It was just another day for Rachel Berry. She was behind her desk at TrustAmerica, helping a father set up a checking account for his sixteen-year-old daughter. They were both polite, the daughter quiet, and as Rachel typed her portion of the form into her computer, she sent a smile her way to help relax the young girl.
It took her about ten seconds to realize what was happening.
The door burst open, and in ran three figures dressed in black, with ski masks covering their faces. Unfamiliar voices were yelling, and Tina shrieked from the desk beside her own before dropping down to the ground.
"On your knees!" someone yelled. Rachel turned around to look straight into the barrel of a shotgun. "I said to get on your knees, now!" the figure yelled again when Rachel hadn't moved.
Rachel moved her hands above her head and slowly pushed herself away from the desk with her feet. She tried to ease herself down, but the shrouded figure shoved her to the ground by her shoulders. As she fell to the ground face-first, Rachel vaguely noted that the voice belonged to a woman.
Remembering that the woman had said to be "on her knees", Rachel attempted to push herself back up, but felt the end of the shotgun pressing into her back. "Stay down," the woman ordered. Rachel quickly nodded her head, and then it sunk in.
Her bank was being robbed at gunpoint.
"Now," another woman's voice said from farther away, "which one of you pretty girls wants to come open up this safe for us?" Her voice was more sarcastic, and Rachel briefly wondered if this was the one in charge. "How 'bouts you, lady boy?" Rachel's eyes squeezed shut in a wince at what she knew was a reference to Kurt. She heard his high-pitched stammer and swallowed, making a decision in her head that she hoped she wouldn't regret later.
"He doesn't know the combination." Rachel tried to speak strongly, but her words came out in little more than a squeak. The woman above her dug the gun into her back more than it had been previously at her words.
"Stop trying to play hero, Hobbit," the woman said sternly, twisting the end of the barrel into Rachel's spine in a way that was sure to leave more damage than a bruise.
"I-I'm not, I'm not lying!" Rachel took a breath to keep from sounding frantic. "The only people that know the c-combination to the vault are the manager and the assistant manager. The manager is out today, which means that-that the only person here that knows the combin-"
"We get it, Chatty Cathy; who's the assistant manager?" said the sarcastic woman from beside Kurt's desk.
Rachel took another deep breath. "Sh-she is also not in today-"
"You're fucking lying," Sarcastic bit out, taking quick steps closer in Rachel's direction. Rachel heard Tina shriek again and jerked her head around.
The masked woman had Tina's head pulled back by her hair, the woman's pistol (Rachel never paid much attention to names of guns) pressed to the Asian girl's temple. "Tell us who it is, Supergirl, or I gets to blow Asian Fusion's brains out," Sarcastic spit, pressing the gun in an obviously painful way to the girl's skull.
Rachel bit her lip and squeezed her eyes shut once, trying to organize her thoughts over the sound of her heartbeat pulsing in her ears. She opened her eyes and looked up blankly at the masked woman, who, after a beat, moved her gun to point towards the sixteen-year-old Rachel had been helping prior to this mess.
"No? How about her?"
"Ess," the woman above Rachel said firmly. It was obviously a warning, and Rachel realized then that it was the woman standing over her that was in charge of all this. The woman now known as "S" nodded after a moment, slightly relinquishing her hold on Tina's black-and-blue hair while moving her gun to the ground. "We don't want anybody's blood on our hands," Woman-In-Charge continued. "Bee, over here."
The third member of their masked gang walked-no, skipped-over, some type of army-grade gun strapped across her back. "Yeah, Cue?" she said jovially, as if she wasn't in the process of holding up a bank full of innocent people.
"Info on this one," Q replied-it wasn't voiced as a command; it was more of a request, which made Rachel believe that they worked more like a team and less like a boss with two lackeys.
The third woman-"B"-looked at Rachel for a moment before saying, in a surprisingly sweet and happy voice, "Rachel Barbra Berry; daughter of Hiram and Leroy Berry-two dads? That's weird; named after Barbra Streisand; grew up in Lima, Ohio; dated quarterback Finn Hudson off and on for two of the four years of high school; graduated from McKinley High School in the class of 2012 and immediately left for New York City; auditioned for NYADA's theater program four years in a row; never got accepted, nor applied for any other colleges-wow, that was stupid; lived in her car until she started working with TrustAmerica: New York branch in 2018 as a minor employee and could actually afford a place; was promoted to the title of Assistant Manager in 2023. That enough?"
Rachel stared up at the tallest of the three women, completely frightened out of her mind. How had she known all of those things about her? There's no way she could have known about Finn, or her being named after Barbra. That was-there was no way.
"Well, then, RuPaul, come up and get your prize, you skinny little-"
"S, calm down. Berry, get up." The shotgun was lifted from her spine and then B was leaning down to help her up-gently, Rachel was shocked to find. "I got her, B; go watch the others. Make sure they don't touch anywhere near their desks."
"Got it, Q." B bounced away, floating on her toes in a way that reminded Rachel of Susie Petrovski, the girl from Rachel's old dance class who was so pretty and perfect and the most amazing little ballerina-
"Berry. Door." Q unceremoniously pushed her towards the door to the hallway in which the vault was closed. Rachel briefly wondered how she could have known where the safe was located, before she realized that they had probably researched and found some map of the building beforehand. It still didn't explain how they knew such personal things about her, though.
They were in front of the door of the room that held the vault. Rachel rose a shaking hand to press the correct sequence into the number pad located beside the doorway, opening the door slowly as Q pressed her gun to Rachel's back once more. The two of them walked inside, leaving S in the hallway-to keep an eye on B, Rachel surmised.
Rachel walked to the vault, again raising her shaking hand. She spun the dial twice to the left, stopped at the first number, then spun to the right. She spun the dial too far in her nervousness, however, and shook her head at herself slightly, resetting the dial with two spins back to 0.
"Hurry it up, Hobbit," Q said with a voice between stern and harsh.
"I'm trying," Rachel huffed, speaking as indignantly as she could. "I apologize, but it would most likely help my cerebrum to better function if there was not a loaded gun aimed at my posterior."
She felt the gun lift from her skin before hearing, "Wow, you really are Chatty Cathy."
Rachel huffed again and rolled her eyes, thankful that the woman couldn't see her face. She took a deep breath and raised her hand to the dial again. She spun twice, then once, then once again, pushing the dial inwards before pulling on the handle that opened the vault door. Q nodded her approval before grabbing Rachel's arm and pulling her back out to the hallway.
They had both passed S when the door at the end of the hall was pushed open and B came running in. "Guys, the cops are here," the woman said breathlessly. Q's grip on Rachel's arm tightly noticeably, and the small girl noted S's tensed shoulders with her peripheral vision.
"Damn it," S nearly shouted, smacking the wall next to her with a gloved fist. "How did they…?" She trailed off and looked up at Rachel, who glanced away as quickly as she could. "What did you do, you stupid bitch?" S growled, taking a menacing step towards her. Q's grip tightened even more. Rachel squeezed her eyes shut and stuttered out a, "N-nothing," as her mind flashed back to the number sequence to the door.
"She put in some extra numbers to that code thingie," B said after a moment of staring, gesturing towards the door. "It triggered the silent alarm."
"God damn it!"
"S. Calm your ass down."
"What do we do, Q?" B asked, and Rachel could almost picture the look of helplessness that was surely adorning the tall girl's face at that moment.
"B, go let them go. All of them, but slowly; one every five minutes or so, until there are about five left inside; then wait. That way they won't make a move because of the risks. If the phone rings, come get me. S, watch her," with this, Rachel was shoved towards the other girl, "and I'll signal to the boys. Don't worry too much, B."
Rachel looked wildly between the women as S grabbed her arm with a decidedly tighter grip than Q had used. B ran back out through the door, and Q walked back towards the vault, lifting a walkie-talkie from her belt to her mouth. "M, P, move in, we've got cops. Vault's open, bring the bags." Rachel heard a faint "roger" come through the device before Q spoke again. "Also, boys… bring some duct tape. We've got ourselves a hostage."
Rachel squeezed her eyes shut for the fifth time in the last twenty minutes and prayed that she would get out of this alive.