1. sleep with the mark
Sophie has a certain way of doing things. She likes the long con. She likes to get inside a mark's head, find out whatever it is they want most, and use it to exploit them.
But more than that, she just plain has standards.
Anyone can use sex to get what they want; Sophie Devereaux isn't just anyone, thank you very much. It's the art of the con she likes. Emphasis on the art.
But she has had a very long career, and before she was an artist, she was a hundred other women, and all of them had their own choices to make.
Sometimes sex was the easiest way out of a difficult situation. Sometimes it was necessary to get what she wanted. Sometimes they were attractive, the marks, and she was attracted to them, and she thought, why not? Sometimes she just wanted to. Sometimes she was bored. Sometimes she fell in love. Sometimes she made mistakes.
Sophie has standards, but she hasn't always been Sophie, and well, these things happen. She's nothing if not practical. And standards don't keep a girl in Italian leather boots, do they?
2. work out
Sophie Devereaux does not sweat. She doesn't do cardio. And if she has to run during a job, it means something has gone seriously wrong and whose fault is that Nate?
Seriously, she's not a bloody action hero. No one ever appreciates how difficult it is to run in heels.
But then there's this:
"You gotta put your hips into it," Eliot tells her, demonstrating the stance, then the motion. Repeats. Nods when she gets it.
He's patient with her when they train like this, but he also pushes her to do better, hit harder, be stronger, and he never thinks this is something she can't do.
It's difficult, but she appreciates the discipline and focus as she turns assessing eyes inward and learns to manipulate her own muscles and bones. She sheds Sophie like the contents of her pores. She's not a princess; she's not a crook; she's a weapon.
Deep down, beneath the skin, she always has been.
3. abandon the team to gad about
Sophie would never swan off and leave her team in the lurch. Well, she doesn't think so, anyway, and that right there is the problem.
She loses sight of Sophie for a while. Or she loses herself in Sophie. Whichever it is, she knows she'll never sort it out surrounded by people who look at her and see everything she wants to be - not when she's not even sure if any of those things are true or real or her.
Voyage of self-discovery it is, then. When in doubt, stick to the classics.
It’s not so very surprising that when she comes back, it’s because they need her to. Nate, especially, needs her, of course, because he’s hopeless. But they all need her, and it's Sophie that they need her to be, and she's okay with that, she loves that. Because, now that she's figured out who it is she's willing to be for herself, being Sophie for them, well, that's easy.
4. hurt anyone
Sophie Devereaux stole paintings, and she was very good at it. She never needed to hurt anyone to get what she wanted. Not really. Occasional application of knock-out drops or shrimp juice in a glass of champagne notwithstanding. No one ever died, no one was beaten bloody, no one ever aimed between the eyes and pulled the trigger.
Annie was always better at that kind of thing, anyway. She never minded getting her hands a bit dirty.
She's still useful, Annie is, on occasion, but she tends to mostly stay tucked away these days, out of sight and out of mind. Until she's needed. Then, well, what's an international arms deal between friends? A Liverpool kiss. An Ice Queen. Just enough of Annie Kroy slips out to do what needs to be done, and at the end of the day the dirt will wash off easy enough, won't it? And she can be Sophie again.
Sophie, who just stole paintings, and even as an ex-art thief this is who she wants to be - for herself and her team. They'd look at her differently, if they knew. But then, isn't that always the way?
5. go home
Sophie Devereaux is an orphan. Her parents died tragically when she was only young. In a plane crash. In Venezuela. While trying to return home to their only daughter in time for her seventh birthday. All round, a devastating experience for a little girl and why, to this day, Sophie avoids any mention of her birthday (or, conveniently, her real age). She doesn't speak of it, it's just too painful.
She's a wanderer, Sophie Devereaux. She doesn't have a home, not really, for all that she owns property in seven countries on four continents. She's fine with that, wouldn't change it for anything - until home finds her when she least expects it, with four other criminals just as displaced as she herself has ever been. And then where home is doesn't matter, because it turns out to be wherever they are.
Sometimes, though, when she doesn't want to be an orphan, or when even thieves aren't quite company enough, she leaves Sophie behind with them for safekeeping, and she goes home.
"Hi, Mum," she calls out, as she lets herself in with the spare key hidden over the door frame. "It's just me."