Murdock shook his head at B.A. as the four quickly walked across the parking lot to the van. "Here we are with the MPs biting our tail, and you make us pull over at a supermarket. You call me crazy!"
"Shut up fool, you are crazy!" B.A. said as he set the crate down near the back of the van. "I need my milk. It's good for the bones! At least I bought somethin' sensible," he added, turning to Face and Hannibal. "This fool bought a bag full o' coconuts!"
"Maybe he's planning luau," Face mused.
"Planning a- ..? Man, you people are so short-sighted!" Murdock said, shocked. "Coconuts could save your life! Haven't you ever seen Gilligan's Island? The Professor found a million things to do with coconuts!"
"Think of what MacGyver could do," Hannibal added.
"If you suckas don't cut out all this crazy TV talk, I'm-a knock you out over the airwaves for real! ... Hey, which one of you fools left the trunk unlocked?"
"I locked it myself B.A.", Hannibal said suspiciously.
B.A. opened the door and looked inside to see a crouched man in his mid-forties, dressed in a suit and tie, clutching a briefcase. "It's a stow-away!" B.A. grunted angrily.
"Wait, let me explain!" the man pleaded.
"You lookin' for a free ride, Jack?" B.A. shouted as pulled the man out of the car with one arm and prepared to throw him. "Lemme give you a lift!"
"Hold it B.A.," Hannibal interjected curiously. "What's this all about?"
"I'm sorry, I didn't know how else to get in touch with you. I want to hire the A-Team."
They heard sirens in the distance. It could only be Decker.
"Jump in the van," Hannibal said, "And we'll talk business. But if we don't like what you have to say, you'll be flying the B.A. Express."
"Fist class, sucka," B.A. said as he jumped into the driver's side. Within a heartbeat the red tires were squealing away.
It took a few minutes and some sharp turns to lose the MPs, but they soon escaped to safety on a secluded highway.
"I wanted to wait for you outside," said the man, who'd introduced himself as Claude Harvey, "but I didn't want to be seen. I've been on the run from the law."
"You're preaching to the choir," Hannibal mused, as he lit a cigar. "The question is, what did you do?"
"Nothing. I was framed. You see, until two days ago, I was the Executive Vice President of the Second National Bank of Los Angeles."
"What happened to the first one?" Murdock asked.
"It's just a name," Harvey said.
"If it's national," Murdock went on, "Why 'Los Angeles'?"
"Shut up, fool!" B.A. shouted into the rear view. "It's just a name!"
"Murdock's a mental patient," Hannibal said in answer to Harvey's strange look. "Now what happened two days ago that sent you on the lamb?"
"Two days ago, the Bank Manager arrived in the morning to find that the main vault had been emptied. The only people who had access to it were the President, the Manager and myself. They both had alibis, so I knew the blame could only fall to me."
"So you ran," Hannibal said.
"Bad idea," Face said. "To the police, that's like an admission of guilt."
"Frankly," Hannibal added, "Sounds like you don't need a hired gun, but a good lawyer."
"A lawyer can't help me. I've been set up, and someone is out to bury the evidence."
"Who would want to set you up?"
"The bank President. You see, the bank's been in trouble for months. But the President's been cooking the books. I didn't realize it at first, but I started to notice discrepancies. I finally confronted him, and told him if he didn't turn himself in, I would. I wasn't going to be a part of a scandal."
"But I thought you said he had an alibi?"
"Yes, but it was all planned. He was out of town the day the robbery happened. But he hired someone to rob the safe, and gave the thief the combination."
"How do you know?"
"Because I was secretly taping his phone conversations."
"And where are these tapes now?"
"They're locked away in my safe, in my office. The President doesn't know they're there. The problem is, if I go anywhere near that building, I'll be arrested. That's why I need you guys. If I can get that tape, it could clear me."
"You should know Mr. Harvey, we don't work cheap."
"I cleared out my bank accounts," Harvey said, opening his briefcase to reveal stacks of cash. "There's almost $200,000 here. And I'm willing to pay you in advance."
Hannibal leaned back contemplately for a moment, then turned to B.A. "Stop the van, B.A. Mr. Harvey, if you don't mind stepping out for a moment, my associates and I need to consult."
The van stopped at the dusty roadside. Harvey stepped out and Hannibal closed the door behind him.
"Well guys, what do you think?"
"I don't trust this dude Hannibal," B.A. said. "These white collar guys are shifty."
"He's got a point," Face said. "This guy says he was framed, but how do we know this guy's not so just trying to destroy evidence, to cover his own tracks?"
"Yeah," Murdock said, "He could be another Bernie Madoff, trying to make off with the money, and make fools outta us."
"But let's consider," Hannibal said, "all he's asking us to do is break into a safe in some office building? It's a piece of cake. Besides, I know some other people who were falsely accused, and could have used someone to help clear their name, or even believe them."
Outside, a few moments later, the door to the van slid open, and Hannibal stepped out.
"Congratulations Mr. Harvey. You've just hired the A-Team."
The parking lot of the Second National's corporate building was virtually empty when the van came to a stop.
Dressed in blue uniforms with logos that read "Aquapurity", the four jumped out and walked around to the back of the van, opened the door, and started to lift out large water cooler bottles.
"Where'd you scam these from?" B.A. asked Face.
"Oh this is completely legit. Just a little operation I run on the side. You see, I ship this mountain spring water from back East, then export it worldwide."
"I seen the shipping labels. Ain't no mountain springs in De-troit."
"Do you think anybody in Sweden knows that?"
They walked through the front entrance of the building. The mustachoed security guard got up from behind the desk.
"What's going on here?" he said, gripping his belt. "Nobody makes deliveries this time of night."
"We do," B.A. said. "Somebody ordered this water, and somebody better drink it."
"I'm afraid I'm gonna have to ask you gentlemen to exit the premises."
Hannibal laughed. "You can ask ..."
"You asked for it," the guard said, and aimed a taser at Hannibal.
Hannibal shielded himself with a water bottle just as the guard fired the weapon, which sent two wired darts into the water bottle. The water immediately sprayed all over the guard, conducting the electricity. The guard's hair stood straight up, and he convulsed as his skeleton became momentarily visible, then fell to the ground twitching.
Hannibal shook his head. "It's hard to find good help these days."
They took the elevator to the top floor, where Harvey's office suite was. There was a glass door and glass walls. To their surprise, however, the suite had it's own alarm system. In order to enter into the offices, they would have to enter a code on an alarm pad.
"This alarm's probably wired into the phone line. Somebody's going to have to go to the roof and cut it."
"I volunteer, Colonel," Murdock said. "I just love seeing the city skyline at night. It makes me weepy-eyed."
"You've touched my heart," Hannibal said, handing Murdock a wire cutter. "The job is yours."
"You better not mess up, man," B.A. snapped. "Or I'm-a press you flat."
"All clear," Murdock said into the radio a few minutes later, speaking loudly over the cool night wind, shortly after snapping the thick telephone wire.
Face used a glass cutter to cut a hole in the door, by which he meant to put his hand through and unlock it from the inside. After he had cut a circle, he placed a suction device. Pulling gently back, all the glass in the door shattered, except for the disc Face held in his hand. Face turned and smiled at them nervously. "Oops."
"Real smooth, Face" Hannibal mused.
"I coulda done that," B.A. added.
They walked into the office suite and quickly found the safe.
Face procured a listening device. "Let's hope I have better luck cracking the safe."
"Forget it Faceman," B.A. said as reached into a small box he carried with him and withdrew a small quantity of plastique and a detonator. "Let me show you how I crack a safe."
B.A. planted the explosive and the three took cover. After the smoke cleared from the explosion, they could see the door neatly blown open, and the contents inside unharmed.
"Nice, B.A.", Hannibal said.
Hannibal lifted a ledger out of the safe and handed it to Face, then turned back to look for the tape.
"He's been cooking the books all right," Face said, as he pored over the ledger.
"Yeah, but where's the tape?" Hannibal said. "Except for that book, this safe is empty."
"I got a bad feeling about this," B.A.
"Colonel," Murdock's voice squawked over the radio.
"What is it Murdock."
"I hate to be a wet blanket", Murdock said, peering over the ledge at the parking lot below, "but we got company. Looks like Decker."
"Decker?" Hannibal, Face and B.A. said in unision.
"How did Decker know we were here?" Hannibal said.
"Let's just say a little bird told me," said Decker's gruff, voice as he entered the office, gun drawn, flanked by Captain Crane and another MP on either side. "Harvey tipped us off that you were the thieves responsible for the bank robbery. And now we catch you here, trying to bury the evidence that would clear him, so he can take the rap? I didn't think you could sink this low."
"We didn't rob no bank!," B.A. shouted, "We was tryin' to help the dude!"
"Sure. You didn't rob that bank in Hanoi either. Well, this time we caught you red-handed."
"You got nothin' on us Decker" Hannibal said.
"Oh really? Captain, show the Colonel what we found in the back of the van." Crane set on the desk the briefcase Harvey had given them which had contained the money, except that now it was empty, save a slip of paper. "Want to tell me why you've got the bank's combination written on a slip of paper in your briefcase?"
"Harvey tricked us," Hannibal said. "He planted that evidence there to frame us."
"And took off with our money," Face said. "I don't suppose there's an I.O.U. in there?"
"I knew it!" B.A. shouted. "All these rich people are crooks!"
"Save it for the Court Marshall," Decker said. "Take 'em away."
"Just our luck," Hannibal said, sitting between Face and B.A. in the back of the MP car. "Framed again. Well, at least we've still got our ace in the hole."
"If you talkin' about Murdock, you as crazy as he is."
Face sighed. "I just wonder if Harvey can live with his own guilty conscience ..."
"A little lower sweetheart," Harvey said to the masseuse at the Hawaiian luxury resort as ukele music played in the background.
"Say, boss," said Harvey's hired thug, who was also getting a massage on the adjacent table, "What if these guys bust out? They've done it before. They're gonna come lookin' for you."
"Those idiots couldn't find water if they fell out of a boat ..."
"I hope you got a plan," B.A. said to Hannibal as he pulled the lever on a machine in the prison workshop. "If I have to make another license plate, I'm-a put my initials on your brain."
"I do, B.A. But The first thing I need to do is to get myself thrown into solitary. I'll explain later. For now, well ..." He drew his fist back, as if to throw a punch. "This is going to hurt me more than it hurts you."
"I doubt it, man."
Hannibal threw his hardest punch across B.A.'s face. B.A. turned his head slightly at the impact, but was otherwise unaffected.
"I'm sorry, Hannibal. I've got no choice but to pity you." B.A. quickly lifted Hannibal over his head and threw him across the room. Hannibal landed on a table full of ceramics, shattering them as the table collapsed to the ground.
"That ashtray was for my mother!" said a bald, muscular goateed inmate as he pulled Hannibal to his feet. The inmate drew his fist to strike. Hannibal dodged the punch, so that it instead fell to the prisoner standing behind him. Within a few moments, a massive brawl erupted in the workshop.
When the smoke cleared, Hannibal found himself being tossed by two guards into a solitary confinement cell. The door closed behind, engulfing him in complete darkness. Only his eyes could be seen darting around the room. They closed for a moment as the orange tip of a cigar was lit. "I love it when a plan comes together ..."
Hannibal re-emerged a few days later, bearded, gaunt and pale. The guard opened the door to the cell he shared with Face and B.A., and closed the door behind him.
They waited until the guard was out of earshot to speak.
"You all right?" B.A. asked.
"Compared to the POW camp, it was a picnic. More importantly, in all the commotion I was able to pocket a file and a strip of metal from the workshop, and had plenty of time to myself to work on this." He handed Face a crudely fashioned knife.
"Very nice," Face said.
"Hannibal, you tryin' to shank somebody?" B.A. asked worriedly. "Man, they'll send you up for life!"
"Relax, B.A. I just needed the knife so Face can trade it to some goon in Cell Block 5 for a carton of cigarettes. B.A., did you get that license plate made?"
"Yeah, I made it," B.A. sighed.
"Good. Don't get too comfortable in the ball and chain, guys," Hannibal sad, lighting a cigar. "We're makin' a break ..."
It was a busy morning at the DMV, and Murdock waited a long time before his ticket was finally called.
"I'm here to pick up my new license plate," Murdock said to the woman at the counter.
"Sign here please," she said, handing him a clipboard, and a few moments later, she handed him a package wrapped in brown paper.
As Murdock walked out to the parking lot, he ripped open the package to see the blue and yellow plate. He flipped it over to see a hastily scribbled sticky note that read, "Wednesday, 12:15 AM, South Tower".
The following Tuesday night started out like any other, until Hannibal called out to the guard who was walking past.
"What is it, Smith?"
"That's Colonel to you. But you seem like a nice guy, so I thought I'd offer you some free advice."
"Oh yeah?" the guard said, laughing. "What's that?"
Hannibal slipped his hand through the bars, grabbed the guard's tie, and yanked it back as hard as he could, so that the guard's head was slammed against the bars, knocking him unconscious.
"Wear a clip-on," Hannibal said, grabbing the guard's keys as he fell to the ground.
A few minutes later, another guard walked past the cell, to make sure the lights were out. He looked inside to see a man in a prisoner's uniform, although the face was shrouded in darkness.
"Hey, where are your cellmates?" the guard asked, but the prisoner didn't respond. The guard opened the cell and switched on the light to see that the man in the prison garb was actually his fellow guard, bound and gagged.
Down on the lower level, Hannibal, wearing the guard's uniform, had been pretending to escort Face and B.A. They had almost made it to the entrance gate to their cell block when the alarm sounded.
"Party's over guys," Hannibal said, as he rushed to the gate and opened it with the guard's keys. They ran through and slammed the gate on the guards where were giving chase on the other side. It bought them just enough time to make it out to the yard.
As soon as they did, however, the light from the guard tower shined on them. "Freeze!" a voice said over the loudspeaker.
Hannibal then pulled out a handmade weapon which consisted of a bunch of cigarettes tied around a metal piple. When he lit a fuse, the cigarettes ignited and began rotating around the pipe, firing off rounds like a minigun. It was crude, but it was enough to make the guard abandon his position just in time for a helicopter to pass over the wall into the yard.
"Right on time, Captain!" Hannibal shouted.
"I ain't flyin'!" B.A. said, as he turned and ran back toward the prison. Before he could make it, however, a coconut fell from the sky onto his head, knocking him out.
"Direct hit!" Murdock exclaimed.
Face and Hannibal dragged B.A. to the helicopter and managed to lift him aboard just as the guards were arriving. By the time they started firing, the helicopter was already flying away to safety.
"Aloha, big guy," Murdock said over the roar of the blades as he put a lei over B.A.'s sleeping neck. "Sorry Colonel ... They don't make 'em in gold ..."
Harvey sat on a lounger in the cabana, sipping a fruity drink out of a coconut shell with an umbrella toothpick as he stared out over the blue ocean.
There was a knock at the door. The masseuse must be early, he thought. "Come back in an hour sweetheart," he said. "I'm feeling a bit fagged ..."
Suddenly there was a roaring sound, and a chainsaw cut through the door. B.A. kicked the door to pieces and stepped through, Hannibal, Face and Murdock close behind.
"You set us up, fool!" B.A. said. "Now you gonna pay!"
"Yeah!" Murdock said. "You got a lot of nerve knocking B.A. out and putting him on a plane!" he added, winking at Face and Hannibal.
Four thugs entered the cabana from the oceanside. "Is there are problem here, boss?" said the largest one, carrying a bat, as he stepped between B.A. and Harvey. "Who are these guys?"
"We the guys that's gonna put him in the hospital!"
"Only way you're getting to him is to walk over me."
"Walkin' ain't what I what I had in mind," B.A. said. The thug swung the bat at B.A. B.A. dodged the swing, then punched the thug in stomach, lifted him and threw him through a glass window. His current whereabouts are unknown.
Another thug took a swing at Hannibal with his left hand. Hannibal stopped the punch with his right hand, punched the man in the stomach with his left hand, and finished him off with a right hook.
A third thug tried a right-handed a swing at murdock, but the wiry captain dodged it and got behind the thug. When thug turned to face murdock, he was met with murdock's right-handed punch to the stomach. When the man hunched over, Murdock finished him off with a knee to the face.
The last thug, almost as large as the first, inched his way toward Face like a hungry bear. Face knew there was no talking his way out of this one as he stepped backward, but he unwitting stepped onto the raised end of a fragment of broken door. At the other lowered end of board was Harvey's dropped coconut drink. When Face stepped on the board, it fired off the coconut like a catapult into the thug's face. The thug lost his balance and fell backward out of a window just behind him. Face smiled and adjusted his tie.
"Wait a minute," Hannibal said, "Where's Harvey?"
Hannibal ran to the front door just in time to see Harvey throw a large sack with a dollar sign on it into the passenger side of a red Ferrari, then jump behind the wheel and speed away.
"B.A., you and Face get in the car and follow him. Murdock and I'll take the chopper."
The car and helicopter were already away by the time the thugs regrouped. They jumped into two pickup trucks to give chase.
"I can't keep up with him," B.A. said a few minutes later as he buried the pedal on the rented Jeep in order try and to keep up with the Ferrari, but it was quickly becoming an exercise in futility. "That car's too fast!"
"Looks like we've got another problem," Face said, as he looked in the rearview to see the two pickups approaching. Each of the trucks had a man in the back with a machine gun, and they opened fire simultaneously. Face grabbed a machine gun and returned fire, but quickly ducked back into his seat.
"It's no use," B.A. said, "we outnumbered."
At that moment the helicopter appeared, piloted by Murdock. Hannibal looked out through the open side door. He steadied himself with one hand, and with the other held a grenade which he unpinned with his mouth. He threw the grenade onto the road just a few feet in front of one of the trucks. The explosion caused the truck to swerve onto two wheels, then flip over.
"That ought to even the score," Hannibal said.
"Sorry I ran out of coconuts," Murdock said.
"It's okay Murdock, sometimes you just have to improvise."
Face raised his M-16 to the remaining truck, but this time aimed at the tires, and soon brought the second truck to a stop as well.
Face then noticed something up ahead. "Stop the car, B.A.!"
"What? If we stop now, we'll never catch him."
"He's not going anywhere," Face said, pointing a sign that said "Bridge Closed Ahead".
"He musta missed the sign," B.A. said. "There goes our money."
"Oh yeah? Tell that to Hannibal."
The helicopter lowered closer to the road in pursuit of the Ferrari.
B.A. shook his head. "He's on the jazz."
Murdock brought the helicopter as close as he could, and Hannibal stepped out on to the lander.
When he was close enough, he jumped into the car.
Hannibal pulled a pistol on Harvey.
"Pull it over Harvey!"
Hannibal punched him across the face, knocking him out, then grabbed the wheel, but he quickly realized it was too late to try and stop the car. Hannibal grabbed the bag of money and stepped back onto the helicopter lander just before the Ferrari went through a barricade, over a cliff into a tropical abyss.
"Well Murdock," Hannibal said as he took his seat in the chopper, and lit a cigar. "It's like they say ... you can't take it with you."
"There you are!" Face said to Hannibal, as he found him standing along the crowded dock. "What's all this about a charter boat, when we've got a perfectly good chopper to use?"
"Relax," Hannibal said. "That's just what we told B.A. to get him to meet us here. We'll be on the chopper on no time .."
"Murdock leaned over a wooden balcony, peering down onto the dock where Face and Hannibal stood. He held a coconut in hand, ready to make another strike.
"What you doin' with that coconut, sucka?" B.A. said from behind Murdock.
"B.A.! What, um ... What are you doin' here?"
"You crazier that I thought, thinkin' I'd fall for that trick twice!"
"No B.A., I was just ... checking out the beautiful ocean view!"
"How about I give you a closer look!" B.A. said.
Hannibal and Face looked up to see Murdock fly over their head past the dock and into the water.
"Then again," Face said, "A nice ocean cruise might be relaxing ..."
"Aloha, sucka!" B.A. shouted at Murdock, laughing.