Lucifer’s Semi-Final Conclave -- Part 29
Christy had dressed normally today…she had worn a pantsuit, and had only included small stud ear bobs… no other jewelry except for her normal pear shaped tear drop watch pendant about her neck.
She had always tried to arrive a few minutes early for work. Seldom was she late due to a traffic accident .. Today especially, must be no exception, she thought… and thus she arrived in the parking lot 5 minutes earlier than usual. She used the extra time sitting in her car, and re-hashing the acronym she had learned from a shrink in one of her training courses. She had employed it occasionally over the years, when facing hostile interrogations… ADDUP. She had modified it personally over the years, because as a Christian she hated lies, since lying was from the evil one. When one lies it becomes too difficult to remember exactly what lie you previously used. So she discovered that a mere change of word choice helped immensely.. In this case, it could be as simple as changing “a” call to “the” call…. For, after all. everyone knew beyond a doubt that Christy had called #6.
The A is for adrenaline --- control it, as it spikes many things in your body easily detected by machine or observant people… concentrate on pleasing mental images. Control your voice tone and amplitude.. Make sure your bodily functions have been recently relieved.
D is for demeanor --- RELAX--- breathe normally--maintain open eyes when speaking. Look directly at the interrogator -- maintain normal posture -- keep hands open -- do not fidgit, nor shift your rear-- NEVER cross your arms or legs. It not only lessens your blood circulation, The movement will be visibly noticed.
The second D is for deflect -- explain your side of the story using verifiable facts that shift the narrative.. At this point, limited emotional outbursts are quite useful, if controlled. For females facing male interrogators, a few stifled tears can be extremely
effective. Remember to control your adrenaline. Christy had modified this one. Because the choice of words used certainly mean things.== “The” vs “A” .-- “is” vs. “could” vs. “does” -- etc. Look directly at the person who is responsible for any particular extenuating circumstances you may state. The ‘leader’ of the group may not be the direct cause…
U is for-- be upfront. As much as possible. When replying to the certain “buts” to follow your deflection -- maintain the A and first D -- Do not allow yourself to fidgit.. NEVER look away from the questioner. NEVER cross your arms nor legs.
Realize that they are attempting to deflect your deflection. NEVER allow them nor yourself to hypothesize on lead ins like “ If” or “so”.. simply restate your deflection, using your same choice of words. Carefully listen to the adverb choices used in their query. Reply verbatim, but with your choice of adverbs.
P is for Peaceful, Pleasant and Persuasive. That is the crux… Never allow them to utter the last words in your presence when the interrogation is concluded, even if all you say is good bye.. And be standing and moving to exit when you say them … wait a slightly obvious long while after they have finished their final words, and are expecting you to reciprocate. It makes them think…
Christy walked to the employee entrance, and buzzed in with a smile…. She had only to stop back stage a moment to ‘makeup’ before her entrance…. ‘Break a leg’ she silently wished to herself.. That expression was the usual “Good Luck” that actors wished to other actors when they entered the stage…
Ken indeed found two small leaks in hussy this morning before he left for work. Fortunately they were minor. One was a drain plug he neglected to finish tightening. The other was a rubber seal cap that had been pinched under the fuel pressure pump. They only took five minutes to fix and wipe clean of fluids, and another 10 minutes of running to confirm. He advised Phil… OK. It’s a go for today… seeya in Henderson.. And he left for work.. Bree and Phil spent an hour and a half finishing the cleanup in the camper, and occasionally shaking the chain at Buffy when she stuck her nose out from her studies. Yough enjoyed teasing Danielle, as she was cleaning. He would sneak up and steal her broom and brushes, and he would lay a few feet to the side, having it firmly captured under his big paws, as Danielle came out and looked all around for it… She quickly decoded his game, however, and the second time she laughingly came for the upholstery brush, he jumped up with the brush in his mouth and ran a few feet into the sand, rolled over and held it in his mouth, looking at her. She knew better than to chase him, because he would beat her all day at that game…. She went into the house and got 2 strips of left over breakfast bacon, and sat on the camper step, placing one on her lap, and munching lightly on the other. Yough jumped up, dropping the brush, and walked up to her, watching her munch, and eyeing the other slice on her lap. She munched, and pointed to the brush, holding her palm up. Yough quickly caught on, and retrieved the brush, placing it on the step where she had laid it. She patted his huge head, and gave him both strips, which he carried around back. Phil had been chuckling while watching the comedy, and just slowly shook his head at nature’s healer in action…
Silver Springs, Md
#2 and his 8 person inquisition crew had assembled a few minutes early. One of the lawyers was female this time. They reviewed their procedures and responsibilities, and each was given a pad and pencil. Another set was to be offered to Ms Bales when she entered shortly. There were two prominent recorders on the table… one to record the meeting, and the second loaded with the recording of Christy‘s call.
Meanwhile, Christy was in the makeup room just off stage in the 5th floor necessary room. She entered the stall to relieve herself, and walked to the sink to wash up. She left the wadded paper towels in the sink, removed her pepper spray from her purse and doused them well. She then rubbed the three middle finger tips of each hand on them. Then with the thumb and pinky of both hands, she sprayed the air and sink with her cologne, and voila, she was ready to exit makeup….
#2 was waiting for her, and held the door as she entered. She responded only with broad smiles, nods and hello at introductions, declining politely to shake hands at the first one who offered by simply turning to the next person…
She was directed to the empty chair as #2 walked around the table to sit opposite her.
She began reviewing the ‘A’ in her mind as she waited. She was careful not to anticipate ANYTHING. The recorders and their purpose were obvious to her. #2 began immediately by playing the recording of her call. His first words were the best possible thing she could have chosen for herself. How do you know this person? He asked..
She was perfect in her answer and the setup. Certainly, and truthfully I HAD NEVER met the person PRIOR to the call. #2 looked at his notes, scribbled, and asked… Then Why did you make the call? What was it’s purpose? Please explain… Christy smiled inside as she was just handed carte-blanche to spring BOTH her second D and the U.
She began by looking directly at the Security chief. … the call was the inevitable and eventual result of your monitoring of my personal life beginning perhaps 2 weeks ago.
Specifically, as she glanced toward the two suits, then directly back to him… your men placed audio monitors above the visors in my car, a gps tracker in my left tail light lens, monitors in my apartment, in my friend’s car and apartment, and have tailed me even more intensely in their brown sedan for the past three days. -- the chief looked at the suits, whose smile had faded. #2 looked at the security chief, then back to her.
While I am certainly no expert on this subject, I have watched quite few detective shows in the movies and on TV. When you are an employee in a company like this, you are constantly reminded by your office to be aware of strange random events and especially on your personal time. Well, three days ago, I had begun to notice the same vehicle being every where I frequent, such as Chik Fila, the park where I frequently each lunch, as well as the ‘misssion’ where I volunteer with my friend, Jennifer O’Dannan.
So, three days ago when I was returning from hiking along Chesapeake bay near Annapolis, I stopped at a ’spy sweeper’ shop. His main business was divorce and business protection, and his sign offered a free bug sweep.. Well it did not end up free at all… but it was worth the 300 it cost. He discovered all the bugs in my car, and showed their location to me. Later, I had a quick look by myself at Jennifer’s visor and taillight, and it showed the same..
That series of events was the thing that ultimately precipitated my call. She momentarily was silent, and slowly looked around at all of them with open eyes, bowing her head and bringing both hands to her closed eyes…finally she looked with wide eyes and reddening cheeks, to #2 .. WHY? You ask?
I believe I have a why coming from you also, sir, as small tears started streaming from her eyes… I am a lowly clerk here. I am not a special security threat at Rocksense…WHY indeed… she pushed back from the table, grabbed her purse and said please excuse me a moment… don’t go anywhere please, I am far from finished..
She was laughing to herself as she re-entered ‘makeup’ back stage. She withdrew her baking soda saturated washcloth and popped it on her stinging cheeks. She wet it well again, and repeated… She then washed her hands thoroughly three times with hand soap in the sink… After a couple minutes, she washed her face twice, and applied a thin coat of her moisturizer. Whew, she said fanning her face, as she mentally readied for Act 2.
When she reentered, the suits were gone… #2 began… we apologize for…. She held up her hand, put her purse on the floor, scooted her chair up, and placed both hands on the table, completely relaxed. She looked at the female lawyer. Her expression betrayed her female sympathy for Chisty’s obvious uncomfort.
Looking at #2, she began… On the day I made the call the brown sedan had followed me from the visitors lot as I went to lunch. As is my often choice, I pulled through Chik Fila and drove to my favorite bench in my favorite park.. Jennifer and I often go there together for lunch, but she was shopping that day. I easily noted the brown sedan a few cars down.. And knowing about the bugs, I got angry. I pulled my cell, and noticed 5 bars. As I said, I have sat on this same bench at the same time of day, many times over several months. On my old device, I have never noted more than three bars… The “Stingray” device used in cell capture has been on the news for the past year at least.
Given the obvious tailing efforts for the past few days… What would you assume?
So, perhaps in anger, I considered I would give them some more fantasies to investigate, that might occupy their time.. So Yes, I dialed A number, and vocalized the first thing that came in my mind… an old standby from the Italian spaghetti movies….. “I need to see you now, the jig is up” .. Yep I said it… You should have seen those two hustle and U turn to follow me when I purposely departed rapidly…. Then drove straight back to work… she smiled … As I was buzzing in they were in the visitor’s lot… she smiled again.. Bet my destination was a shock to them.. The security chief began to speak… Ms Bales… Again she held up her hand… I’m not finished, sir…
As you can imagine, by this time I had become concerned for my personal safety… a single female being followed around everywhere by two unidentified males ..she glanced at the lawyers who were taking notes, and continued… The evening prior my making the call, I had gone to Jennifers for a late supper. By that time I was well aware of my car bugs, and had assumed my cell was monitored as well. So I laid a trap for them. On the way over to pick Jennifer up, I called her and we agreed on Selby’s, a restaurant with all outside aaand sidewalk tables, about a half mile away from her place. When I got there and she was coming down to my car, I got out and hugged her, whispering that it was not far, and would be a needed walk. So I locked the car and we walked… As we rounded the corner, there was a delivery van backed up to Selby’s with an open back door… It’s dark, I thought, who delivers after 7? So I decided to go to Trina’s which was a block closer anyway. Well, guess what? A brown sedan with 2 male occupants was parked nearly directly across the street from Trina’s, pointing at Selby’s… We ate at Trina’s and then walked back to her Apartment. The brown sedan nor the truck up the street were there when we exited. The truck? maybe innocent coincidence.. The brown sedan? Not a freaking chance. So was I pissed? Yes indeed. So yes I trolled them with a call.. And I will do it again, as she looked at the security chief.
Your call was a shock to us, also, Ms Bales, #2 Said. He then stated, for the record. Ms Bales, Did you know the person you called? At the time, sir, definitely not. I do understand now however, that he is a key person at Rocksense … Again.. I simply dialed a number. .. How would a third floor clerk know a key person in management? …
#2 said.. That’s all for now, Ms Bales.. You will, of course be invited up to meet the person face to face, and explain your actions to him… As he is not part of Rocksense corporate structure, He will have to advise you the particulars…
He looked around the table and asked: Does anyone else have a question?
No one offered. #2 said,
Thank you Ms. Bales.. Have a good day… She rose, grabbed her purse, and walked to the door, turning and smiling as she left… You all have a good day also.
Whatcha all think?
After leaving Buffy on her honor to work on her schoolmarm course, Danielle and Phil had arrived back at Moe’s Auto Parts Emporium. Yes, he had 7 of the large unusual tires in stock, and he would indeed sell Phoebe 5 of them, for only $190 each, free W&B and mounting included. A deal, he said because the Ford shop charges $225 each plus W&B.
What about the batteries? She asked.. The one for the truck seems OK, and I was told it was replaced 3 years ago, but the camper battery, no. He sent a man out, and confirmed the camper battery measures 25% capacity on load test, but the truck was 85%. It’s a Go for it, also, said Horace.
While they waited, since it was too early for lunch, they walked to Dunkin Donuts for a cup, They mentally reviewed the supplies they should buy for their mission. Danielle specifically said.. I don‘t want to sleep on that mattress, Phil… Let‘s find a new one up here somewhere, OK. ? Great Idea honey.. Replied Phil.. I had forgotten that… She said, well bug bombs and Clorox are good, but I don’t like sleeping with their odor and the carcasses of dead bugs they cause…euohh, she smiled.
They left a smiling Moe sans another bunch of cash, and went to the local furniture mart, where they bought the best Queen mattress they had and persuaded the salesman to to get rid of the old one.. They made mental notes to pick up proper sheets and blankets at Walmart later… From there they stopped by a shop Moe had recommended and had the AC system cleaned and serviced.
FINALLY they went to the truck stop, exchanged both the step mounted propane tanks, filled both Diesel fuel tanks and then waited for a few minutes as Ken did another inspection for leaks and a final tweek on the fuel injector pulse width. Ken came up grinning, and high fived them both, and said…se yall tonight… They then headed for their final stop, Walmart…
Christy had just arrived at her apartment, and noticed first thing, that her alarm was tripped… the hair was on the floor. The door looked fine.. She unlocked it and stood back, while shoving it inside, to a full open position. She waited a bit, looking around, inside for clues and noticed a small topless card board box in the middle of the short tiled entry way. She entered, glanced behind the open door, closed the door and picked up the box. There were two strange devices and 2 keys inside. The devices she recognized immediately from her latest agency courses were a video camera and an audio bug.. Those creeps she thought as she got a strange feeling in her lower parts.. Those damned perverted creeps… the keys, she later confirmed fit her apartment and her car… There was also a yellow stick note which read… they are all gone.
She went to her car… noticed first that the gps tracker in the left tail light was missing…she chedked the right one to make sure it had not just been relocated… She pulleg down both visors and the multicolored cable on both were gone.
Returning to her apartment she tried the apartment key…. Yep, she said… and closed her eyes in temporarily relief. She checked her safe place, and was relieved that it’s alarm was still set.
She was just about to head to Jennifer’s to check her car, when a small white van stopped outside and a man in blue trousers and a clean white shirt with embroidered name tag walked up to her door.. Ms Christine Bales? He asked… Yes she said.. He handed her a small package, had her sign his clipboard, and left. She went back inside… Hmm, she said… not big or heavy enough to be a bomb, she laughed to herself. She got her letter opener, and cut the the small strips of cellophane tape securing the lid. She opened it and discovered a tissue wrapped item about 4 inches long, and a small card. The card held a white card with gold trim, and simply said: BRAVO!! … It was signed.. Old Goat.
The tissue paper held a 4 inch high, gold colored plastic Oscar statuette. Laughing out loud all the way to her coffee table, she placed it down and headed for a half glass of wine --- To celebrate….
To be continued:
The previous Part 28 is here: