A little short story for Women's Day.
He was merely a boy (even if he was, by age, a teenager), sitting in his daddy's office. It was a major task for him when the phone rang.
After one second of contemplation on whether or not to pick the phone up - teenagers always take the risks - he snatched the phone up, and, with satisfaction, he put it by his ear.
"Gregoroville residence, how may I help you?"
"Is this Mr. Simon Gregoroville?"
The voice, though grim and rough, was definitely female. Interesting. The boy leaned back on his father's chair, twirling the phone wire in his fingers.
"Nope, sorry, darling. This is his son. He's temporarily occupied. Should I give him a message?"
Simon Gregoroville was temporarily occupied - with nature's calling. The boy could've told the voice to call back in a few minutes, but he decided against it. One client out of dozens couldn't make much of a difference; especially some little girl. It sounded like she was crunching some sort of biscuit.
A sigh of disgust crackled across the phone. "You won't be much help, will you?"
"Sorry, ma'am," the boy said, eyebrows arched matter-of-factly though he knew she couldn't see him. "I'm not quite so professional at this."
"You'll do," the girl decided. "Even if you are some weird boy."
"You insult me, ma'am," the boy said drily. "Now, what would this message be?"
"D'you need a pen?" came the tart reply.
The boy frowned, irritation itching at him. "No, no, I don't. Could you please just relate the message for me?"
"Fine, fine. You know those two crooks - whatever you want to call them - who've been travelling 'round here?"
Yes, he knew the two 'crooks'. They were robbers, abusers, identity thieves... pretty much every tick in the Villain Book.
"What about them?" the boy questioned. "Have you got any information on them?"
The voice on the other end of the line snorted. "Information which, if you were so kind, you can shove up your and your father's arses."
"Listen," the boy said, taken aback, but sharp, "I don't have time for stupid prank calls or whatever. If you have something, spit it out. There's no need to insult me, I could just hang up right now."
"Sure, you could," the girl replied, "But then you wouldn't get to hear what I have to say."
"Well, then, do me the honor of telling me of your oh-so-magnificent information." The boy was rather tired of this conversation now. He wondered if all of his father's clients were like this.
"My information," came the drawling reply, "Is that they are currently driving up Blackburn street, the one at the back of town, to the warehouse. They've got all their shit back there."
The boy stiffened. "What? Wait, how do you know this?"
"I'm tailing them right now, you arseface."
"B - b - " He composed himself, ignoring the girl's rude words. "Okay, why don't you stop, and I'll call the police?"
"I learned not to trust the police a while ago," the voice said spitefully. "I'm going after them myself."
"Why?" the boy said, shocked, fumbling around for something. Anything.
"Because they need to get what they deserve."
"But - you're just a girl!" he protested, unable to think of any other excuse.
There was momentary silence.
"I may be a girl," she said harshly, "But sometimes, you can't trust anyone else. Never send a policeman to do a girl's job."
"But it's not your job," he said, rather desperate. For some reason, he just couldn't comprehend it.
There was the splutter and braking noise of a car engine, then the girl spoke.
"It might not be my job, but this time, I'm making sure they won't run away again."
The line clicked dead.
And the boy - whose name, by the way, was Dan - was left wondering how one girl could be so unbelievably indomitable.
The phone rang again. He didn't pick it up.