Part 4 of Event Zero.
Yuri Hrab sighed as he parked the sedan between a rusted Nissan pickup with the flatbed torn off and a neon-blue Humvee with little gold daggers hanging from the mirror.
It’s going to be one of those days.
The row-houses that weren’t boarded up or burnt out looked like they wanted to be left alone. The concrete stairs were chipped from neglect and bullets. Bars covered windows on each floor. Doors were made of metal.
Hrab checked the address again on his glasses.
Four young men were sitting on the stoop. Their pants were baggy enough to conceal shotguns if they wanted to stick them in there. There was a near empty 40 ounce bottle of beer on the lower step. The smell of marijuana from the previous night still clung to their jackets. It was 9:00 am.
He adjusted his glasses on his nose, the surreptitious motion activated a basic thermal imaging system and general health scan. It wasn’t a 100% solution, especially in the daylight, but it gave a high confidence result. He finished adjusting and turned the scan off. To outsiders it would have looked like the reflection from the sun.
“Gentlemen, good morning.”
The presumptive leader of the group puffed up and offered a “What the fuck do you want?” that was weekend by the previous night’s efforts at having a good time.