Stolen Sunsets

In a darkened backstreet of London, two groups of criminals discuss business beside a cart filled with lacquered boxes. Most are plain, but some are ornate, each painted with a different scene. A different memory. One specific box, painted with a blazing sunset among windswept lilies, is haggled over specially. A rare matching set of the same memory, shared between two lovers on the surface. Something that could do quite well in an auction.

The flapping of wings is heard, and black feathers descend around their gathering. Out of the shadows of one end of the alley steps a slender brown haired figure, dressed in a rich maroon and gray outfit, knee high boots, an ankle-length coat, a braid wrapped around their neck like a scarf, and… A gas mask?

The figure, once noticed, makes an elegant, if exaggerated, curtsy with their coat. Their red colored eyes smile viciously behind the goggles of their mask. The inside of their coat is lined with the same feathers that descend and lay scantly about on the ground. The criminals look up just in time to see a glittering red dust crash down into the alley, and into their faces. Screaming, retching, coughing, and gurgling sounds fill the alley as the masked figure spins among them, a venom ruby studded stiletto in hand, like a baton conducting a symphony. When the dust clears, not a single person is left standing, save for the interloper. Bodies, blood, and black feathers litter the ground, and all is covered in a layer of sparkling dust.

They approach the cart, and gingerly lift the box painted with a sunset. Their eyes glimmer with tears as they read the names painted in gold on the side, and hug it tightly to their chest. The sound of footsteps is heard from the far end of the alley, and the figure departs with haste, dashing through the shadows of the backalleys of London, their prize in hand.