Interlude 3

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Interlude 3

"What exactly is the holdup?"

"DE-16 filed a report on it."

"I can see that. I'm not about to read a thousand pages of nonsense. I want you to tell me."

"Apparently, Pakistan's stability was higher than predicted. It's also a large population. The more people, the more time it takes. Or so the report says."

"You read this whole Goddamned thing?"

"Yes."

"You believe it?"

"I'm not enough of an expert to say. Nobody is."

"...I don't like it. Begin China immediately."

"That might be dangerous. Since when were we so gung-ho about this?"

"Since those three-star shitheads started throwing their weight around. I don't care about the fucking project, but I care about my job and life and so should you. Explain why it's dangerous."

"If Pakistan needs more time, starting an even bigger project now could overwhelm the resource."

"We've got a replacement coming up."

"SS-74 needs another six months, and it would be difficult to hand off control mid-project. There's no way China will be complete in six months, even starting today and ignoring Pakistan."

"All the more reason to get started. If this SS-74 is so great, it shouldn't be a problem. Hell, we can have them work together."

"I don't think—"

"You don't get paid to think, for fuck's sake. Alright, not China. Yet. But I want Pakistan finished yesterday. I don't care what it takes."

"...I'll give the order."

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