still making his beats, and took every coin the guy had on him. As soon as they had robbed the guy of his last penny, they took off.
    It turned out Melody was right – the guy was loaded! They got enough money to pay off most of their bills.

  • Rhythm’s ego would not let him admit that Melody was right to have forced them to go on the mission, but deep within him, he knew it was one of the best missions they ever did – simple, yet highly rewarding.

    “Poor guy. Must have had plans for his money, though.” Melody said, looking sober. 
    “If you were going to have sympathy, you shouldn’t have suggested it in the first place. Look, life is hard, and making money is even harder. People like us, have to do whatever it takes to survive. “
    “What do you mean by people like us?” Melody asked.
    “Well, we’re not exactly privileged, you know. We both lost our parents a long time ago and we’ve been dependent on each other ever since. I feel like having these powers is the universe’s way of helping us. Have you ever wondered where we would be now if we didn’t have these powers?”


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