|Volume||Into the Forest|
|Starts||May 14, 2014 (22:07:17)|
|Ends||May 15, 2014 (02:22:22)|
Chapter Quote Edit
"We escorted Death up the main aisle." - Richard Rodriguez
The chapter opens up on May 14, 2014 at 22:07:17 in Los Angeles, California. The last three days have been silent for Luther, but he is now presented with a major offer. He is in town with Tweetie when the two of them are approached by a stranger. The man says he works for Teyo and he has something for them. He hands them a phone and Tweetie uses it to converse with someone named Eswin. Afterwards, Tweetie takes the phone and drops it into a black box in the back of his van. Tweetie is careful to switch phones every few weeks, and is the only person Luther trusts to handle phone conversations. Luther points out that the Mexican drug lord El Chapo (Joaquín Guzmán) was brought down after information from his Blackberry was intercepted.
Luther and Tweetie go to Chinatown and they end up at a swap meet. They keep walking around, Tweetie leading, and he brings Luther to a small place filled with computers. They go into the back and log onto one of the computers. Tweetie logs onto Parcel Thoughts and clicks "Noosphere." He finds the profiles of three women who directly work for Teyo: Eulalia Valdez, Calsilda, and Rufina. None of their profile pictures are really them, but rather are just pictures they found on the internet. They change their pictures weekly. Tweetie begins writing down notes on things written on their profiles, and then Luther tells him to figure out who they know. Tweetie tells them that if they get caught by police over posting information on Parcel Thoughts then it will be their own faults.
Luther scans around Parcel Thoughts and other social media sites from time to time to make sure his crew honor his "Never List." The rules of the Never List are this: "never mention drugs, never drop where you been, where you at, where you going, for sure never what you got at, never give names, one reason names stay fake, and never never post real pics." He is certain he will never have to worry about Juarez, Victor, or Tweetie disobeying or slipping up. Piña owns a phone but she also honors this code. While he trusts his crew, Luther knows that mistakes always happen no matter how cautious or prepared someone is, and he wants to be able to control the damage in case anything does happen. They do eventually spot a profile owned by Almoraz, and on that profile there is a link to a YouTube video of him rapping. Chitel so posts every now and then but not quite to the same degree as Almoraz does. Even Lupita has a profile but it is mostly pictures of her fingernails.
They then leave Chinatown and go to Frogtown. Tweetie parts ways with Luther for the night so he recruits Juarez to assist him with the job they need to take care of. They are standing in a parking lot underneath a bridge. They are waiting for someone but the lot is empty when they get there. Luther remains calm but Juarez quickly becomes paranoid. The vehicle they brought with them was not their own car, but instead a truck they are borrowing from Victor's friend Adolfo. They promised Adolfo they would pay him eight thousand dollars if they did not bring the truck back.
Eventually another car pulls up into the parking lot. Three people step out of it and walk up to Luther and Juarez. The driver introduces himself as Memo. The other two stay by their car while Memo starts trying to make a deal with Luther. He wants to buy a large quantity of balloons. The two people waiting by the car pull out a toolbox and show Luther a large amount of money. Luther prepares the amount of balloons Memo requested. All of the balloons are pink. The pink ones seem to be among the strongest and rarest balloons. Juarez can't shake his paranoia, though, and he pulls Luther away from Memo and the others. He insists Memo is an undercover cop. Luther decides to trust Juarez's instincts.
When Luther and Juarez return to Memo and the others, Juarez quickly pulls out a gun and shoots Memo in the chest. He shoots the second person in the back three times. Suddenly lights begin to shine on them and they hear sirens go off. The third person who was with Memo hides behind the car and starts shooting at them. Juarez manages to shoot him in the neck. When more police begin to move in, Luther and Juarez make a run for it. They are forced to leave the balloons behind, as well as the money brought by Memo. Adolfo's truck is also abandoned.
While being pursued, Luther and Juarez run towards a nearby river. They are briefly split up, and during this, Luther is stopped by a cop. The cop aims a gun at Luther and orders him to get down on the ground. Juarez shows up again and shoots the cop in the head. The two of them continue running. They manage to lose the pursing cars at an overpass but a chopper is still following them. They decide to rest in a thick wooded area until the chopper passes over them. Things become silent again after a while of waiting.
The chapter ends on May 15, 2014 at 02:22:22.