“Fire Team Delta to Control: We lost contact with our spotter. Over.” That was the first time the one of the teams had transmitted.
Chad nudged Kenny with an elbow. “Can you spot for Delta?” he asked off-mic.
“I got it.” Kenny said as he flipped to the Delta-only channel.
“Got my eye on targets. Can you hear me Delta?” Kenny growled into the mic.
“Read you five-by-five. Whaddya have for us.” The team responded.
“No more Willie Pete. No more Willie Pete. You guys done good. I have more targets in your secondary target zone. Give me another half klick and fire a spotter round…” Kenny took over.
Chad, overhearing Kenny, transmitted on the open channel, “No Willie Pete. No Willie Pete. The bad guys can see those. Leave those rounds next to the booby traps. Fire all the High Explosive you have. Burn out the banks. I want to blow this popstand in two minutes. Abandon the tubes. We have plenty of those but fire ALL HE.”
Switching to Charlie and Foxtrot’s channels, “Delta took fire and has at least one casualty. I want Charlie to send a couple of guys to see if they can help out. Foxtrot, I need to have you cover Charlie.”
Kenny lowered his binoculars and commented, “That was a righteous ass-kicking.”
Chad shook his head. “It was, but you gotta remember that it will never be this easy again…and we took losses even though they rolled into it blind.”
The old guys were sweating. It was not so much lifting and dropping the ten pound shells into the mortar. It was the fact that they were wearing three layers of clothing and plastic hair nets.
After the last round went down the tube, the teams left their hides. They stripped off their Tyvek paint suits and dumped them into a burn-barrel. The pulled off their hair nets and gloves, turned the shower caps inside out and deposited their gloves inside. Those went into cardboard box that used to carry beer. The men wiped their faces with damp cloths and put them into the beer carton.
Each team leader opened up a ziplock baggie and dumped the contents on top of the Tyvek suits and then stirred them. Next, he made a small nest in the top of the pile and deposited the critical communication gear. Finally, on top of the comms gear he placed and activated thermite grenade. The grenade would not destroy all of the clothing but it was important to make it look like they had tried.
The contents of the ziplock baggies were floor sweepings from elite spas and hair salons in Sacramento. With any luck some of Bona-Brown’s cabinet and one or two of his mistresses left DNA evidence on the floors there. Even dust from the floor can be a weapon. It can be used as an improvised explosive, or in this case, as a weapon to mislead the enemy.
The team leader placed four cans of beer on top of the shower caps and gloves that had been stashed in the used "12 pack" boxes. He would deposit it outside the first squatter’s camp he came to.
Then the men mingled out into the gathering crowd of gawkers. They slowly percolated away from the scene. When convenient, they ditched their middle layer of clothing. Light became dark. Dark became light. Long became short.
The video collected by the long range cameras on the helicopter seven miles away proved to be of no use in apprehending the men. Nor were scanners looking for traces of gunpowder or other propellants.
The interest rate of the benchmark 10 year Cali bonds went from 6% to 7.5%.