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Dev, a second generation Indian male, arrived early to work. He was the branch manager and responsible for the transferring of cash to a security van that arrived every Wednesday. Every week Dev arrived for work, alone, to meet the private company. 

On getting to the front entrance of the bank he was shocked to see three burly soldiers  by the building. Behind them was a large stand that said 'Royal British Legion'. Quickly he surmised it was a charity event.  The three soldiers all had camouflage paint on their faces, and were carrying weapons. Dev felt a sense of dread, but soon calmed down when looking closer. 

He seen one had a donation jar, passer's by were putting money in. One or two older people stopped for a chat, perhaps feeling a sense of nostalgia. He slipped his smooth soft hands into his pocket, he rumbled around his keys for the bank doors, and picked up some loose change. 

All three soldiers were laughing and joking with one another, enjoying being in the public eye. One had a mock rifle tied to his shoulder, and another had a fake bereta in a gun holster, around his waste.  

He walked up to the one carrying the jar, he placed around £1.50 in the tin, and was met with a huge smile from the man. Looking up, Dev could see he was huge. He was at least 6"2 and was very broad.  In fact they were all big guys.  It made the bank manager feel very nervous. The soldier with the jar had a very imposing stature, and deep penetrating dark brown eyes. He definitely wouldn't cross him.

Quickly, Dev nervously smiled and said "Thank you for your service", and quickly turned and  made his way to the bank entrance door, around three metres away.

As soon as he put the keys in the door, behind him he heard a deep voice say, "Excuse me Sir, I think you may have dropped something."

Dev turned around and saw the soldier with the gun holster walk towards him, with what looked like a filofax in his hand. Immediately he knew this wasn't his, he didn't carry a filofax, he always carried an A4 size diary. He began to shake his head and went to say something. 

Before the words left his mouth the soldier had stuck a gun in his mouth and viciously ordered him to open the bank door.  His eyes were focused, threatening. His mouth was pulled tightly together, he looked like he was about to explode in a rampage of violence if Dev didn't open up.  If this man was a dog he'd be snarling for sure, Dev thought. 

Because the soldier was a giant of a man, he blocked Dev out from the view of the general public walking past. 

At that moment he knew the bank was getting robbed. At that moment he knew his life was at risk. Despite all the training procedures he'd been through, Dev began to wee himself. Suddenly a damp patch appeared around his groin and down his inner thigh. He'd never been so scared in his life.

The soldier looked down, giggled, and then threatened Dev with the gun again. Growling this time, "If you don't open that fuckin door now I'll make sure I shoot you in the arse that many times you'll be constantly shitting and pissing yourself for the rest of your life you little paki cunt."

Petrified, Dev did what he was told. The soldier looked over at his friends, signaling that he was in. One by one they made their way into the bank. Not one passerby suspected anything. 

The bank manager didn't see the soldier pick up the long box behind the Royal British Legion stand. Inside the long rectangular boxes were two sawn off shotguns. 

Dev was sure his nose was broken. It was the soldier who was carrying the charity jar.  He placed it on the nearby counter and took immediate control of the situation. It was like he was familiar with this role, a natural leader. 

As soon as he stepped in, he made Dev put his soft hands together and wrapped a thick, grey, cable tie around his wrists. The edges of the solid plastic began to cut into his soft skin, it hurt to move.  It was painful to keep them in the same position. 

When Dev had his wrists tied together he recalled seeing a huge flash of light in his vision, felt a huge thud on his face, and then hazily looking up from the ground. The bank manager was coming in and out of consciousness, he tried to level himself with his hands and wobbled. 

In the background he heard one of the soldiers say,

 "Your going to fuckin kill him if you hit him that hard again. Look at him, there's nothing to him. Calm the fuck down."

Warren did intentionally hit the bank manager hard, he knew time was of a premium, he needed to go in hard and fast. The collection van was due in just under 25 minutes, they needed to move fast if Leon was to get into the car park and they load up the £3 million pounds. 

Although Jack was right, the bank manager was very delicate. He'd already pissed himself. Now, he was half delirious. Maybe he did hit him a little too hard. Warren picked Dev up, he could see the bank manager was still coming to his senses. 

He looked around the branch for a bottle of water, he motioned for Winston to grab the plastic bottle on one of the nearby desks.  Winston also understood the time pressures involved, and quickly jogged to collect the water. He got back, unscrewed the blue lid, and poured some water into Dev's blood stained mouth. His nose was already streaming with blood. His white shirt was covered in red claret.   He was finding it very hard to compose himself.

Throughout his life he'd never once seen his own blood. 

"Where is the fuckin safe? If you don't show me where the fuck safe is, Ill whack you in your massive hook nose again." 

He could see Warren wasn't messing about when he said this. 

This time Dev took on board what was said. He didn't want to feel that thunderous pain again. Forget about procedures, trying to delay the robbers for as long as possible. It was clear, the person who wrote the guidelines on when the bank got robbed, had clearly never been held up before. It was shocking, painful, and traumatising. 

Nervously, Dev pointed to the left far corner of the bank. There, it seemed all the walls had oak panelling.  The robbers could only make out the doorway on closer examination.  There was no clear door frames, just a slight outline of an oak panelled door. Hidden from clear view. 

Automatically, Warren demanded,

"What's the fuckin code to the barrier?"

He didn't get a response from Dev, he still seemed vacant. 

Warren violently shook Dev by his shoulder blades. The bank manager's head was flung backwards and forwards, the motion giving him whiplash. He tried to fight the dizziness and the stiffness in his neck and upper spine.  These guys were super violent, he thought. Warren's aggressive actions had the desired effect. 

He closed his eyes in deep concentration, trying to block out the unrelenting pain in his head and body, "388345."

"You sure ?" , his mouth constricted, on edge ready to lash out more violence if needed.

The robbers see Dev reluctantly nod his head.

"Right, tell your man, get him to back up to the rear of the bank asap."

Jack, jogged over to the rear door, he mentally revisited what the bank manager said, about the code to the barrier. He pulled out a black walkie talkie from a side jacket on his military uniform. Quietly, he pressed the call button. 

"Yankee one, yankee one, come in, over?"

"Yes Foxtrot two, can hear you over and out, over?"

"Barrier code is 388345, I repeat, 388345. We are in and almost good to go. Have rear doors ready".

"388345, loud and clear. Be there within five minutes, over."  

Warren was in clear command, pleased he was making progress. They stepped through the oak door, into an empty office, no windows, and a doorway on the opposite door. A plain white, wooden door, with just one key hole. 

Already he'd taken the keys off Dev.  He knew not to fuck around. In complete control he put the sawn off shotgun to the side of his head. He cocked it, the noise reverberated around the empty office. 

He saw Dev twitch from fear. Warren pulled up the keys with his left hand, in full view of Dev's vision. 

"What's the key to this doorway?"

"The one with the Green tag."

Warren passed the sawn off to Winston, he was the one who originally had the rifle tied to his shoulder. He now realised it was a real rifle. These guys were really professional and determined, he thought. Dev knew not to mess about. 

He tried to see the features on their face, knowing that if he got through this, the police would be asking questions about their identity. It was difficult to say, they all looked the same. The camouflage on their faces was dark green and covered all their features and neck. He couldn't see any tattoo's as they had gloves on.

Also, they were very clear about not saying each other's names. 

Passing through the office Warren was met with a huge circular locked solid steel door. The main safe of the bank. 

On the right hand side of the door the gang leader could see a digital board with numbers on, and a key in the safe. In effect two openings. 

Again, Warren placed the keys directly in front of the fearful bank manager's eyes.   In a tone that belied his real intentions, 

"If you don't press the right code straight away, and if that door doesn't open, I'll blast your foot off first. Then if you don't get it right the second time, I'll blast your other foot. Then your hands, and then finally a shot right up your arse hole, just like my mate promised earlier."

Regaining more clarity now, Dev felt extremely uncomfortable and humiliated. His trousers were wet through, his shirt was covered in blood, and his nose and face hurt like hell. He was struggling to breath through his nose, it had dried with clotted blood. His mouth was sandpaper dry, his tongue stuck to the roof of his mouth. 

Previously, he'd never been in a fight in his life. Now, he thought, he was actually fighting for his life. It was clear these guys were extremely dangerous. He had to play along. He knew they wouldn't be aware of the bank's failing safe system.  Feeling slightly angry inside, he composed himself and went along with their instructions. He was aware they would fall into the trap set by the bank. 

Nervously he replied,

"The safe's key is the one with the red tag. You have to open it exactly after you have put the code in, you'll hear a beep, the key must be turned before the end of the beep. Otherwise it locks itself. The beep lasts two seconds.  Also, you have to put the code in within two seconds, otherwise the door locks itself."

To Winston, it was clear the bank manager was telling the truth about this part. 

"He looks too fucked to be able to do mate, you'll have to do it," Winston correctly guessed the manager was in no state to work the safe. 

He knew already they'd be getting 10-15 years for just breaking into the bank and pointing a gun in his face, as well as assaulting him. With his previous convictions, they'd throw the book at him. He understood the importance of getting it right the first time. 

He saw Warren nod his head and commanded to Dev, 

"What's the code?"

"6216219.  As soon as you hear the beep, turn the key right, then left, immediately."

Passing the keys to Jack, who had come into the bare walled office room, Warren turned his back on the other's. He repeated the numbers once more, aloud, so Dev could confirm. The bank manager told him he was correct. 

Nervously, Warren had the key in the locking mechanism with his left hand.  He was focusing so much that he could hear his heartbeat, loudly, thumping against his chest. He had to get this right. It would be a great earner, then he could disappear for 12 months.  One thing was for sure, Warren thought to himself, he wasn't ever going back inside. 

He wiped his hands on his trousers to remove the sweat that had quickly built up. Before he pushed the buttons he rehearsed the movement, going over the numbers and keeping his fingers a centimetre away. Satisfied that he could put them in with the allocated time.

Dev, and the two other criminals in the room could hear Warren say the numbers to himself once more. Satisfied he was correct, he put in the code, all could hear the beep, he turned the key right, and then left. A split second passed and nothing happened. He thought he'd messed up or the bank manager was lying. 

Suddenly, he could hear an internal locking mechanism move to the left of the door. It partially opened. He put his arm around the thick, steel door, and pulled it towards him, it was certainly very heavy. Ahead of him, ahead of the gang, and the bank manager was three million pounds. It had already been vacuum packed the night before, it had been stacked on six trolley's, £500 thousand pounds on each, stacked in  £50 thousand pound bundles.  

Mesmerised, they took it all in. This was what they took the risk for. None of them had seen that much money before, it was great to see. Exciting.  All three criminals quickly played out what they would do with their share. Getting to his senses Warren got behind one trolley and began pushing it outwards. On cue Jack followed, whilst Winston kept his eye on the fearful looking bank manager. 

It didn't take long for the powerful guys to push the heavy trollies out to the rear door. Jack pulled out his walkie talkie once more. 

"Yankee one, yankee one, are you in position, over?"

"Foxtrot two, yes, rear doors open"

Winston, mindful that the bank manager was tied up. Injured, battered and bruised, but also a liability if he was free to roam. 

"What shall we do with him?"

Warren turned around, he'd finished wheeling the last of the trolley's to the rear door.   Quickly, he ordered Jack, 

"Open the door, check no-one is about, and start loading the van with your man.  You help him too."

Warren pointed the sawn off gun into Dev's mouth again and ordered him back into the safe. He callously threw him inside, whilst pointing the weapon at him. He slowly closed the door, smiling as he did so. 

Dev immediately knew that Warren intended on locking him in the bank safe. 

His cries got drowned out the moment the door sealed shut. Warren simply walked off and laughed. A good day's work.


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