What Could Go Worng?

“Dammit,” Nathaniel’s voice crackled over the comm. “Silent alarm report on the police scanner. You’ve got maybe two minutes.”

Cleo stepped away from the vault. After all, no need to disturb Maximilian yet. “Care to guess how that happened?”

“I’ve got every landline, every cell channel, and the building’s ethernet,” the tech lead’s voice revealed a tremor. “They must have a ham band connection.”

“You can tell me what that is later.” Her boot heels echoed in the bank’s austere marble lobby. Cleo could already hear the first approaching siren. “Our egress plans are out. Find us another exit.”

Ella broke away from her post at the massive front doors. “Are we made?” Her face was ashen. “How’re we…” The lookout’s breathless question died in her mouth as the leader stilled her with a touch.

“Maximilian’s on the last tumbler right now. Grab the bags and join him, would you?”

“But we…they’re coming!”

“We’ve got time,” Cleo answered cooly. “I promise we won’t linger. Now go.”

Ella’s haste betrayed her borderline panic. She hurried toward the vault, unaware that her future on this team had just been decided. The first rhythmic flickers of blue played across the polished floor and walls as Cleo retreated to a safe vantage point. “Our friends are here,” she whispered into her comm.

“You’re buttoned up tight,” came Nathaniel’s answer. “I’ve got all the mag locks.”

“How about that new exit?”

“Found one,” the hacker replied. “You’re not gonna like it.”

She entered the scene of the crime as a grinning Maximilian swung the heavy door wide. “Do tell.” Cleo gazed upon the neat stacks of federal note bags awaiting the morning’s armored car pickup. “Open vault, open mind,” the heist boss allowed herself a chuckle.

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