© 2004-2007 Beni Wilson
r. Wilson, would you please install the alarm system at the bank?” asked Mr. Johnson, my boss, “You’re the best alarm installer in the whole city!”
“Well I don’t quite know about that; Josh is just as good as I am, and there are probably some alarm companies we don’t know about. But I can do it anyway,” I answered.
“Alright, I’ll send Josh over tomorrow morning to help,” He replied.
I then headed to the bank. It was about 7:00 p.m. when I got there. For the next hour I researched which alarm would work best and where I would put the sensors. Then I started installing. After I had gotten to a stopping place for the night, I climbed into my car and fell asleep. I had meant to drive home, but I was too tired to drive.
At 4:00 AM I was woken up by a car starting up. Since it was still dark, I shoved the key into the ignition, turned it a little and then turned on the headlights. I saw a car driving off. I wondered where someone would be going so early. It was a blue Honda, its license plate read:
I went into the bank and saw that all my work had been ruined! The bank must have been robbed! I grabbed the phone and dialed 911. The dispatcher who answered said, “Hello, this is Arapaho County Police what is the matter?”
“The bank has been robbed!” I blurted out.
“Wait, how do you know the bank has been robbed?”
So I began the story. “I work for the alarm company, and the bank needed a new alarm system, so they sent me over to do it. While I was taking a rest break in my car in the parking lot that night, I was woken up by a car starting. I went into the bank to work and found that it had been robbed!”
“Alright we’ll come and invetigate as soon as we can,” he said.
I hung up the phone then pulled out my pocket Bible and read a few chapters for my morning quiet time. Soon, the door opened, and my 21 year old brother Josh, came in. “Have you eaten breakfast yet?” He asked.
“No, I forgot about breakfast,” I answered.
“Well, I brought enough for both of us,” Josh replied, handing me a plate and putting eggs and toast on it.
After we had finished eating, we started working on the alarm system. Then, the door opened and the Arapaho County Police entered (One of them was our friend, Gregory).
“What is this about?” Josh asked, putting his hands above his head.
“Oh, Josh, I forgot to tell you that they would be coming,” I said. “As you already know, I work for the alarm company, but what you don’t know is that this morning, when I came in to continue working, I found that the bank had been robbed! So I called the police, and that is why they are here.”
“Oh,” Josh said, lowering his hands, “Mama wanted me to tell you something, but I can’t remember what it was now.”
It was a Thursday, so employees were arriving for work, and customers were lining up for their business transactions. Everybody was asking, “Why are the police here?” So I explained the story over and over until Josh had memorized it, and he told them the story for me.
After a while the police chief came up to me and asked, “Do you remember the license plate on the car that woke you up?”
“Yes. WGP-539, it was a blue Honda,” I answered.
“Thank you,” he said, scribbling something on a note-pad. As the policeman walked away, Josh walked up to me and said, “I just remembered what Mama wanted me to tell you: Come to your birthday party at noon!”
“What?! It is my twentieth birthday already?” I asked, looking at my watch. “Well my watch does say that it is April eleventh.”
A few hours later, my watch beeped twelve o’clock. “Oh no.” I said. “We are late! Let’s go.” We jumped into our car and sped off. At a stoplight, I glanced at the car in front of me. Its license-plate read:
Quickly I grabbed my cell-phone, being suspicious of someone who had been prowling around the bank in the middle of the night. I dialed 911, “I just spotted the car that was at the bank at 4:00 this morning. Could you please come and investigate?” I asked.
“We will be there right away,” they promised. And they were there in less than sixty seconds, and they started the chase.
Meanwhile we continued to go to the party. At our family’s house we found Mama, Papa, Amos, Peter, Grace, Irene, Lilly, Hope, and Aletheia. They were all ready for the party. While we were eating our cake and ice cream, I told the family about the bank and the car.
he police continued their chase and followed the car onto I-25. They had turned off their siren to surprise the suspects (and also to test them). The car’s driver finally looked through his rear-view mirror and, seeing the police car, pulled off to the side of the road, the police following. One of the policemen stepped out of the squad car and approached the suspect’s car.
“What did I do?” the suspect asked.
“Where were you at 4 o’clock this morning?” the policeman asked in return.
“I was driving to work. I have an early work schedule,” the man answered.
“And what is your name?”
“John Right,” the man answered.
Then the police drove to the bank, where Josh and I met him an hour later. “I questioned the owner of the vehicle in question,” Gregory told me, “He seemed to be not guilty, although he was scared of us. But, we do have another lead.”
“And what might that be?” I asked.
“Finger-prints,” he answered. “We found a mysterious pair of gloves that had finger prints on their base. These, then, would be from the person who put them on. Here they are,” he said showing me a slip of plastic with a fingerprint on it. “I was just going to the finger-printing office to see who it belongs to, and I was wondering if you two would like to come along.”
“Sure!” Josh and I agreed, “That sounds like fun.”
So Josh and I got into the police car and headed over to the finger-printing office. Once we were there we found that the finger-prints belonged to a Dean Brown.
“Hmmm,” Gregory pondered, “That sounds familiar.”
“Do you know him?” I asked.
“Yes,” he answered. “He is another officer at HQ. I think we should check his desk.”
“Good idea,” Josh said. So we went to the Police headquarters. At Dean Brown’s desk there was a note. It read:
Dear John, 4/11/13
Meet me at December 30 in the bank. We will get the rolls and deer then.
No one spoke for the next minute. Then I said, “What could this mean?”
“I don’t know,” Josh answered. “Wait, that’s it!”
“What?” Gregory and I said at the same time.
“What is a male deer?”
“A buck,” Gregory replied.
“Oh, a dollar! Buck is slang for a dollar!” I said.
“Right,” Josh said. “They are coming to get the dollar bills…when?”
“What about the rolls?” I asked, “I know, rolls of money!”
“Well it is 6 o’clock,” Josh pointed out, “time to eat.”
“Well, see you tomorrow,” I said to Gregory.
Josh and I then went to Chick-fill-a for dinner and went to the bank to install the alarm system. Just as we were finishing up for the night the phone rang. It was Gregory.
“I just thought of it!”
“What?” I asked.
“What do you mean?”
“Which month is December?”
“The twelfth,” I answered, “Oh, 12:30!”
“What do you say about a stake-out?” he asked.
“I’m for it, but I’ll have to ask Josh first.” I covered the mouthpiece and asked Josh. He agreed, so I confirmed with Gregory.
At midnight two police officers came in.
“You are under arrest!” one said. The other slapped handcuffs on Josh and me.
“Why are you arresting us?” we asked.
“Because we know you robbed the bank.”
“What about the finger prints?”
“Those were a police officer’s prints, and a lot of police officers were working in here earlier today (well, I guess it was yesterday now),” they replied.
“Well, why was he wearing gloves?” Josh asked.
They ignored that question.
They dragged us into the police car and took us to the station. While we were in the car, Josh pointed out a suitcase and a flight schedule. Josh and I whispered to each other about it.
“If I just robbed a bank, where would I hide?” Josh asked me.
“In a crowd; where lots of people are,” I answered. Josh jerked his head toward a flight schedule. I looked. It read:
Flight 3827 boarding for New York City 9:30 AM April 12 at Gate 15.
“He is probably leaving on a flight tomorrow morning for New York City,” Josh said.
“Who?” I asked.
“Dean Brown,” he answered. “I saw his picture at the police station, and he is the one taking us to jail.”
Soon we arrived at the police station. Since it was so late, they just locked us in an empty room downstairs.
Gregory and some other policemen arrived at the bank at 12:30, right on schedule. They saw our car and supposed we were there, but they were surprised when they found that Josh and I were not there. They waited for the crooks. After a few hours they came back to the police station, and found us in the basement. After they untied us we explained everything, including our hunch that Dean Brown was the robber and that he was leaving town. We decided to spend the night at the police station because all of us were very tired. I phoned home to give our status, then we all crawled into some extra sleeping bags that the officers kept on hand, and soon fell asleep.
fter a short night of sleep we awoke to a foot of snow on the ground. We wondered if we would make it to the airport through the snow. But the snowplows were already working on clearing the main roads.
When we were done reading our Bibles, we bundled up and started to shovel the driveway. Once that was done and we had eaten something for breakfast, we drove to the airport. We had been figuring that we might be stopped by security and so on. Over all we figured that if we left at 7:00 we could be at the gate to intercept the thieves between 9:00 and 9:30. Of course, we made it to the gate by 8:00, and we had to wait. And, of course, none of us had thought to bring a book to read.
We waited for what felt like a long time, without seeing either of the crooks. Finally at 8:45 we were told that the flight was canceled because of the snow. Then we drove back to the police station to think things over. We agreed that we should check all flights going to large cities. A quick Internet search brought up hundreds. But, one thing that we found was that the flight which had been canceled was un-canceled.
“Do you think that the thieves have any thing to do with this?” Gregory asked.
“Maybe,” Josh replied. (Later we found out that the thieves had bribed the airline.)
“They are going to get away,” I pointed out.
“But we have still have a trick up our sleeves,” Gregory answered.
“What?” Josh asked.
“The police helicopter!”
All three of us sprinted to the landing pad and climbed in. Gregory knew how to fly it, so he got in the pilot’s seat, and we took off.
eter,” Amos said, “Would you bike over to the police station and tell Josh, Beni and Gregory that I was able to track the thieves and put a homing device on them?”
“Really? Cool!” Peter replied.
When Peter arrived at the police station, he saw us about to take off. He waved his arms around and yelled for us not to leave yet, while he ran toward the helicopter. We did not see him, so we took off before he could open the door.
e got to the airport just in time to see the plane leave. “Let's try to follow the plane,” Gregory suggested. “Helicopters aren’t made for long trips, but we might be able to make this one. It will be tricky to stay out of the way of the jet engines, however. If we get behind them, the wind from them would blow us backward and I would loose control and crash.”
We agreed to follow the plane. To stay out of the way of its jets we hovered behind and to the left of the plane as it flew east.
“What is that?” Josh asked.
Gregory and I looked where he was pointing. We saw another helicopter flying right above the plane. Just then two things with parachutes dropped onto the plane, but we were on the wrong side of the plane to see what they were.
“What do you suppose those were?” I asked.
“Maybe bombs?” Josh suggested.
“No, if they were bombs, they would have exploded by now,” Gregory replied.
As we were speaking, the other helicopter turned and flew out of sight. We followed a little longer until we were 100 miles from the airport. Suddenly the plane swerved, leaving us right behind the jets! The jetstream was too strong for our helicopter. It threw us backward. We started spiraling downward toward Interstate-70!
hunk, clink. “What's that noise?” the co-pilot of the plane asked a flight attendant.
“I don't know.” she answered, “It sounded like something fell on the plane.”
Just then they heard three more sounds. The first sounded like the airplane's outside door opening. The second was a passenger screaming. The third sounded like a strong wind.
“I’ll go see what that was,” the flight attendant said.
When she stepped out of the cockpit she saw the door of the plane open and strong gusts of air were coming in.
“Put your hands up!” A masked man, with a heavy accent, shouted. By him was another masked man, both of them held guns!
“How did you get in?” The flight attendant asked.
“Through the door,” came the answer. They ran to the cockpit and made the driver turn back to crash into the airport. The plane had been hijacked!
hen the helicopter spun out of control, Gregory’s head hit the steering control and he went unconscious! I grabbed something to steady myself on. It turned out to be the door handle. The door opened! I grabbed something else, which proved to be steady, just in time. Josh leaped to the driver's seat (he had been riding in the co-pilot seat) and pushed Gregory into the seat that he had just gotten out of.
From reading books like The Hardy Boys and the Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook, Josh had learned a little bit about flying planes and helicopters. He brought the helicopter back in balance. I was too dizzy to move for a little. I felt some one or something-large crawl over me. A few seconds later I was able to sit up. Gregory was awake. I also saw that Peter was in the helicopter.
“How did you get in here?” I asked.
“Through the door,” he answered. He told us that he was about to climb into the helicopter when we took off. He had grabbed the tail of the helicopter and had been trying to get in ever since we left. When I opened the door he was able to get in.
“Was that plane hijacked?” Peter asked.
“I guess,” I answered.
“Do you want to un-hijack a plane?” Gregory asked.
We set a plan of action. We decided that we would drop (with parachutes) next to the door of the plane then get into the plane with ropes.
“Under the back seat you will find parachutes and ropes with grappling hooks on the end,” Gregory told us. “Also, let's not make the arrest yet. We don't have enough evidence against them.”
He handed us some walkie-talkies and cap guns. When we were all equipped for our mission and had prayed for God’s help, we opened the door. Once we were positioned correctly we dropped. Gregory stayed to fly the helicopter.
As we floated down we saw that we didn't need the ropes after all. The hijackers had apparently hooked ropes onto the door and had left their ropes there. It was then that I realized why they had done it this way. They had done it so that they didn’t have to get past security with guns. The hijackers had left the door cracked open, so we grabbed the ropes and climbed inside.
“Oh no, more hijackers!” we heard a passenger say.
We assured them that we were not hijackers. Then we marched up to the cockpit. The hijackers spun around when they heard us. The co pilot now being unguarded did a quick move, conking the hijackers heads together.
“Thank you,” we told him.
“I wish that at least the pilot was allowed to have a gun,” Josh said.
“Yeah, is the government afraid that I will hijack a plane? I’m already the one flying it!” the pilot told us exasperatedly.
With our extra ropes we tied the hijackers up in the bathrooms of the plane.
“Well, that was easy,” Peter commented.
Josh radioed Gregory on the walkie-talkie and told him what we had accomplished. Gregory flew the helicopter up underneath us, and we skydived down to him.
An hour later we were flying over Chicago. “Our gas gauge reads almost empty,” Gregory informed us, “We left in such a hurry that I forgot to check how much gasoline we had in the tank.”
“Can we make it for about fifteen more minutes?” I asked.
“Yes, I think so,” he answered, “Why do you ask?”
Josh replied, “We have some cousins who live in Northern Indiana.”
We made it to Milford, Indiana before we had to land. We found a road that didn't look like it was used very often. Gregory landed, using this as a runway.
“Well, this is a providential place to land,” Peter commented, “We are probably only five minutes from our cousins’ house by car.”
“What car?” Josh asked.
“I'll call Cousin Hannah with our cell phone,” I said.
Hannah (who was a couple months younger than I was) played violin in an orchestra. I called her cell phone right before her orchestra was about to perform. She was backstage when we called.
“Hello, This is Hannah Wilson.”
“Hi, Hannah this is Beni!”
I quickly filled her in on what had happened. She drove out to where we were. (I'm not sure what happened at the concert when they got to her solo part...) When she arrived we talked a little about how our families were doing, then we drove to a gas station where we bought a large container to carry gasoline. We filled this up and drove back to the helicopter.
After we said goodbye, Hannah got into her car and drove off.
“Do you think that we should keep going?” Gregory asked. “With this delay they are maybe an hour ahead of us.”
“Well,” Josh figured, “They will have to stop for a while at the other airport.”
“Oh,” Peter said, “The reason that Amos wanted me to come was to tell you that he has made a tracking device. It connects to a little chip so you can tell where it is.”
“How can this help us?" I asked.
“Well, Amos put the chip in Dean Brown's back pocket. Now as soon as he e-mails the software to us we can see where they are.”
“I guess that this means it will be worthwhile to continue on, since we will still be able to find where they are,” Gregory decided. We took off.
An hour and a half later we landed at the airport where the thieves had landed an hour earlier. We waited in the airport for Amos to e-mail us the software. While we waited we ate some lunch.
mos dialed a number on the phone in his home office. After a short talk he hung the phone up.
That minute Hope came in and asked, “Who were you talking to?”
“That was the computer shop. My computer is broken and I'm trying to send something to Josh, Beni, and Peter,” Amos answered.
“Well, I came to tell you that it is time for lunch,” Hope said.
“Alright I'll be there soon.”
Half an hour later, Amos' computer was fixed and he e-mailed the software.
t the airport we were getting past bored without any books to read.
“I know what we can do,” Josh said, “We do have a book to read: we have the Bible on the laptop here.”
Peter opened it up and asked, “Where should I read from?”
We agreed on the book of Mark.
As we were reading, a man came and asked us, “What are you reading?”
“We are reading the Bible,” I answered. “Have you read it?”
“Yes,” he replied. “How did you get it on there?”
“I'll e-mail you the web site if you would like,” Peter answered.
“Sure,” He answered, “That would be handy since I already carry my Laptop wherever I go.”
We sent him an e-mail with the web address. When we sent it, we received the email from Amos with the tracking software he had programmed.
We walked from the airport to a car rental shop. We found a good car and started the software. Fifteen minutes later we were out of NYC but still in a highly populated area in New Jersey.
“Is there a power converter in this car?” Peter, who had the laptop, asked.
“I think so,” Gregory replied. “Why do you ask?”
“The computer is threatening to hibernate if we don't plug it in.”
“OK, I'll get it plugged in if you pull over,” I told Josh.
Josh pulled over to the side of the road, and I found the inverter and plugged it in. When we had gotten driving again we found that the thieves had stopped in Trenton, NJ.
We drove south towards the thieves. Soon we were in Trenton. There was a Quality Inn close to where they had stopped. We decided to spend the night there. After we had rented a room, we ordered some pizza. Then, after some devotions, we all crawled into bed.
he next morning we went downstairs to have some breakfast. When we were done eating, we fired up the computer.
“It appears that they are still around here,” Gregory said. “To be precise, they are at the laundromat across the street!”
“Let’s go!” Peter said.
We checked out and walked over to the laundromat. The map led us to a corner of the building. In this corner there were some dryers that were running.
“Do you think that they are hiding over here?” I asked.
“I think that there is another answer,” Josh said.
Once we zoomed in on the map software, we decided that the tracking chip must be in one of the dryers.
“The chip was in their back pocket, so they must be washing that set of clothes,” Peter deduced.
“Hmm. Well, they will probably be back soon, so I suggest that we wait here for them,” I said. Everyone agreed.
hat’s Greg doing in there?” Dean Brown asked, parking the car he was driving at the laundromat.
“Who is Greg?” John Right asked in return.
“He is a co-worker from Denver,” Dean answered.
“They must be following us!”
“They must be washing their laundry. Let’s wait here until they come out.”
ye, nice meeting you.” We said to some one that we had met at the laundry-mat.
“They will probably be here soon. Let’s hide,” Gregory told us.
ome one is coming out, get down,” John said.
A car pulled away. Once it was out of sight range, they entered the laundry-mat.
“Alright, Which one was ours?” Dean asked, “Ah, here it is.”
As they were scooping their clothes into a bucket, we surrounded them with our guns from the hijacking.
“You are under arrest!” Gregory said. They both jumped at least a foot.
“You can’t arrest a policeman can you?” Dean asked.
“Any one who has broken the law can be arrested,” Josh replied.
Seeing our guns, John said, “I think that we had better obey.”
We marched them out to our car, then called the local police. Five minutes later the police had arrived and handcuffed the criminals. As they were about to pull away, Gregory said, loud enough for the thieves to hear, “It’s amazing how much cap-guns look like real pistols.”
We all laughed and gave the cap guns back to Gregory.
Within a few hours we had driven to the airport and flown the helicopter back to Denver. After a good, home-cooked meal with the whole family, I said, “This has been one of the most exciting birthday weekends ever!”