Spies Read Too

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If the President is the only one who gets to see Game of Thrones early logic says the Queen is the first one that gets to read any new Harry Potter. She could lend you a copy but then she’d have to kill you after you read it.

Most people make the assumption that the dark underworld of espionage is populated by James Bond types with a license to kill. The reality is more like my college buddy who was recruited by an alphabet soup agency and sent to listen to phone calls in Spanish that had been flagged for phrases like: We’re not voting for George Bush. The “information management officer” killed in the 2012 attack on the US consulate in Benghazi was far more infamous for being Vile Rat in EVE Online. Real spies are boring. Their tradecraft is not being noticed.

Is it a surprise then that the apparatus of national security was turned to matters of great import to muggles everywhere?

Britain’s top secret eavesdropping spy agency GCHQ contacted publisher Nigel Newton with information that one of Harry Potter books had been leaked early. This is way more important that how to build an A-bomb in a shoebox for fans of J.K. Rowling’s seven-part wizarding saga. Millions of fans worldwide were anticipating the release and a mole could have ruined everything for them.

“I remember the British spy eavesdropping station GCHQ rang me up and said ‘we’ve detected an early copy of this book on the Internet’,” Newton told Australia’s ABC Radio

“No that’s a fake.” Reported one of the Goblins who work deep in the vaults of Bloomsbury Publishing where the ultra-secret drafts of Harry Potter are kept. The founder and editor in chief of Bloomsbury hadn’t even known if the leak was real because the lockdown was so airtight. He had to call down to this top security bunker (I’m envisioning Gringot’s but I’m sure it looks like an ordinary office cubicle) and have the real spy read a page of the leaked book to a Harry editor.

A spokesman for GCHQ said: “We do not comment on our defense against the dark arts.”

Just that one statement alone made my day. I’m pretty sure that means the Laundry Files are now categorized as non-fiction.


Sangfroid's unabashed use of punctuation and grammar has made him a literary standout on the internet. A rising star in the urban/romance/horror/science fiction/Nancy Drew fiction market, Sangfroid is the talk of the local McDonald's. His dog actually ate the first page of his magnum opus "That Foggy Night" and compared it to other great works like the weekly circular for its absorbent qualities.


  1. Sangfroid
    April 29, 2016 at 6:59 am

    What is The Laundry?

    The Laundry Files are a series of science fiction spy thrillers written by British writer Charles Stross. The series main character is Bob Howard, a one-time I.T. consultant, now field agent working for British government agency The Laundry which deals with occult threats. The books are influenced by Lovecraft’s visions of the future, and set in a world where a computer and the right mathematical equations is just as useful a toolset for calling up horrors from other dimensions as a spellbook and a pentagram on the floor

  2. Penny
    April 29, 2016 at 12:53 pm

    That makes sense I am sure my computer is a monster just waiting till it lulls me into a feeling of security before it turns on me.

  3. Acadia Einstein
    April 29, 2016 at 10:43 pm

    Harry Potter books are more powerful than weapons….

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