This is some of the shoddiest code I have ever laid eyes on. Eser stared at the computer screen for a moment before shaking his head and resuming his typing. Seriously, it looks worse than that one time I tried to teach Savas how to hack a computer.
Yeah, that had been a disaster and a half. Savas might have a scary amount of focus behind a scope, but hacking was pretty much beyond the sniper. Eser winced at the memory. That poor machine had to be completely overhauled by the time he was done with it. Though that might have been Savas’s plan—he had no skill at hacking, and had made it abundantly clear he had no patience for it, either.
Eser glanced at the countdown in the corner of the screen. Good. Should have complete control of the security system in five minutes. Was it necessary at this point in the mission? Probably not. But it’s always the “routine” missions that turn out to be the most trouble.
Besides, if he could control the security cameras, it would be easier to keep track of his brothers. And backdoor access to all the locks, lights, and communications in the complex wouldn’t hurt, either.
He shifted his gaze to the other, smaller timer counting down. Should have the movie downloaded and ready for after the recon tonight. Never mind that he’d borrowed someone’s Netflix account to download it. Judging by his lineup, the guy could stand to watch a movie or two that has an actual plot and isn’t rated ‘X.’
A movie would help everyone to unwind after the Katiller’s week-long mission. Nothing overly dangerous—yet—but being out in the field that long gathering intel wore on a team used to more immediate action.
Eser sighed and pounded out another line of code. Their Ghazi missions kept getting longer and longer, and the intel shrinking exponentially. The longer his brothers remained in the field, the more keyed-up they got.
Savas cleaned, disassembled, and reassembled everyone’s weapons to the point of obsession. Bener hadn’t gotten a good night’s sleep in days, opting instead to review mission notes and every scrap of intel the Katiller managed to scrape together.
Even Kenan was starting to show the strain of having to schmooze complete strangers into talking to him like they were long-lost friends. Just because Kenan had a knack for making people comfortable and coercing them into spilling secrets they didn’t even know they had, didn’t mean it came without effort. He hid the strain well. But Savas doesn’t corner the market on keen vision.
Just because Eser didn’t bother to pay attention to social cues in public didn’t mean he didn’t notice when his brothers were getting worn down. And if the socially inept one is picking up on it, it has to be bad.
He was well aware he came off as aloof and uncaring to most people. But when it came to his brothers, he could always sense their moods—when they were wound up, when they were down or needed some space.
Too bad knowing and actually doing something about it are two completely different things. If only people were more like computers. Give him a finicky program, and he’d have it solved in a matter of hours.
But people— well, you can’t just reprogram people.
His team seriously needed a break, a few days off from this stupid mission. But since that wasn’t an option, he’d have to go with plan B. A movie night. Usually that job fell to Kenan or Bener—since they actually cared about a social life. But they were too focused on the mission this time, with no room to think of anything else. So it’s time for the anti-social one to organize the party. With a comedy no less.
A ghost of a smile flitted across his face. If it took a little creativity and a Trojan or two to get everyone to relax, then that’s what he’d do. He’d do practically anything for his brothers—including volunteering his precious laptop so he and his brothers could pile together and watch a stolen movie on the small screen.
Eser’s head jerked up at a knock. He relaxed as Kenan eased the door open and stepped into the room.
The youngest Katiller blew out a heavy sigh and he slouched into the nearest chair. “Why do all the marks for this mission have to be such chatterboxes? I swear half the nonsense they say is because they just like to hear themselves talk. I may have lost some brain cells listening to them carry on.”
Eser shook his head. “So did they have any new intel, or was the day a complete loss along with your IQ?”
“Nah, nothing I hadn’t heard before. “ Kenan sprawled out, one leg swinging over the arm rest. “I am so ready for this job to be over. I’m starting to look forward to the twelve-hour training days back on base. Anything would be better than this waiting around.”
If he’s longing to be back on base training without explosives, then things are getting really bad. Eser sneaked a quick look at his brother before focusing back on his computer screen. He let the silence stretch out for a few moments as the timers finished counting down.
Eser smirked, but didn’t look up from his laptop. “So Kenan—have you heard of the movie, “Galaxy Quest?”
“Eser, you’re the best.” Kenan’s grin split his face. “I don’t care what they say. You definitely have a heart somewhere under all the techno mumble-jumble.”
Eser returned his brother’s smile. And that’s why my family is the best. His brothers cared enough to look past his distant, computer-savvy exterior to the person underneath. And I wouldn’t give them up for all the processing power in the world.
Special thanks to our model A.J. Nightingale. Photography by Katie Morford (http://www.storyforhisglory.com).