“We finally found you. Ten years, four months, and three days of hunting for you. You want to know how you screwed up?” my interrogator asks while slowly circling the chair I am restrained in.
I say nothing, keeping my eyes glued to a single spot on the wall and my mind as blank as I can. Tiny pinpricks inside my skull let me know she is reading my mind.
“Come on you have to be curious,” she taunts.
Memory flashes. A message received through an old email account I should have deleted ten years ago from… Fuck, no. Blank mind, like the blank wall.
“Ah, there we go. You’re good but no one can keep from thinking forever. Memories are such insidious things one leads to another to another. Once you start it’s hard to stop. Let’s play a little game. I’m going to talk you through the event and you can just remember the details for me, ok?”
“Let’s start with where you all met. A café or a bar or a warehouse or…” she pauses letting the silence ask for her.
She’s right, I can’t help myself. The memories flash into thought quicker than I can stop them. Quick Wash Laundry. Quarters. Ms. Pac-man. Clothes dropped into a washer. Plastic chairs in the back. My contact.
“A washateria. Interesting but I want to the whole team not just your contact.” She starts spitting out questions. “Who planned the job? Where did you practice? Who had the intel in the security? When did you meet for the first time?”
The Fujiyama Building. Everyone is in a mask. No talking. I go to my floor to follow the instructions I was given through my contact.
“There is no way you performed one of the biggest data heists in the last century without intensive planning and practice.”
My watch. Seconds click by. Power shuts off. Five seconds to patch into the fiber links. Done in four. Power comes back. Red and green lights flash on the spliced in modem. Elevator.
“This is obviously not how it happened. What aren’t you showing me?”
I like to think so.
“So, the four of you working independently but following the instructions of a mastermind you never met or talked to, infiltrated the top floor of the Fujiyama Building?”
I watch the last two exit the elevator together. We enter the only office on this floor. One of us plugs into the desk. Five minutes pass while the rest of us watch over their still body. The alarms sound. Part of the plan. Two more minutes pass and they unplug from the system. They nod. Job’s done. Time to leave.
“You never even saw what you stole. Did you even care? Just another job to you. Except, I didn’t say it was the Fujiyama Building until after you thought it. I just gave you a time frame.”
Ten years. The last job I did. Couldn’t be anything else.
“Oh, was this the big score before retiring and leaving behind your life of crime? Maybe you wanted to walk away and forget. We haven’t forgotten. That heist cost the company billions of dollars worth of projected profit. We never forgot and we never stopped looking for the four of you. Now that we have you it’s just a matter of time before we have the rest.”
No. Pick a spot on the wall. Think of nothing.
“That’s ok. I’ve got enough for now. We can have another chat later.” The door to my holding cell opens and she walks out.
The restraints on my wrists and ankles release. I can get out of the chair until the next time she comes but instead, I stay seated. I refocus on the wall and think of nothing. I don’t think about the other three people they are hunting. I don’t think about the gray market bank we were paid through. I don’t think about the flash of a tattoo I saw on one of their arms. I don’t think…
I think of elevator music.