The Present (Essay about a guy who starts house fires to make money when he gets called in to the fire department)

Essay by Chris MullenCollege, Undergraduate November 1996

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Theme: Greed and stupidity.

'Mysterious Fires Breaking out Across Prince Rupert, British Colombia'--John Reeves

'I can't believe there is another one' read surprised Henry Peters. 'That must be 5 houses in the last 2 months. Why would anyone do such a vapid thing?'

'Dad, they don't even know if someone is setting them yet!'

'Oh Billy, wake up and smell the smoke. Fires like that just don't start themselves.'

Billy knew that as he was walking away, but since he was the cause of all the fires he did not want anyone to know. He felt ashamed that the only way he could make money was to set fires and then get called in to the fire station as a part time worker. He had no other way to make money for his girlfriend and her Christmas present. He tried to keep living this life for as long as he could but he was not sure how long he could keep it up.

If he were to ever be caught Lord only knows how long he would be locked away for.

Coming from a small town nobody was used to all the buzz going around. It made Billy nervous. That was all everyone talked about on the small shaded streets of Prince Rupert.

'Billy, Billy!' Henry yelled.

Snapping out of his dream world Billy relied 'What?'

'Go down town and pick up some eggs would ya?'

'Yeah sure Dad.'

As he walked down the street Billy pondered if he was really doing the right thing. He had convinced himself that since Christmas was the time for giving and he was just getting a little extra cash so he could give some more to his girlfriend; he was doing the right thing. As he looked around the normal hang out...