BANK SECURITY • by Adam Brinckerhoff

Walk in the front door.

It hurts more than usual today. Apparently, when they leave the bullet in your leg, the pain comes and goes. Doctor said something about my femoral artery when he told me why they weren’t going to take it out. All I know is now I have a constant reminder literally buried inside me.

A reminder of that day about a year ago when that masked lunatic stood right here, yelled the bank manager’s name, and shot… my leg. The manager and I hadn’t even gone through the metal detector yet.

And after all that, they didn’t even catch the guy. I guess if you come in, shoot, and run, the police don’t have much to go on. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that the only useful piece of evidence is still stuck in my leg.

Walk through the metal detector.

More came from the shooting than my recurring leg pain. First, I got promoted to head of security. I hardly think I’m qualified, but apparently hero worship is a thing. That, and I’m sure it made for some good press.

Second, I got the dubious honor of being the only person in the whole bank, employee or customer, that can bring metal past the detector. Keys to the valet, plastic belt buckle, wooden cane. I guess that makes us super secure.

Regardless, it makes my job a whole hell of a lot easier. That’s probably why we haven’t had a single incident since the shooting, and nothing at all inside the security checkpoint since the bank opened. But I can’t take credit for all that since I’ve only been on the job for a grand total of two years.

Walk to the control room.

This place isn’t even connected to the internet. I guess that’s cheaper than keeping up with the newest cyber attack software. All of our computers just store client information locally. And those computers are monitored by more computers to make sure that no one tries to take the information on the first computers. Without using metal. Seems like overkill to me.

Besides that, there isn’t even anything to take. No cash. No jewelry. No gold bars. We don’t even have safe deposit boxes. Just computers. Every day, the same guy goes into the vault with a piece of paper that he feeds into a mysterious machine, which spits out another piece of paper. Then he leaves. That’s it.

Whatever that machine does makes the bank a lot of money. Like, all of our money. And even I don’t know what it is. The head of security. Some employees think it’s some proprietary stock market analyzer thing. All I know is lots of people come here to invest in its magic, and ultimately that magic pays my bills.

Walk to the vault.

This is the bank where I work. This is the bank I “protect”, wooden cane and all. Fifteen years ago, this was also the bank that ruined my life. Well, temporarily. Anyone that thinks that anything can ruin their life permanently is weak. I’m not weak.

This was the bank that took my family’s house after the factory closed. No second chances. No empathy for the sudden, unexpected financial collapse (that they had a hand in). Just cold-hearted foreclosure. Dad didn’t even drink himself to death. Tried to for a while, but eventually was just content to wither away slowly, both inside and out. Mom just watched it happen, too helpless and sad to do anything about it. I don’t know which is worse. But they’re gone now.

Now it’s just my brothers and me: the soldier, the doctor, and the head of security. After a whole lifetime of fighting each other, it turns out we can make a pretty good team. Especially, when we all decide to take down the bank that took down our family. The soldier made a pretty convincing masked lunatic, and he shot me exactly in the right spot. The doctor made a pretty convincing argument not to operate, even though the bullet wasn’t really that close to my femoral artery.

And now it’s my turn. Who knew the bank would hire me in the first place? Who knew they’d promote me after the shooting? Who knew you can fit a bluetooth-activated short range electromagnetic pulse device in a bullet?

I guess with enough time, planning, and desire, you can infiltrate the “world’s most secure bank”. After all, security is just an empty word that our board members say to help them sleep at night. But all of their emphasis on deterring theft painted them into a tight little corner when it comes to destruction.

Plus, it doesn’t hurt that we’re heavily invested in the two other banks that stand to gain the most from this one’s collapse.

Walk into the vault.

Adam Brinckerhoff lives in Broomfield, CO with his wife, who’d like to be in charge, and his 3 year-old son, who actually is.

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