From a distance, the sound of gunfire could be heard, the heavy staccato of artillery slamming mercilessly against the eardrums as the officers of the Nigerian Police Force exchanged firepower with armed robbers.
The robbers were in the bank, but in the compound not the main building. They had just carried out their act and were about escaping when the police had shown up, foiling their plans.
Fury, the leader of the gang, was currently as his name depicted; furious!
"Where the hell did the Po-Po come from?" He screamed over the gunshots, while ducking to avoid being hit. "I thought I ordered you to take all their phones?"
"Snake was in charge of that Boss." Red-Eye, Fury's right hand man replied as he slid another magazine into his rifle.
"Then what are they... You know what? I'll deal with that later. We need to get out of here. Now!"
"How?" Red-Eye asked, cursing as the windshield of a car beside him shattered. "We cannot use hostages."
They were unable to re-enter the bank's building as they had been locked out. So the bank staff and customers were safe from them.
"No." Fury replied, "call the others. We're leaving now."
Still exchanging gunfire, the four robbers; Fury, Red-Eye, Snake and Tiger got into their vehicle, hurling their bags of money with them. It was a Toyota Camry, a 2018 model.
Outside, pistol in hand Inspector Chika watched them. How he disliked robbers.
"Do not let that car leave!" He barked into his radio.
The Toyota's engine roared to life even as bullets from the police officers pelted it's body.
"Stop that car!" Chika screamed.
The vehicle did a quick reverse and drove through the open gates into the busy streets of Lagos. Snake and Tiger stuck their heads out the window, opening fire on the police.
With a curse, Chika ducked out of harm's way. Then he too got into his police van.
"I need a team inside that bank!" He ordered, holding the radio close to his mouth. "Check if the civilians are okay. The rest of you, come with me!"
Punching the sirens on, he slapped the gear into drive and swerved into the road. Behind him, three police vans and one sedan did the same. While two vans were left behind to tend to the bank.
The road was filled with vehicles, they were skewing off course to avoid the chasers and their prey. The air was rent with the screams of sirens, the blowing of horns and the screech of tyres over asphalt.
In the Camry, Fury slapped the steering wheel in frustration. How could everything had gone so wrong so quickly? It had been an easy job. Get in, get out. And the bank's staff and customers had not been a problem. Everything had gone smoothly. Until the police showed up. And he would be damned before he let them take him to prison. Again.
"Get those cops off my tail!" He shouted at no one in particular.
Red-Eye put his head through the sunroof and began shooting back at the chasing police.
Chika swerved out of the path of the bullets, behind him, one of the vans slammed into a civilian's sedan.
"This has to stop." He muttered angrily, using one hand to control the car, he took out his pistol and stuck it out the window beside him. He began to shoot.
"He's going for my tyres!" Fury barked as his side mirror exploded, he swerved the car to confuse the Inspector's aim. "Red-Eye, are you gonna shoot this guy or what?"
"Keep the car steady!" Red-Eye screamed back as he took aim at the Inspector.
Just then, Chika fired his fifth shot and it found it's mark. Admist the staccato of gunfire, the sound of the tyre bursting filled the air.
The Camry spun out of control, the three other tyres skidding across the tarred road as it slammed into a barricade with a loud bang, flinging Red-Eye through the sunroof. Then, it's rear lifted off the ground completely and landed on it's roof. The tyres rolled lazily in the air.
Chika and his men pulled to a stop, sirens still blaring. Pistol in hand, he got out of the van just as Fury crawled out of his wrecked vehicle.
"Drop the gun!" Chika ordered, his pistol going up automatically.
Fury looked at the rifle in his hand, "I'm not going back to prison."
"You should have thought of that before robbing a bank."
Fury raised his gun.
"Drop it! I swear..."
Gun still raised, Fury could see about fifteen police officers not counting the Inspector, they all had AK-47 rifles pointed at him. If he squeezed off a single shot, he would get nothing less than fifteen in return.
"You have five seconds." Chika warned him, "then we'll open fire."
It was then Fury realized he didn't want to die. But then, he still didn't want to go to prison.
"I want to make a deal!" He shouted.
"Give me a deal or I'll shoot you all!"
"You think this is a joke? Three!'
"Please man..." Fury pleased, gun still raised. "I don't want to go back."
Chika locked eyes with him, "two!"
There was a stretch of silence save the sirens where the two men eyed each other. Chika got ready to pull the trigger...
"Okay! I give up!" Fury yelled, dropping the gun as he raised his hands in surrender.
Chika moved forward and wrestled him to the ground, then he was cuffed. Once Chika was done, he turned to his men, "check the others."
The other three robbers were still unconscious, Snake and Tiger were trapped in the car while Red-Eye was face down on the ground. And they were bundled like that into an ambulance. They needed medical attention. Especially Red-Eye. When they wake up, it would be in a cage.
Chika took Fury to the van himself, prodding him so he would hurry up.
"Quick question," Fury asked suddenly. "How did you guys find out?"
"A call from one of the bank staff."
Fury raised his eyebrow in shock. He had thought the call had been made by a customer.
"Is this staff a female? Works at the Customer Care desk?"
"I don't know about the Customer Care bit," Chika told him, studying him. "But it was a female. What are you trying to say?"
"We got into the bank, but someone opened the door for us."
Chika nodded at that news, but said nothing as he shoved the robber in and locked the door.
And soon as they drove back to the station, the bags of money and robbers in tact, Chika was already thinking of the paperwork waiting for him. And the next case he would open.
About a certain female in the Customer Care department of the bank.
Thank you for reading.