This entry is part 16 of 17 in the series Doing Laundry
Photo: Kim MyoungSung – (CC BY 2.0)

“How long do we honestly need to wait here?” Eli asked, desperate for a straight answer.

“Long enough for whoever spent ze last zree weeks looking for us to let zeir guard down. Besides, we needed to kill time for zose zentrifuges to arrive.”

Eli was only paying enough attention for the first sentence. The word ‘centrifuge’ startled him back to engagement. Lucas had mentioned that the next objective involved breaching two walls of security running around an Iraqi power plant in the middle of a dessert, but nothing about a centrifuge.

“Did you say…centrifuge?”

“Of course, what did you zink Nukletech made?”

Eli hadn’t thought about it. All he could think about was Haley.

“Uh, I dunno…wireless uranium?”

Lucas didn’t flinch.

“Zat virus you planted was ze pet project of CIA and Mossad. It’s…complicated. I didn’t read all of it, but ze briefing used verds like “evolutionary algorizm” and “genetic programming” quite a lot. It was designed to defeat ze unbelievable security of zis plant.”

“Unbelievable like you couldn’t sneak in?”

“Yes, and no. More like unbelievable for a purely civilian installation. Nuclear reactors are inherently safe structures. You can fly a triple 7 into ze side of one without leaving a scratch. Even if zere’s a catastrophic failure and the whole zing melts, it does so in a nice big crucible buried below ze reactor sealing every rad of radiation off from ze rest of the word until ze end of time. Safe,” Lucas shrugged.

“So…”

“So it’s like it doesn’t make sense when it’s announced that an outer wall encircling ze facility was built a mile away ‘for safety purposes’…do you understand?”

“Ah, so the virus does something with the centrifuges?”

“I told you I didn’t read all of it. It vas very long and boring.”

“But why do we need to get in?”

“Virus is sleeping. We are ze alarm clock. Are you hungry? I’m going out for food.”

Starved, Eli nodded and Lucas left quietly. Ten minutes later he wasn’t surprised to hear the landline ring. After all, Lucas hadn’t asked him what he wanted.

“Hi Eli. Haven’t heard from you. Shame. Haley says hello…oh, and I know what you and your friend are up to. Don’t get too close to that power plant. It’d be a shame if a car bomb got confused for an old landmine. Anyways, might be best for you to not mention I called. Just wanted to check in on you,” Hank hung up.“

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