Mistakes Made: Act 3, Scene 8
Arly never expected that she would have to face young Joey Miller after failing to rob the man who caused the condition he was in. She wasn’t someone who enjoyed failing, and to face that failure hurt. She needed to do something, anything to make the guilt disappear, but the people who could help her do that simply didn’t want anything to do with her. That wasn’t usually something that stopped her though, so she was going to do something about it whether they liked it or not.
That following Monday, Arly put her plan into action. She was smart about it too. After several months with Benny, Kyran, and Tom, she knew that there was one surefire way to get them to stop and talk with her: free lunch, and it was waiting for them outside the classroom in Arly’s hands. She’d even decorated the cover of the pizza box with an apology to prove that she meant what she said. “What is this?” Benny asked, crossing his arms in disbelief.
Benny thought he made it clear to her that he was angry she betrayed his trust that way, that all three of them betrayed his trust in such a way. How was he ever supposed to forgive her for that?
While they tried to understand Arly’s actions, Kyran and Tom thought cornering Benny was the perfect way to find themselves in prison for what they tried to do. To avoid that fate, they tried slipping around her without saying a word. They were stopped by a picture held between her fingertips of a smiling Joey Miller with his blue dragon. It was hard, for Benny especially, to look at the little boy they’d done all of these things for. At least she had their attention.
Arly knew that she didn’t have much time to get the men back on her side, so she took the chance to explain: “Joey Miller and other children like him are sick because of your father’s company, Benny. What we did was wrong. We should’ve considered how it would hurt you, and we didn’t. We didn’t mean to hurt you, but what we did was meant to help the people your father’s company hurt.”
The man’s eyes narrowed as he listened to Arly explain their actions. He wasn’t satisfied with what she had to say, because they used him and he let them get away with it. He wondered if he should’ve allowed the police to arrest them, but he also knew he couldn’t blame them. He wanted to help the people that his father’s company hurt too. If he had thought about taking the money, he likely would’ve done it himself. “Arly, I think you’re crazy, but I like the mission. Always wanted to help people,” Kyran interrupted Benny’s thoughts. “I’m not against trying again.”
Tom looked between the former Peace Corps agent and the hopelessly optimistic mastermind behind this whole plan, wondering how crazy they must be to tell Benny that they were going to do it again. How on Earth was any of this going to end well? Either way, he was already implicated in the crime, and Benny had all the power over them. “I think you’re all insane,” Tom sighed, pinching the bridge of his nose. “Guess that makes me insane too.”
Arly grinned, turning her attention back to Benny. She knew that they needed him to agree to help if they were going to succeed with robbing a man like his father. He looked conflicted, but she could tell that she was wearing down his resistance. She knew, in her heart, that Benny was a good person and could agree that things his father had done weren’t right. Now she simply needed him to say he would help or, at the very least, stay out of their way. “Benny, I promise you will never hear from us again if we can help Joey Miller,” Arly told him, genuinely. She didn’t want him to leave her life, but she assumed that was what he wanted because he’d already turned his back on them. Of course, she was also entirely aware that this could blow up in her face. Maybe Benny wasn’t the good person she imagined him to be. “What do you say?”
“Fine. I help you do this and then we’re done.”
Having succeeded in getting the three guys to agree to try again, Arly handed over the pizza box and watched them tear into it hungrily at their usual picnic table outside the classroom. There, Arly laid out the plans from their failed heist in hopes that Benny could tell them where they went wrong. It was clear to her now that this plan never would’ve worked without the four of them being present. He was able to show Tom where he had missed a camera system that caught Kyran’s movements and identified how a security guard noticed their equipment abandoned on a lower floor.
Arly couldn’t believe that things were progressing quickly for them and she could only hope that, when everything was said and done, Benny didn’t want her to keep her promise. They had more in common than she thought, and he had a good heart.