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The Oiley Truth

At first, we thought the black liquid was oil, that we’d struck it rich and that we’d be able to retire and live in leisure. We actually started writing down all the ways we’d spend the money. Our first choice was…

not going to be the easiest to achieve. You see, the black liquid was in fact the toxic waste that the city had been disposing of for years. All that biohazard waste accumulating in the underground caverns. We just happened to stumble upon it by chance. This information comes at a price. A very steep price. A price that is usually thrown around with words like, “How much is your life worth?”

We knew that price was more than our lives. So if we were to pursue this, we needed to make certain we were ready for it. To disappear and make a new life, because those involved will not be willing to just pay someone off and let it go. They intend to recoup their costs one way or another. But the city, no, the world needed to know the danger they were in and what would become. Going to the press would undoubtedly get the news out, but would effectively end in tragedy for us. We needed to be smart and quick.

The short of it was that we needed to blackmail the city to keep us quiet and force them to give us the cash we require to disappear. Then as soon as we have that, we leak the info to all the media outlets, and poof, we’re gone.

Our first choice consisted of getting brand-new identities. Her brother-in-law was an agent at the local FBI branch. He’d know how to get those for us. Then we’d need to rent a car. Then to help lose the trail, we’d take a flight in the opposite direction, to the west coast, and then drive the rest of the way north. Find some quant snowy city and settle down in a new home, keeping an eye over our shoulder every day. The amount we’d get could keep us in a home and job-free for a good 5 years, 7 if we really wanted to. It would be risky. Everyone would know the truth and we’d still be relatively safe.

Our second choice was much easier, much safer, and the one we ended up going with. We decided to pay for a padlock out of our own checking account and re-lock up the gate that was clearly marked, “No trespassing. Trespassers will be dealt with to the fullest extent of the law.”

We decided to let someone else discover the “black liquid” that almost seemed too good to be true.

This was from a book of writing prompts. The bold text at the top was provided.

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