Mission Improbable (Tracy Bullit 2)

I know I said that Keeping Secrets was most likely going to be a one-shot story, but happily, I had more ideas. If you haven’t read the first story, I’d recommend reading that first, but it’s not absolutely necessary to understand what’s going on in this story. Also, the title is still just a temporary one. If I get a better idea later, I might change it.


Mission Improbable

“Shit!” Tracy looked out of the window of her van. Big, fat raindrops splattered against the windscreen.

“What’s the matter Häschen?” Kat’s voice on the other end of the phone line asked.

"Rain. “That’s going to make flying harder.” A single one of those big drops could upset the balance of Tracy’s little drone. It would also make audio surveillance next to impossible.

Lightning flashed somewhere behind the car, illuminating the trees in front of the car briefly. The thunder that followed only moments later drowned out whatever Kat said.

“What was that?” Tracy put Kat on speaker while she climbed around the seats to the back of the van.

“I said ‘just be careful’. I wouldn’t want to take care of a zapped, little bunny. You’re fussy enough when you’re just wet.”

Tracy felt a blush creep up her neck.

“Kat,” Tracy pleaded, the whining tone painfully clear even to herself.

God, I sound like a four-year-old.

“Oh come on,” Kat said. “It’s not like there’s anyone else in your car with you.”

“How do you know.?”

“Well, is there?”

“No,” Tracy admitted. She was struggling to find the neck hole inside her dark grey rain poncho. The stiff plastic of the poncho crackled slightly with static electricity as she pulled it down. The mesh of hair-thin metal wires inside the plastic would hide and distort Tracy’s heat signature, making her much harder to see with infra-red cameras. She wasn’t expecting anybody to be using that, but if she had to be somewhere in person, she was not going to take any chances.

Tracy picked the phone up from the suitcase holding most of her surveillance gear. “Anyway, are you doing anything tonight?” Tracy didn’t actually hold her breath; at least not physically. She always felt awkward asking if Kat was free. Asking a dominatrix if she’s working felt to Tracy like asking ‘are you fucking someone’. It wasn’t like she was jealous when Kat was seeing clients. Well, maybe a little. She knew what she was getting into when she and Kat started… dating?

No, that wasn’t the word she’d use. Maybe ‘seeing each other’? No, that didn’t seem right either. They weren’t two high-schoolers making out between classes. ‘Sleeping together’ didn’t feel right either, although it was true in the most literal sense.

Tracy was so lost in her search for the right term that she missed Kat’s answer. She shook her head to dismiss the thoughts.

“What was that? You dropped out there for a second,” Tracy bluffed.

“I said I have a client all night. Sorry.”

Tracy sighed. “Okay.” She had hoped that she could snuggle up to Kat after having had to be out in the rain. Even if it was only for a few hours. Sleeping like that was so much more restful than sleeping alone.

“Aww. Were you hoping for some snuggles after you were done?”

Tracy suddenly realised something. “All night, you said? Are they there now?”

“Relax Häschen. It’s not like they can hear you.”

“Still, you know I hate it when we talk like this when you have other people there.”

“You didn’t seem to mind last week when Jessie and Uncle Dieter had us over for dinner.”

Tracy sighed again, almost rolling her eyes at Kat. “That’s different and you know it. They think we’re… you know, dating.” Tracy cringed at the word. It wasn’t like they hadn’t gone on dates. But there was a big difference between ‘going on dates’ and ‘dating’. At least in Tracy’s mind.

“We can have breakfast,” Kat suggested. “Or maybe lunch. I don’t know how late it’ll be before I get some sleep.”

“Mmm-yeah. Breakfast sounds nice. Surprise me.” Tracy knew that Kat could hear her smile. “Do you want me to wear my…” Tracy hesitated, “you know…”

Kat laughed. “You can say ‘diaper’ Häschen. It iss not a naughty verd.” She said the last sentence with an exaggerated German accent that made Tracy smile.

“I know. It just feels weird to say it.”

“You know, it’s funny. You have more trouble saying the word than you have actually wearing them.”

“Yeah, yeah. It’s hilarious,” Tracy said dismissively.

“Scheiße, I have to go,” Kat said as there was some noise in the background that Tracy couldn’t identify. “Tomorrow, wear your diapers if you want to. Or not. We’ll figure something out. Bye.”

“Uh, bye,” Tracy said, but Kat had already hung up. “…I guess.” She put away the phone and opened the car door, looking out into the downpour. Even before before stepping outside, she imagined she could feel a greasy trickle down the back of her neck. Tracy grabbed her camera and checked the batteries.

Almost fully charged.

Before she slipped the strap over her head, Tracy made sure the waterproof casing was properly closed.

Wouldn’t want foggy lenses that I can’t reach.

Tracy stepped out of the van and found herself ankle-deep in a puddle that hadn’t been there when she parked.

“Damn.” Tracy stepped out of the puddle and shook her feet to get some of the water out of her shoes.

“Not exactly the greatest start,” she said to no-one in particular. Grabbing a black, plastic briefcase and a small tripod, Tracy closed the door and locked it. The alarm activated with a quiet chirp. Then she trudged off into the bushes.

Half an hour later, Tracy was in place. She was crouching in a bush halfway up a small hill. Below her was a footpath with a metal bench and a trash can with a couple of impressive dents. Tracy absent-mindedly wondered what could have made the dents. They looked too big to be from bikes, but the footpath was too narrow and twisting for cars. ATVs maybe?

Tracy checked her watch: A quarter to one. In fifteen minutes, that trash can was going to be one of the richest trash cans in the city. Tracy shifted her weight, moving her knee out of the small brook that had appeared only minutes after she had settled down in her bush. Her mind drifted back to earlier that day.


Tracy had been in her office, working on the final report to a client when there was a quiet knock on the door. Tracy checked the camera outside the door. Kat had insisted she install the camera and reinforce the office door after a case had gone badly, in a death-threat kind of way a couple of months earlier.

Outside the door was a woman and man. They didn’t look like a threat, so Tracy pressed the button to unlock the door. The lock buzzed and clicked and after a few moments, the couple entered. Tracy pushed her keyboard aside and motioned to the chairs in front of the desk.

“Please, have a seat.”

Tracy found her trusty notepad and pencil. Then she pushed the phone to the middle of the desk.

“You don’t mind if I record this…” Tracy paused and studied the couple of a few moments. The man was sitting with his eyes lowered, turned slightly towards the woman, who in turn was sitting back in the chair with her legs crossed, looking relaxed and confident. Tracy figured that she was the one in charge. "… Ms?

“Wilford,” the woman said. “Nalah Wilford. And I’d rather you didn’t. I don’t want any of this coming out.”

“It’s only to help my note-taking, but if you’re uncomfortable with it…” Tracy picked up her phone and put it away.

“OK Ms Wilford, what’s the problem?” Tracy tried to sound professional.

“Marc here fucked up,” She answered matter-of-factly.

Tracy looked from one to the other and back and again. “I’m going to need a little more details than that.”

Ms Wilford looked coolly at Marc. “Well? Tell her what you did.”

“There was this email, and I thought it was from Miss Nalah and I clicked on the link in it and-”

“And the idiot opened a back-door into the system. Look, I couldn’t care less that they hijacked his webcam and caught him undressing and getting into position for me under the desk in my office.”

“I-” Tracy began, a little taken aback.

“I do, however, care that they caught me on camera as well. And as if that wasn’t enough, they encrypted the entire system, locking us out.”

“And let me guess, they want money to unlock the system and not release the video.”

“Yeah, fifteen thousand.” Ms Wilford said it like it was more an annoyance than a serious sum of money.

“Not to point out the obvious, but isn’t this a police matter? Or at the very least, your IT department? Why hire someone like me?”

“If we use yesterday’s backups we lose all the logs from a crucial deposition, plus we’d look incompetent.” Ms Wilford glared at Marc. “And going to the police wouldn’t get the files back in time for the trial either. I figured the simplest solution is to just pay them.”

“Okay? But then why hire me?”

“Don’t get me wrong, I’m not OK with what happened. I want you to find out who did this so I can make them regret it. And as for why you specifically? You came highly recommended from a business associate of mine. A Mrs Devereux?”

“I see,” Tracy said, trying to sound neutral since she didn’t know how much Ms Wilford knew about the case in question. “So, fifteen thousand. I’m assuming they didn’t want to meet in some back alley with a suitcase full of cash.”

“Unfortunately not. They wanted the money in some stupid cryptocurrency, Ding-Dough, on a thumb drive, and they wanted Marc to drop it off at a specific location at 1 am. tonight.”

“So, in…” Tracy checked her watch, “…eleven hours or so. I’m assuming they gave the whole ‘don’t contact the police’ warning or something like that. Will getting raising the money be a problem?”

Ms Wilford shook her head.

Tracy put down her pencil. “Well, since they’ve been smart about the money, our best bet is probably to follow the actual thumb drive once your husband makes the drop and hopefully identify the blackmailers that way.”

“Oh please! Like I’d marry him.” Ms Wilford rolled her eyes. “I deal with enough fucked-up marriages at work. Marc’s my personal assistant.”

And your executive stress relief toy, it sounds like.

Tracy opened her desk drawer and rooted around in it for a couple of seconds before bringing out a bright yellow thumb drive. “Use this for the money,” she said and handed it to Ms Wilford. “Now, this is a rush job so I’m going to have to charge extra.”

“I expected as much. Camille told me the rates you charged her; I’ll double it.”

That was more than Tracy had been planning on charging, so she simply nodded. "I also have a couple more conditions. First of all: My job is to follow the thumb drive, or the information on it, to the blackmailers without them realising it. That is, until they’ve given you the password to unlock your system. So until that happens, you’re going to follow the blackmailer’s instructions to the letter. Agreed?

“Sounds reasonable.”

“Also, whatever you’re planning for whoever did this, I’m not involved. Once I’ve identified the blackmailers, my job is over.”

“I wouldn’t have it any other way.” Ms Wilford’s smile sent a chill down Tracy’s spine. It was like a cat watching a canary with a broken wing. Tracy decided she didn’t want to get on Ms Wilford’s bad side.

They spent the next twenty minutes getting all the details Tracy felt she needed. After Ms Wilford and Marc had left, Tracy started planning. She would park a drone by the drop and follow whoever came to pick it up.

Tracy opened the box of drones and checked the battery levels of the one with best range. It only had a basic camera and microphone, but it was small enough to escape notice. After checking the map of the park where the drop-off was, she found that the drone should be able to follow the thumb drive to any of the parking lots in the immediate area. After that, it was just a matter of recording the licence plate and the traffic cameras would do the rest of the job for her.

The thumb drive even had a tracker that she could activate remotely in case she lost track of it. If whoever picked it up scanned the drive for bugs, they wouldn’t find it until it was too late. Tracy had to admit that she had a similar tracker on her car keys and that she had had to use it more than once.

Content that all the technical preparations were done, Tracy went to bed. If she was going to pull an all-nighter, she should start out well rested.


Movement on the path below brought Tracy back to the present. Somebody halfway hidden by a big, green and white golf umbrella, approached the bench. It was Marc. He looked around nervously.

“Come on,” Tracy mouthed silently. “Don’t get creative. Just make the delivery and walk away.” Marc fumbled in his pocket and brought out Tracy’s yellow thumb drive. Tracy zoomed in on Marc with her camera as he kept fiddling with the thumb drive. He was turned halfway away from her so she couldn’t see exactly what he was doing.

“Come on,” Tracy kept whispering inaudibly. “Be a good, little executive fuck toy and do what you’re supposed to.” As though he had heard her, Marc turned and looked in Tracy’s direction. She froze, trusting her poncho, the darkness and the distance to hide her. That, and the fact that she had told Marc and Ms Wilford she would be using her drones to track the drive. Eventually Marc looked away. Tracy slowly brought her hand back to her camera and zoomed out a little, letting it catch the area surrounding the bench.

Eventually Marc stopped looking around. He looked down to his hand where the thumb drive was before tossing it into the trash can. Then he hurried off down the path where he had come from. Then there was just the almost sizzling, white noise of the rain pouring down. Tracy imagined she could hear a plink, plink whenever the faint, yellow street light flickered, but other than that, nothing happened.

Suddenly, there was a flash and an almost immediate, deafening crash of thunder as the lightning struck somewhere nearby. Tracy thought she could see something in the bushes by the footpath. She switched the camera to thermographic, turning everything dark grey and black; everything except the bright heat bloom of somebody hiding in one of the bushes.

“Now what do we have here?” She zoomed in, trying to get a good picture. Unfortunately, thermographics was never made for identification purposes, so the face remained an unrecognisable white blur.

Tracy was so focused on the person in the bushes that she almost missed the movement by the trash can. Tracy turned the camera back and switched off the thermographics when she saw no heat signatures. Something reminiscent of a bug the size of a small plate was scuttling out of the trash, holding Tracy’s thumb drive in its pincers. It fell from the opening, but instead of hitting the ground, it rose with the unmistakable whine of high-speed rotors.

Shit, they’re using a drone for the pickup.

Tracy fumbled in her pocket for the remote control for the tracker. She pressed the button and the little light on the remote switched from red to a blinking yellow.

“What the…” Tracy pressed the button again, but the light stubbornly refused to change to green.

“Shitshitshitshitshitshitshitshitshit.” Tracy reached for the briefcase on the ground next to her. She opened it and lifted the largest of her camera drones out from its foam housing. Unlike its smaller cousins, this one was capable of operating without Tracy having to steer it manually. In one fluid motion, Tracy switched it on and threw it up in the air.

The rotors started up almost immediately and it rose up with a buzzing sound like the world’s biggest wasp. Tracy hap programmed it to follow the signal from the thumb drive, and failing that, it would try to track movement below. The amount of rain, however, made the latter option a long shot. She pressed the button on the remote one more time, but the light still didn’t turn green.

“So much for plan B,” Tracy grumbled. She rose, leaving the briefcase and tripod with the camera, and ran down the hill towards the person hiding in the bushes. Whoever they were, they were her last chance of finding out what was going on.

Tracy half ran, half slid down the hill, branches and twigs scratching noisily against her poncho. The figure in the bushes looked in her direction, obviously having heard her. There was a flash and a sharp crack of thunder.

No, not thunder. A gunshot. The fucker’s shooting at me?

Tracy wanted to turn around, or hide behind something, anything. But her legs, apparently having made a deal with her momentum, just kept going. There was another shot, the bullet hitting the trash can with a metallic clunk.

The figure turned and tried to run, but slipped on the mud and fell. The gun landed in a puddle, out of reach of both of them. Tracy dove forward, landing with her elbow in the man’s stomach in a move that would have made a pro wrestler proud. The man folded up, coughing and moaning. Tracy picked herself up and was about to give him kick when she recognised him.

“Marc?!?”

Marc was too busy gasping for breath to answer.

“What the hell are you doing here?”

“Help-helping Mistress Nalah,” he wheezed.

Tracy had a sinking feeling. “What did you do?”

Marc rolled over on his side and tried to sit up. “Tracking bug,” he coughed, “on… on the drive.”

“Gimme.”

“Wha…?” Marc asked with a bewildered look.

“The bug tracker. Now!” Tracy demanded, trying to sound extra bossy in the hopes it would speed things up.

Marc fumbled in his pockets and held out a small, cracked, plastic rectangle. Tracy grabbed it, noting silver company logo above the small screen.

TeraTech Electronics: Fantastic range, but shitty transmitter shielding. That could explain my tracking problems.

Tracy left Marc in the mud and ran back towards her equipment.

“Call ‘client one’,” Tracy told her phone as she struggled up the slippery slope.

Ms Wilford answered almost immediately. “Yes?”

“Bullit here. Is the money still there?”

“Yes, it still all here,” Ms Wilford started. “No, wait. They just moved it.”

“Password?” Tracy suppressed a curse as she slipped and almost fell.

“Not yet. Do you have them?”

“No. Still working on it,” Tracy said between gasps of breath as she reached the briefcase and knelt down next to it. “There was a complication. I’ll call you back.”

Tracy hung up and pulled out her pocket knife. She used the screwdriver to pry open the casing of Marc’s tracker, cutting a small gash in her hand when it slipped. Ignoring the stinging, Tracy examined the circuitry inside, quickly finding the receiver and reading its frequency from the little sticker on it. She dropped the tracker and grabbed the drone remote. The screen showed a map of the park and the drone’s search pattern. Tracy input the new tracking frequency and the drone immediately picked it up, abandoning its previous pattern and homing in on its new signal.

Tracy’s phone rang.

“What do you mean ‘There was a complication’?” Ms Wilford asked sharply when Tracy picked up.

“I thought we agreed that you were to follow the drop-off instructions, or did I misunderstand something?” Tracy glanced back down to where she had left Marc, but he was gone.

“Yeah, that’s the deal.”

“So what’s the deal with Marc sabotaging my plans by putting a cheap and obvious bug on my thumb drive?”

“He did WHAT?!? Where is that little fucker? Is he still there? Marc! If you can hear this, don’t bother coming to work tomorrow!”

There was a beep from Tracy’s remote control indicating that the drone was approaching it’s target. Tracy switched from the map to the camera view and the small screen showed a parking lot. There were maybe a dozen cars; no lights or movement.

“Look, I still have a couple of tricks up my sleeve. With a little luck, whoever they are didn’t notice Marc’s bug, or if they did, they’re going to be greedy and ask for more since you tried to track the drive. Either way, we still have a shot at finding them. it’s just going to be a little trickier and take a little longer.”

“Just. Find. Them.” Ms Wilford hung up.

Tracy left the drone in a holding pattern above the lot and picked up her equipment. Marc had already scurried off to wherever he stayed when he wasn’t under Ms Wilford’s desk, leaving the gun in the puddle where he had dropped it. Tracy picked it up before heading for the car. She didn’t like guns, but leaving it for someone else to find wasn’t an option.

Too many irresponsible idiots running around; and not just Marc.

By the time Tracy reached the car, she was panting and sweating, cursing the poncho for trapping so much of her body heat. She put the camera and the drone remote on the passenger seat. Then she pulled off the poncho and threw it in the back along with the empty briefcase. For a little while, she just stood there, letting the rain cool her down. Then, before she got too wet, she got in and started the engine.

The drive to the parking lot didn’t take long; maybe ten or fifteen minutes. Tracy’s attention was divided between the road, which was wet and slippery, but thankfully empty, and the screen showing her drone’s bird’s eye view of the parking lot. Only one car had left the lot since she started driving, and she had a good picture of the car and its licence plates. Hopefully the cameras in the area would help her get a picture of the driver. The thumb drive still hadn’t moved, but Tracy hadn’t had time to check if the car, or its driver, had been anywhere near it.

Tracy picked up her camera and used it to quickly scan the lot. No heat sources; human or engines. As the drone slowly descended, Tracy saw the thumb drive in a puddle. She got out and carefully picked it up. To Marc’s credit, the tracker dot that he’d put on on the drive at least matched its colour, but it was still obvious if you knew what to look for. And Tracy had no reason to think the blackmailers didn’t. They had been smart about avoiding identification; cryptocurrency payment, drone pickup and quick transfer of of the money. So Tracy doubted there would be fingerprints on the drive, but maybe she was lucky and they had screwed up. She put it in a paper bag and put the paper bag in a plastic box of rice she kept in the car precisely to dry out wet electronics. Even if there weren’t physical fingerprints, there would be electronic ones.

Tracy picked up the drone and put it in the back of her van before climbing in herself. She started the computer and began scanning for available wifi networks. Again, Tracy doubted that the blackmailers would have used an open network when they transferred the money, but at the moment, long shots was pretty much all she had.

Thanks a lot, Marc.

At least there weren’t too many networks in the area. Tracy shuddered to think what the list would have looked like if this had happened downtown. Since pretty much everything in the area was closed for the night, there shouldn’t be too much computer traffic to sort through.

Tracy loaded a sniffer program to copy the details about the last twenty minute’s traffic on the open networks. She noted down the names and details of the protected networks so she could come back the next day to check them out.

She debated whether she should have the last can of energy drinks while driving home. On the one hand, it was late and drinking it might keep her up even later, but on the other hand, she was thirsty and really tired. The adrenaline rush of tackling Marc had been a great pick-me-up, but the problem was that as soon as it wore off, it seemed to take with it all the caffeine stored in her system. Concern for her fellow drivers won, and at the next red light, Tracy opened the can and emptied it before the light turned green. She grimaced at the taste. She would have preferred the original what-our-chemical-engineers-think-strawberries-taste-like flavour, but the store had been sold out and all they had had left were the we’ll-pretend-this-tastes-like-kiwi-but-all-you-get-is-a-furry-tongue flavoured ones. But caffeine was caffeine, and hopefully, drinking it on an empty stomach would mean that it’d kick in quickly.

By the time Tracy reached home, she had gone gone through most of what she called the energy drink caffeine cycle. She had seen individual air molecules vibrating, had tingly fingers and a pounding pulse. Now she was crashing; her stomach was grumbling and her brain itched. She parked in the parking garage across the street and made her way back to the office, being eternally thankful for her landlord having fixed the elevator.

Tracy stumbled through the door. It was a struggle to even open the boxes with her equipment so it would dry while she slept. There was only one thing she wanted to do before getting out of her damp clothes and falling into bed. Tracy opened her fridge and grabbed a bottle of water. She knew better than going to bed thirsty. She peeled off her clothes, lay back on the bed and put on a diaper before wrapping herself in her blanket. After all, she also knew better than going to sleep with a rapidly filling bladder without taking some precautions.

2 Likes

Ding-dough? Oh dear :slight_smile:

It’s nice to see another Tracy story though.

Hey !

Great to see Tracy and Kate back. I really like this universe.

Hope to read more soon.

When Tracy woke up, sunlight was streaming in through the blinds, there was a warm body hugging her from behind and her diaper felt swollen and damp. All things considered, not a bad way to start a day. As she stirred, one of the arms encircling her reached up to brush the hair away from her face.

“Good morning,” Kat purred in Tracy’s ear.

“Mmm.” Tracy smiled and wriggled closer.

“Did you have a good night?”

“Mmm-yeah, and no.”

“Oh?”

“Ransomware attack. They wanted me to ID the attackers. Should have been easy enough.”

“There was a snag?”

“There was a snag.” Tracy sighed.

“What happened?”

Tracy quickly summed up the events of the night before, leaving out the names of Marc and Ms Wilford. When she got to the part about Marc shooting at her, Kat sat up.

“He shot at you?!?”

“Mm-hmm. Good thing he wasn’t hired for his aim.”

“It’s not funny,” Kat said pointedly. “What if he’d hit you. He could have killed you.”

“I know. I just… I don’t know what came over me. All I wanted to do was to duck behind something and hide, but my legs just didn’t want to stop.”

“Stupid legs.” Kat gave Tracy’s thigh a playful, little slap. “And after your little Gus Sonnenberg moment? Then what? Did you find them?”

“Who’s Gus Sonnenberg?”

“A wrestler back before the Second World War. Did a lot of flying tackles.”

Tracy blew a little raspberry at Kat. “You’re such a nerd.”

“Come on, I can just see it. My little bunny jumping up and landing on Bob with a squish, her generously padded butt pinning him to the ground.”

“His name isn’t Bob,” Tracy pointed out. “And I wasn’t wearing my diaper at the time.”

“Oh shush. My version is cuter and more cartoony.” Kat reached down and gave Tracy’s diaper a squeeze. “So if you weren’t wearing your diaper in the rain, why is it wet?”

Kat teasing her like this was nothing new, but it never failed to make Tracy blush.

“Aww, did my little girl wet herself?”

“Yeah,” Tracy admitted in a whisper, hiding her face behind her hands.

“And?”

“Kaaat,” she pleaded.

“You have to saaaaay it,” Kat sang.

“Change me? Please?”

Kat wriggled herself out from under Tracy. “On one condition: That you eat a proper breakfast.”

“Yes, mom.” Tracy rolled her eyes.

“Hey, I mean it. You can’t live on that shit you’re eating.”

“Okay, okay.” Tracy knew better than to continue the discussion. She kicked the blanket aside and felt the warm sunlight on her bare skin. Lying exposed like that, wearing nothing but a diaper, and a wet one at that, would have been unthinkable for Tracy only a few months ago. But Kat had cured her of that. Tracy hated the expression, but one baby-step at a time, they had managed to make her comfortable enough to wear only her diapers. At least in her own bedroom. When she slept over at Kat’s, she would still insist on wearing a comically oversized t-shirt as a night dress.

“You know that if I change you, you’re going to be wearing diapers all day, right?” Kat said in a mock-serious tone. That had been another one of their little rules: If Tracy put the diapers on herself, she was allowed to stop wearing them whenever she wanted. But if she asked Kat do do it, Kat got to be a bossy mom for the rest of the day and keep her in diapers for as long as she felt like.

“Do I have to? I have to go out and talk to people today.”

“Hey, you’re the one who came up with the rule. If you don’t like it, you can always change yourself.”

“But I don’t wanna,” Tracy whined. “I like it better when you do it.”

“Aww. Is my little bunny feeling needy?” Kat stroked Tracy’s cheek.

“Maybe a little.”

Kat smiled and chuckled as she got out of bed. She took Tracy’s hand and helped her up. Tracy felt the diaper sag a little as she stood.

Kat led Tracy to the bathroom which was so small that there was barely enough room for the both of them to be in there at the same time. Kat slowly undid the tapes and pulled the diaper off Tracy, bundling it up and putting it in one of the plastic bags that Tracy had in the bathroom for just that purpose. She had made sure they were different from the ones she used for all her other trash so they’d be harder to trace back to her if anybody went dumpster diving.

“OK Häschen, you get in the shower and get cleaned up, and mommy’ll be waiting in the bedroom with a fresh diaper for you.”

Tracy felt it was a little weird that Kat referred to herself as ‘mommy’ when they were together like this, but Kat seemed to like it. Also, since Kat insisted her clients call her ‘mistress’ or ‘ma’am’, it helped Tracy separate their time together from Kat’s job. Knowing that whatever they had together was different from what her clients had, made it feel even more special.

“Now hop to it Häschen,” Kat said and gave Tracy’s butt a playful, little swat, derailing her train of thought. Then she squeezed past Tracy and left the bathroom.

Tracy stood under the warm spray and felt the water rinse away the sweat and dirt from the night before. She hadn’t realised how grimy and dirty she had been before looking down and seeing what the rain hadn’t managed to wash away.

How did Kat even bear to snuggle up to me like she did?

Eventually Tracy felt clean enough and stepped out of the shower. She quickly dried herself and wrapped a dry towel around herself. It was a little shorter than she would have preferred, barely covering her butt, but Tracy told herself that she probably wouldn’t be wearing it for very long.

When she came out of the bathroom, Tracy saw that Kat had put on a t-shirt and sweat pants and changed the sheets on her bed.

Probably just as well. Those sheets were most likely just as ripe as me.

“Come here sweetie,” Kat purred. When Tracy came closer, she held out her hand.

“Towel,” she said softly, almost whispering.

Tracy knew that it was pointless to argue. She undid the towel and handed it to Kat who spread it out on the bed. Tracy realised that Kat was giving her the whole package deal and not just a quick diaper change.

Standing naked in the middle of the room while Kat finished her preparations felt awkward; more awkward than being diapered by Kat. The feeling of vulnerability that came with being naked in front of someone else was something Tracy doubted she’d ever get over. When Kat was actually putting the diaper on her, she would give Tracy a feeling of just being cared for. It made lying there naked feel completely different from how it felt when she was just standing there, almost like she was on display.

Kat patted the towel and Tracy obediently sat down on it and lay down on her side and rolled over on her back, putting herself dead centre on the bed. She looked to both sides, noted her position and smiled.

I always did have good aim.

“What’s so funny,” Kat asked.

“Oh nothing.”

Kat spread Tracy’s legs and knelt between them, slowly running her hands up the outside of Tracy’s thighs. As her hands moved inwards, Kat scratched Tracy’s pubic stubble with a fingernail and frowned.

“We should take care of that, don’t you think? Itchy babies can get so very cranky.”

Oh shit. She’s in full mommy mode. Definitely not a good night.

Tracy realised that this was something Kat needed as must as she did. She nodded.

“Will you do it?” Tracy asked quietly.

“Of course Häschen. You just lie there. I’ll take care of everything.” Kat crawled backwards off the bed and walked to the bathroom. She returned a minute later with a damp washcloth, a can of shaving foam and a razor.

Kat quickly gave Tracy a pair of foam undies. Then she leaned in close.

“Now hold still my er… my little cream puff. We wouldn’t want any nicks or cuts, would we?”

Kat slowly and carefully ran the razor across Tracy’s skin, removing every trace of stubble. It didn’t take very long, and when she was satisfied with the results, Kat wiped away the leftover foam with a clean corner of the washcloth. Tracy shivered briefly as the newly shaved skin was caressed by an otherwise imperceptible draught.

“There we go. All smooth. Doesn’t that feel better?” Kat’s voice took on a sweetly maternal tone.

“Mm-hmm.”

“No you be a good girl and lie here quietly while I put away these things. Can you do that for me?”

Tracy nodded. Kat disappeared to the bathroom. She stayed in there a while, but when Tracy heard the toilet flush she breathed a little sigh of relief.

At least she’s not in there crying.

That had happened once before, after Kat had had a session with a long-time client who had died shortly thereafter. That night had been when they had found out that letting Kat do her mommy thing to Tracy helped them both deal with the stress of their jobs.

Kat emerged from the bathroom, picked up one of Tracy’s diapers and knelt down between Tracy’s legs again.

“Now let’s get you properly dressed,” she said cheerfully and unfolded the diaper. Tracy lifted her hips to let Kat slide it in under her.

As Kat sprinkled baby powder on Tracy, she gave her inner thigh a little pat with the back of her hand.

“So, after you did your wrestling thing, what happened?”

“I followed Marc’s signal to a parking lot, but I was too late.”

“So that’s Bob’s name.” Kat smiled and pulled the diaper up between Tracy’s legs. Tracy suppressed a groan as she realised what she had revealed. “Let’s hope nobody entrusts you with state secrets.”

Kat taped the diaper in place and crawled off the bed, putting the baby powder into the plastic box under the bed where Tracy kept her diapers. Next she piled the blanket and pillows up in a heap at the head of the bed and sat down in front of it, leaning back. She spread her legs and patted her thigh. Tracy wriggled her way up between Kat’s legs until she was lying with her head against Kat’s stomach.

Kat began stroking Tracy’s damp hair. “So, if you were too late to the parking lot, who are you talking to today?”

Tracy smiled and leaned back. Despite the heat of the bedroom and the sunshine, the warmth from Kat’s body felt wonderful. “Mmmm, right now I seriously want to say ‘nobody’. Can’t we just stay like this all day”

“Now, now. We can’t have you shirking your responsibilities like that. Now tell me who you’re talking to.”

Tracy sighed. “Just the companies around the lot. I’m thinking maybe the blackmailers hitch-hiked on one of their networks. So I need to get a look at their logs for last night.”

“I think I smell a sneaky plan.” Kat chuckled. “Either that or…” Kat reached down and patted Tracy’s diapered crotch.

Tracy closed her eyes. “Mmm, they’re about to be visited by an agent for an obscure law enforcement agency.”

“Sounds like I’m going to have to come along to make sure you don’t get into trouble. And besides, who knows when you might need a change.”

“Kaaaat,” Tracy whined, knowing full well it wouldn’t work. But she still felt that her pride required the attempt.

“Isn’t pretending to be a cop is illegal?”

Tracy grinned. “Only if you actually claim to be a cop. If they only assume it, you’re not technically breaking the law.”

“Oh you’re a sneaky, little bunny.”

“A sneaky, little bunny with a official-looking ID-card,” Tracy added.

“And is the sneaky, little bunny hungry?”

“Mm-hmm.”

Kat reached down next to the bed and brought up a plastic box. She placed it on Tracy’s chest and pulled the lid off. Tracy tried to get a better look at what was inside, but Kat put a forearm across her chest to keep her from moving.

“Now don’t do that or you’ll spill it. Food goes in your mouth, not on the sheets.” Kat lifted a carrot stick out of the box and dipped it in some kind of creamy dip before feeding it to Tracy.

“Like it?” Kat asked as she picked up a second carrot stick and ate it.

“Mm-hmm.” Tracy nodded while she chewed.

“Better than those terrible energy bars, right?”

Tracy wrinkled her nose. “Mmmyeah, they’re yucky. But carrots don’t taste so great after ten hours in a hot ca-mmmph.” Kat interrupted her by shoving a new carrot stick into her mouth.

“That’s no excuse for not eating properly. Sounds like I’m going to have to keep an eye on you and those bad habits of yours for longer than just today.”

Tracy looked up at Kat and rolled her eyes. Kat only smiled in return and fed Tracy a piece of something yellow with a slightly peppery taste. For a couple of minutes they didn’t say anything. Kat kept feeding Tracy and slowly stroking her hair. Eventually box was empty and Kat just wrapped both arms around Tracy and held her close.

“Tough night?” Tracy asked. They had always been able to talk about what was wrong, although Kat sometimes used her maternal role to talk about things as if talking to a child. Tracy found it a little weird, but at the same time oddly comforting. Kat’s silence today, however, worried her.

“Yes and no,” Kat answered after a long silence. “I ran into someone I didn’t know was in town while I was out with my client. And she didn’t realise I was working before things got… really awkward.”

Tracy grimaced.

“I don’t really want to talk about it,” Kat continued. “At least not now. OK?”

Tracy nodded.

“Good.” Kat gave the top of Tracy’s head a kiss. “So, time to fill in your new partner about the case. Who are we working for? And did they manage to unlock their computers? Your clients, I mean.”

Tracy shrugged. “No idea. They might not like that Marc tried to track them, so maybe they’ll demand more, or maybe just not give them the passwords out of pure spite.”

“But you tracked them too,” Kat pointed.

“Yeah, but I’m good at hiding it. But anyway, I’ll talk to Ms Wilford later today, so I’ll find out if they’ve been in touch again.”

“So for the moment we’re working as if nothing has changed. Computers still locked.”

“And sex tape still ready to be revealed.” Tracy added.

“There’s a sex tape too? Do tell.”

“I haven’t seen it, obviously. But apparently the blackmailers used the webcam on Marc’s computer to catch his providing Ms Wilford with some… executive stress relief.”

“Oooo. A bit of secretary action? Naughty.” Kat wiggled her eyebrows suggestively, making Tracy chuckle.

“Did you at least get a look at it?” Kat asked.

“Nah. And I wasn’t about to ask her for a copy.”

Tracy had to admit to herself that she was a little curious about the sex tape. Marc wasn’t an unattractive man and the idea of him kneeling naked under a desk was an appealing thought. Although in Tracy’s mind, Kat was seated at the desk instead of Ms Wilford; and Marc had morphed into the only one of Kat’s clients she had ever met: A nameless woman that had looked a lot like Tracy.

It wasn’t like Tracy wanted to be the woman under the desk, but she would like to watch.

“I’d offer you a penny for your thoughts,” Kat said, interrupting Tracy’s train of thought. “But I’m pretty sure I can guess.”

Tracy blushed, and when Kat saw it she continued. “I guess we’d better get moving if we’re going to track down your porn.”

“It’s not my-”

“Oh shush. Do you have another one of those ID cards?”


Hopefully the next part will be done before the end of the year, but I make no promises.

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It just goes to show that vacations are good for writing. I managed to finish this part in record time. If things go according to plan, and work doesn’t come in the way, the next part should be ready towards the end of January.


Tracy steeled herself before opening the car door. The comfortably warm morning had turned into a miserably hot and muggy day. She was feeling sweaty despite the air conditioning in Kat’s car. The grey pantsuit she was wearing didn’t help. The fabric felt itchy and stiff compared to the cotton and synthetics she usually wore, but it did make her look more official; more like a government employee. In addition to the uncomfortable clothes, her diaper felt hot and clammy, even though she hadn’t used it. At least not yet.

Tracy looked over at Kat, who looked infinitely more comfortable in a crisp, black suit and tie. Her usually messy hair was slicked back and she looked more like an agent in some shadowy government agency that shouldn’t be named, than the semi-legal drug-dealer and part time dominatrix she was. A part of Tracy’s mind wondered if the suit was one of her ‘work’-outfits, while another part didn’t want to know the answer to that question.

“How many more?” Kat asked. She sounded like she was bored and beginning to regret tagging along.

“Only two more.” Tracy tried to sound more cheerful than she was. If Kat was bored, she might decide to make things more interesting by embarrassing Tracy in some subtle way that would go unnoticed by everyone else, but would still make her feel incredibly self-conscious.

“I still can’t believe they give you the info, just like that.”

Tracy grinned. “The whole trick is to have the right attitude. You have to… sort of give off this air of entitlement. Like when you ask questions, you expect them to be answered immediately and respectfully; when you ask them to do something, you expect immediate compliance.”

Kat grinned and arched an eyebrow. “Are you sure you’re not a closet domme?”

“Fuck you,” Tracy rolled her eyes at Kat.

Kat kept grinning. “Is that supposed to be an insult or a to-do list?”

Tracy sighed. “Can you at least try to take this seriously?”

“Yes ma’am. Absolutely ma’am.” Kat quipped back and opened the car door.

The outside heat overwhelmed the air conditioning and forced Tracy out as well. She stood and adjusted her jacket. She knew her diaper was thin enough not to cause a noticeable bulge, but it still felt huge.

“Ready?” Tracy took a deep breath and tried to shift her attitude to ‘I-expect-immediate-compliance’.

“Yeah. Let’s just get this over with.” Kat put on her sunglasses. “I’m beginning to think that your idea of staying in bed wasn’t so bad.”

Tracy didn’t answer. She just gave a little smile and walked towards the entrance to the ambitiously named ProtoDev Global.

The door was locked, but when Tracy knocked on the glass, the woman at the front desk looked up from her screen and buzzed them in. Tracy stepped inside the blessedly cool front office.

“Yes? How can I help you?” the woman asked. She looked at Kat who had taken up position by the front door and stood at a parade rest that would have made a drill sergeant weep with pride.

"Ah, “We’re with the Internet Data Integrity and Oversight Division.” Tracy flashed her ID, making sure her thumb was covering the name of her fictitious agency.

“I.D.I.O.D.?” the secretary asked hesitantly.

Tracy sighed and rolled her eyes. “Yes yes, make the jokes and get it out of your system. I’m just glad they didn’t find a word beginning with T instead of Division.”

“Treaty?” the woman suggested.

“Not. Helping,” Tracy replied icily. “Look, we need to speak to whoever’s in charge of your IT-department.”

“That’d be me,” the woman said.

“Right. Last night someone used a network in this area for some activities that I’m not at liberty to discuss. I would appreciate it if you could check to see if there was any unusual traffic on your network between one and one-fifteen last night.”

“Don’t you need a warrant for that kind of information?”

Tracy took a deep breath. “How many networks do you think you can access from here?.”

“A lot?”

“Yeah. And if I want to root through their records, I need a separate warrant for every single network. Do you have any idea how much paperwork I have to fill out for every single one of those warrants?”

Tracy leaned on the desk and spoke quietly. “I’m not asking you to give me the data. I just want to find out if there’s any point to filling out all that paperwork. If they didn’t use your network, that’s one less warrant to fill out.”

“Is that legal?”

“Technically, yes. After all, you’re not giving me the data, you’re just checking for suspicious activity. And if you happen to find anything, you’re just being a concerned citizen by letting me know that I should get a warrant. Or, if it’s OK with your legal department, you could give me the data. That would probably be the least disruptive course of action. For your business, I mean.” Tracy glanced back at Kat who had barely moved a muscle. Her living statue act was really quite unnerving.

“I have to check on some things. Do you mind waiting a couple of minutes?”

“Not at all.”

Tracy watched the woman disappear through the door to the back of the building. She leaned forward and glanced surreptitiously at the computer. She hadn’t locked it before leaving. Tracy looked around for surveillance cameras. Not seeing any, she brought out black box the size of a pack of cards. Tracy nonchalantly put it on the front desk next to the computer and pressed the button on it.

If she’s this careless, why shouldn’t I give myself access.

The button flashed green a couple of times, signalling that it had copied the necessary credentials to access the system. Tracy slipped it back in her jacket pocket and looked back at Kat who still hadn’t moved. A small bead of sweat was making its way down the side of her neck where the sunlight hit it.

Tracy walked over to Kat and leaned against the wall next to her.

“What do you think?” Tracy asked quietly.

“I bet she’ll say that legal insists on a warrant before letting you know anything,” Kat whispered, barely moving her lips

“Oh? What makes you think that?”

“Come on, there’s no way they’re not doing something shady, if not downright criminal back there.”

“I don’t know.”

Kat pulled her sunglasses down her nose and looked at Tracy over the top of them. “Tell you what, I’ll make you a bet. If they let you know anything at all, I’ll take you out for dinner tonight.”

“And if they don’t?”

Kat leaned closer. “You’re still dry, aren’t you?” she whispered.

“Kat,” Tracy hissed.

“If they want a warrant to let you know anything at all, we’re not leaving this building until you’re wet. I’m guessing you should have some ‘reserves’ ready to make that happen.” Kat smiled almost imperceptibly and pushed the sunglasses back up.

Before Tracy had a chance to reply, the door opened and the woman returned. Tracy walked back to the front desk.

“I’m sorry,” she said. “But our attorney says, and let me get this right, ‘if you want to go fishing in our pond, you’d better have a permit’.”

Kat touched her ear. Then she cleared her throat. “Agent Hopper?” she said, “HQ needs us to handle a leak.”

Tracy had to force herself not to roll her eyes. “Seriously?” she asked.

“Orders,” Kat replied curtly and shrugged.

Tracy leaned on the front desk and sighed heavily. She tried to make it sound like a sigh of frustration as she let go.

The diaper was hot and clammy enough that there’s wasn’t even the usual warm rush. Instead, the itching was replaced by a momentary swelling feeling as the trickle increased to a steady stream. For a few moments, Tracy felt the wetness pool between her legs.

How the hell is she able to make me agree to do this with a single word? And actually make me go through with it too. It’s not like I’d ever come up with this on my own. Peeing in my diaper in front of a complete stranger, like I’m a… baby? Is she just doing more mommy-things? Mommy-domming? Mommynatrixing?

Tracy could already feel the diaper begin to swell. In a minute she would be waddling in a very un-governmental-agent manner. She tried to clamp down and stop it so she wouldn’t have a leak, but it was no use. Luckily she hadn’t had a full bladder so the stream soon turned back into a trickle and stopped completely.

“I guess we’d better go handle that leak then,” Tracy said and rolled her eyes. She pushed herself away from the desk and turned to walk to the door. Kat opened it and the blast of hot air from the outside instantly made Tracy feel sweaty. The fresh heat trapped around her crotch didn’t exactly help; nor did the flush of shame from having done what she just did.

“We’ll be back with that warrant later,” Tracy said over her shoulder. “Unless the other companies have what we need,” she added just before the door closed behind them. Making a conscious effort to not waddle, Tracy headed for the car.

“Why do you do that?”

“What do you mean?” Kat opened the passenger side door of the van for Tracy.

“Make me… you know…”

“Well, you are my little baby girl today. And good little girls do what their mommy tell them.”

“Kaaaat.”

“Now, no more whining. You get in the car before I just change you right here in the back seat.”

“Oh you wouldn’t.” Tracy stared at Kat who gave her a steely look.

“Do you want to try me?” Kat said quietly, her voice a velvet glove around an iron fist.

“No,” Tracy admitted meekly.

“Good. Now get in. We have to back to HQ.”

Tracy eased herself inside. She knew it was impossible, but she could have sworn she heard the squelch that she felt when she sat down. Kat got in behind the wheel and put a hand on Tracy’s knee.

“Want to get changed before hitting the last place?”

“Mm-hmm.” Tracy nodded. “I don’t think we’d be very credible as highly trained government agents if I waddled into the office like a duck.”

“A very cute duck though,” Kat pointed out. Tracy just looked back at her.

As they headed back to where they had parked the van, Tracy had to stop herself from trying to slide back and forth in her seat. The humiliation of having been made to wet herself in front of a stranger, didn’t diminish the way her wet diaper felt.

And did I actually get forced into doing it? After all, I could have just said no and just wet myself afterwards. Do I like this? It’s terrifying, but it also feels really good, kind of like the first times I wore diapers…

“Sweetie. No playing with yourself in public.” Kat’s voice interrupted Tracy’s train of thought. Tracy quickly pulled her hand away from her crotch. She looked away, her cheeks burning.

Why do I keep losing control like that when I’m with Kat?

“Does my little girl want a little alone-time before I change her diaper?”

Kat’s question only made Tracy blush even harder. “No,” she mumbled and focused her attention on the street outside.

“Are you embarrassed Häschen?” Kat reached over to stroke Tracy’s hair.

“Why do you make me do this?” Tracy asked, still facing away. “I don’t think it’s fun at all.”

“First of all, I’m not making you wet yourself. You’re choosing to do that yourself. And I’m only telling you to do these things because I think that deep down, you like it.”

“No I don’t,” Tracy protested. “It’s humiliating.”

“That’s what you said about wearing diapers too. Remember?”

“That’s different. I wasn’t wearing them, and certainly not wetting them, in public.”

“Baby steps Häschen, baby steps.” Kat pulled up next to Tracy’s van that they had left parked in a back alley. “OK, we’re here.”

Tracy opened the door and eased herself out of the car, wincing at the squishing sensation as she turned in her seat. She felt the diaper sag a little as she stood and hoped there hadn’t been a leak on the short ride.

Apparently Kat had read her mind again. “Relax. No wet spots,” she said.

Tracy opened the side door of the van and climbed inside. Kat locked her car before joining Tracy in the back of the van. She closed the door, plunging them both into the stuffy gloom.

Kat sat down on the box behind the passenger seat and patted her lap. As Tracy sat down, she spread her legs so Tracy’s diaper could hang between her thighs. Then she wrapped her arms around Tracy’s waist and pulled her closer.

“Are you upset with me?” Kat asked as she rested her chin on Tracy’s shoulder.

“It’s just… Sometimes it feels kind of like you’re working through your frustrations by going all mommy on me. Maybe we could try, I don’t know, talking about it? Instead of having me piss myself in public, I mean.”

“The way you were behaving in the car tells me you did like it; even if you won’t admit it.” Kat played with Tracy’s belt.

“I’m serious Kat. You need to tell me what’s bothering you.” Tracy swatted Kat’s hand away.

Kat sighed heavily. “Fine. But promise you won’t get weird about it all.”

“Kat, I’m sitting on your lap wearing a wet diaper and suspecting you’re about five minutes away from gagging me with a giant pacifier. Who am I to be all judgy?”

“Now that you mention it, a gag like that would be really cute.”

“Kat,” Tracy said as sternly as her position allowed.

“Fine, fine. But can you at least pretend to be my little baby girl and let me change you while we talk?”

Tracy turned and looked at Kat.

“Please?” Kat asked, suddenly sounding very small and insecure.

Most of all, the tone in Kat’s voice just made Tracy want to hug her and say that she didn’t have to talk about it, but she realised that that wouldn’t solve anything and this, whatever it was, was something that needed to be dealt with.

“OK,” Tracy said and rose. She checked that the curtain between the front of the van and the back was completely closed before beginning to undress.

While Tracy took off her jacket and pulled down her pants, Kat spread a blanket out on the floor of the van. She had to push Tracy’s bean bag chair and the suitcase with her drones all the way to the back of the car, but when she was done, there was enough room to lie down.

Tracy, in the meantime, had kicked off her shoes and stepped out of her pants, and stood there wearing only a white shirt and her slightly sagging diaper. When Kat was done with the blanket, she squatted down and crawled onto the blanket before lying down and rolling over on her back. Kat spread Tracy’s legs and knelt between them.

“Aww, is my widdle baby girl wet?” she asked in a high-pitched voice.

“Uh-huh.” Tracy nodded. Then for good measure, she put her thumb in her mouth. “An I’m mot bun ye’,” she said around the finger.

If this doesn’t get her talking, nothing will.

“OK, wha’ happeped las’ nigh’?” Tracy asked.

“Once upon a time,” Kat began while she sat down on the blanket, resting Tracy’s legs across her lap and slowly stroking Tracy’s thigh. "Deep in the forest in a faraway land, was a magical town called… Urwald. And in Urwald lived a little girl named Katarina.

Oh man, she’s really going full out here.

Tracy took the thumb out of her mouth long enough to ask “Was she a pretty princess?”

“They didn’t have princesses in Urwalt, but she was pretty. She had long, blonde hair, and she was smart. Really smart.”

“Just like you?” Tracy asked, playing along.

“Yes, I guess. She loved playing in the woods and learning about all sorts of flowers and plants. Now, one day, a new family came to Urwald. They were a mommy and a daddy and two girls and a boy. They were kind of strange because they all only had one name. The mommy and daddy were called Sierra and Marley, and the children were Rosemary, Coriander and Basil.”

“Are you kidding?!?” Tracy looked at Kat in disbelief. Kat nodded seriously.

“They came from a different country called Oregon, and only the grown-ups knew the language they spoke in Urwald. Well, they knew a little of it, but their children didn’t. So some of the children in Urwald had to teach them.”

“Mm-hmm?” Tracy tried to seem interested as she felt a small trickle of pee escape her to tickle its way down to pool by her butt.

“Now, since Katarina was the same age as Coriander, she got the job to teach her.”

“Makes sense,” Tracy mumbled.

“Coriander was smart too and she learned the language really quickly, and she and Katarina became really good friends. They did everything together. They went exploring in the woods, they played house together; they even practised kissing together.”

“Sounds like they were really good friends,” Tracy said and grinned.

“The best.” Kat smiled wistfully. “In fact, when Katarina was thirteen and Coriander was fourteen, they ran away and planned to get married.”

“Mm-hmm.” Tracy was beginning to see where this was headed. She took Kat’s hand in hers and gently stroked it. “Kat? Did you run into your ex-girlfriend last night?”

“Wife, actually.” Kat looked down.

“Wife?”

“Yeah,” Kat said sheepishly. “Cory and me actually did get married. The priest was high as a kite when he did it, but it’s still valid.”

“And did she know you were… ‘working’?”

“OK, are you done?” Kat gave Tracy’s diaper a little squeeze.

“Kat?” Tracy asked, not letting her change the topic.

“Not at first,” Kat admitted. “But I think she figured it out.”

“Oh?”

“My… date calling me ‘Mistress Katarina’ probably gave it away.”

“I guess. And what did she want? Or was it just random?”

“I don’t know. She did say she wanted to talk later.” Kat crawled back between Tracy’s legs and began undoing the tapes. “Now, is mommy’s little bunny done?” she said, effortlessly slipping back into her mommy role.

I guess I’m not getting anything more out of her yet.

Tracy nodded and lifted her hips to let Kat pull the wet diaper out from under her. Kat spread her legs enough that Tracy’ thighs rested on hers and her butt was hanging in mid-air. The cool touch of the wipes Kat used to clean her sent a shiver up Tracy’s spine. Being cleaned like that was her second favourite thing about wearing diapers.

Kat held up the tube of anti-rash cream. “Do you want the cream?”

“Uh-huh.”

“Use your words Häschen. Do you want the cream?”

“Yes please.”

Kat squirted out a generous amount on Tracy’s mound and began to spread it out, making sure she got into every nook and cranny. When Kat’s slick hand slipped between Tracy’s buttocks, she giggled and twisted.

“Stop fussing sweetie. We’re almost done.” Kat dried her hands and pulled a fresh diaper out of the bag she liked to call Tracy’s diaper bag. She unfolded it and slid it in under Tracy’s butt. Then she eased herself backwards, lowering Tracy onto the diaper.

Kat cocked her head and looked at Tracy’s crotch. “It’s almost a shame to cover this up. Isn’t it, my little, glazed doughnut?”

Tracy just stuck out her tongue. Kat laughed and pulled the diaper up between Tracy’s legs and taped it in place. She added a long strip of duct tape across the front in case she got some of the diaper cream on the tapes.

“There, isn’t that better?” Kat stroked the diaper.

“Mmm-yeah.”

“Good, because you have to get dressed. There’s still one more company that needs a visit from the idiot agents.”

Tracy sighed and rolled over. When she got up on all fours, Kat squeezed her diapered butt, making Tracy let out a surprised squeak.

“Kat!”

“Sorry, Mommy just couldn’t resist. Your little baby butt just looked so adorable.”

Tracy stood and pulled on her pants, tucking the shirt inside. “You know we’re not done talking about last night, right?” Kat shrugged non-committally and picked up the blanket, stuffing it into the diaper bag.

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This story is so fun !

Please keep going.

Cheers!

“Fuuuuuuuck!” Tracy’s drawn-out curse was directed at the universe in general and her lack of progress in particular. She crumpled up the printout she had been working on. It was a rainbow of highlighter ink and pencil notes. She had gone through nearly all the records from the companies near the parking lot, and so far she had only found one lead that had looked promising. Of course, that lead had also turned out to be a dead end. Just somebody using the network to watch porn in the middle of the night.

Tracy only had three sets of records left. Thankfully, those records were digital. Tracy cursed the other companies for having wasted her time by only giving her hardcopies.

You’d think they’d want to be more cooperative with something as official-sounding as the I.D.I.O.D.

Tracy looked out of the office window at the rooftops shimmering in the afternoon sun. The only sound in her office was the slight rattle of the air conditioning unit and a low hum that was a mixture of the cheap fluorescent lights and the traffic a couple of streets away.

Kat had dropped Tracy off at her van after they had visited the last of the companies she wanted records from, leaving Tracy to do the boring part of her job.

“Now you be a good, little girl while mommy runs some errands and maybe you’ll get a treat,” she had said and kissed Tracy’s cheek.

Tracy worried a little about Kat’s mommy-kick. Whatever was on her mind was obviously a big deal and Tracy was pretty sure it had something to do Kat’s… ex-wife? It still felt weird to think of Kat as married. She decided that she would have to continue their talk the next time they were together.

Just then Tracy’s phone buzzed briefly

Kat:
Soooo, wie geht’s? Find anything useful?

Tracy:
Nothing yet. Only 2 left.
Kinda buzzed frm hi-litr fumes ;‌)

The reply came almost immediately.

Kat:
Well-behaved little bunnies don’t get
high without their mommies. ;‌-)

Tracy couldn’t help rolling her eyes. She stuck a pencil behind her ear, put her thumb in her mouth and made bambi-eyes at the camera as she took a picture and sent it to Kat. She knew she shouldn’t play into Kat’s refusal to deal with her issues, but mommy-and-bunny-time was their thing and she didn’t want it to stop; even if Kat sometimes took it a bit further than Tracy liked.

The phone buzzed again.

Kat:
Aww… Is my little Häschen still padded and comfy?
Or does she need a change?

Tracy:
Still wearing & still dry.

Kat:
Enjoy the afternoon.
Mommy will come pick you up at seven tonight. :‌-*

Tracy read that last message a couple of times, going over it in her mind.

“Mommy”, not “I”. Is she planning on keeping this up tonight? I guess we’re going to have to a little discussion about that.

Tracy returned her attention to the computer that was busy cross-referencing the information she had already entered with the records from the last two companies. So far, nothing looked out of the ordinary. It was already at just over forty percent. Another half hour or so and it should be done.

Tracy turned her chair around and put her feet up on the windowsill. Looking out of the window, she saw a man working on an antenna on the roof of the building across the street. He wasn’t wearing a uniform and when Tracy got up and looked down on the street, she couldn’t see anything that looked like a company truck.

Tracy rolled the drone suitcase over to the desk and opened it. She brought out one of her medium-sized drones and carefully put it on the desk. Next she turned on the remote control unit and pulled out the control cable, letting it hang over the edge like a fat, yellow, spiralling snake.

After opening the window a little bit, Tracy rolled the suitcase over to her sofa and laid down. She moved her hair out of the way and plugged the control cable into the socket behind her right ear.

Tracy felt her body grow heavy as the familiar sensation of the security paralysis set in. When the tunnel vision began, she closed her eyes and took a deep breath, letting the drone’s sensory input replace her own.

After a few more seconds of darkness, Tracy found herself on the football-sized desktop, looking at her own giant body. She looked up and down, left and right, testing the movement of the camera. Stretching her fingers, she could feel her little pincers scrape against the fake wood. A quick thought turned the rotors on, momentarily drowning out all other sound. The noise-cancelling software activated soon enough, reducing it to a low hiss. Then, with a twitch of her buttocks, Tracy took off.

Tracy hovered above the giant desk for a few seconds. Then, she slowly flew towards the window, slipping out through the barely big enough crack.

The updraught from the street made Tracy shoot up and almost hit an air conditioning unit on the floor above. She cut the throttle and gravity pulled her in a graceful arc that gave her a little distance from the wall. At the apex of the arc, Tracy nudged the throttle back up and stabilised herself. She hovered for a few moments, getting her bearings, and then headed across the street.

Tracy increased her altitude to get a better view of the rooftop. The man was still there. Tracy circled, trying to get a look at his face, but his cap and the fact that he was looking down all the time prevented her from seeing anything other than his rather large ears.

Landing on another antenna, Tracy crawled down to get a better angle. She almost had it when the man looked up and immediately dove to the ground, rolling behind a ventilation duct.

What the hell?

Before she had a chance to anything other than power her rotors back up again, the man popped back up and pointed a… something at her. Tracy’s field of vision tumbled end over end as her rotors lost power and her controls froze. She fell uncontrollably, hitting a junction box at the base of the antenna before coming to rest upside down on the roof. Tracy was about to try disconnecting and reconnecting when she saw the man vault over the duct he had been hiding behind. She barely had time to snap a quick picture of his face before she was treated to a close-up of his boot, coming down hard on the camera.

Tracy’s eyes shot open. The sofa felt like it was a boat in a storm. It took a couple of precious seconds before she had control of her limbs again and could pull the control cable from her skull.

“Fuuuck,” Tracy breathed. There was still a residual tingling in her hands and feet from the safety paralysis and abrupt disconnection, but she rolled off the sofa and crawled over to the window, carefully peeking out at the building across the street. The roof was empty, at least as far as she could see, although there were plenty of places to hide.

Tracy grabbed her pepper spray and ran out, barely pausing to make sure the door locked behind her. She ran down the stairs, almost tripping over some cardboard boxes on the second floor and emerged from her building into the baking sun. The door of the building right across the street was locked and refused to budge when Tracy shook it. Peering into the narrow alley between the building and its neighbour, Tracy saw a fire escape. She had to climb onto a garbage container to reach it and as she climbed it, it creaked ominously and sprinkled flakes of rust into the alley below.

Panting for breath, Tracy reached the top of the fire escape. She crouched and quickly peeked over the edge of the roof. She couldn’t see anybody, but there were more than enough of places to hide. Tracy slipped over the edge and crouch-ran to the nearest vent. Gripping the pepper spray tightly, Tracy slowly made her way towards the antenna, ducking from cover to cover.

Tracy reached her goal without seeing anyone. She crouched silently and listened, but couldn’t hear anything. Suddenly there was a screech of tires and the roar of a powerful engine. Tracy rushed to the edge of the roof and looked down, catching rear of a black car turning the corner at high speed a block down the street.

Tracy walked back to the antenna the man had been working on. Examining it more closely, she realised it was some kind of directional antenna and that it was pointed right at her office window. The control box at the base of the antenna was still open and Tracy crouched down to get a closer look.

“Yeah, that’s going to need a specialist to figure out,” she said to herself. Tracy pulled out her multitool and detached the top of the antenna and the control box from the pole and tucked them both under her arm. The roof access door turned out to still be unlocked, a piece of duct tape having been taped across the lock, so Tracy could just take the stairs down instead of the fire escape.

Once she was on the street, she headed for the parking garage. The security booth was shockingly empty.

“Jamal?” Tracy called, the absence of the ever-present, old security guard suddenly worrying her. “Jamal!”

“Hold your horses, I’m coming. Just gimme a minute.” The voice came from around the corner. Tracy hurried there and saw Jamal closing and locking a well-concealed door.

“It’s getting to be so bad that an old man can’t even go to the bathroom,” he grumbled as he walked back towards his booth.

“Jamal, this is important. I need you to check your tapes to see if a car drove past here the last three or four minutes. A black one.”

“With lots of horsepower? And a driver who’s still not entirely used to it?”

“You saw it?”

“Nah.” Jamal shook his head. “Heard it though. Plus those are a dead giveaway.” He pointed at the skid marks on the street in front of the parking garage exit.

“It was in here?” Tracy felt a sinking feeling in her stomach. “How long?”

Jamal put his newspaper down next to the old computer terminal in his booth and tapped a few keys.

“You in some kind of trouble again?” he asked as he frowned at the screen and then tapped a few more keys.

“I’m beginning to think I might be.”

“Ah, there we are. It came in here about five hours ago, prepaid for a day.”

Jamal squinted at the camera feed while he fiddled with the controls, skipping back and forwards on the recording.

“Looks like the same guy in the car both coming and going.” He jotted something down on the corner of his newspaper, before tearing it off and handing the scrap of paper to Tracy.

“I’m guessing you want the license plate,” he said with a wink.

“Thanks.” Tracy knew that there weren’t any cameras inside the garage itself. That was one of the reasons she used it. Now that had come back to bite her in the arse. Five hours was more than enough time to bug her car before going up to the roof to work on the antenna.

Tracy thought back. Five hours ago she had been out of the office, pretending to be a government agent.

Shit! They could have gotten to the office as well.

“Jamal, can I borrow your phone?”

“Yeah, sure.” Jamal fished out a positively ancient phone and handed it to Tracy.

She racked her brain until she remembered the number she wanted. The phone rang while she tapped her foot impatiently. After what felt like forever, a gruff voice answered.

“You have five seconds before I hang up.”

“Marko, it’s Tracy. I’m going to need you to make good on that favour you owe me.”

“I thought we were even after I helped you with that redhead with the huuuuge-”

“Okay, okay,” Tracy interrupted. “I still need that favour though.”

There was an exasperated sigh on the other end. “What?”

“I need a complete clean-up. Two-room flat and a car.”

“That’s a pretty big favour. It’s not going to be free.”

“Fine,” Tracy said through gritted teeth. Marko’s services weren’t cheap, but he was one of the best counter-surveillance guys she knew.

Besides, I can probably bill Ms. Wilford for it.

“How old is… the dirt?” Marko asked.

Tracy rolled her eyes at Marko’s insistence on using code phrases. The man was professionally paranoid, which was annoying, but also made him very good at his chosen profession.

“Probably no more than four hours, but it might be as old as twenty-four.”

“And is it a rush order?”

“Marko, It’s my own office and car we’re talking about here, so yes, it is a bit of a rush order.”

“Fine, fine. Don’t get your panties in a bunch.”

Oh you have no idea just how bunched-up my underwear feels right about now.

Tracy sighed. “Just do me a favour and do the car first.”

“Yeah, yeah. I’ll be right over.”

Tracy hung up and handed the phone back to Jamal.

“Sounds like you’re in more than just a little trouble.” Jamal put the phone back in his pocket and sat down.

“Yeah, I might be,” Tracy admitted. “Look, I need to get some stuff from my office. If a guy that looks like a cross between Santa and a Russian mobster shows up looking for my van, could you let him know where it is?”

“Sure. Your usual spot?”

“Yeah. I’ll just leave this here.” Tracy put the antenna and control box down next to Jamal’s chair. “I’ll be right back.”


Tracy jogged across the street and took the elevator up to her floor. Once she was in her flat, she grabbed the bright yellow bag containing all of her diapers. It was the only thing she was sure couldn’t have been bugged. If Marko was coming to do a complete bug sweep, she wanted the bag out of the flat. Marko was good at his job, but he was also pathologically curious, so she had no intentions of leaving him alone with anything embarrassing.

Next Tracy grabbed her laptop, external hard drive, her box of thumb drives and all the printouts and put them in the suitcase with her drones and the remote control gear. She considered slipping into the bathroom to get rid of her diaper, but since she had no idea if there were hidden cameras, she decided against it.

Good thing I didn’t wet it yet.

She gave her office one last, quick check before pushing the suitcase out and locking the door.

While waiting for the elevator, Tracy pulled out her phone and turned it off. Then she pulled the SIM-card and and the high-capacity storage chip and put them both in a plastic pocket in the back of her little notebook.

Let’s see you try to bug my phone now.

When Tracy rolled her suitcase up to Jamal’s booth, he was back in his usual position: Chair tilted up against the back wall of his booth, the newspaper crossword puzzle on his lap, one pencil in his hand and a spare one behind his ear. He looked up as the wheels on Tracy’s suitcase rattled across a grate.

“No communist Santa yet,” he said.

"It’s still early. Marko takes a lot of detours. To ‘throw off whoever’s tailing him’ or whatever his paranoid delusion du jour is.

“He a member of the tinfoil hat brigade?”

“If he’s off his meds, yeah, then he’s nuttier than squirrel shit. But if he was, he’d never leave his bunker to help me out.”

Jamal nodded and returned his attention to the crossword puzzle. “Giant Gaul; starts with an ‘A’?”

“Asterix?” Tracy suggested.

“Only five letters. And besides, Obelix was the big one.” Jamal sucked the top of his pencil.

“Then I don’t know.”

Tracy sat down on the curb next to the booth. The next five minutes passed in silence.

“So, what is this thing?” Jamal asked and nodded towards the antenna next to his chair.

Tracy shrugged. “I don’t know exactly. It’s some kind of antenna that the guy in the car had pointed right at my office.”

“That doesn’t sound very good.”

“Sure doesn’t. I’m hoping maybe Marko can tell me just what it is.”

Again, Jamal just nodded and they sat in silence a while longer.

Tracy was just about to get up and stretch her legs a little when a old, tan van rumbled up the street, turned into the parking garage and sputtered to a stop. Behind the wheel was a huge beard with a pair of sunglasses and a baseball cap on top. It almost looked like Cousin Itt wearing a disguise.

“New car Marko?” Tracy asked sarcastically?

“Go ahead and laugh,” he said, lowering the sunglasses to look at her over the top of them. “But they can’t mess with the electronics if the only electronics is the radio. I’m not dying in a mysterious single-car accident. Nuh-uh.”

“Riiight.” Tracy rose with a grunt. She slung the diaper bag over one shoulder, tucked the antenna under her arm and then grabbed the handle of her suitcase.

“Jamal? Just put him on my tab, would you?”

“Sure, sure,” Jamal said and just waved Marko through as he raised the boom.

Marko followed Tracy down the ramp to her car. He parked next to it and opened the door, easing his considerable bulk out with a groan from the car’s suspension.

“Wanna take a look at this before we start?” Tracy held out the antenna.

“I guess. What is it?” Marko switched out the sunglasses with a pair of wire-rimmed glasses.

“I was kinda hopin’ you could tell me.”

Marko poked around in the control box, moving wires around to get a better look at the circuit boards. After a minute or two, he looked up with an expression like a junkie looking at a pile of his favourite drug marked with ‘Free samples’.

“Can I have this? Please? I’ve wanted one of these for ages.”

“Depends. What is it?”

“Super-sensitive electromagnetic sensor.”

“Sooo, not a bug?”

“Oh, this is not ‘a bug’. This is a highly sophisticated piece of surveillance equipment. This puppy can detect the radiation coming from a computer screen with so much detail that it can basically read a screen through a wall.”

Tracy swallowed. This was sounding more and more worrying.

“Are you sure? That sounds awfully sophisticated for a bunch of ransomware hackers.”

Marko chuckled. “Tell you what, you let me have this thing, I’ll give your stuff the full scrub and still let you say I owe you one.”

Tracy had to stop herself from whistling. “Throw in one of burner phones and we have a deal.”

Marko nodded and opened the side door of his van, putting the antenna and control box inside. He rummaged around in a plastic storage bin and pulled out a mobile phone, still sealed in its plastic packaging and tossed it to Tracy. Then he got a big tool box out and closed the door.

“Mind checking this stuff first?” Tracy opened the suitcase and removed the printouts, but leaving all the electronics in place.

“Not the other bag?” Marko asked.

“I’ve had it with me all day. No way they could have got to it.”

“Fair enough.”

2 Likes

Fifteen minutes later, Marko declared her suitcase and its contents clean. Three locator bugs and a microphone lay in the coffee can he used as a Faraday cage.

“You still need to check the computer and phone for malware, so I wouldn’t use’em just yet.”

Tracy nodded. “How long do you think the car’ll take?”

“An hour, an hour and a half maybe. Cars are easy since you need different kinds of transmitters. Plus they’re smaller. Would be a lot faster if you didn’t have electronics in the car. Then I could just fry everything with my EMP-bomb.”

“That thing you built out of a microwave oven?”

“Oh, I’ve improved it since then. I use it every week on my car, just to make sure they aren’t tracking me.”

“Every week?!? That can’t be healthy.”

Marko shrugged. “My nuts are toasted so I’m not having any kids. But I wasn’t planning on that anyway.”

“Right. Well, no EMP-bombing my car, OK? I’ll go get some lunch. You want something?”

“Nah, I’m on a new diet.” Marko turned on a headlamp and turned towards Tracy’s van. “Keys?”

Tracy handed him the car keys. “I’ll be back in an hour then.”

“Wanna leave the suitcase here? I promise I won’t look.”

Tracy laughed. “We both know you won’t be able to keep that promise.” She grabbed the suitcase and her diaper bag and headed for the exit.

Once she was out on the street, Tracy wrestled the new phone out of its packaging and pulled the little plastic tab out to activate the battery. Next she sent a text message to Kat.

Tracy here. Equipment bugged.
Probly car and office 2.
Be careful. Will call later.

Then she looked up Ms. Wilford’s number in her notebook and sent her a text too.

Tracy Bullit here. This may be*
more serious than we thought.
Get a burner phone and call me
back on this number. Do NOT call
from your home, office or car.
They may be bugged.

To Ms. Wilford’s credit it didn’t take her more than ten minutes to call Tracy back. It sounded like she was calling from inside a wind tunnel.

“Where are you calling from?”

“Ms. Bullit, this is not my first rodeo. I’m on the roof of my office building. And before you ask, I’m the only one up here. Now talk to me.”

“I’m guessing you still haven’t gotten the password.”

“No.”

“You probably won’t get it either. I don’t think this was about money. If it was, they wouldn’t bother bugging me, using equipment so sophisticated it made my counter-surveillance guy drool, and then just abandoning it when they were discovered.”

“Good point.”

“Now, if they’re willing to spend that much on me, I’d imagine they’ve spent even more on you. I would assume your office, car and home have more bugs than the mattress in a cheap motel. We need to talk and go over what I’ve found. I’ll call you in about an hour to let you know where.”

“I’ll have our security guys do a full sweep here in the meantime,” Ms. Wilford said.

“Oh, and you should probably warn Marc too. Even if you did fire him.”

“Not following orders like he did, he can go fuck a duck.” Ms. Wilford hung up.

“Ooooo-kay,” Tracy said to the dead line. She put the phone away and looked up and down the street, weighing her options. After a couple of minutes, she headed for the petrol station one block over.

Five increasingly sweaty minutes later, she walked through the doors and was met by a cold, almost frigid blast of air. For a second, Tracy just stood there, feeling actual goosebumps on her bare arms.

She pushed the suitcase to the giant fridge in the back and grabbed a couple of cans of it-may-not-taste-like-oranges-but-at-least-it’s-got-the-colour-right energy drink. After a few seconds’ hesitation, she also grabbed one of the untouched-by-human-hands-and-should-probably-stay-that-way sandwiches, checking its date to make sure it wasn’t expired. Then she headed for the cash register.

The pimply-faced teen behind the plexiglass screen took a few moments to notice Tracy look up from his phone. When she had paid, Tracy asked to borrow the key to the bathroom.

“That’s for customers only,” he pointed out.

“I kind of figured as much.” Tracy took a deep breath and tried to calm herself. Her diaper had absorbed enough sweat to feel uncomfortably hot and itchy.

The teen stared at her blankly through the plexiglass; Tracy stared back. She slowly lifted one of the cans she had just paid for and slowly waved it back and forth.

“I bought these.”

“You don’t have a car,” the teen said smugly. He was clearly enjoying the tiny measure of power he felt like he had. “No gas, no piss,” he added unnecessarily. He moved to stand between Tracy and the hubcap the petrol station apparently used as a key ring as if he was worried she could reach through the barrier to grab it from its hook on the wall.

“Seriously…” Tracy looked at the name tag, “…Bob? Is this really how you want to do this?” She tried to sound menacing, but knew that it wasn’t working.

“Fine, be that way.” Tracy turned and left. On her way out, she stopped at a elaborately stacked cans of motor oil. She moved a few of the bottom ones to deliberately make the whole display unbalanced.

“Come on; really?” Bob said. “Do you have to do that? It took me forever to stack those.”

“Well, I think it looks better like this.” Tracy nudged one of the bottom cans with her foot, making the whole thing wobble. “But then again, if I were a customer, I might care a little more about not making the lives of the employees here more miserable than they already are.”

“Fine fine fine. You win.” Bob grabbed the hubcap from the wall and pushed it through the barely large enough slot in the barrier. “Now will you please stop?”

“Of course,” Tracy said with a smile. She grabbed the hubcap and headed for the door to the bathroom next to Bob’s plexiglass cage. She could see him breathe a sigh of relief as she moved away from the wobbly display of motor oil.

Once inside the bathroom, Tracy locked the door, put her diaper bag on top of the suitcase and opened it. She dug around inside until she found a thick, plain plastic bag and her box of baby wipes. Then she undid her jeans, pulling them down. The white plastic backing of her diapers peeked out over the top of her bright pink boxer briefs. They weren’t really her style but they were a compromise between Tracy’s more girly panties, which looked ridiculous over the diapers, and the big plastic panties Kat sometimes wanted her to wear to prevent leaks. Tracy pulled the briefs down as well and tore the tapes open, ripping the plastic backing. As she pulled off the diaper, the smell of stale sweat rose from it. Tracy was suddenly very glad she hadn’t used the diaper before this whole thing started.

Tracy put the diaper in the sink and and cleaned herself off with the wipes as best she could, putting the used ones in the diaper before rolling it up and putting it in the plastic bag and tying it closed. For a few moments she thought about putting on a fresh diaper, but decided against it. When she pulled the briefs back up, there was a familiar feeling like there was something missing, and when she pulled up the jeans, they too felt oddly loose. Tracy smiled. She loved the roomy feeling of not wearing diapers after having worn them for a while almost as much as the tightness of having just put one on.

Tracy checked herself in the mirror one more time, then she flushed the toilet for appearances’ sake and washed her hands. When she exited the bathroom, she saw that the display of cans had been fixed and Bob was back in his cage. She put the hubcap on the counter and slid it through the slot in the plexiglass.

“Have a lovely day Bob,” she said with an obviously fake cheerfulness and left, resisting the urge to kick the display on the way out. Tracy put the plastic bag with her diaper in one of the dumpsters next to the petrol station and then she headed back up the street.

When she reached the parking garage, Tracy waved to Jamal before heading down the ramp, but he was too busy with his crossword puzzle to give her more than a quick nod. Tracy sat down inside the rear hatch of Marko’s car and watched him crawl around the back of her van, waving around what looked like three different devices duct-taped together.

“Want a drink?” she offered as she cracked open one of the cans she had bought.

Marko looked at her, his eyes comically enlarged by the goggles he was wearing. “Don’t touch the stuff. Rots your brain.”

“Since when? You used to have a six-can-a-day habit.”

“Like I said: New diet.” Marko ducked back inside the van.

Tracy took a bite out of her sandwich and chewed the rubbery cheese. She watched her van rock as Marko moved around inside it, muttering to himself

“Now where the fuck are you hiding you little sshhhi- Gotcha!” Marko emerged from the back of the van. “That’s the last one,” he said and dropped the bug into the coffee can. “Seven locators and two microphones. Somebody really wanted to keep tabs on you.”

Tracy nodded and swallowed the final bite of the sandwich, washing it down with a mouthful of synthetic orange flavour. Then she got up and grabbed the coffee can.

“So what are you doing with those?” Marko asked as he picked up his tools.

“Oh, I figured I’d give ‘them’ something to follow,” Tracy said and began walking down along the other parked cars, planting one bug on each of them. Then she gave Marko back the coffee can and handed him the spare key to her office. “Just leave the key with Jamal when you’re done.”

Marko took the key and picked up his big toolbox, locking his car and activating an absurd number of alarms.

“Oh, and Marko,” Tracy said as she got into her car, “stay the hell out of my medicine cabinet.”


Tracy tried to figure out where it would be safe to meet Ms. Wilford. She wanted somewhere loud enough that it would be hard to bug, and also outdoors so she could keep an eye on her car to make sure nobody bugged it again. She finally decided on the downtown street market.

It took Tracy less than twenty minutes to reach the market. The music from half a dozen stereo systems and countless conversations formed a near-constant noise that would mask most conversations. Tracy parked her car near a food truck and sent a message to Ms. Wilford where to meet her. Then she went to get some proper lunch.

Tracy was halfway through a plate of barbecue when Ms. Wilford showed up. She wiped her hands on a napkin and waved her over. Tracy had found a table right below a speaker blasting some generic k-pop. When she sat down, Ms. Wilford gave the food a disdainful look.

“What the hell is that?” she asked.

“Menu just says ‘meat’,” Tracy said. She pushed the plate to the middle of the small table. “Want some? It’s pretty good.”

Ms. Wilford pushed the plate back towards Tracy with a single finger. She looked like there had been a dead rat on the plate.

“I’ll pass.”

Tracy shrugged and put her napkin over the plate. This pretence of hiding the food seemed to put Ms. Wilford more at ease.

“So why did you want to meet me here?”

“We need to figure out what’s going on, and my office hasn’t been debugged yet. And based on the number of bugs we found just in my car, it’s going to be a while until yours is clean too.”

“That bad?”

“Seven location trackers and two mikes.” Tracy held up nine fingers for emphasis. She could see Ms. Wilford almost whistle.

“I don’t think the ransomware attack was a blackmail attempt,” Tracy continued. “I mean, yes they tried to blackmail you, but that was just to cover up for something else. Otherwise they would have already given you the password or contacted you with a new demand for not following their instructions. I’m guessing that neither of those two have happened.”

Ms. Wilford nodded affirmatively.

“So in a way, Marc’s clumsy attempt to save the day was actually helpful. Just not in the way he thought it would be.”

“He’s still fired though. I can’t have an assistant who can’t follow simple orders.”

“He tried to shoot me. I don’t care if he never works again. But if whoever bugged me also bugged you, it’s reasonable to assume he’s bugged too. So you should probably let him know so he doesn’t reveal anything to whoever did it.”

Ms. Wilford considered this for a moment, then nodded. “Good point. But we still need to figure out whoever’s behind this.”

“Yeah, I’ve been giving that some thought.” Tracy suddenly felt like a character in one of her hardboiled detective novels and wondered if the whole conversation would have been ever cooler in black and white.

“Obviously following the money is a good starting point. When you hired me, you said that using a backup instead of paying the ransom wouldn’t really affect you too badly, right?”

“Yeah. We lost the logs from a a couple of routine meetings and a deposition.”

“And when was the, uh…” Tracy hesitated momentarily, “…recording, of you and Marc made?”

“A couple of days before the system was locked.”

“So it’s safe to assume whoever did this had at least partial access to your systems for at least that long.”

Ms. Wilford nodded again.

“The deposition. Big case?”

“It’s a divorce case; with lots of money that we can’t find.”

“And losing those logs is a big setback?”

“Pretty big, yeah.” Tracy could see how being reminded of this annoyed Ms. Wilford.

Tracy really wished she had a fedora she could tip to just the right angle. She leaned in closer. “I think it’s all connected to that case. Would you set up a meeting with your client when your office has been debugged? I think we need some more information before deciding on how to proceed.”

Ms. Wilford rose. “I’ll call you. Same number?”

“Yep. I’ll let you know if it changes.”

“Good. And next, I pick where we meet.” Ms. Wilford turned and left without waiting for an answer.

Tracy waited a little while, but the plate of luke-warm meat looked less appealing with every passing minute, and the music was beginning to annoy her. Eventually she got up and walked back to her car. leaving the rapidly cooling food behind.

Once inside the car, Tracy called Kat. She put the phone on speaker while she slowly made her way from the street market.

“Hello Häschen,” Kat purred when she finally answered. “How are you doing?”

“I’ve had better days.”

“Aww. You sound like you need a hug.”

“Yeah…” Tracy paused. “Look, my place is off-limits until Marko gives it the all-clear. Do you mind if we just stay in tonight? I really don’t feel like going out and also, my wardrobe is kind of limited to what I’m wearing right now.”

“Of course sweetie. Do you still want me to come pick you up?”

“Nah. I’ll come to your place. It’ll be safer.”

“Are you sure you’re all right?” Kat sounded worried.

“Yeah, I’ll be fine. Want me to bring anything take-out or something?”

“Nah. I’m making dinner. Oh, maybe pick up something to drink. Not any of those terrible energy drinks of yours. Wine; red wine. Something that goes with a spicy tomato sauce.”

“I can manage that. Anything else?”

“Uhh… no, I can’t think of anything else.”

“OK, see you in…” Tracy checked her watch, “… about an hour or so?”

“Can’t wait, my little bunny.” Kat made kissy-noises before hanging up.

Tracy put the phone back in her pocket and began making a mental list of what she needed to do. Her regular phone was probably not infected with some kind of malware, but she had wirelessly tagged enough phones herself to know that she couldn’t be sure. Her computer was almost certainly infected with something. Anybody bugging her office would have to be a complete moron to ignore the computer. And who knew what could be hiding on any one of the thumb drives.

Tracy stopped outside a small electronics store and bought a new thumb drive, making sure it had a write-protection switch. She plugged it into her phone and went online to download the programs she needed to clean up her computer and her regular phone.

“OK. Wine,” Tracy said to herself. She resisted the temptation to head for a store with expensive wines. The chance of impressing Kat was weighed against the impossibly snooty attitude of the people who invariably worked in stores like that. Instead, she stopped at what looked more like a mid-range liquor store. The clerk was still snooty, but not intolerably so, and recommended a few different bottles that he said would work with the dish Tracy described. She pretended to think about it for a few seconds, then picked a bottle at random.

Back in the car, Tracy headed for the junk yard where Kat was still staying. At a red light, she had the creepy feeling of somebody watching her. There was a dark blue SUV she was sure she’d seen before. Tracy felt an uncomfortable knot in her stomach as it followed her through the turn. She turned left at the next light; the car was still there, two cars back.

“Well, that’s not good,” Tracy muttered to herself. She looked in the mirror again. The windows of the SUV was tinted so she couldn’t really see who was inside. If it was somebody following her, she needed some way of finding out.

At the next light, Tracy didn’t drive when it turned green. She just sat there, checking the mirror. It took about 3.2 seconds before the cars behind her began revving their engines or honking their horns. A second or two more and one of the cars behind her pulled out around her, the passenger giving her the finger as they passed. Another car followed closely behind the first. The SUV didn’t move.

Just before the light turned red, Tracy stepped on the accelerator, making the van leap forward. She turned the wheel frantically to turn down a narrow side street amid a cacophony of horns. No-one followed her. Tracy kept going a little while longer before turning back onto a regular street. Over the next half an hour, she slowly made her way to the junk yard, taking numerous detours, doubling back and using every other trick she could remember for spotting a tail. She couldn’t see any other cars that could be following her.

“God, I’m turning into Marko. Next I’ll be wearing a tin foil hat and worrying about the contamination of my precious bodily fluids.” Tracy took a final look in the mirror before stopping outside the gate to the junk yard. She left the car to unlock the gate in the chainlink fence and push it open. After driving through and locking the gate behind her, she waved at Diego who had come out to see who opened the gate.

“I see the alarm is working. Sorry. I didn’t think you had turned it on yet,” Tracy called out as she climbed back inside her van.

“You staying the night?”

“Probably.”

Diego nodded and went back inside.

Tracy drove further in and parked next to Kat’s shack. She grabbed the wine, slung her bag over her shoulder and dragged the suitcase with all her drones to Kat’s door and knocked.

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