Heist

Drawing of the front of a building, with a sign saying "Bank". Caption reads: "He had watched the building for a week."

Heist short story by Iris Carden

He’d watched the building for more than a week. Every evening, he’d stood across the road, unnoticed, and watched.

He knew the doors were kept unlocked until 7pm, and many clients took advantage of the option to drop in after work.

He knew that after 7pm people were allowed out one by one, and by 7.30pm, most of the clients had left, and at least half the staff had gone as well.

By 7.45 everyone else had left except for the woman who was in charge and who locked up each night. She would then water the plants either side of the front door, take out the rubbish, lock up, walk to her car and leave for the night.

The time to strike would be when she was watering the plants. She left the place unlocked while she did that, because she had to go back inside, and no-one else would be there. It was her everyday routine, which she could have done for years, so she would not be looking out for trouble.

He had a small handgun. Having done this in many other places, in many other times, he had learned that aiming a gun at a person and saying, “I think you should invite me inside,” or something similar would definitely get the appropriate response.

Tonight was the night. He’d watched long enough to be certain of the routine.

He watched, the last stragglers of the clients entered and left. The last of the staff left, except for that one woman. Here she came our with her jug of water, to water the plants.

He made his move. He came up behind her, and pressed the gun into her ribs through the crisp white uniform.

“You need to invite me in,” he whispered harshly.

“Invite you?”

“Invite me into the building.”

She took a deep breath. “There’s nothing of value in there.”

“I’ll decide the value of what’s in there. You need to invite me in.”

“Please come in,” she said, her voice shaking.

He pushed her through the doorway, and followed her in. “Give me your handbag,” he said.

“My handbag?”

“Handbag.”

He followed her to the staffroom, where she took her handbag from a locker.

“Open it,” he said.

She opened the bag.

“Take out your drivers’ licence and give it to me.”

She complied.

He looked at the licence, and then put it in his pocket.

“You can go, but understand, if you call anyone, if I am interrupted, I will come after you. You understand? Say you understand.”

“I understand.”

“Now go!”

She went. She did not need to be told another time.

He found the cold storage room. Bag upon bag upon bag of blood. He opened one bag and drank. It had been months since he’d last fed, he savoured the metallic taste, felt his strength returning. A second bag satiated his thirst.

The vampire found the carry bags, meant to pack the blood bags for transport to the hospitals in the area. He filled two carry bags, and took them with him, exiting the same door he had entered.

Remembering his own human life, he had always felt conflicted about hunting humans, meeting his own needs at the cost of others’ lives. Robbing a blood bank didn’t bother him in the least.

By Iris Carden

Iris Carden is an Australian indie author, mother, grandmother, and chronic illness patient. On good days, she writes. Because of the unpredictability of her health, she writes on an indie basis, not trying to meet deadlines. She lives on a disability support pension now, but her ultimate dream is to earn her own living from her writing.

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