A Con Man’s Lie
I could not help myself or, at least I did not want to. I became so sly in my tongue everything I said was believable or so I thought. I think my terrible habit of a slick tongue started with my father. He was a smart man. A man with great intelligence but it was used for the wrong thing.
He was a con man, the first of my family lineage. He was born into a family of nine children, him being the eighth child. I remember growing up and he would tell me the stories of his aging. The constant struggle to get attention from his parents. The lonely feeling even with his siblings.
He was born six years apart from his brother before him and four years before his younger brother. It was a family of brothers except for his one sister, who was treated very well. Being as she was the only the girl among a crowd of men.
My father, poorly given love from what he told me. Led him to be mischievous. Looking for trouble, he believed this was in attempt to seek attention. It worked, but was not welcomed with open arms. Rather, a bar of soap in the mouth along with a cold bath.
Over the years of his growth, he became resentful of everyone but oddly enough he never resented his parents. He concluded in his thought to right their wrongs thinking, the strenuous care it must have taken to raise nine children in poverty. He hated his brothers, but loved his sister, though they never interacted much.
As the years went by, my father found ways to “get back” at the world and those he resented. He found tricks, cons to seek his revenge. He thought the world dumb and most upon the world about as smart as a sack of rocks. My father had the smarts to go to any school, take any career path he wished. But his heart was heavy with aggravating loneliness and anger.
He was never rude nor treated me with malpractice. He loved me quite a lot. But his unethical approach to life was taught to me the moment I could talk. We would often roam the streets in tattered clothes, acting as if we were broke. Scavenging peoples money. It was quite lucrative some days.
But, with such an act, you can only do it for so long before you are caught. So, we were constantly on the move. By the time I was sixteen I started to do my own cons. My favorite and honestly most deceitful and ugly con. Was going around selling elderly women bonds that had zero value.
Some would fork over three hundred dollars for a slate of paper that meant nothing. Mind you, I grew up in this type of living. It seemed normal and I found thoughts to make it feel and look ethical in my head.
Then my father passed when I turned eighteen. He died from a rotted tooth, he never saw a dentist, he said they were over glorified and false doctors. I think he used that as more of an excuse to hide his fear of the dentist. I remember at the young age of ten, my father had a excruciating pain in his mouth.
He went to see the dentist, but the moment we got to the office, he turned pale, it was like a ghost looked down on me and told me we should go. After that, he never even got near a dental office. As I ended up alone, I had to fend for myself, which I already had been doing for the past year.
My father was too old to really compete in the world anymore, especially in his craft. I think the lies wore away at his entire body, you could see it in his eyes and skin. Not a single soul believed anything he said, he had this foul odor that permeated from his heart.
So, as the years went by I honed my skills of lying. I became quite good at it, and had no fear of dentists. I even saw one regular, at least every six months. As time went on I became bored of my usual cons and I had no son to help.
So one day I decided I to try college. But even that, I became bored with. Math was simple, science was mostly drivel of theories that could never really be proven, or rather, I just did not care for it. Sociology I could see was on a path of self destruction and lies. Takes one to know I guess.
So I dropped out, but before I did, I remember meeting a professor who taught economics. He was a wealthy man, a great investor. I stumbled upon his acquaintance at a small pub just outside the campus. He ordered the same drink, Sazerac. Not many in town ordered such drink so I struck up a conversation.
I remember looking at his bald head as it reflected the lighting of the bar like a mirror, I could almost see myself in it. I asked what he did to keep it shimmering as such, he laughed and we built, what you might say, a “friendship.”
But there was something about him that intrigued me. I knew there was some con I could spring on him, his presence smelled of wealth. He dressed like a poor man though, ragged jacket and wore the same style pants everyday. I did know if he had many pairs or just one, I did not care nor do I now.
After our night of foolish drinking. We stumbled into the street together, our legs wobbling like a child of polio. We held to each other as we sang songs of drunken tunes. After that, much of the night was forgotten. I woke up in his house with a throbbing headache. At first I was unsure where I was.
Then I saw the boisterous and self indulged painting of himself hanging over his fireplace. I then took up on my feet and headed out his door. I remember my foul breath lingering in the air like rotted cabbage from all the drinking.
I headed home immediately upon smelling my breath. You can’t tell pretty lies if your mouth is gutted into a pit of stench. After cleaning my teeth I put on clean clothes then headed back to the professors house. When I got there, he was heading out his door to teach his class.
I followed him and conversed for the entire thirty minute walk. I learned quite a bite. I was such a sly manipulator, I was able to pry some delicate information from his mind. I learned how wealthy his family is, his inheritance from his father and how he is the only remaining child.
Time went on and we became “good friends.” Such good friends that every Friday night we would repeat our drinking habit together. Eventually he asked what I did, I told him I was an investor who had just moved into town. Mind you, the college I attended was fifty miles from where I originally lived.
Very few knew who I was and I stayed clear of making myself noticed in college. The professor became very interested in my career. So much so, he asked what I could do for him. I told him to meet me at the pub on a Sunday morning and we could discuss.
I spent an entire week at the time preparing my con. I even drafted up fake business accounts and stole an accountant degree from the college printing room, had name and everything on it. When we met up, I laid out my plan and with delicate and precise execution, I turned his funds ten fold.
He was extremely impressed as was I! This was the first large scale con I had ever attempted. Months went by and he kept feeding me money. I would then do other small cons to return a one percent profit for him at the end of the month.
But, at one point I could not return such money. So I had to con another man in the same fashion, but three towns over. I wanted to make sure none of my cons would catch up to each other. But unfortunately they did.
The man I coned three towns down, was actually a professor at one point at the college I attended. Him and the professor are good friends, they were college roommates in back in the day. At an alumni meet I was introduced, which put me in a pinch. The man revealed our relationship and that caused a chain of small events, that almost did me in.
As they discussed my investments to each other, they became aware of my slowly struggling returns for each of them. See, I could not overturn strong returns anymore and I could not find anymore old wealthy men willing to give money.
The college I went to, was no longer revered as the top school of economics. It became the tenth after two professors left to teach at Harvard. Eventually they asked to see their portfolios, which I had ceased to keep up on after two years.
I said I would show them at the end of the month. A month went by and I did not show them. I was out of money, I had been indulging in poor decisions. Spending it on women, clothes, and a new a home.
I had no place to go at this point. They kept pressing and I kept coming up with lies. Then, one day, as I was about to skip town on what little change I had. They both showed up to my home. I remember opening the front door as I was leaving, bag in hand and there they were.
I told them I was going on a last minute trip to see my ill mother. But I hadn’t seen my mother since I was six, she was not fond of my fathers lifestyle and I had no idea where she was. They did no buy my lie, my eyes were jittery, I had sweat coming off my head and I remember trying to loosen my collar.
I have never stumbled over a lie before, but this one was so big, I did not know what to do. So, I let them in my house and said I would retrieve their portfolios, which I did. But as I went up to my room to gather the false documents. I thought up a very rash and horrific plan.
I decided I was going to murder them and I did. I grabbed rat poison from my kitchen as I passed by them with documents in hand. I made them drinks and poured the poison into their drinks. I was strangely calm, relieved really.
I was about to be a freeman. I brought the drinks over to them and as I did I wore an impressive smile upon my face and said, “gentlemen, you will be very pleased at what you are about to see. But before we take a look at your money, let us cheers to your health and wealth.”
They agreed and we cheered. Our glasses clinked and I took my sip as well as they did. But as we drank I realized something, I handed off the wrong drink to the professor, I handed him mine. I panicked. I pretended to trip over the coffee table causing me to spill my drink.
I spilled it on the old professors hideous pants. Sadly, their color is so plain the drink blended well with them. He stood up in frustration. I apologized with frantic lips and then, a minute or two later, me and the gentleman I had coned three towns down started chocking and coughing. I dropped the documents from my hands.
We both collapsed on the ground our mouths frothing with saliva. We were both looking directly at each other. He had eyes of face filled with betrayal. And I, I had a face of fear, I knew my lies would eventually catch me like my father. I just didn’t think it would be like this.
Lies will always catch up, you can’t juggle lies forever.
What is a lie you tried to tell but slipped up on?
Like what you read? A Man’s Traveled Heart
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