The Simsville Inheritance
Copyright ©2006 Elizabeth G. Cox. All rights reserved.

Chapter 21 - Not All Cash is Greenbacks

Jamie had been extremely fortunate in his choice of ancestry, he thought. And upbringing wasn't bad, moving around a lot, having to learn to adapt to new cultures and a few extra languages along the way, but all in all not bad. The problem was his parents didn't acquire a lot of dough in the process, what with military life not paying much. So when they'd died in that so-called accident they didn't leave much for their teenage son to inherit. Not to worry, he'd told himself, Grandpa surely has a stash if he's planning to take me in. Wrong. No stash, just rules. Go here, do that, learn this, eat that, and work, work, work for every little thing. The military didn't even compensate him, orphan that he was, for the accident that took the lives of both parents, though they had been doing government work in a government vehicle on a government base. No, Grandpa got whatever money there was and he didn't parcel it out to Jamie. "In trust for your future, earning interest." That's what he always said.

But as soon as young Jamie made a few friends and learned a few ropes back in the good old U.S. of A., he'd found a way to make the money he wanted for clothes of his own choosing, plus exciting entertainment and eventually an exciting automobiles. Grandpa didn't know about the Corvette, of course. Grandpa didn't know about a lot of things and that's the way Jamie intended to keep it. He'd had plans to tell Grandpa "see ya," explaining he'd gotten this great new job up north. No boring college classes, no waiting around until he was thirty years old to get his hands on his trust fund.

The exciting entertainment had thrown a monkey wrench into those plans. His little weekend jaunt to Atlantic City with new friends had cost him dearly. He'd learned to play poker and blackjack with the best of them, he was bound to come home a winner, he'd told himself. By the end of the weekend he knew better. "You'll recoup next time," his buddies assured him. "No big deal, sure I will," he replied. But now there wasn't enough cash left to strike out on his own. He'd have to go back to work and make nice to Grandpa another few days while he came up with plan number two. This time he would make the score bigger. He never wanted to have to think up plan number three. But first he wanted to make darn sure he didn't lose any more money.

It had taken him an entire day to set-up an offshore account using information from one of his newly-made pals. He'd gone down to Charleston to make the arrangements, but after that it was oh, so easy, to send all that lovely money down to the islands, waiting for more to come along soon.

Plan number two had worked exactly like he'd wanted. He'd gone to the bank at a time when he knew the guard would be out back smoking a cigarette, like he always did. It was easy as pie to clonk the old guy over the head, pull open the car door and lay him down on the back seat. A quick injection and he'd sleep several hours at least. Jamie walked calmly around the building and entered the bank through the front door. Speaking in a soft, raspy voice made the teller lean a little closer to try to understand him, and the little pistol assured her cooperation from that point. She had been taken completely unawares, unable to press the silent alarm beneath her window. They quickly covered the few steps to the back door where he ushered her into the front seat of the car, administered her own little injection, and within a moment or two she joined the guard in sleep.

Finding the perfect place to house these two hadn't taken long. He'd scoped out several places when he was planning Charlotte's kidnapping, and the closed down textile plant was perfect. It had a completely enclosed inner office with no windows and only one door, easily locked up tight. You could tell no-one ever came out here. The grounds were littered with trash and garbage, tall weeds growing up in what was left of the parking lot and driveway. To keep tire tracks from showing, he'd driven partly on and partly off the dirt road to the loading dock, carefully keeping his speed low and watching out for broken glass. A flat tire wouldn't do right now, no sir.

He'd driven right into the main warehouse, avoiding the piles of broken debris and machinery the best he could. He wanted to get completely out of sight of the secondary road. Getting the girl into the office had been fairly easy, she didn't weigh much. He had to lay the guard down on an old piece of cardboard and drag him but that didn't take long. Both were still out cold when he left them there in the dark room. He laid a six-pack of water and four energy bars down between them, figuring that would be enough to keep them alive a day or so. Not comfortable, but alive. Two small ventilation grates were located near the ceiling; they'd supply enough air.

His scheme was simple. He was surprised he'd never thought of this before. He'd accompanied Grandpa to the bank several times to do business, learning how his trust fund worked, how the investments worked, how the interest was reinvested. He'd watched when Grandpa switched all his accounts to paper-less transactions.

Back at home he'd paid close attention to the numbers and steps necessary to get into Grandpa's computerized bank accounts. It hadn't taken him long to find the passwords. Grandpa had imagination in coming up with passwords, but he also had a bit too much trust. He'd left the passwords penciled on an index card in his desk, not labeled "passwords" of course but obvious to Jamie.

In the past he'd never figured out how to get to the money without being caught. Grandpa checked over every account every month. He'd be sure to know if money went missing.

While looking for passwords, Jamie had found something else. He found out what Grandpa's real occupation had been before he retired. He'd thought it was cute, quaint even, but not particularly profitable. Still, he kept looking and copying down information. It might come in handy one day, you never know.

With the loss at the blackjack tables, Jamie had reconsidered his options. He began to think he could be sitting on a gold mine a digital gold mine. Using the information from Grandpa's desk, it had taken him several evenings to hack into the bank's computer files. He was careful not to do much at any one time, waiting to see if anyone noticed unauthorized entry. But it was an unsophisticated system with none of the newest start-of-the-art security features. Nobody noticed. Jamie then opened up one of Grandpa's quarterly reporting accounts and switched several thousand dollars from it into his newly created one. No alarms, no reporting e-mails sent back to Grandpa, nothing.

So much for the trial run. Then came the fun part. Over the next few hours Jamie maneuvered around in the bank's system until he came up with seventeen other accounts that had no regular activity, except that each one was worth over five thousand dollars with interest accruing at a conservative rate. He quickly zipped half the funds of each into his brand-new offshore account. Again, nobody noticed.

Jamie was pretty sure bank officials would find out money was missing sooner or later. They would raise cain about the ease with which it was done. "Heads would roll," as the saying goes and they would go looking for persons who could have been responsible. By the time they got to Grandpa, he planned to be far away, enjoying the good life on a sunny beach.

All he needed was a little time to make a hundred more hefty transfers and a distraction to keep folks confused while he did it. What better distraction than a missing guard and bank teller?

Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7 | Chapter 8 | Chapter 9 | Chapter 10 | Chapter 11 | Chapter 12 | Chapter 13 | Chapter 14 | Chapter 14 | Chapter 15 | Chapter 16 | Chapter 17 | Chapter 18 | Chapter 19 | Chapter 20 | Chapter 21