Heist

Black Robin had shocked the nation with their cunning and skill, pulling off the most elaborate heists, working towards their one goal: overthrow the warped government. Seemingly appearing out of nowhere and disappearing just as fast, the organization has never been caught in the act... until now. (Cover photo by Mike Deere)

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1. Heist 1: Syntax

Syntax Headquarters, New York. 3:24 AM.      

 

 

          Jake's earpiece crackled to life. "Jake. This is Eric. Operation is a go." The deep, static-filled voice said.

          Jake chuckled, "Roger."

          The tall boy sprinted across the catwalk that extended high above the ground of the warehouse, his hooded black cloak streaming behind him. He slid down a ladder and began to make his way to the vault. This was the night Black Robin would make their move. Black Robin was an elite gang of thieves and spies who's mission for the night was to bring about the downfall of Syntax, the weapon's provider for the American Army. This was the situation: the government was irreversibly corrupted, keeping most of the nation in a state of extreme poverty. The only way America could hope to survive was a resistance. 

          Jake reviewed what he had to do once he reached the vault: he was an expert at cracking locks, so his role in the mission was to open the safe, load all the money into duffel bags, then toss them into the air vents to be moved into the loitering cars. He wasn't sure if he would have backup, so he'd have to move quickly to avoid being caught. Panting, Jake rounded a corner and came face to face with the first guard.

          "You there, stop!" The pudgy guard commanded, pointing a gun at Jake with a trembling hand.

          Jake slid to a stop, and feigned innocence. "What? Are you talking to me?"

          "Yes, you! What do you think you're doing? Don't you know we're closed?"

          "Really? I'm terrible sorry." The boy sneered, then pulled the trigger of his taser. Within moments, Jake had the security guard gagged, and tied to a metal support beam.

          He progressed on, still in search for the doorway that lead to the vault. 

          Though the hallway was dark, Jake new that beyond this next doorway was the safe. He reached into the pocket of his black jeans and pulled out a single bobby pin. Within seconds, the door was open. Jake stepped cautiously through the doorframe, and noticed just what he had been expecting: trip wires, webbing across the hallway as if made by a thousand spiders. Jake stepped over the first of the nearly invisible wires, then tediously lowered himself under the next. As Jake slid past another wire, a door slammed. He teetered, then gasped.

          Oh no! Jake thought. The boy clenched his brown eyes as he came crashing to the ground, knowing that this would be the last mistake he would ever make. After laying still for a few moments, Jake cracked one eye open. I'm.... alive?

          He slowly opened his other eye, and saw that he was just millimeters away from a crystal clear thread. Jake let out a sigh of relief, then his heart stopped as he watched that last thread slowly stretch... and tear. He scrambled onto his feet, then made a mad dash for the door. Jake could feel and hear the bullets from the self-defense mechanism whiz by him, so he pressed the red button on the inside hem on the bottom of his black leather glove.

          All of Black Robin had a special feature on their gloves, that when the button was pushed, their fabric of their shirts tightened and formed bulletproof armor. Just as Jake had reached the door, he was hit. The impact forced the air out of his lungs, and he was thrown to the ground. The young thief desperately pressed the button that would close the sleek metal door. Once he heard the metallic click of the lock, Jake relaxed, gasping for breath. He had made it to the vault room.

          A glance around the circular steel room revealed a small air vent, and the safe on a platform in the center. Jake slowly arose, clutching the the side where he had been shot. There would definitely be severe bruising, but Jake was just glad to be alive. He made his way over to the vault, and got his more sophisticated lock picking gear out. This small pack consisted of a drill and diamond drill bit, a borescope, a flashlight, and a screwdriver.

          Jake knelt before the safe, and began drilling at an angle so that his drill would go above the cobalt plates that protected the wheel pack. Eventually, the drill slipped forward, indicating that Jake had reached the wheel pack. From there, he used his borescope to look inside the hold he had just made, and watched the wheels fall into place as he turned the dial.

          The massive safe opened with a hiss, as if it knew it was being accessed by enemy hands. Jake pulled open the air vent, and out fell multiple duffel bags. In no time, Jake had every last dollar loaded, and back in the dark air vent. All that was left was to lift himself up, and crawl through their predestined escape route. 

          Just as he had secured his grappling hook onto the lip of the vent, the door slip open, and in came a policeman and a panicking employee of the company. Jake tightened the string in the hood of his black cloak so that a shadow was cast across his face, and smiled.

          "Freeze! You're under arrest!" The policeman shouted, pointing at the cloaked form.

          "I'm afraid you're too late. Remember the name Black Robin when you tell your story to the press." With that Jake zipped up into the air vents, and was gone.

~

          Jake exited the building, and silently made his way to the many black cars that were waiting outside. Gathered around the cars were the rest of Black Robin, all in matching gloves, cloaks, and shirts. While he had been cracking the safe, the rest of the gang had been occupying the guards, disabling other security systems, and other tasks that were vital to the operation.

          "Jake!" His close friend, Cori called to him.

          "Hi." Jake grimaced in pain, as he handed some of the bags to the short girl.

          "Are you hurt? What happened?" Cori's face scrunched in concern.

          "I was shot, but don't worry! I had my armor activated."

          Along with Cori, Jake took off his cloak, and disabled the armor as they got into the back of the car. Cori had been close friends with Jake since they were little, and was the first of his friends to join Black Robin. She was usually in charge of painting their symbol, a black silhouette of a bird on all the places they hit. Their symbol was becoming more recognizable as they became more notorious.

          The crew sat in silence as they made their way to Jake's house to drop him off. Jake got out of the car, dog-tired, and trudged to his doorstep. 

          "Bye Jake! Good job tonight!" Cori called from the back seat.

          Jake waved back, and entered the small, run-down house. He lived alone with his mom, and she worked night shifts at a bar, so she wouldn't be home until around five in the morning. Jake stood in front of the bathroom in his small house, and looked at his ribs in the mirror. Sure enough, black and blue bruises had spread their way across his abdomen.

          Jake changed and went to bed, totally unaware of what tomorrow would bring.

 

 

It was only the beginning.

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