A Bank Job (Part One)

The noise of the alarm is beginning to send a shiver down my spine. You never realize how tall you are until you are faced down on the floor, stomach flat, staring up at the ceiling.

“Now ev-ver-ry-one, let’s just make this easy, real simple, and we’re out of here. No problems, no worries.”

The way he stretched out the word everyone was very disconcerting.

I hate banks. I absolutely loath them. I deposit my hard earned money for it to quickly disappear. I’m used to negative signs on my balance, and life for that matter, and this current situation doesn’t surprise me.Take what you want, the bank already raped me the day I opened an account.

“Slide your phones over. Be as delicate as you’d like. Your smartphones are in good hands.”

Thank God for prepaid phones.

***

Materialistic, that’s society in a nutshell. People who are bought on the American Dream and the American “Way of Life.” Social ideas that have to make up a whole, and without your loyalty there is no order. There isn’t room for honest speaking or honest thought. We follow a line and we are very careful on this line. It is an order.

Everything is ready.

The sun is up.

The people are out.

Everything is in order.

***

“Now ev-ver-ry-one, let’s just make this easy, real simple, and were out of here.”

***

The more time I spend on the floor the more I think about what time the cleaning crew comes. I figure they come later in the night, maybe a few hours after the bank closes, so they can keep the floors shiny and empty the trash bins. It’s hard work, but someone has to do it. There is always a job for someone to do. If people weren’t hired to clean, the bank wouldn’t be able to operate, there would be one less check to cash, money wouldn’t circulate, the world wouldn’t turn. It is all connected in some way. It is all clockwork.

I collect unemployment. I serve no purpose. I couldn’t cut it as a waiter, a cook, a salesman, a warehouse worker, a son, a brother, nothing. My mark on this world is insignificant to say the least. The most I’ll be known for is being a witness.

“Slide ’em over. C’mon, all of you,” The one robber said. “No problems, no worries.”

I reach in my pocket and slide my “modest” mobile over. I have no worries. Problems are a different story.

“Good. Now everyone take one of these and wrap your hands.” The robber passed out cable ties. The patrons started to fasten them securely around their wrists. Click. Click. Click. “Hurry. Hurry,” he said.

I stared at the cable tie.

The robber giving orders walked around to see that we were being compliant. I continued to stare at mine. He stopped in front of me.

“You too,” he said to me.

“I’d rather not.”

“This isn’t a choice. Tie your hands.”

“No. I’m no trouble, just go about your business,” I said and waved him off.

He gave me a look of interest, slightly turned his head, and stared. Our eyes met and locked.

“Just do what he says before you get us killed!” A patron yelled.

“Mind your damn business,” I yelled back.

Our eyes still locked. “What’s your name?” The robber asked me.

“Chris.”

“Chris, put your hands together.”

“For what?” I asked.

He smirked. “So I can tie your hands.”

His two other mates were behind the counter clearing out the tills and the deposits that were dropped off during the course of the day. It must have been a busy day because money wasn’t moved to a secure location. You have to love irony.

“No,” I said.

“I wasn’t asking,” he said. Our eyes were still locked. He was still smirking.

“I know you weren’t.”

“Just let him tie your hands! Stop being a hero!” The patron screamed once more.

“Shut the fuck up!” I screamed back.

The robber walked over to the patron. Our eye contact was broken. I watched him closely.

He pulled a handgun out from his waistband and hit the man. The smack echoed through the walls of the bank. A woman yelped, a few people shifted uncomfortably in their spots.”Let this be a warning,” the robber said. “If your hands are tied you do not speak, understood?”

He walked back over to me. “Now, would you like to tie your hands, or would you like me to do it?” He asked.

“I can speak because my hands aren’t tied, right?” I asked. He laughed.

“Chris, stay here and don’t move.”

“You’re the boss,” I said, and he waked over to his mates.

The three robbers were huddled together like a football team making a play, and I suppose that’s what they were doing. The only thing they were missing were numbers on the back of their matching uniforms. That must have been to confuse the opposing team, the police.

They separated and went back to what they were doing previously. The two mates continued with the deposits and the other walked back over to me. He got on one knee and faced me, speaking softly, only for me to hear.

“Chris, when we leave we are taking you with us. Do you understand what I’m saying?” He asked.

“Yes,” I replied.

“Okay, now tie your hands.”

“You’re the boss,” I said, and I tied my hands as he walked off to finish his job.

My heart was racing, my adrenaline was flowing like I have never experienced before, I wasn’t scared as much as I was intrigued. What did this guy have up his sleeve? I didn’t think he was going to hurt me, if he wanted to he would of hit me with his pistol, but he didn’t.  And his attitude seemed all too familiar. I felt like we both shared something we weren’t aware of. Maybe I wasn’t aware and he was. Only time would tell, and in this instance, time was limited.

Time is limited. Time is man-made, our time, the time we know.

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