Radikha and AJ, Tory and Tim-Tom padded into the breakfast dining area shortly before ten. They appeared damp and rumpled which was an anomaly given the efficient air conditioning of the Bora Bora unit.
They saw Dilip waiting for them by the windows near the line where diners placed the orders. They were efficient: Farmer's omelets, hash browns,coffee and orange juice all around. Then they joined Dilip.
"So what's the job?" AJ asked without preamble.
Dilip had been giving a little bit of thought as to how he was going to approach the team of four.
"I have been studying the code you banged together the night before you left." Dilip started.
All four of the programmers nodded. AJ and Tim-Tom had photographic memories for code and they had long, heated discussions about what they should have done differently. Unfortunately, once code like that is released to the wild it is almost impossible to catch and update every last copy.
"I think that with a few tweaks it might have some other uses." Dilip continued.
"Radikha" Dilip said, nodding to the girl "said something the other day that stuck with me. She said something like, 'animals evolve to fill the niches that are available.' "
"That puzzled me. What defined the niche in Cali government that caused so many of them to become the way they are?" Dilip mused.
"I talked to Kenny Lane and his comment seemed off the wall at first. He said, 'Folks don't generally throw a turd in the punch-bowl unless they got their own personal jug of hooch squirreled away somewhere."
"Putting two-and-two together, Kenny was telling me that the bad actors in Cali have golden parachutes and are colluding to protect that fact." Dilip said.
"So what do you think this code should do?" AJ asked.
"Just talking hypothetically here...the cement is wet and I don't want you guys to fixate on the first idea that pops out of my head...what if you wrote code that wrote checks against those golden parachute accounts and dispersed their assets?" Dilip said.
"That would be unethical." Tim-Tom said automatically.
Tory blew up. "And what Cali was going to do to you, put a bullet in the back of your head and throw you in a pit IS ethical???"
Dilip didn't say anything. He didn't have to.
"Who would we transfer the funds to?" AJ asked.
"My thinking was that you would make most of those funds a bit difficult to follow. Maybe mix them in an anonymous off-site account before dispersing them to entities that would spend them so fast it would impossible to claw them back." Dilip said. "I was thinking that there are thousands of charities in the US, the European Union and in Asia that would be happy to take those funds.
"You said most." Radikha said. "What about the rest?"
"That is going to the 'designated decoy'." Dilip said. He slid a piece a paper in front of them as the food arrived.
Around a mouthful of hashbrowns Tim-Tom guessed as he looked at the acronym and address "Syphilitic Pustules Law Center of Montgomery, Alabama?"
"Close enough." Dilip affirmed. "It is a group of lawyers who will defend to the last drop of blood every penny that is donated to them."
"You just need to ensure that some of the funds stripped from the most aggressive and territorial Cali people have a clear path to the 'Syphilitic Pustules Law Center' and let nature take its course." Dilip said. "Most of the other funds will be unrecoverable by the time they think to go after them."
"I don't see how that is going to unravel Cali." Tory said.
Tim-Tom had wandered back up to the ordering line and brought back four cinnamon rolls slathered with cream-cheese frosting.
AJ started to reach for his when Tim-Tom swatted his hand away. "Get your own." Tim-Tom planned to eat all four.
Dilip looked up from the by-play. "The bad actors in Cali are a pit full of wolverines. The only way to have them play-nice with each other is to keep throwing in big hunks of meat. Pull the buffalo carcass out of the pit and they will turn on each other."
"We don't need to beat Cali. We just need to change their target from us to each other." Dilip concluded.