The lock surrendered to my patient prodding of it, and the door swung open to reveal the apartment of Sibyl McCarthy, Chief of Police. I had nothing to fear as I had disabled the alarms and the most vicious animal that lived there was a bowl of goldfish. The place was ripe for the picking!
I slipped in the door and locked it behind me and went immediately to the master bedroom, and cased the place with eyes that had done this sort of thing a dozen times. After the obvious hiding places were eliminated, I reached under the bed and slid out a cardboard flat upon which rested an old lockbox. I had a pretty good idea of what I'd find in there. Three weeks ago when I had been bartending at Pat's Bar & Grill -a cop bar-she'd shot off her mouth about what lax security her own place had. She ought to have known better.
Back when I'd been a rookie, Chief McCarthy drilled it into my head that burglars came in two classes: amateurs and professionals, and that the former outnumbered the latter a thousand to one! She never dreamed that twelve years later (after I'd been handed my pink slip) that I would become a professional burglar, or that I would get my revenge by robbing her blind.
The lockbox opened to reveal a single key, just like I'd thought. Removing the key, I scoped the rest of the room, and spotted an antique steamer trunk sitting in an odd place. Upon closer inspection, I saw the drag marks on the carpet, and pushed the trunk aside to reveal a floor safe. No combination, just the keyhole. In went the key, and a turn, and the door was open to reveal a gold charm bracelet, several ropes of pearls, cash, and securities. I took the cash and bonds, and left the jewelry behind as a pointed insult.
I was about to close the safe when inside I spotted a red key; an ordinary key for a door, but blood-red. After a moment, I took it and then walked around the apartment and found a heavy door opposite the master bedroom. It was locked, but the red key fit and the door swung open to reveal a dark room which lit up when a motion sensor spotted me.
A dungeon! An actual dungeon filled with racks, hanging rings, whips on the walls, a set of leather pants flung casually over a slave kennel, and many more things than I had ever seen outside of a BDSM catalog. As I glanced around at stings, crops, and whips I realized what a godsend this was! I pulled out my iPhone and began to snap pictures of the place. This would come in handy if the heat ever got to be too much. I looked around in the hopes that Chief McCarthy had ever posted pictures of herself in leather, or whipping her husband, the mayor! But there were none; not surprising, of course. If any of this ever got out, both of their careers as the youngest police chief and mayor of a major American city would be finished. They would both be bounced out of office under a bigger cloud than the Rampart scandal.
At the back of the dungeon there was a door with shuttered slats on it. I expected it would be some sort of punishment cell, but instead it was a walk-in closet filled with hanging outfits for all sorts of fantasies: silk night-dresses, babydolls, black latex bodysuits, chainmail brassieres, and quite a few things that I didn't recognize. I dutifully snapped photos of them all. The leaders of our fair city had a dark side that would have made Darth Vader blush with shame!
There were also several cardboard boxes which appeared to be empty. The markings and labels on the boxes showed that they had come from an outfit called Brown Paper Bag. How appropriate!
Today was proving to be very profitable!
I returned the red key to the floor safe, and cleaned up what I'd disturbed. I'd been here far too long-ten minutes was my average time inside someone else's home-and was just heading for the door when I saw the knob move. Chief McCarthy's voice sounded out in the hall, and I back