“Hey Elizabeth? Did you take money out of the piggy bank?” Janine shouted from across the room.
“No.” I stood up straight with a snap and searched my mind. I had taken money out but I had logged it, hadn’t I? Emma and I had ordered pizza the other night and I had told her to grab cash from the jar to pay for it. I forgot to log it! Oh no this is what Janine was talking about. She would be so angry I took the money out and now it wasn’t adding up. I walked over slowly. “Wait yes I did.”
“Oh thank god. So you deposited it into the saving account?” Janine smiled she looked to relieved.
I looked at her confused. I scanned the table in front of her. She had the small black log book held open with a pen and our ‘piggy bank’ which was a large clear glass jar. The piggy bank was empty but for the bottom filled with coins but there were no bills counted out in front of her like there should be, like there usual was when she checked the log.
“No. What’s going on? I took out maybe $50 for pizza.” I finally said “You do the deposits I don’t”
Janine had been away the last couple weeks and so I had no reason to look in the high cabinet that held the piggy bank. Janine cleaned houses on the weekend to save money towards our big trip. This meant she would have cash to put in far more often than I. I would usually transfer money directly into the saving account.
“We should have $953.50 in this jar. All the bills are gone. There's only $73.50 worth of coins left.” Janine put her head in her hands and began to rub her face.
I was at first relieved, that she wasn’t angry at me for taking out the $50 but then my whole body went weak and I had to sit down. This meant someone had stolen the rest. Someone we had invited into our home. Most likely someone I had invited in as Janine had been away.
“I can’t believe it.” I was dumbfounded and sick to my stomach. “Who? Who would do this to us?”
My mind raced. It couldn’t be our friend and roommate Emma. It also wouldn’t be our new roommate Andrew, he was a good guy and had just moved in. This narrowed it down to two people. The guy I was kind of seeing, who was not of the most reputable stock, or our past roommate, who had just moved out because he had tried to assault me. It seemed they were both good suspects.
“I’m so sorry, this is all my fault.” I reached out and grabbed Janine’s hand. “I will replace the money.”
“No it’s not your fault. Why would you say that?”
“Because it’s either Mac or Travis who did this. If Travis then it was me who invited him over here. And if Mac then it was me who was too afraid to be around while he moved out.” I could feel the tears begin to form behind my eyes. I swallowed hard to keep the feeling down.
‘Look we will figure it out. It’ll be ok.” Janine was always so kind and forgiving to me face. Though I was sure, whether true or whether it was through my own insecurities, that she did blame me regardless of what she said.
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Based on the topics/ideas in "642 things to write about" by the San Francisco Writers' Grotto