Gaz and I have been working together for around three or four years now, and have a pretty good feel for how the other likes to operate. I know she’s going to want a nice cozy place in the treetops to do recon and snipe from, she knows I prefer side entrances and plenty of “requisitionable” items. We play to each other’s strengths and do good work. Honestly, I’m glad they keep pairing us up together; hard to find grade-A, professional professionals, if you catch my drift.

I’ve never been a fan of missions marked “OSP” (on-site procurement). What that really means is they’re sending us in naked and we have to fend for ourselves. Not a lot of FAMAS G2 rifles in South America, I assure you, so I have to make due with whatever I come across. Gaz was grumbling about having to leave her favored HTI back on base, but with the heavy security these narcos are using, I’m sure we’ll come across one or two. That all said, we were off and running with little more than pistols and day packs, tromping through the jungles of Bolivia. Did I mention I don’t speak a lick of Spanish?

At least the rebels had a sturdy truck we could use. Flying over a few klicks of rugged, muddy road would have been nicer, but nobody would complain if this rust-colored four-wheeler went missing during the op – people tend to care more about multi-million dollar helicopters for some reason. After an overnight flight from West Africa, a few hours in the back of a bumpy cargo hauler, and now driving this rig with half a shock absorber, my back was already killing me. They know we’re going to be in the muck here for at least a month, right? Would have been nice to get a good night’s sleep first.

I could tell by her expression that Gaz hadn’t fared much better, and was itching to get past the “kidnapped grandfather” job so we could focus on the real task of taking down this cartel. Government. Military. Whatever they were. Even trying to keep the ride as pothole-free as possible, both of us were in sour states as the enemy compound came into view.