The Armored Car Incident by HawkeyesGirl

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The dark night casts a shadow on a man, crouching on the roof of the tall building towering over all the scant homes near a dim alleyway. He is cloaked in the blackness; the only things truly visible are the whites of his eyes and shadows of his movements. As the moon lowers into the horizon, the time is about 4 or 5 in the morning. He moves, bending down to open his large satchel. Pulling out a stumpy tripod, he places it in front of him, so the top is just even with the edge of the building's roof. Also from the satchel, he pulls a dismantled rifle. He locks it in place with skill worthy of the Guinness Book of World Records. Putting it on top of the tripod, he tilts it so that the rifle stays at a straight 170° angle. He attaches a scope to the end of the rifle and a peculiar device to the muzzle. As he gets into position behind the rifle, his eye trained through the scope and his finger kept lightly on the trigger, he keeps perfectly still, as if he had been trained for that moment.

            The distant church bells chime the hour, half past 6. For the man on the roof, his time had come; he tenses the muscles in his left index finger, waiting for the precise moment to pull the trigger.

            An armored car pulls up at the end of the alley, and brakes, waiting for the traffic to subside.

            "What are we transporting that's so important," began the man in the passenger seat, "that we have to bring it ‘round the bank before seven?"

            "I dunno, man," the driver responded, drumming his fingers on the steering wheel. "But whoever owns it must be so damned paranoid. Bank doesn't even open ‘til eight."

            The passenger shook his head. "Who's it belong to anyway?" he muttered, reaching for the manifest in the glove box. "John Smith," he read. "How ridiculous is that?"

            "Maybe it's some celebrity," the driver suggested. "That guy who helped us load the crate looked like a butler."

            "Sure," the passenger remarked sarcastically. "Bruce Wayne wants to give the Commissioner some top secret thing. Get your head on right, Plonky."

            At that moment, a bullet crashed through the passenger-side window, embedding itself in the passenger's head. He slumped forward, his head resting on the dashboard.

            "What the hell?" the driver began, looking at his partner. Before he could do anything else, a second bullet flew through the hole that the first had made and landed deep in the skull of the driver. His head fell to the side; leaning at an awkward angle against the driver-side window.

            Two human figures, clad in all black, approached the scene; each was holding an industrial-sized set of bolt-cutters. They snuck around to the back of the van and set to unhinge the door and retrieve the treasure inside. With the taller one working on the top hinge and the smaller one on the bottom, the process went fairly quickly. Inside the cargo unit was a single wooden crate. The smaller one crawled inside the cargo hold and started to drag the crate out.

            "Lift it up!" the taller one hissed. "You could break it that way!"

            "It's too heavy!" his partner shot back. "I'm just a girl!"

            "You're 29 years old," the taller one said. "You lost the right to call yourself a girl about a decade ago. The term you mean is woman.

            She scoffed and rolled her eyes.

            "Let me get the package," he continued authoritatively. "God knows what'll happen when we meet up with him and something broke."

            The smaller one sighed angrily, but slipped out of the hold and let her partner into the cargo unit. He picked up the crate and made his way unsteadily outside. "Get the car," he told her.

            She nodded and left the alley, disappearing from her partner's sight. She reappeared moments later, driving a black Mustang.

            He tightened his grip on the crate and went to the car. She leaned over and opened the passenger-side door for him so he could slip inside with ease. He pulled the door closed when the crate was securely on his lap. She grinned and pressed her foot on the accelerator. The engine revved with life and the car pealed into the flow of traffic, heading east into the sunrise. As for the man on the roof, well, he had disappeared.

            The scene was not noticed until 45 minutes later, when a group of children from the nearby apartment complex cut through the alleyway on their way to school.

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