“It will be easy money!” Jaxon had said. “All we need to do is get in, grab the painting, and get out.”

As Mel and Jaxson sat in the back of the police car, she could just about murder him. Easy money. She scoffed. They were caught by the police on the way out of the museum, having tripped the alarms without knowing it. It’s not easy money if you have to face jail time for stealing a 100-year old portrait, she thought.

Beside her, Jaxon stared blankly out the window with his arms crossed as buildings passed them by. Chances were, he didn’t see this coming. He was most likely blinded by the thought of 50,000 dollars lining his pockets. Greed is a powerful motivator.

But he needed the money as well, they both had. That was the only reason they had both gone on this botched heist in the first place. They both had overdue debts to pay, with no way to pay them. Now they would sit in prison instead of paying those debts.

“Nice going.” She whispered to Jaxson. She knew it would sting, but she still needed to get her frustrations out.

If he was upset at her, he didn’t show it. He just kept staring out the window. All the way to the police station, where they were locked in a cell together.

“So what’s your grand plan now?” Mel asked him.

Jaxson was busy sulking on the bed. It would be a while before he forgave himself. And before she forgave him. “I don’t have one.” He murmured.

She flopped down on the other bed. “Of course you don’t.”

The seconds ticked by slowly, no words passed between them. Until Jaxson popped up from his bed, all his energy returned to him. “I know how to get out of here.”

Mel sat up slowly, not wanting to believe him. “What is it?” She asked, her arms crossed. “Because I swear to God, if you get us into more trouble–”

“It’ll work,” he interrupted, “I swear.”

Mel let out a long sigh. What other option did she have? It was either wait for the trial and get convicted or run away while they still had the chance. “Fine.” She stated. “Tell me everything.”

This plan wasn’t nearly as complex as the heist was. In fact, it almost sounded too easy. All they had to do was wait until midnight, pick the locks with forks stolen from their dinner trays, and sneak out without tripping the alarms.

“Are you sure this is a good idea?” Mel asked once more as they were about to set their plan into motion. She didn’t want to get into more trouble with the law than they already had, but she didn’t want to stick around either.

Jaxson gave her a quick nod. “Trust me.” Was all he said before grabbing the forks he managed to steal from their dinner trays. She wasn’t sure how much more trust she could give him before she gave up on him completely.

He made his way over to the lock on their cell door, looking both ways for patrolling officers before he started working at the lock. After a few tries and a lot of swearing, it came open. Mel let out a sigh of relief, she didn’t think he would get it, especially after failing more than ten times.

Her joy was cut short by the sound of alarm bells. Had Jaxon set them off? Or was someone else escaping at the same time as them? Jaxson held the door shut, but not enough to keep it locked.
To her surprise, the several officers rushed past their cell, paying them no mind. Someone else must have been escaping. Jaxon smiled at the perfectly timed distraction and waved her out.

They ran the opposite direction of the officers, hoping to find some sort of exit. The hallway was short, leading them to the front of the police station. Jax stopped short, and Mel stopped close behind him.

“Now what?” She hissed.

“There’s no one there.” Jaxon said. “Look.”

Mel chanced a peek over his shoulder. He was right. The front of the police station should be full of officers, but it was deserted. Without thinking, she opened the door leading into the station. No one came to her, because no one was there. It was no trick, no illusion. There was simply no one there.

She waved Jaxon forward. “Where is everyone?” He asked, looking around.

Mel shook her head. “I’m not sure.” She answered. “But I don’t think we should find out.”

She walked towards the door, practically running. She couldn’t wait to be free. Maybe they could sneak on a plane and hide in Canada. Anywhere where they could live anonymously. It didn’t really matter to her.
What greeted her at the door was something she would have never prepared for. It started at her with blank eyes, jaw open. It looked like a person, but something was off. It was reaching for her before she could move. Jaxon pulled her back inside, slamming the door and barricading it with a desk.

“What was that?” She asked, voice wavering.

“Zombies, I think.” Jaxon said.
“That’s impossible.”

“Apparently not.”

The zombie now had its face pressed against the glass door, trying to break in. Is this what those cops were running from? More joined the zombie, closing in on them, smearing their faces on the glass. She whipped around, looking for a second exit. The only path led straight back towards where they came from.

Without a word, she ran back where they came, hoping Jaxon was following her. She ran as fast as her legs would carry her, sprinting through the cells, she knew an exit would be in the back, there had to be. When she saw it, she almost cried out of joy. And when she flung open the door, one thing was certain in her mind: she would never rob a museum again.