Nikolaus had just gotten off the phone with his liaison provided by the Chinese government. Even with the container of undocumented cash buying everything possible to push the project along, they were still a full three months from having the site up and running.
Concrete simply took too long to cure. All of the power and utilities had been roughed in, but once all of the footings were poured they had to wait three days for them to cure. The crew erecting the security fence was the only crew that could work during that time. Once the footings had cured, both shifts welded up rebar and poured so much concrete they ran out of forms. Again they had to wait days because there were no more forms to be had. It was the peak of construction season over there. The only crew working then was the truck drivers hauling in concrete mix and rebar.
No doubt about it, Nikolaus was in a pissy mood just like his team doing the harvesting. That situation was nearing open revolt. He couldn’t blame them. They worked twelve days straight and got two off. One worked all day harvesting and the other worked all night. The incinerator simply didn’t shut off. It was not supposed to happen like this. It was supposed to be another six to eight months before they were trying to handle this quantity. The Lutton bombing had really screwed the operation. Granted, it made selling the second secured location easy, but Nikolaus was thinking about finding a place to build a third now.
He had sized the second site for about half of the freezer storage of the first site. There were twice as many labs and dorm rooms at the new location. The incinerator was now a double incinerator. Nikolaus still hadn’t had time to put together a team to work there. Not a lot of people were going to want to go to China.
Nikolaus had some people looking for an abandoned factory or some other large site which could be taken over. The party would purchase the land and Nikolaus would pay for the interior modifications with some containers of cash. There had to be a factory in a somewhat remote location which they could obtain. The only trouble was it needed to be within driving distance of the interrogation camp. OK, there were two problems. Nikolaus would need to find a team to work it as well.
While he was thinking about money, he used his logon ID to check inventory on the special products for Dimitri’s distributor. “Egads!” he said when he saw the numbers. “This stuff is piling up like snow in the winter.”
He clicked over to the page with their latest invoices. Every week the distributor placed close to a $2 million order and paid for it within three days. The latest invoice showed the head corporate office had gotten its way. Some of the premium drugs were on this invoice. They had taken only seven containers of currency, but at least they had cleaned out most of the non-euro, non-dollar currencies. There were still the two containers of Indian currency which Nikolaus hoped Hans would use, but at least all of the other stuff was gone.
The problem appeared not to be on the distributor’s end. They were taking a few containers each time, just as they had said. The problem was the money coming in. Nikolaus did not know how much money was in any given container. His conversation with Hans had educated him about Twinkies. Each Twinkie was a stack of money roughly one-third of a meter high. They were only one bill wide and tightly wrapped in plastic shrink-wrap. The container Hans had received had five of them in it.
When you think of someone strongly, there is some force in the universe which communicates that fact to them. Nikolaus was reminded of this force the same way everybody else is reminded. The phone beside him rang and it was Hans.
“How are things going?”
“We are getting ready to bag three operators, but going to leave the original trainer in play for a few days. We are still trying to determine what his plan is and who the team members are.”
“I trust in your judgment.”
“You wouldn’t happen to have one of these care packages in a different flavor, would you?”
“Yes. Once again, I don’t know how much would be in it.” “No problem. One this size should be way more than they need.” “I will fax you a shipping address, if you think you can get it shipped to Pakistan.” “Why there?”
“It’s where we need to hire the chopper to pick these guys up at sea. We don’t have friends in government here. Getting people out of the country means finding a boat to sneak them on and getting them picked up in international waters.”
“We should consider using some of the care packages to purchase a long-range deep water boat, like a yacht, but a fast one.”
“I wouldn’t. We never know where we will be or how we will need to transport. A nine-passenger private jet registered to someone squeaky clean with landing rights in Nuremberg would be more useful. Then again, a Huey set up for troop transport would be even better. They have a 1,200-mile range if I remember correctly. Still, you have to have some place to land it and a crew to fly it and clearance with air traffic. It is probably best we simply grease palms and let others take the transportation risk.”
“Fax me the address in Pakistan. I will have the shipment arrive there tomorrow. Someone will need to sign for it.”
“We have one person there now. I will call and make certain they are there tomorrow morning. Then I will let the suit know about his care package.”
“Can I send you another care package?” “I still have two Twinkies left.”
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