You won’t believe this, but after I arrived home from work yesterday my phone chimed – a text message from Jake Stone, the alleged CIA, NSA operative I mentioned in my previous post, Clandestine Operative Hints at Cyber Terrorism Plot.
The message said,
“Go to the Starbucks closest to you and order a tall Caffe Misto. Pay with your debit card. JS”
What no time? Now I’m thinking this is so melodramatic like a cheap spy movie from television’s black and white days. So I immediately drive to the nearest Starbucks – a freshly built, clean structure that had yet to earn its handful of regulars.
An older man, white beard, glasses and wearing a cheap imitation of a captain’s hat and faded jeans, sat alone at one of the wired tables near the entrance. That’s him, I thought, but then why would he make himself so obvious? I went in and ordered the Caffe Misto. I handed the barista my debit card and waited for her to swipe the card and hand it back. Instead, she walked over to the barrister preparing my coffee and spoke in whispers. This is it, I thought, I’m dead meat. I danced nervously at the counter ready to bolt out at the slightest movement.
“Sir, your coffee,” he said.
With that he handed me my coffee and debit card.
“Sorry for the delay. We have to check all the cards now. There's a theft ring in the area.”
Popeye sitting outside must be my man. I started for the door and stopped as two little girls about five or so ran up to him followed by their mother, a thirty something woman wearing a billowing summer dress that made her look forty. Nice cover, I thought.
“Oh, sir this is for your trouble,” the young man said holding up a sealed Starbucks envelope.
“What is it?”
“A gift card.”
“For my trouble?”
I leave and notice Popeye and his crew have sailed off. Back in the car, I open the envelope. It’s a gift card all right with a form letter thanking me for buying Starbucks coffee. I throw it down on the seat and start the car. I’m about to pull away when I notice letters forming on the back of the letter. It’s new information from Jake Stone.