Jenny boarded the center console first and asked, “So what’s your manifest?”
The speaker for the prize took a second to register before he replied, “Oh, that, that’s seven boxes of stuff, in the baitwell. And that’s it.”
She looked at him hard and said in a low voice, “Y’know, every time someone says to me, ‘And that’s it,’ I just know there’s more.”
He backed away under her stare and added, “…and some whiskey for personal consumption.”
“Well, let’s see what your boxes are first,” she said as she trained her pistol on them and motioned to Dutch to open the baitwell.
Dutch pulled the first box, the size of his forearm, and started to read the exterior. “What is this, Spanish?” he asked.
Tia glanced at it and said, “Portuguese.”
“Let me guess,” said Jenny, “Brazilian mini-pads. Smuggle in a few to avoid the tariffs, or just tired of the way Korean models keep freezing up on you?”
“Little of both,” said the center console’s spokesman. “Truth to tell, yeah, making people spend more of their money to go west then south may be good for your diplomacy to keep the Chinese busy, but I just like Brazilian electronics better than Korean stuff.”
“These from GEB or one of the smaller companies going alone?”
“Ever heard of Transformaco?”
“New electronics group?” Jenny asked as Dutch and Tia got out the last of the smuggled electronics.
“Breakaway from those collectives in Fiera de Santana that helped break the 3 petabyte per second barrier for handhelds. Decided to go it alone and get away from just doing the guts and making the whole unit.”
“That’s seven boxes,” said Dutch, as he hoisted the last one over the side to the bottom of Jenny’s boat.
“Well,” said Jenny with a smile, “if these Transformaco folks are ex-Fiera de Santana people, then maybe we don’t need the whiskey. See, not everyone plying the lake’s a complete asshole.”
“Good to know that,” said the spokesman…
…right before Jenny got knocked over…
All content Copyright © 2011 James Ryan