It will be easy money!” Chloe says.

“It’s a scam, Chloe.”

“Potato potato.” The thought of scamming innocent people never bothered her before. Everyone is just running on learned programs anyways.

“You are crazy.”

“Well, we already knew that.”

“You’re telling me that you want to sell lottery tickets that you know are duds, for double the price?”

The doubt crept into her best friend, just as it always did. Slowly at first, then all at once. Chloe tried to push the thought that she was disappointing her friend and played her part in a state of denial.

“Brilliant, right?”

“No, not brilliant. Stupid!”

Another pang of guilt hit her at the insult.

“Well, I think it is a great idea.”

“Someone is going to sue you.”

“They can’t sue me if it says on the ticket that they are ‘for play.’”

Chloe was smart and determined. She wouldn’t let her friend of five years get in the way of her becoming a millionaire.

“I still don’t approve.”

“Well Holly, it’s a good thing I don’t need your approval. Just means more money for me.”

Holly didn’t notice the implication that Chloe was going to share the funds with her.

The disbelief consumed her: “You aren’t even going to make much money off of this.”

“Tell that to the five grand in my pocket,” Chloe retorted, a slight pinch of anger altering her typically monotone voice.

“You already started? Five-thousand dollars! That must have taken you forever!”

All of a sudden, Chloe felt good. She felt like she accomplished something when Holly was impressed.

“Try two and a half hours this morning.”

“WHAT!? You know what? It doesn’t matter. This isn’t legal.”

Pride swelled inside of Chloe’s heart. She shocked her best friend and that felt good. Finally being able to prove herself to someone she loved was one of the best feelings she knew.

“Neither is 97% of things that happen in this city. There are thousands if not tens of thousands scamming here in times square. You don’t see them being arrested, do you? Plus, the five thousand is just from this morning. I’ve been working at this all month.”

“All month! Wait… five thousand dollars today… 30 days so far this month…that’s…wait… 150,000 dollars this month?”

Recognizing that Chloe will become a millionaire if she kept this up was something she was extremely unprepared for. And something that made Chloe’s ego mock the growth of the Grinch’s heart.

“Don’t insult me, Holly. I made over double that. I spend around six hours a day on this business.”

“Business? You really are crazy.”

“And once again, we already knew that.”

The three-hundred-dollar gallon of scratch off ink was finally ready to be picked up the next morning. Chloe’s use of a silver marker was not good enough since people would try to scratch it off right in front of her to no avail.

Now, all that was left was trying to find a UV light to dry the ink. Chloe underestimated how long this task would take. She was in New York: the place where you can find anything. But, apparently, a UV light isn’t just “anything.” After hours of scavenging, Chloe decided to go home and try again another time. Maybe she would even do a little bit of research before going on her nearly impossible quest.

By the time she got home, all thoughts of scratch tickets and UV lights had left her head and all that was remaining was regret of staying up too late last night. Everything is going to be fine, she reminded herself. And without another anxious thought, Chloe fell on the one thing money could never change: the coziest bed she had ever been in.

At 7 pm that night, Chloe woke up from her nap and called her friend:

“You were right, Holly. This was stupid.”

“What are we talking about?”

“The scratch tickets.”

“Oh, yeah, yeah, right. I remember. What made you come to this conclusion?”

“Maybe the fact that I spent 300 dollars on UV ink and I spent 5 hours looking for a UV light. I was unsuccessful.”

“So you are giving up because it didn’t work out? That doesn’t sound like you,” Holly said, the disbelief apparent in her voice.

“No. I’m giving it up because when I came home after spending all my time today looking for that light, I realized that there are better things I can do with my life.”

“Hmm. And what would those things be?”

“Sleeping. A lot of sleeping… and spending time with my friends. I miss you. I know I saw you yesterday, but that was the only time I’ve seen you all month.”

A small chuckle left Holly’s mouth at her friend’s confession that she would prefer sleep over money.

“I miss you too. Do you want to go to a cafe and get drinks?”

“Maybe at 7 in the morning, not night. I just woke up from a nap and I don’t think I will be awake much longer.”

Laughing when she hung up, Chloe knew she was right. There are better things than money: friends and sleep.