I was on a plane within two hours of them picking her up. I had grabbed a late flight, telling only my wife where I was going. I didn’t answer the in flight call that came through for me. It was not time to talk to Otecko.
I wasn’t terribly surprised to see Sam when I got off the plane. He was irritated. “You know it’s been years since I’ve had to ride a military transport to get somewhere. Thanks to you, I can’t say that anymore. What are you doing here?”
“I’m going to stop the Professor. He threatened my family. I won’t allow that. I don’t have time for your long term plan. I’m going to stop him, and no I’m not crazy. I don’t have a death wish, and I’m not a murderer. He will face justice, and it will be in court.”
Sam looked at me and sighed. “So you’re not suicidal, or insane, only naive. How can you stop him now, when all of us couldn’t together, even the US government?”
I stopped, and looked at him. “Concentration.” He didn’t get it, truthfully I wasn’t convinced either, but I continued. “The reason people like espresso is because it’s concentrated. It’s intense. Here’s the big thing, most people don’t know if they like the taste or not. It’s hidden by the flavors they like.”
He looked at me like I was crazy. I only had a small carry on, so we were already headed to grab a taxi. He fell in step beside me, and I kept talking. “They like the effect of the espresso, but they don’t know whether they like it or not, it’s camouflaged. I don’t have to be crazy, just make him think I am. That’s why I’m sorry Sam.”
He started to ask why, which distracted him enough not to notice my carry on hitting him. I prayed he wouldn’t get up, and he didn’t. I don’t know if I knocked him out, or he realized what I was doing.
I hoped it was the second, because I really would like backup, without having to ask. I was setting myself up as bait. I wanted the Professor to think I had snapped. That I was crazy enough to come at him head on, maybe with a gun.
Of course, that meant he would have his guys with bigger guns to try and stop me. I was trying to create an advantage. I wanted him to think I was a desperate mad man, instead of a sane man who was tired of playing games.
I had a plan, and it was crazy, but I wasn’t. I also wasn’t going to try going through his front door, or any door for that matter. Instead I was going to climb through the window of opportunity I hoped his anxiety would create for me.
Once I was in that opening, then I would shut him down. If I was quick enough. If not, then I would … I didn’t finish the thought, I had to get moving, but I did stop for coffee.