Green

Erin McCafferty opened the door to the First Hoboken Savings and Loan, jangling the little bell, only to immediately find herself kneecap-to-face with a tiny man dressed in green and holding an antique flintlock pistol.

“Are you fooking kidding me?!” he shouted. “Another one?!” He waved the gun, ushering Erin toward the pair of bank tellers tied up in the corner. “It is a Sunday, why is anyone fooking here?”

“I, uh, I needed to take out some cash,” she explained, raising an eyebrow along with her hands. “The ATM’s broken. What are you doing here?”

“I am trying to rob this bank,” replied the small man with no small amount of exasperation.

“No, I figured that. I meant why are you robbing the bank?” Don’t you –”

“Why would anyone rob a bank? For the fooking money.”

“But aren’t you supposed to have, like, pots of gold?”

“Where do you think the fooking gold comes from? You think we’re independently wealthy? That we shoot gold bricks out our fooking arses?”

“I don’t know … maybe?”

“No, we don’t. We rob fooking banks.”

“That seems pretty shitty. Like, all around.” Then Erin noticed the leprechaun wobbling slightly. “Are you drunk?”

“Of course I’m fooking drunk! I’m a foot tall and trying to rob a fooking bank!”

“Say ‘They’re always after me Lucky Charms.’”

The leprechaun seethed. “You should be taking this more seriously, girly. I am descended from Celtic fooking GODS!”

“Which gods?” asked Erin.

“You do see the gun, right?” he asked, waggling the end of the sidearm.

“I do,” she replied. Then: “So I’m guessing you don’t have any special powers then?”

“This is all the special powers I need!” he shouted, waving the antique pistol around like he was trying to swat a bunch of invisible flies.

“I feel like if that were true you would’ve shot me already. Or at least one of the hostages.”

He screamed something in prehistorical Gaelic and then, in a flurry of movement, the leprechaun waved the pistol around even more menacingly than before.

“Right, yes, of course,” she replied patronizingly. “You’re a big, scary man. But, like, if I kicked you really hard, it would hurt, right?”

Suddenly nervous, the leprechaun replied: “How, uh, how hard are we talking here, girly?”

Erin ripped off her tear-away jumpsuit, revealing a filthy soccer jersey, shorts, and a pair of splintering shin guards. “Semi-professional,” she explained.

“Then yes, it would hurt,” replied the man in green. “Please don’t kick me.”

“Then put the gun down.”

“I feel like you’re going to kick me if I do that.”

“Only one way to find out,” she said.

“But I don’t want to find out …”

And so the two stood there, staring at one another for several minutes in an Irish-American Mexican standoff. Eventually, though, the tiny man’s tiny arm started cramping. He fought the pain as well as he could but, within seconds, he dropped the gun. Immediatley, Erin booted the tiny Irishman through the air.

“Me red balloons!” the leprechaun shrieked, before splattering against the bullet-proof teller window.

Turning from the green sprite sliding slowly down the reinforced plastic, Erin looked toward the bound and gagged tellers. Then she looked back at the empty counter. Then back at them. Then she said: “Look, guys, I’m just going to go and take my money. I feel like, if you let that little guy do this to you, it’s probably – for your own safety, of course – better if you stayed tied up.”

The tellers mumbled their begrudging agreement.