Short Story Fiction
Better Luck Next Time
Scott A. Gese


Every detail was accounted for, except for the one that wasn’t.

better luck next timewikimedia

“Wow, five million,” remarked Kyle. “I’ve never carried this much cash in one trip. This is a record for me.”

“I’ve carried more, but it always makes me nervous,” replied Jeremy.

“One driver and one guard doesn’t seem like much for this kind of cash. You’d think the boss would have added at least one more guard,” noted Kyle.

“We’re only going across town. Lock me in and we’ll be OK.”

Kyle locked Jeremy into the back of the armored car and jumped into the cab.

A mile down the road they hit a detour. Kyle got on the intercom. “Road construction ahead, Jeremy. We’re being detoured. This wasn’t on the route report this morning. I don’t feel good about this.”

“Just stay alert. Call it in and let dispatch know what’s up,” replied Jeremy.

The construction brought them to a stop just as they turned onto the detour road. Before Kyle could get on the radio a maintenance worker walked up to the truck. “Hey, I used to work for this outfit. I know you guys get nervous sitting like this. I sure did.

One of our guys dumped a load of gravel in the wrong spot. The detour’s going to be blocked for a few minutes. I know there’s enough room for you to get through before we start to scoop it up. I’ll escort you through. I’ll let the guys up front know we’re coming. They’ll wait for us.”

“Thanks,” replied Kyle. “We appreciate it.” Kyle started moving again. The barrier was lifted for them and put back in place as soon as they passed.

About a half mile down the road they hit another road block. “Oh shit,” barked Kyle into the intercom. “We’re in trouble.”

Jeremy looked at his monitor to see what Kyle was so freaked out about.

The road was blocked by a backhoe and a dump truck. There was no pile of gravel to be seen. Several men in body armor holding assault rifles stepped out from behind the truck. One of them started to walk up to the cab. Kyle double checked to be sure he was locked in.

The man called out loud enough for Kyle to hear through the bullet proof glass. “You can get out now or die in your vehicle. The choice is yours.”

Kyle got on the radio but the signal had been jammed.

“Did you really think it would be that easy? You have ten seconds.”

Kyle called back to Jeremy. “If we get out they’ll kill us. You know that, right?”

“I’m sure of it,” replied Jeremy. “Tell them we’re staying put. We don’t have much choice. I’m going to feed ’em a couple of ‘Hot Potatoes’.”

Kyle hadn’t anticipated the ‘Hot Potatoes’. He had no choice but to go along with it.

“We’re staying put. Come and get us,” Kyle yelled back to the man outside the truck.

The guy at the window motioned his two friends forward. As soon as they were all together, Jeremy shoved a couple of hand grenades out a small opening on the side of the truck then quickly sealed it shut.

Before the men had a chance to react, the grenades exploded instantly killing all three of them.

When the guy who had escorted Kyle saw his three buddies laying dead on the ground, he drove off and headed back from where he came.

“That was too easy,” Commented Jeremy. “You can bet the others at the main detour are involved in this. Let’s get the hell out of here before they show up.”

The damage to the armored vehicle was minimal. The outer rear tire was shredded but the inside tire still held air. Kyle drove off and called in their situation and location as soon as he had a signal.

They were soon met by several squad cars who safely escorted them to their final destination.

Kyle was stunned at what had happened. He hadn’t expected the grenades. At least the men who knew he was involved in the heist were dead. Maybe it wouldn’t be discovered that he had set the whole thing up.

His dreams of an early retirement would have to wait.

© Copyright 2023 by Scott A. Gese All Rights Reserved


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