It was about eight o’clock when I stumbled into the coffee shop on my way home. I wanted a drink and about a half an hour to work with fewer distractions than I knew I’d find at home. Sitting down with my drink, I walked by a booth with four people, all of whom were wearing costumes, some more extravagant than others. The one that stood out most was Batman. The guy had really gone all out.
Somewhere in the back of my mind, I recalled that the newest Batman movie was opening the next day. They were most likely dressed for a midnight showing. I’ve never understood people like that—did they really get more enjoyment out of the movie by wearing ridiculous outfits? And why would they stop in here first? Did they have no shame?
Though I would never do what they were doing, it didn’t stop me from sitting near them for the possible chance to observe them. They weren’t making it very hard to eavesdrop. “Batman” was forcing out a gravelly voice that had the others in uproarious laughter.
It wasn’t long before I grew bored of listening to their prattle and turned my attention back to my own work. I was almost done with my coffee when a man walked up to the counter. I wasn’t paying enough attention to give you a play-by-play of what happened, but it quickly became evident that he was there to rob the place. He waved a gun in the cashier’s face while the man opened the register.
Then the gunman glanced over his shoulder in my direction and nearly started laughing. He’d noticed Batman, and, worse yet, Batman looked to be getting up to confront him.
You fool! I thought. Wearing the costume does not make you a superhero! It’s not like your chest plate is bullet-proof!
As soon as the gunman turned his weapon on the Dark Knight, he sat back down. Apparently it had been enough to make the thief nervous though, as he motioned for Batman to exit the booth. As the man complied, the gunman caught sight of perhaps the reason for Batman’s courage—a gun of his own attached to his suit. The gunman relieved the hero of his weapon and insisted he sit on the floor on the other side of the room.
For good measure, he decided to send the other three over-dressed companions with him. As he turned to watch Batman go, the last one out of the booth—a woman in a green costume of some sort—grabbed him around the waist and slammed him to the ground while at the same time knocking the gun out of his hand. In the next instant, she pulled a gun of her own and held it on the man.
She produced a badge, which she held up for the rest of us to see. Batman came jogging over, holding up an identical badge. In the ensuing business of an arrest made and witness statements gathered, I realized that all four of the costumed patrons were cops. The man had really picked the wrong time and place for his petty heist.
I still wonder if they made it to their movie.
Prompt used: The night won’t save anyone.