Book 1 of Applied Topology. A stand-alone plot.
Opens with Thalia in her office discovering that the source of the funding for the Institute for Applied Topology would like to see some applications.
Brad Lensky shows her some message about a "birthday party" that they suspect are codes for something worse.
The topologists at the Institute have, in fact, learned how to apply mathematical transformations materially, so the story goes on. It involves robotic snake bodies, coffee and donuts, many grackles, the need for a computer geek, the Turtle Pond, the necessity of attending a Foundation party, and more.