The Heat is On Page 2

And anyway, this was just starting to get fun.

As Matt and the blonde fell silent, Red Shoes clucked his tongue in approval, lifted his gun, and paced off. At the counter, Black Hair was forcing the manager to dial the branch manager’s home phone number.

“Speakerphone!” he barked.

Matt really wished he could see what was going on above him, but he had to settle for just hearing it. The assistant manager’s cell phone resonated a loud busy tone.

“I guess the branch manager is too cheap to invest in call waiting,” Blondie murmured.

“Maybe he can’t multi-task when it comes to communication,” Matt pointed out, fighting a grin.

“Quiet!” Red Shoes barked at them.

“Call his cell phone,” Black Hair ordered.

This time they got a dial tone, only to be replaced with a booming male voice that announced, “Lewis Templeton, San Diego Savings and Loans. Leave a message.”

More silence.

Obviously Black Hair and his crew of misfits had no idea what to do now that they’d been barred access to the big safe. Across the room, a woman whimpered.

“You’re lying,” Black Hair finally said, anger in his voice. “You do know the combination to the vault, don’t you?”

“I really don’t,” the manager protested.


“I changed my mind,” Blondie whispered. “I thought they had the IQ of first-graders, but I’ve demoted that down to kindergarten.”

Matt laughed, only to receive another harsh reprimand from Red Shoes, who was beginning to look frazzled by this entire mess. He kept glancing at the enormous window, then at the confused people standing outside the bank door wondering why they couldn’t get in.

“Someone’s using their cell phone out there!” Red Shoes said, sounding frantic. “I think they’re calling the cops, Billy! We should split!”

Billy, the robber formerly known as Black Hair, spun around in fury. “What did I tell you about using our real names, you f**king idiot? Stick to the codes.”

“I bet one of them is eagle,” Matt murmured.

“Sorry, Eagle.” Red Shoes sounded humbled. “But we need to split, like, now!”

From the corner of his eye, Matt saw the red sneakers making their way to the wicket. The two robbers huddled together, mumbling to each other about their next move.

A streak of impatience shot through Matt, and a little alarm went off in his head. All right. This had gone too far. The guys were panicking now, and idiots plus panic plus guns could only equal trouble. Someone could actually get hurt here.

He glanced at Blondie. “Stay down,” he said in a low voice.

Her gray eyes widened, her mouth parting to protest, but he was already on his feet and springing to action. It took two seconds to disarm Billy and Red Shoes, and two more to land an uppercut on Billy’s jaw that had the guy slumping unconscious onto the floor. Without even breaking a sweat, Matt wrenched Red Shoes’s arms behind his skinny back, getting him in an iron hold that had the guy gasping in pain. Then he raised one of the guns he’d confiscated from the robbers and pointed it at Hook Nose, who looked like a deer caught in headlights over by the door.

“Drop your weapon, or this idiot dies,” Matt called cheerfully.

Hook Nose hesitated for all of a second, and then his handgun clattered to the floor and landed next to the foot of the security guard. “Now get on the ground, hands on your head,” Matt ordered, and the guy dropped down like a bowling pin, just as the wail of sirens filled the air.

Matt glanced over at the security guard, who was staring at him with shocked and grateful eyes, and said, “You’re welcome.”

The cops didn’t keep the patrons in the bank for long. After slapping cuffs on the idiot robbers and carting them into the waiting police cruisers out front, the three officers gathered everyone’s statements and collected contact information should they be called in as witnesses for the moronic trio’s trials. The officer who questioned Matt looked about nineteen, and listened in awe as Matt described how he’d taken out the robbers. He explained he was a Navy SEAL, which got him another dose of awe and a bunch of questions about the Navy, but Matt was only half paying attention to the conversation. Ten feet away, Blondie was speaking to a female police officer who was scrawling things down in a little black notebook.

Now that he had a better view, he realized Blondie was even hotter than he’d thought. Tall, as he’d suspected, but with the figure of a centerfold. Tiny hips, big tits, and the roundest, perkiest ass he’d ever seen. His mouth watered just from looking at her, and a burst of irritation went off inside him when he noticed the officer close her notebook and gesture that Blondie could leave.

Interrupting his own officer mid-sentence, he said, “Can I go now? I’ve kind of got somewhere to be.”

The young cop looked down at the notes he’d made. “Yeah, you’re free to go. We’ll contact you if there’s anything further.”

“Good. Great.” Matt was already heading toward the double doors, which his sassy blonde had just waltzed through.

He caught up to her just as she reached the small parking lot next to the bank.

“Hey!” he called.

She stopped, glanced over her shoulder, and a wide smile spread across her lips. “Oh, it’s you. The big hero.”

“Don’t bother hiding it. We both know you were impressed with what I did back there,” he said with a cocky grin.

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