Mission Briefing: Riverbank

Harold Wu and Keaton Dean had just accepted a case. Their new client, Gabriel Andrews, had hired them to investigate the death of his longtime best friend Kyle Jacobson, a friend whose death had been ruled an accident. Harold had decided to take this case, despite the fact that he now knew that he had a top-notch NSA surveillance team shadowing his every move — to the point where they were no longer even bothering to conceal that fact anymore.

Gabe had found Kyle’s missing shoe down on Beaver Islands trail, which was an area where he knew Kyle had liked to walk. Harold and Keaton had taken a look at the area, and while they’d found signs of what they thought were likely to be Kyle being dragged away, unconscious, time and weather had taken their toll on the two week old incident’s marks, and no other evidence could be found at that spot.

Failing to come up with anything else useful at what they thought was the scene of the crime, they followed Gabe back up the trail so that they could take a look around Gabe and Kyle’s apartment.

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Mission Briefing: Riverbank

Harold was worried about the additional surveillance that had been following him lately. It was definitely not standard FBI surveillance; he’d defeated that time and time again, and they went away.

But they were replaced with something far more sophisticated, using three unit vehicular tailing techniques that taxed even Harold’s considerable talents to spot consistently. And someone had left him an envelope recently, full of the product of some of that surveillance. Worse still, it had been left for him while he was somewhere nobody should have known he was staying that evening.

He needed some answers. And another client probably wouldn’t hurt either.

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Mission Briefing: Fence Post

Keaton Dean wanted to get in touch with Harold Wu. While Harold had worked for The Company as an analyst, Keaton — a British entrepreneur — had been brought in on a number of operations as a business consultant and he and Harold had hit it off.

However, Keaton had heard some disturbing things from his intelligence contacts. He’d heard that Harold had gone rogue, had done some questionable things, and had gotten himself blacklisted and vanished.

Keaton Dean knew how things worked in the intelligence community, and he knew Harold well enough to know that he’d probably been set up. He wanted to help him out, and the best way to do that would be to find him.

So Keaton came to America.

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Mission Briefing: Counteroffensive

Harold and Jon spent a few hours going over the mountain of data on the copy of the CDROM that Donald had given William “Ace” Kelly and his crew.

At first it didn’t make sense. The individual items on the CDROM were pretty useless, at least that’s how it seemed to Harold. It was just endless, boring, business related crap. Employee work schedules. How much vacation time was accrued for the managers. Sick days. Reports of how many computers had been repaired at the Granite City Best Buy in the past two years. Inventory reports. Dry, boring sales statistics. Scans of HVAC repair receipts.

But then, just as Harold was about to give up, something emerged from this mass of static that brought the picture into stark clarity.

This wasn’t about the Best Buy store at all.

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Mission Briefing: Damage Control

While Harold Wu drove home from his meeting with Gary Warchevsky and Donald Thomas he was developing a bad feeling in his gut that was getting worse by the minute.

I’m really going to need the others in order to pull this off and prevent a bloodbath.

He was becoming more and more sure that the reason these bad guys had been trying to squeeze such a bizarre pile of information out of Thomas was because they were planning some big heist, and what they were really looking for was a small bit of data they were hiding in plain sight with a bunch of garbage.

If known violent criminals with military discipline were planning some sort of big job — and it had to be big, considering the lengths they were going to just to get some intel — that meant they’d likely kill to protect themselves and maybe even the job itself.

Not good. Thomas was almost certainly on their hit list; he’d have to do something to keep him safe, and quick.

Harold turned his car around and drove back to Donald Thomas’ apartment. He had to bring him back to his new place (a.k.a., “Bernie’s house“) until he managed to get this whole situation sorted out safely.

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Mission Briefing: Dead Drop

Harold Wu needed a car. Some surfing around on the internet and he found just what he was looking for: cheap, local, and someone who would take cash.

Harold found a 1988 Chevrolet Caprice Classic on Craigslist, and it was right in Granite City, on the north side, maybe a half-hour’s walk from downtown.

He paid $650.00 for it, and drove it away. It was perfect. It had recently had an engine overhaul, so it ran great, the heat and the air conditioning worked. True, it wasn’t pretty to look at, and it had almost 140,000 miles on it, but who cared? Harold figured the way things were going it’d end up getting shot up or crashed at some point anyway, at which point he’d simply find another cheap, local, used car to buy with cash.

Today was pretty productive so far. He’d managed to finally hack Bernie’s laptop, so now they had two laptops they could use. He put down the first month’s rent on the house in which Bernie had been living (the landlord was a friend of Rico’s and he and the other spies were referred to him as new renters), and now he had a car.

What he really needed now was a few items that could come in handy if he was going to be doing “odd jobs” like the ones they’d just pulled for Rico.

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The morning had been productive. Their new “Bernie” (a.k.a. Hank the Homeless Dude) had been shipped off to Bermuda and was making a permanent disappearance.

They had gone back to Bernie’s house so that Harold — who had lots of crime scene and forensics experience — could go over it with an eye for that kind of detail and make sure they had left no trace evidence that might lead any police investigators to suspect foul play.

The only thing that worried them was the green Mustang that Jon had seen down the street last night while they were hauling Bernie’s body from the house to the garage. Someone had been behind the wheel of that car, and it’s possible that they had seen something.

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