Bruna had had it all, lost it all, and regained it all.
A successful career in Art Curating at a top London Museum, a dream husband, a bustling social life and money to make out paper boats til the oceans got polluted.
During her 3 year of marriage to Tom, an angry security officer from their mansion had taken an intimate video from their bedroom nest and posted it online, after blackmailing the couple with no success.
Her friends had told her to give in to the blackmailing or they would lose it all, but she didn’t listen.
As a result, her marriage broke apart, her reputation was seriously stained , and her affluent social circle turned its back on her.
But luckily, all the money they had accrued was split and she had a good eye for investments.
Once going out of Pimlico’s Sainsburys, she spotted three homeless beggars looking desperate and needy. Her creative mind lit a new star and she went to the local printer to get some badges done.
Even though she felt she was heading to a dangerous adventure, her heart was stubborn and the next day she took her basket full of badges and went to meet the homeless.
“Hi, my name’s Bruna, I got this magic badge to increase your earnings. I hope it helps you spend the money wisely and sort out your situation. Good luck!”
The homeless lad put the badge on as a trophy, and soon the Magic started to deploy itself.
Customers from the supermarket were giving the homeless money for errands, the homeless felt dignified, wealthier, more respected and jolly, for the badge read “I’ll carry your bags for 2 pounds 50”.
One week later Bruno bumped into a group of six homeless who threw themselves to her arms, exploding with gratitude and wanting more badges for their friends.
She offered to take them to a cafe and get to know them.
They couldn’t stop talking all at the same time, telling terrible stories of addiction, crime, love and loss, so Bruna had to tell them ” one at a time!”
In 36 years of reading horror novels and having military friends, her heart had never been gripped in such a manner. Halfway through the stories she wished she’d just go deaf.
These youngsters seemed trustworthy since they opened their souls to her, so she gave each a business card of hers.
What happened after was a tale of friendship, joy, betrayal and forgiveness.
She met with the group once a week at the same cafe and brought presents to all, because they were making positive changes into their lives and were repentant of their past misdoings.
Soon it would be Christmas.
Many of the friends were washing cars, walking dogs, cleaning windows, and getting help for their addictions.
Bruna turned pale when she heard a TV presenter say “many of us will be spending Christmas alone”.
So she organised a Christmas meal for the twelve at her flat, bought garnments for the girls and lads, decorated her flat like a school hall, cooked her best, and they all had the jolliest time of the year.
She didn’t mind, her phone did not ring once from her old friends from the Museum lot.
They ended up drunk, Bruna fell asleep on the couch, and the next morning her purple star had turned into a deadly Asteroid.
She had been robbed by them.
A panic attack took hold of her once she saw her family portrait, which was framed in gold, had gone missing too. Even her landlines handset had disappeared.
She was too hungover to go confront them or go through the Police route.
She called Tom. He was emotional to hear her and they stayed two hours on the phone.
While she was dozing off, the doorbell rung, she saw a huge pile of flowers and asked who it was.
“I’m amazed by your bravoury and generosity. I got a new job which I prefer not to talk about, but let me in and lets catch up. I got a friend who can help get your family portrait in minutes”, said Tom.
“okay…. could you go go buy some fresh orange juice, please?”
“definitely not .”
“I beg your pardon?”
“I’ll squeezed twenty oranges with my bare hands for you.”
The glass was broken, but the picture was intact.
“please tell me, what job are you doing?”
“I’d rather not tell you, it’s sensitive…”
“go on, tell me”
“okay. I’m in the counter blackmailing department with the police”
“I thought you’d end up dog walking!”
” never, after having had a wife like You.”
Tom did not leave her side for ten days in a row, only to get out the garbage, and soon they got the Portrait back.
“I want to tell you a thing, please forgive these friends of yours as they said they are burning with shame. Addiction is a very tricky thing”.
“I’ll need some time for that…”