I rode a lightweight ten speed through the traffic snarl. I was made out like a bike courier. The helmet was used to obscure my hair, I wore wrap-around sunglasses, a fake VanDyke style goatee, and spandex. I had to be honest. No one was going to recognize me. On my back was a slightly modified courier bag which was heavier than I would have liked. I was also being a bike-dick, weaving between cars, which were all conviently stopped due to that wonderful disturbance up ahead, Take Back the Streets. Jack was a few lanes over, similarly weaving between the stalled traffic, and similarly dressed as a bike courier. Of course, it was Le Contesse that handled our costume and make-up.
My pulse was racing as I approached the armored car. I couldn't help but think that this was insanity. When I heard this plan, I thought it was crazy. When we rehearsed the plan, I thought it was crazy. It was crazy. I'm not sure if the armored car drivers thought anything was wrong as I rode up on the driver side, Jack on the passenger side. I slowed and stopped right next to the door, reached through the extra hole in my courier bag specifically for quick access, and pulled out a large, very heavy device. It had, at one time, been an electro-magnetic security door in a state-office building over in Queens. The type of door that can be unlocked by a swipe card, but is normally held shut with an electro-magnet so strong that the door will break before it does. That itself was only a few pounds; the real weight came from the monstrous battery hooked too it. Enough juice to hold the door shut for a few minutes at most. I held it close to the door and pressed the switch. The device leapt from my hand and slammed into the door, right over the lip where the door met the body, locking it as securely as those aforementioned security doors. As it slammed into place, I fell over into the door. When the driver looked down, I made a show of standing and brushing myself off. That stalled him for a moment, but even as I straddled the bike and prepared to ride away, his eyes locked on the device in the mirror. I'm not sure what he thought. I think he was convinced it was a bomb, at least that's what the look on his face said. I didn't pay much attention though, because I was pedalling my heart out. My part in this was done.
I could only hope that the rest of the plan worked. As far as I was concerned, my job was to pedal my heart out until I was through the Take Back the Streets demonstration where I would drop the bike with an accomplice in that group (who would find me, and I would recognize by the phrase, 'What kind of wheels are those? Pancakes?'). A quick dart into a nearby subway station and a similarly quick trip to the restroom would leave me a changed man- back into my standard appearance. I was then going to follow a chain of confusing subway instructions, which would eventually put me out on Coney island. From there I'd use a metro card in my name to get back to my apartment.
By and large, Jack and I had the easy part. I was more worried about the rest of the group.
They were going to be in a car in that snarl. It of course had fake plates and registration. Once Jack and I passed them, they were going to get out and start running for the armored car. Unlike Jack and I, who would be to conspicous wearing masks, the others had no such concern. Kristin was wearing shoes with lifts to disguise her height. Eric was carrying a small charge of home made C-1, a plasticised version of the high explosive RDX, and a smokebomb.Simple to make, or at least that's what Jack told me. He promised to teach me the formula after this escapade. Le Contesse and Kristin were carrying large bags. From there, things were supposed to be pretty straightforward. They'd blow the lock on the back, toss in the smokebomb to keep the drivers from being able to open fire through the grating (not that anyone expected them to, but better safe than sorry). Load up with all they could easily carry, which should be a few hundred thousand at least, and bolt for it. At a nearby intersection they'd meet up with another accomplice and give them the bags. The accomplice would be posing as a bag lady. I wasn't told the intersection for security reasons, and I was okay with that. Once they made the drop, they'd split up. Again, I wasn't told their escape routes. The bag lady herself would be moving fast to stash the cash in a dozen different locations so that we could pick them up later.
So that was the plan, and it was that plan that had me waiting nervously in my apartment, pacing at 7:15. If everything went according to plan, Kristin was supposed to call me at 7:00. I wasn't sure what I'd do if they were caught. Still, the sinking feeling wouldn't let up. It wasn't until 7:30 that the phone rang, and I pounced on it like a tiger. "Hello?"
"Hey sweetie." It was Kristin. My heart flip-flopped. "About that date tonight, I was wondering if we could postpone it till tomorrow?"
"I don't think that'll be a problem." I replied, wiping sweat from my forehead. "Six o'clock?"
"Make it six-thirty."
"Sounds great Kristin. See you then."
We established a code beforehand. No call obviously meant arrest. If either Le Contesse or Eric called, it meant Kristin was arrested. If Kristin called and told me that she was really looking forward to tonight's date, it meant Eric was arrested. And so on. Different codes for each combination of arrest. The call to postpone the date meant everything worked. Or at least mostly worked. Postponing till tomorrow meant that there were some minor glitches, that could pose a future problem. Six-thirty was her rough estimate of the haul- six hundred and thirty thousand. Maybe more, maybe less. Le Contesse warned us that after laundering, it would be signifigantly less.
Tomorrow, at noon, we'd meet in Central Park and discuss the results of our escapade. Talk about the problems that arose. My guess was that someone saw one of our faces. Or someone was injured in the escape. At this point though, I didn't really care. We survived, and that's what mattered. No one was in jail. I felt invincible.
Phew. Do you know that when I was researching armored truck heists, I couldn't find a single one that didn't involve gunplay. I also couldn't find a single one that hit the truck while the driver and the two guards were in it. The assailants would always strike as they were on their way into or out of the building. Now, admittedly, the electromagnet thing sounds odd at first, but the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. Sure, the power would drain quick, but I think you could get one with a portable battery that could hold a door securely for a minute or two, and perhaps a little longer as the power drops off. I'm not 100% sure on the consumption of those magnets, but that aside, it's an artistic license I feel entitled to. Besides, it's a really cool idea. The C-1 shaped charge can be built at home; the only really tricky ingredients are the nitric and sulfiric acids, which aren't all that tricky. It's not like you need a license for them.
And don't worry, the holes that are here so far will be patched up tomorrow when I have Thom and Kristin meet.