Hi there and welcome to otherhawk's latest project. This is the prologue of a continuing story that is likely to be five or six chapters in length.

I don't own Ocean's 11, 12 or 13. They are just some of the many things I don't own.

The thing that Rusty had to keep in mind was that there was no way in which Roy Blake was even remotely like Daniel Ocean. The fact that he kept forgetting to make allowances for this was seriously throwing him off. It was possible that working with Danny for so long had spoiled him, but his new 'partner' couldn't even pick-up on the signals they'd agreed on. Not quite what he'd planned for himself when Danny gave up the game for the life of a suburban house-husband.

He stood in the doorway, trying to ignore the smell and watching Roy fiddle with the safe door. It probably wasn't a good idea to go stepping on any toes too early, but if the guy took much longer, security was going to come back inside to find out what was going on. Not to mention the wailing of the fire alarm was getting really annoying. His mind played around with a couple of early exit plans for a few seconds until a quiet 'click' and Roy's whispered "Fuck, yeah." brought him back to the present.

"Is it there?" he asked, moving forward and peering over Roy's shoulder.

"Man, there's everything here. I'm telling you Rus', we're fucking rich."

Yeah. Because it was all about the money. "Not what we'd planned." he said firmly. "Just the list."

"Yeah, sure. You've got no imagination though." Roy stepped aside, and Rusty poked his head inside the safe. There was plenty of interesting stuff in it, but even so, well, perhaps having fourteen million dollars of Terry Benedict's money had given him a different perspective on what 'fucking rich' really meant.

Fastidiously, he turned over a couple of bundles of stock certificates, and found the familiar-looking folder. At least something was going right. Flicking through the folder quickly, he checked that the disc was in place, before slipping it under his overalls. "All set."

"I'll get the alarm and swap the security tape, if you get the AC?" Roy said quickly.

Rusty nodded patiently. "Just as we planned." Given enough time, it was possible that the guy would shape up, he mused as he headed to the roof. Just had to be patient, that was all.

He managed to resist the temptation to peer over the edge to see if anyone was heading back in. Once he was through, he reached into the air vent, disconnected the canister, and put it in his toolbox . If he understood it right – and he did – then the chemicals should dissipate within ten minutes, taking the smell with them.

As soon as he stepped back inside, he noticed that the alarm had been cut off. Well that was a relief. Roy was waiting for him on the bottom of the stairs.

"Did you get it?" he demanded.

Rusty told himself that it was just Danny that wouldn't have had to ask. It was just Danny that would have smirked and fallen in step with him. If it had been Linus, or someone, they'd have said something as well. "Yep. We're done."

"All right! Let's get out of here before someone catches us."

When they get down to the front door, Ms. Weber was peering around the lobby with a distracted look on her face. Rusty surreptitiously stuck a piece of gum in his mouth and went to meet her.

"Really, you shouldn't be in here Ma'am. Smart thing to do is to wait for us to give y'all the all clear." He grinned, just enough to show that there was no danger and was pleased to see her a blush spread across her face. He still had it.

"Well, Mr.. . . " he caught her sneaking a look at his ID badge, "Mr. Grant, I heard the alarm stop and assumed you'd fixed our little problem. And the smell does seem to have faded."

"Call me Jimmy, Ma'am." He smiled warmly at her. "And yes, we've fixed the problem. Nothing more than a slight coolant leak, spread right through the system. Smelt pretty bad, sure enough, but it coulda been a lot worse. It was quick-thinking to evacuate, and I'll be telling your boss that in my report."

"Thank you, Jimmy." She gave an almost-giggle, and Rusty worried for an instant that he might have laid it on to thick. The last thing he wanted out of this was a date. Fortunately she turned business-like almost immediately. "Now, I'm sure you have something for me to sign?"

"Sure do, Ma'am." He produced a clipboard and pen. "Now if you could just read this here….and sign there . . . and there . . . and just once more. Much obliged."

"You're welcome. Is it alright for me to get my people back inside now? Time is money, as I'm sure you're aware."

"It's the same all over, Ma'am. Yes, you go right on ahead. Me and Andy there'll get out of your hair."

They both glanced over at Roy, who gave a kind of disgruntled nod. They'd agreed that Roy should stay in the background as much as possible. "Andy's a little shy." Rusty confided.

Ms. Weber giggled again, and walked outside and past a small crowd of people who seemed a little disappointed that the show was over.

"Be seeing you, Ma'am. You have any more problems, be sure to call us." Rusty called, his hand on the van door.

"I'll make sure to ask for you personally, Jimmy." she cooed back.

"You do that, Ma'am."

Less than an hour later they were in a different car, driving towards the state line. It was a little early to be celebrating, but so far things seemed to be going according to plan. Taking one hand from the wheel, he pulled uncomfortably at his turtle-neck. Too bad he couldn't plan for the weather.

Out of the corner of his eye, he could see Roy looking at him. He wondered if the guy had a problem, or if he was forgetting something.

"What?" he asked, not taking his eyes off the road. They hadn't passed another car in ten minutes, but there was no point in taking too many chances.

"Where the fuck's the list?" Well, that didn't sound very friendly.

"It's in the toolbox on the back seat."

"You fucking liar. I saw you put it in your overalls." He wasn't sure whether Roy sounded more worried or angry.

"Yeah, and then I put it in the toolbox when we got out the van." Need to stay patient. Need to stay calm.

"You planning on fucking me over?"

Sure, that's what was going on here. "No," he said, slowly. "It's in the back seat. Why don't you check for yourself."

"Yeah, you'd like that wouldn't you." Roy sneered.

Give him strength . . . "If it meant we could drive to Phoenix in peace, then yeah, I would."

He could feel Roy glaring at him doubtfully for a couple of moments, then the man clambered into the back seat. Not what he'd want to be doing in a speeding car. He dropped the speed down to forty. He could be a nice guy, sometimes.

"Did you find it?" he asked, after a moment of listening to Roy breathing hard.

"Yeah, I did." There was a slight pause. Rusty found himself wondering how Roy would react to the suggestion that they stop at the next diner they passed. Then suddenly, "I'm sorry, Rusty."

He was about to say something along the lines of "Forget about it," when he heard the gunshot. He felt it a split second later. As everything went dark amid a screech of brakes and Roy's screams, (and what did he think was going to happen when he shot the driver?) he finally realized exactly what it was he had failed to plan for.

Thank you for reading this far. I really need opinions about this - how did it work for you? Let me know, and I will listen.