“The Final Purchase” (Part 3)
Catch up on Part 1 of “The Mobile Spy” here and Part 2 here.
He enjoyed the obscurity that the shadows of the train station provided him. He easily slipped between alcoves and doorways, at times jumping into the moving crowds. Everything was falling in place the way that he had planned and he was in the final stretch. Only, he hadn't planned on them catching up with him so quickly.
The file had been transferred, he had "lost the laptop", the safe house thoroughly destroyed, and with an unplanned stroke of luck, the provider of the data had been killed in the process, thus closing the loop and erasing almost all chances of his personal mission failing. But he wasn't out of the woods yet as four pairs of agents were combing the train station with orders of shoot him on sight.
But he still had a few tricks up his sleeve. He initiated a plan that was so over used that nobody tried it any more. He hoped that the mere obviousness of it would act to his advantage and people would simply think he was panicking.
Pulling the HTC Tilt 2 from his pocket again, he did a quick search for a local taxi service. After finding the phone number, he quickly dialed it. Slipping casually into the local dialect, he spoke a few sentences and gave the company a credit card number, one that was not entirely off the radar. His view from the shadowed alcove gave him a clear look at the front entrance and within a minute or two, he saw the cab pull up.
"Want to make some quick money?" he asked the vagrant who shared the alcove. He peeled off some bills from a thick wad in his pocket. The bum's eyes lit up, putting down the tattered cup he was using to collect change from passers-by. He quickly emptied the pockets of his jacket and helped the vagrant put it on. Not a perfect fit but good enough. He whispered some instructions to the vagrant who nodded as the money changed hands.
The timing was perfect. The cab was waiting by the time the 4 pairs of agents' earpieces started crackling with electronic information. The vagrant had started walking at a brisk pace toward the front entrance as the agents received the confirmation that the target had just made a credit card transaction for a cab at the train station. By the time the vagrant was 50 feet from the door, he was running as quickly as his tired legs could carry him.
The agents started sprinting after him, clearly outlining their locations around the station. They were falling for the oldest trick in the book. The vagrant got through the front door and into the waiting cab much faster than expected. He watched the chase unfolded before his eyes. The cab door slammed and the taxi screeched away from the curb. Seconds later, two large SUVs pulled up at the front entrance and the eight agents jumped in. The SUVs sped off, leaving behind a smell of burnt rubber.
He waited a few more seconds in the darkened alcove and then headed toward a local shop within the train station.
Once hidden in the aisles of the shop, careful not to have his back to the door, he perused the contents of the shelves. Perched near the cash register was a small stuffed animal. It was perfect. He scooped it up and placed it down next to the register. The sales person smiled.
"Last minute purchase?" she asked.
He squeezed out a grin and handed over a bill, but suddenly he panicked. MINUTE! He glanced at his watch. Time had passed too quickly and the unplanned distraction scheme had thoroughly messed up his timetable. He sprinted out of the store and down to the platform of the departing train.
As he hopped on the last car, he glanced back over his shoulder. No one was following him. He made his way to his seat and slumped down. Apart from his cell phone, he was empty handed.
The stuffed animal sat back at the cashier, abandoned.
TO BE CONTINUED
About this article: This post is the THIRD installment of an on-going series for the AT&T Lose the Laptop Challenge. See the FIRST installment here and the SECOND installment here. This is the FINAL month and we are all “gunning” for the GRAND PRIZE of $5000. Remember to VOTE (for me, especially). By voting, you too can win $5000. There were 3 subjects during the previous 3 months: Travel, Social and Shopping. Please take a look at my previous posts. Over the next few weeks, I will be tying it all together so I hope that you will follow the progress and adventures of the hero.
HTD says: What do you think will happen? Re-read Part 1 and Part 2 as well! Check next week for THE FINALE (Part 4) of The Mobile Spy.