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The Pocket Change Job

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Alec is really not interested in hard copy of anything. Digital information is his stock in trade, his paint and canvas, his music and his instrument. But even he will admit that hard currency is sometimes useful.

"Um," he says as Parker presses a cold circle of metal to his inner thigh, then starts rolling it around. Are those flat edges? He can't really tell. "Chinese?"

"Noooo," Parker says. "It's Nordic gold."

He rolls his eyes under the blindfold. "So it's from Norway?"

She hesitates, then flips the coin over. "Not this one."

"Euro," he guesses.

"That was a giveaway," she says. "What denomination?"

"Parker, why can't I just touch them with my hands, where I'd normally hold money?"

"I'm picking a spot on your body with a lot of nerve endings," she says.

"My fingertips, Parker. My fingertips have a lot of nerve endings. When am I going to have to identify currency with my dick?"

"Oooh, there's an idea," she says, and the next thing he knows she's rolling the coin along the underside--and--he is not going to tell anything about anything at this rate.

"Shit, Parker, Parker--"

"Focus on the milling," she says. "All the euros have different ridges on the edges, right?"

"Oh, I'll show you milling, I'll hell if I can--" he swallows and squeezes his eyes closed to help him think. "Uh--bumps. The one with the bumps."

"Which is?"

"Ten? Te--uh, twenty! Twenty cent euro coin."

"Very good!" He can hear her smiling as she pulls the coin away and he moans just a bit, although he could do with less spare change and more attention from Parker's hand. "Okay, let's try bills."


His concentration is already shot, but there's something familiar about the rectangle she's rubbing against his thigh, something like buying movie tickets and ice cream cones and CDs full of pirated software in person before he had the bandwidth to download that much stuff. "That's a US dollar, isn't it?"

"Yup," Parker says happily. "Thought I'd start you out with something easy. Okay, this one--"

"What do I get if I win?" he asks.

She goes quiet for a moment. "What do you mean win?"

"If I guess right, what do I get?"

Parker doesn't say anything right away. Then he can feel her climb up onto the bed, and then her legs are straddling his waist and she's leaning over him and breathing in his ear, "I'll think of something."

He doesn't think he's going to be able to tell a ruble from a slap on the ass, after that. "Oh... okay," he says weakly. "Thanks, that's... just what I wanted to know."

"Here." She climbs off and then something papery is trailing down his stomach. "Try this one."

"Oh, hell, no," he groans, but he tries to concentrate, really he does. The banknote is cold, and kinda... plasticky?

Shoot, he'd had a civics class on this, he remembered, some country that was using plastic money, which he'd thought was cool at the time but hasn't remembered--Parker is rubbing the bill in circles on his stomach, now, smooth and cold, and--okay, it's not China, it's not Russia, it wasn't England and Germany's in the Eurozone now so...

"Australia?" he guesses, and Parker stops moving. "It's Australia, isn't it?"

"You are paying attention!" Parker squeals happily, and then she jumps on top of him to give him his reward.