Death Comes Hard

Prologue

A gunshot fired.

The hostages became suddenly silent in fear as the security guard fell to the floor limp, his brains covering the sidewall.

"Anyone else want to try being a hero?" the gang leader said, smoke drifting from the nozzle of the 45 calibre in his hand, "no, good, now get back to filling the bags or I'll repaint another wall."

Five bank robbers, all armed and each wearing a balaclava, watched impatiently as the cashiers filled the bags with money as quickly as their shaking hands would allow.

The Bank door opened.

Spinning at the sound, the leader of the group and two others faced the newcomers, they took a split second to observe them before firing.

A young, hysterical, female cashier screamed as she watched everything develop in a nightmarish slow motion.

Two teenage boys had entered unaware of the bank robbery in progress and had reacted even quicker than the robbers themselves.

She watched the two boys' dive either side of the entranceway to avoid the oncoming bullets, which shattered the glass behind.

One teenager, wearing glasses, quickly found his feet and attacked the gunman standing closest to him. He kicked the gun out of the man's hands and smashed his fist into the side of his face with bone breaking strength. The boy, around 17 years, and dressed in blue jeans and white, open top shirt, was soon battling the next gunmen behind.

The other teenager, who had dived to the left, was on his feet almost as quickly and was the mirror image of the other he had entered with. The second gunmen he fought coming victim to a double kick to the chest.

When his second opponent was down, the teenager with the glasses turned on the man in the centre of the room, but without warning a bullet struck him in the chest and sent him tumbling backwards over a table. The man, who had killed the security guard, turned to shoot the other teenager but was just in time to receive a fist full of rage. A volley of punches, fed by anger, struck the man in the face over and over again, until he fell into the world of the unconscious on to the floor, blood pouring from the multiple wounds on his face.

Checking quickly to make sure none of the robbers posed a threat any more, the teenager ran over to the table where the other had landed.

"Ed! You OK?" he said as he approached.

"I will be," came the reply from the other side, "Mike did we win?"

"Would I be talking to you if we didn't."

The young women who had screamed fainted.