Breed Book 4, Part 33


“I still think we should rent a nicer car,” Rui said. “This van smell’s like Tso’s smelliest part.”

“His feet?” Sonya asked.

“I’m thinking butt,” Anita said, “and I’m now very invested in what he meant.”

“This is not the conversation I want to be happening right now,” Ben said, covering his head with a jacket.

“You don’t hear Mahmoud complaining,” Rox said.

He leaned in from the front passenger seat. “I’m going to be your go-to for a while, aren’t I?” Mahmoud asked, wincing.

“Sorry,” she said. “It’s kind of the elephant in the room. I’m trying not to notice the smell, but it’s a fucking elephant.”

“I think the smell might be Tso’s taint; at least I hope it is, otherwise something died in this car, and it’s really soaked the smell in.”

“Any progress?”

“So, given that there’s a pandemic still raging, I guess Drump’s schedule is kind of no duh,” Mahmoud said. “But he’s on lock down at the White House. I’ve got their emails, too, so it’s something he’s constantly griping about, but so far they’ve managed to keep him from trying to roam wild- though God knows how long that will keep. He’s essentially wild cattle- the moment someone leaves his pen open he’s going to go stand in the nearest road and just dare the next virus that happens along to fucking hit him.” 

“So where does that leave us?”

“Well, nowhere good. Though fortunately, it also leaves Mira up the same shitty creek. They can’t pick him off in a convoy, or getting off a plane or a helicopter. They’ve got to storm Fort Dumb as Rocks. Bricks, rather.”

“Good save,” Sonya said.

“I did also notice that, um, his staff are pretty dumb. I mean, you’d have to be, to work there, but still. Not only are they using unsecured, easily hackable phones, but they spend a just inordinate amount of times on their phones, jotting mean-spirited missives about each other. Each other apparently includes more than you’d think about the security details. I think I see a few vulnerabilities we could exploit- or that Mira and her group might try to exploit- assuming they’ve got either a mildly talented hacker or a kindergarten technopath.”

“Loose dips sinks ships,” Anita said, before turning to Sonya. “Not you, no offense.”

“I wouldn’t have taken offense until now.”

“That’s great work,” Rox said. “I mean Mahmoud. Anita, you’re going behind Tso in the bathroom order.”

“Oh, come on. It wasn’t that mean.”

“Maybe,” Rui said, “but you did follow it up with an additional mean thing. Sort of hurts your case.”

“He treats burrito-eating like a competitive sport.”

“Sounds like sour grapes from someone who keeps losing,” Ben said without emerging from his jacket tent.

“I also feel like you probably should have seen this coming,” Rox said.

“Damnit,” Anita said.

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