The Artful Dodger, the greatest child criminal in the world…was locked in a cell. He had been for the past week and he was getting tired of it. The Artful Dodger was not the type to sit around and wait, but that was part of the plan, and it had to be done. Well, technically it wasn't part of the plan, but it had turned into part of it. The original plan had been get in, take what they need, get out. Unfortunately, that's not what happened. Seven of the boys, including Dodger, had been caught. Since then, the plan had changed. Now, the boys in the prison simply had to survive until the rest of the gang figured out how to get them out.
As you may imagine, if you have ever heard of the Artful Dodger, staying locked in a cell when he could be out using his pick-pocketing skills was not enjoyable. During the day he hung around the door to the cell, mocking the guards when they passed, but even that was getting boring, especially as some of them were starting to lash out at him. He'd have to learn to avoid those ones. Or he'd have to think up his own plan. He had some friends here, some skilled friends, and he himself was a mastermind (admittedly he had told himself this), so he could get out, he would simply need a little time. Time to make a plan.
"Tonight's the night boys, you all know what you have to do, and I know you'll do it well. Let's go," Dodger said to the six boys around him. It had been two nights since he had told them that he wanted to escape, and they had all been more than happy to participate. The Artful Dodger was standing against the wall with Jack, making themselves as flat as possible, Bobby, the youngest and smallest of the boys, was lying of the floor and the other four boys were standing around him. "Help!" Bobby called, "They're going to kill me, help!" Ok, it wasn't the greatest plan but it was all they had; now they just had to hope one of the guards cared enough to come and see what was going on, even if they only cared about the racket being made. "Shut up!" a guard outside the cell shouted back, banging on the door. "They're going to kill me though! Please help!" 'Come on' Dodger thought, 'just step inside the door…' As soon as he thought it, the lock clicked and the door swung slowly open. Life seemed to go in slow motion as each of the boys turned to the door. Jack and Dodger swung the door shut as the rest of the boys jumped on the guard. For a moment, it seemed like the guard was going to overpower them, but he fell awkwardly onto the cold, wet floor. Blood poured from the man's head and, although he had not meant for anyone to be hurt, Dodger had no time to think of the person lying on the floor. Instead, he grabbed the keys from the man's belt and swung the door open again. In front of the seven young boys, stood two rather tall, ugly and powerful men, who did not look at all happy to see them. As one lunged forward to grab Dodger, he ducked and crawled beneath the man's legs. This was his specialty; escape. But then, the other boys were less experienced…they probably wouldn't make it. Before he knew what he was doing, Dodger was jumping on the back of the man he had crawled under and pulling him back as much as he could. One of the other boys got the idea and tackled the second man, who fell to the ground in shock. Dodger jumped down and, checking everyone was ready, tripped the first man and ran off down the hall. All seven of the boys ran, smiling, right to the entrance without seeing another person. They unlocked the door and ran out into the open air (tucking the keys into an inside pocket as they went).
"Free again," Dodger sighed, as their home came into sight and they slowed to a walk. "You know boys, there ain't no one I woulda rather been stuck in there with. You did me proud back there but now, I want you to go straight home."
"Where are you going Dodger?" Bobby asked as Dodger turned back to the main street.
"I've missed a week of pick pocketing! It's time I got back to that street!" He replied, running off into the crowd.
The Artful Dodger, the greatest child criminal in the world was back where he belonged.