Sean thought he had left all the sneaking and hiding in camoflauge duty behind when he left contracting for the Feds with Blac

Sean thought he had left all the sneaking and hiding in camoflauge duty behind when he left contracting for the Feds with Blackwater Security behind six years ago. He thought he could have a simple life as a county sheriff. But his mercenary past had come back to haunt him. Once a month for five days, like every other cop in Arizona, he had to go down and work the border. Forty hours being the official law enforcement officer for the squad of M-4 armed National Guard troopers he was assigned to.

He hated border patrol duty. It was so utterly hopeless. If you blocked one border area, people would come up another. It wasn't like they had much choice. If people in Latin America wanted to eat, they had to come North. There was only a thin line of Mexico that was above the 30th parallel. Everything else in Latin America was suddenly thrown back into the 19th century. Yet the population was so much larger and the per capita food needs were so much higher that it was impossible to feed the people with 19th century technology.

The Cubans and the Venezuelans had it so unfairly easy. They could just claim that they were freedom seeking victims of oppression under a totalitarian communistic regime and they were automatically given asylum. But people who were only victims of oppression from totalitarian fascistic regimes were denied asylum and starvation was not considered as a valid reason for granting asylum.

He sat a few hundred metres from the border, with the rest of the group. They scanned the monitors and watched the tall border walls with night vision scanners, but they knew it didn't do a bit of good. The millions of poor in South America always did something new. The coyotes that had smuggled a hundred in the back of a cargo van now were running boats a hundred kilometres miles off the coasts, well in international waters, and then dumping them over board and telling them which way to swim. Many were making it, but the number of bodies washing up showed how many didn't. It was sickening.

And yet he sat, silently obeying his orders. He didn't want to create waves for Molly. He didn't want to be known as being disloyal to the new Fortress America.

It was a dark, moonless winter night. Everyone was on extra alert, staring through their night vision gear at the border. Everyone except Sean. He just struggled to keep from laughing. The recruits that were with him were green, idealistic yahoos. They meant well but had no experience with the real world. They all thought they were alone that night. Sean knew they weren't. As they watched the border, he could feel the ones watching them. He didn't know exactly where, but they were there, probably relaying his position by text messaging. The Coyotes would go to an area where nobody was watching, or better yet wait until a night when Eta Carinae was high and all the high tech surveillance and communications gear was down. Thundering, miserable nights when Eta Carinae was high were best. The border patrol would stay put in their shelters, deaf, blind and dumb.