Sixty Five

We might be an armada, except on wheels, not the ocean. I booked us into Hampton Inn, eight suites for a little elbow room. There are seventeen girls, Danika and Su stay at the house. They know what we’re doing and why, but this business isn’t for them.
While most of our militia unloads and preps, Dasha, Eloise and I take one of the older, less noticeable Tahoes to Hicks Machine.
It’s in an industrial park, fairly new, upscale body shop, warehouse space, delivery service. Some in a strip mall setup, other standalones, like Hicks. They make specialty fittings, bolts, screws, anything metal that isn’t on a shelf at the hardware store. Looks like decent size operation, the place must be five thousand square feet.
There are roll down doors for trucks, a single glass door entrance to the lobby and offices. I spot two cameras on the roof, but one is pointed down the side where there is another door, the other covers the front entrance. I can’t tell if it catches the truck, I pull away to a strip of shops down the block.
Dasha, “We need to get tracker on truck.”
“There are security cameras, one covers the front and might show the truck. Considering his hobby, he’s paranoid enough to keep an eye on the video screen. It’s almost noon, maybe he goes out to lunch.”
I move the Tahoe a couple of times, Eloise has a drone but we decide to just wait and watch. We’re rewarded twenty minutes later when Hicks comes out, fires up his Ford and pulls away.
“Funny, he doesn’t have American flag decals, or bumper sticker about liberty, guns or freedom. Isn’t that stuff in the militia requirements manual?”
Eloise, “Maybe he has the sense to keep a low profile. All that junk would make him a target.”
“Excellent point.”
He takes the 202 to San Tan Village, pulls up to a Red Robin, the gourmet burger chain. You know it’s gourmet because the burgers are ten bucks and up.
Dasha, “We can try burghur Dahfoney, he doesn’t anyway know us.”
“Caps and sunglasses then.”
Janah’s been following in my head like Daria in Dasha’s, “We’re out to lunch ourselves, place called Firebird’s, seems popular and the menu looks good.”
“Hicks has met up with two more guys, fit Cassie’s physical descriptions. One mid forties and chunky, the other in his twenties, scrawny beard, beat to hell ball cap. He has a sewn on name tag, Trey, well, well, Cassie’s all over it. Hicks is the fittest, looks fifty but brawny, carries himself like the crew boss.”
“We need to follow then, or at least track them when they leave. I’m sending Nikko and Zi over to you. Did you get a tracker on Hicks’ truck?”
“Yes, on the way in. The others were here, don’t know the cars. When they leave, we won’t need to follow Hicks, I can take one, Nikko the other.”
“Order them something to eat so you don’t have to leave halfway through.”

There will be five, but the burgers are big, we order three, standard, bleu cheese and one with spicy mayo and jalapenos, Nikko likes hot. Large order of boneless chicken wings with BBQ sauce will do it. We cut the burgers in half and share around, eat a few wings.
Nikko, “Burgers are quite good, we’ve passed the one in Prescott, it’s by Trader Joe’s.”
Dasha, “We can haf lunch there when we go to town for grocery Dahfoney.”
“Yes, don’t know why we never gave it a go before. Our pals don’t seem to be in any hurry. At least we don’t have to scarf lunch. Are you getting enough?”
Zi, “Plenty.”
The rest agree, we don’t need to be stuffed anyway, we might be facing a long afternoon.
Nikko, “We do need to be outside when the targets leave.”
I pay the tab, we do a restroom stop, then to the cars. Ten minutes later Hicks, Trey and whoever, exit. They stand around a couple of minutes jawboning, mostly Hicks, the other two nod agreement. I take it Hicks requires a lot of agreement. He finally releases his toadies, Trey walks to a hideous mint green tow truck with Walker’s Towing painted on the door. Whoever is in a van, hmmm, Cassie saw a van.
Nikko taps in, “We’ll take van.”
 “Goody, always wanted to meet an authentic tow truck operator. I wonder if he’s the engines and oil Oceane’s slivers of wood told her about?”
“Janah’s collected some strange people.”
“Cassie told Sloane she collected us.”

Nikko’s mind is on the hunt, we pull off to Williams Field Road, Nikko’s headed to the 202.
Trey drives to Val Vista, takes a right and winds up at a small apartment complex. He backs the truck alongside the far edge, comes around the corner and upstairs to an apartment on the second floor, number 12.
There are apartments on both sides of the building, I drive down the side away from Trey’s place to the end.
“Okay Dasha, track that truck, no, wait. He must be on call, that’s why he doesn’t go to a workplace. He’s got a personal car or truck, he isn’t going to use the tow truck to drive to crucifixions. Most girls don’t want the date to arrive in a tow truck.”
Dasha, “Trey ees marry, he haf ring.”
“Good catch, didn’t notice. Maybe the wife has the car. There’s covered parking, how are they numbered?”
Eloise, “The numbers on the canopy don’t correspond to apartments, and there is open parking as well. Trey may have two cars, most couples do. But apartments only provide one covered space per, which means Trey’s car might be the one covered or might be in an open space.”
“If his wife works and takes one car, it would be dumb for them to have Trey’s car in the blistering desert sun all day. He’s going to be in the covered spot, but we still don’t know which one that is.”
Dasha,  “Then we park someplace and see if he goes to his car.”
She’s right, nothing else to do, this is the part of surveillance where it pays to have androids to play around with while nothing happens.
Or, if you can mental, you check in, “Anything Nikko?”
“Whoever is Charles Lawson. Guess what he does for a living?”
“There’s not much market for crosses, so I think he’s in the gun biz.”
“Congratulations, we have a winner. Lawson Firearms.”
“And a big sign that says Guns.”
“You’re going to the bonus round, how’d you know?”
“They all have a big sign that says Guns, besides, I can see through your eyes.”

Janah, “Lunch was lovely, how’s Red Robin?”
“We can go to the one in Prescott, we enjoyed it well enough to stop in for lunch when we’re in town.”
“We need to make the rounds in Prescott and the valley, there must be decent places for a dinner out. Anyway, I partially followed, Nikko’s found Lawson and tracked his van. You’re waiting to figure out which car is Trey’s.”
“That’s all of it. Nikko and Zi are sticking with the gun shop, maybe somebody interesting visits. We’ll stick until Trey does something or his wife gets home.”
“Let me shorten the process, back to you in a bit.”

Fifteen minutes later, “Trey is Trey Tolliver, his license plate is DVP3035, tag it and come to the hotel.”
I pull to the car, it’s in a covered spot, my passenger side to the back of his car, Dasha gets out and clicks on the tracker, I pull away while Eloise verifies it’s working.
“Good to go.”
We have suites, but nothing big enough to stuff seventeen girls in and we can hardy park around the Hampton lobby. The next best alternative is technology, we  collect four or five to a room and have a Skype call.
There are no names mentioned, nothing about Muslims, crucifixions or militias. The discussion revolves around assignments. Who tracks who with a drone, when do we deploy to physically confront, we’re still missing Dog Man and two Home Depots.
Daria, “There are three stores in Chandler, places to start. The problem is obvious, they may not work in a Chandler store, they may get bounced from store to store and we have no idea of shifts. There are eleven Home Depots in the Mesa, Tempe, Gilbert, Chandler area alone. There are also several guard dog services. You can buy a dog already trained, or there are trainers who will train your dog and services that rent dogs to protect businesses. Most of them seem to use German Shepherds. Rottweilers might be his personal preference.”
“Good work Daria. I think the only sensible solution is to get this done quickly. We snatch the three we know about, they’ll give up the other names with a little pharmaceutical coercion, we round up the rest, extract confessions and give them to the FBI. Nikko, take Zi, Katya and Janah. Amaya, take Daria, Katja and Chloe. I’ll go with Dasha, Sarah and Mani. That gives us girls who can communicate mind to mind in each group and someone who has pharmaceutical experience. Oceane and Eloise operate drones, we have to find a place to launch, this hotel is no good. Sloane and Ellen are guard duty for our drone operators and Cassie. Ellen, if there are any difficulties, any danger to Oceane or Cass…”
Ellen, “No sweat, those people gonna to be dead long before they get close. Sloane has a wolf nose and a bite that can crush rocks. I got a Glock, a Mini 14 and a buncha magazines for both.”
“Find a hotel with balcony rooms, probably going to be upscale. We’ll get you food and drinks, no room service. Once you’re checked in, one of us will make a delivery. You need something else, reach out on the sat phone, don’t use the phone in the room for anything.”
Janah, “We stayed at the Royal Palms in Scottsdale, they have villas. Eloise, book one, if you can get it the Alvadora Villa has two bedrooms and baths, big sitting room, private patio. Wait, no, The Presidential, it has a kitchen.”
Eloise, “Presidential is available for three nights.”
“Take it, one of the shell corp cards.”
That done, they pack up and take one of the Mercedes SUVs to the Royal Palms. Need to arrive in style, not in a ten year old Tahoe with dings and faded paint. Dasha and I take said Tahoe and make a grocery run, by the time we get to the hotel, Sloane and crew are ensconced in the villa.
“Nice digs. Sorry, no SPA treatments, the food is great, just don’t order any. Skip housekeeping, keep the DND on the door, unplug the phones. There’s a ton of bottled water, Coke Zero, tea and coffee you can make in the room. You have breakfast food, milk, half and half, Splenda, cold cuts and bread for lunch, snacks, chips, pizza and frozen entrees for three days. Anything we overlooked, short grocery or drug store run only, Sloane goes, Ellen here with Oceane and Cass.”
Ellen, “Go Daph, snatch the assholes, get ‘em to talk, we’re locked and loaded here. Drones will keep us busy, we have your back from the sky so to speak.”
“Eloise, all the drones are coordinated to the phones?”
She cocks her head and blinks at me.
“Duh, okay, I needed to ask, time to go hunting.”

Sixty Six

Nikko’s group takes Hicks, we think he’s the lead dog and Janah’s in that group. She has the most interrogation experience.
Amaya’s group takes Lawson, the gun dealer. He’s concealed carry all day every, Katya’s lethal experience may be necessary.
We take Trey Tolliver, he’s the lightweight but he may also be the one easiest to crack.
Sarah, “Trey’s on the move,” she’s got the tracker on her phone, “he’s just leaving the apartment.”
We connect up with him past Mesa towards Tempe, he keeps traveling west. Phoenix Metro is huge, it takes a while to get to nothing, but eventually he does. His car is a smaller SUV, “What is that?”
Sarah, “A Chevrolet, I think they call it Equinox. Looks to be a few years old.”
I back off a half mile, it’s getting barren out here and I have no idea if he’s the type to pay attention or is blasting metal on his radio.
“Geez, where’s he going? There’s zero here.”
Then there’s a lone concrete block building with a half dozen trucks out front. It isn’t marked, no sign, no flag draped over the door, no militia tough guy crap. Maybe he plays in a secret bingo league.
We’re off road, behind a stack of boulders, I can see the entrance through binoculars. More men arrive, it isn’t bingo unless they fill the cards with holes, everyone has a pistol on his hip, many have ARs slung over their shoulder.
Gun people are adamant that the AR-15 is not an assault rifle since it isn’t fully automatic. That argument seems a bit too precious given the size of magazines available. You can pull a trigger fairly quickly and they carry thirty rounds, sounds like assault to me.
Dasha holds her tablet out to me, “Drone ees arrive.”
The drone can’t fly as fast as we can drive, it’s been catching up.
Dasha, “Do we take over control of drone?’
“No, we have a joint full of armed whatevers down the road, don’t need to be distracted flying a drone, keep it with whoever is flying it now.”
She’s on the sat phone, “Da, nyet, let Oceane keep control, we haf to monitor crazy militia peersons wiz guns. Da, all armed, many wiz peestol and rifle. And tell her to keep drone at a distance, use the zoom. Eef they spot, they can shoot it down. What ees armed wiz?”
“Okay,” she clicks off, “tranquilizer dart.”
“That’s fine, we don’t want to kill anyone at this point.”
Sarah, “If things go well, maybe I can kill someone at some point.”
Now there are maybe twenty cars, pickup trucks and SUVs mostly.
“They must not have read the militia manual, there are big guys and small guys, where are the fat guys?”
Mani, “On TV, the patriot crowd leans to not lean, more to fat, belly over the belt buckle fat. This crew has different rules.”
“They have the ball cap part down, got part of it right anyway. I suspect they actually train, like crawl around the hills, hike, camp, do stuff that fat boys don’t. That might turn into a problem for us.”
Nikko tunes in, “We’re headed to where you are now, so’s Amaya. Looks like we fell into the entire brigade.”
I have Nikko in my head, Eloise on the phone, “Tell Oceane to scan the cars.”
“Nikko, what’s Lawson drive?”
“F-150, red, oversize tires, the giveaway is a small sign painted on the door, guess what?”
“I see it, Lawson Firearms.”
“Amaya, Hicks just pulled in, it’s his Super Duty.
“We’re hanging back, you realize there will be two more drones there in a minute, do you want one or two of them to return to the hotel?”
“No, they’ve flown a long way, I’ll talk to Eloise.

“Eloise, how much juice is left on the drones?”
“You’re out almost thirty miles, they can make it back with a bit to spare, but if you use them more than fifteen minutes, you’ll have to collect them there.”
“Land two, you have Nikko and Amaya locked in?
“Yes, I’ll drop mine by Nikko, Sloane will drop hers by Amaya.”
“Good, they won’t use much power just sitting. The militia, or whatever it is, has shut the door.  There’s no guard outside, but the place is covered on all sides by cameras. They didn’t think of drones. See if Oceane can locate a spot to drop a mike. I’m plugging in a listening device here, let’s see what the party is about.”
Oceane finds a spot at the back of the building, an air vent blowing out. It’s easy to hear, they’re using a mike inside. I have to turn down the volume coming through my headphones.
“Welcome brother warriors of the Christian Infidel Militia!”
Lots of wahoo, whistling and shouts.
“Tonight we honor the first of our heroic patriots, you all know them, the first six to waste two terrorists right here in Phoenix.”
More hoo-hah, clapping, a chant of CIM! CIM! CIM!
“What’s a good Muslim?”
The crowd bellows, “A DEAD Muslim.”
“Men, we know the truth our fucked up President is hiding. He’s a fucking Muslim himself, and all the illegals he calls refugees are really terrorists creeping into our America our neighborhoods, our families. When they have enough of ‘em parked here, they rise up and go for the takeover. You want America to be an caliphate?”
“Fuck no!”
“You want your wives and kids to dress up in bags, your daughters to be given to raghead fuckers to do whatever perverted shit they want?”
“Fuck no!”
“And who’s gonna keep that shit from happening?”
“We are, CIM! CIM! CIM!”
Mani, “Wow, talk about drink the kool aid.”
“Do tell.”
The Voice, “Tonight, we draw six more names. Everyone in the CIM will get his chance to snatch and crucify the fuck out of a couple of good Muslims… because the only GOOD Muslim…”
“Is a DEAD Muslim!”
“We did our first work here at home. The next will be in California, the Los Angeles area. That’ll confuse the fuckin’ Federal Bureau of Idiots.”
“When the names are drawn, the Major will give you two names of good Muslims, then what happens?”
“DEAD Muslims!”
“Well, they’re dedicated at any rate, crazy but dedicated.”
Sarah, “More like obsessed, what do they think, all the Muslims in America will decide to move to Mecca?”
“I presume they think they are making the paranoid point that all Muslims are here to ultimately take over America. One would think that the biggest military in the world, not to mention three hundred millions guns in the hands of citizens, might make a Muslim takeover difficult.”
The show continues, “Arright men, our first six warriors led the way. Ever-one else line up and draw a number. One through six have been pulled, seven through twelve will go to LA, find their two good Muslims and…”
“Crucify them!”
“Cause the ONLY good Muslim is..”
“A DEAD Muslim!”

Sixty Seven

Nikko, “What a crowd of whacks. If they hadn’t already carried out two crucifixions nobody would believe it’s anything but macho bullshit.”
Janah, “Somebody is playing it smart. If all the members, and it looks to be about twenty, participate in killings, that eliminates the possibility of undercover agents.”
“I also imagine the members have been members long before the crucifixion thing came up. Maybe there were other tests, not murder, something to validate sincerity, like a tat.”

Janah, “We need to snatch our targets and find out what we can.”
Nikko, “What about LA?”
“What do you mean, how do we stop it? By interrogating our first three targets.”

Janah, “No, no good, you miss Nikko’s point. The way they do this is the only people who know who the victims are would be the guy who selected them and the six who do the snatch and crucify. Spreading victim’s names around multiplies the risk that somebody leaks them. We may have to send some of us to LA.”
“Ah, good catch Nishiko. Devious samurai mentality. Then we need to grab the fearless cheerleader, who isn’t fearless, he’s scared shiftless of Muslims.”

Janah, “Yep. You were tracking Trey, he’s a nothing and he’s done his bit in the crucifixion so he’s not going to be murdering another Muslim anytime soon. Take the leader if you can figure out who it is”
I call Eloise, “We need to know, and soon, who’s doing the talking, the Voice leading the parade. See if Oceane can find anything, a slot in a vent, there are few windows along the sides, kind of like prison windows, high up and narrow, but she might catch an angle. He’ll have a mike and probably be on a stage.”
“On it, hang tight.”
Danged if Eloise isn’t all over it. She and Sloane fly the other two drones, they shine a laser into the cameras on the building, effectively blinding them. Oceane’s searches windows. They find one that works on the left side, the cam zooms in.
There’s an almost caricature of zipped up, wrapped tight military type on stage still exhorting his zombies into a frenzy of hate. The numbers have been drawn and the next six are paraded to the front, fists in the air, hoo-hahing, can’t wait to get their victims nailed and raised.
“Daria, see if you can put a name to the face.”
A few minutes, then, “Colonel Barry Henderson, served two tours in Iraq, was at Ft. Hood when the army psychiatrist Hassan murdered thirteen and shot thirty others in 2009.”
“Ah, he translates that as, if an army shrink is a terrorist, then every Muslim is a terrorist in waiting. He might be delusional, but I can see where he’s coming from.”

Janah, “Snatch him however you need to, the interrogation rooms are ready. Nikko, we don’t need Hicks just yet, Daph, tell Amaya we don’t need Lawson. We know who and where they are, they’ve done their bit.”
“Amaya, we’re dropping Trey, Lawson and Hicks for now. I’m getting the commander in chief, take your drone, we aren’t flying them back, meet at the conference center.”

Amaya, “When you have a location, tap in and let me know.”
“Eloise, make sure we have video of the next six chosen ones, I’ll get plate numbers when they leave. We need to get trackers on their cars and figure out what vehicles they take to LA.”
Eloise, “When you get to the conference center, have someone bring the drones back here, we can charge them, we still have one fully charged. Once we have locations for the six, we’ll plant trackers from here while you work on the Colonel.”
What we call a conference center is our favorite chat spot, an isolated unused warehouse with the power on, running water, a bathroom, a small refrigerator, cots and blankets. Sometimes we’re there a while, days even. Mrs. Pearson called the Society’s Transportation section, a location is found, stocked with water, other drinks, a coffee pot, the little things that make coercion and intimidation flow more smoothly. If we need Minders or other Surveillance, we could call for those as well. In this case, we have seventeen comrades, plenty of Minders and Surveillance of our own.
As one would expect, the Colonel is the last one to leave. The crowd exits before he assigns the next six their targets. Now we know who they are and where because Oceane still has them on the drone mike and I’m still plugged into my listening device. We have time, first they have to get to LA, find a spot to plant crosses, figure out where to snatch the victims, then finish the mission.
Instructions are to leave day after tomorrow. That’s good, we have time to terrorize the Colonel, soon as I figure out where to grab him.
The only two left are the Major and the Colonel, they lock up and stand round jawboning next to one of the trucks.
“Dasha, take over the drone from Oceane, when they separate, drop the Colonel before he gets in, then the Major, we’ll take them both.”
Which is pretty much how it goes, except the Colonel gets in his truck before they’re done.
“If he closes the door, his window is up, then we have to get physical. Take them both now.”
Pop, zip, the Colonel slumps over. Major’s first reaction is to reach for his pistol, it doesn’t make it out of his holster, zip, pop, he crumbles to the dirt.
“Let’s get them wrapped.”
While Dasha, Sarah and I load up two bodies in the bed of the Colonel’s truck, Mani drives the Major’s around to the back of the building. It’s not visible from the road and could sit there a long time before anyone stumbles on it.
I find a tarp behind the seat, we cover the bodies and anchor the tarp by tucking it under the targets. Then we head for the conference center.
I drive the truck into the warehouse. Dasha follows in our Tahoe, the others wait outside. I go out to sort out assignments.
“Katya and Katja, take the drones and go to the villa, wait with Ellen and the rest.
Eloise may have gotten addresses by now, Daria will check with her and dig out the rest if she needs to. The rest of you stay here with us, keep an eye on the area. It’s dead as dust now, but cops or curious could roll through anytime. Be invisible. Chloe and Zi, you’re inside, maybe pick up something from the auras.”
We transfer the drones to one SUV, “Katya, make sure everyone gets rested, some of us may have to go to LA depending on what we get out of the targets.”
“Da, only no one there can mental anyone here.”
“Good catch, okay Dasha will go with you, Katja stays here. I can mental Dasha, you your sister.”
They take off, we go inside. Janah and Daria have the targets placed, separate chairs on either side of the vehicles facing a wall. The usual halogens to keep them blinded. Our crew knows to stay behind the targets and keep quiet. As far as the targets know, there is one inquisitor.
We leave the Major out of it, Zi monitors in case he starts to rejoin sentience. Janah starts in on the Colonel after she shoots him up with a mild dose of amphetamine.

Sixty Eight

Maybe a tad more than a mild dose, he comes to with a jerk of his head. She lets him orient as much as his restraints and the light allow.
“What’s the deal? You kidnapping a guy with no money, not smart.”
Amaya is the interrogator, in performance mode she sounds like Mel Gibson, “Funny, you had a few million in your brokerage account, and a half mil in pocket change in the bank. I assume there’s gold someplace. You bury it, or is it at the home safe, or safety deposit box?”
“Gold is for suckers, ammo is gold. What do you mean had?”
“I took it, all of it.”
“Uh huh, like I’m going for that shit.”
She sticks a tablet in front of him, he recognizes his account, it’s empty.
He sighs, “Been busted before, I’ll get it back. When I find you, I’ll get it back and punch your ticket for the annoyance.”
“Punch whose ticket genius? You have no clue who I am. But I’m not up for chat, here’s how this goes down. You start in with details of the Christian Infidel Militia, the beginning down to today’s meet. If you tell a good story, you get to live. If I have to start pulling it out of you, so be it.”
“Don’t know about any Christian…what’d you call it?”
Amaya nods, I play the video, he can’t see it, but he can hear it.
“An-duh, it’s on video, we have your hatchet face right on screen, along with Major Whatsis and the guys you planned to ship to LA. We also know who the six were that crucified the Muslims, their faces, their names, where they live.”
He’s quiet, playing hard to get.
“I can send this to the Federal Bureau of Idiots, then make a call and let them find you here, or, you can tell me what I want to know and I cut you loose.”
He thinks this over, “Why would you do that? This isn’t making sense. If you aren’t the FBI, who are you? You aren’t Muslims, I’d be dead by now. So what’s your game?”
“Call it curiosity.”
“Bullshit, the only other possibility is you’re inside, which one are you? I still got the same question, you didn’t rat us out, not yet anyway, you got the money. Why we do our thing you already know, fucking jihadists are coming to America by the boatload.”
“Far as I know, your soldiers are loyal, I’m not one of ‘em. Look, I’m not gonna dance all night. You feel the needle in your arm? I got pharmaceuticals here that can make you think you’re Jesus Christ, or wish you were dead. I’m not gonna cut off fingers and toes, I’m not gonna beat crap out of you, waterboarding just gets everything wet. What’s it gonna be?”
“Fuck you, drugs don’t faze me, had that shit tried on me before, in fucking Afghanistan. I’m still here.”
“Suit yourself.”
She inserts a new syringe into the Luer-Lok, goes for a blend of Trust and Truth first. If it takes hold, it’s simpler than jacking him up on hallucinogens and amphetamines for several hours. Our versions are made by David Li at the Shaolin temple. We have an entire lab there, primarily for the herbal remedies he makes from the plants he grows. Some from plants he grafted with other plants, and a touch of synthetic chemical compounds only produced in his lab. Consequently, the drugs we use are far more effective and have the additional benefit of being proprietary, nobody else can duplicate them even if they had a sample.
A half hour later, he’s spilling. A tale of his own horrific treatment in war, which morphed into severe paranoid PTSD. Everything Islamic fills him with a blend of paralyzing fear and rage. The Major came off better, not by much. When they left the military, they took a half dozen loyal soldiers along and started recruiting in Arizona. They picked it because of the gun culture and the population. Montana or Idaho are just as gun crazy, but the population is smaller and there are fewer immigrants to scare the citizens.
We know enough, Amaya puts him under and we confab.
Janah, “At least he’s got something like an excuse.”
Nikko, “His militia doesn’t.”
“No, but we can turn this conversation and the other video over to the FBI and let them deal. We have names of a dozen, video of the rest. They’re all complicit in the murders to one degree or another. Katya and her people can get back to their lives and we can go home in a day or so.”
“And we didn’t even have to maim or kill anyone. It’s late, take Katja to her sister, they can stay with the others at the villa tonight and catch a plane in the morning. I’ll stick here with Nikko and monitor these two, we’ll alternate cot time.”
Janah, “Amaya will get you in the morning, then I’ll call my contact. We can be on the road home by noon.”
Some plans actually go as planned, we’re home, I know because Oceane, Sloane and Cass are in the pool. Beautiful and safe, for now.
Danika, “What a horror story, both for the deranged Colonel and his victims.”
Janah comes in, “The Christian Infidel Militia is no more. According to my contact, most are stepping all over each other trying for deals. The FBI is trying to decide whether to hold them as terrorists or stick their faces in the press with details.”
Nikko, “That means the President is figuring out which way the politics plays. If he outs ‘patriots’ and risks the subsequent backlash, or plays the terror card and keeps them anonymous.”
Janah, “We aren’t giving him that option. I, as Mrs. Pearson, made it clear, either put them on page one, names, faces, and the entire story, or Anonymous would do it. The entire story including the Colonel and Major’s experiences as examples of what sending men to war accomplishes. The suicide rates of soldiers is through the roof , they aren’t killing themselves because they feel like heroes. We hold the cards, we have copies of the videos. They have twenty four hours or the biggest story of the decade goes viral without them.”
Nikko, “Good enough then, and all of us are also anonymous?”
“Nobody knows who Mrs. Pearson is, they don’t want to know. She’s the hub of a reliable anonymous information exchange. And what Daphne and I, as the Mrs. Pearsons, know about the inner workings of national and local agencies would collapse the government.”
Danika, “It’s that bad?”
“It’s worse.”

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