“I think I found something,” said a diminutive voice.
“Let him in,” said Ivy, as the techs parted ways for Adrian Evans, “What’s up?”
Adrian pulled a small notebook out of his pants pocket, but before he could start telling what he had found, the door opened again. Three security guards entered, roughly clearing a path from the door to the station where Ivy sat.
“There’s no damage, Stephen,” replied Ivy, as the CSWA Commissioner nudged Billy Parsons out of his seat and took it, “The Hacker got into our systems again and started up his CSWA Vision crap, but I was able to lock him out. We kept the cameras on Bill and Sammy the whole time, I doubt anyone at home saw what was happen—oh, shit!”
“What? What?” asked Thomas, as Ivy spun back towards the keyboard and monitors, and typed in some frantic letters and numbers, “I command you to tell me what’s happening!”
“And I command you to step back and don’t touch anything unless you wanna get sued!”
Thomas backed up like he was just struck. Ivy used the four letter ‘S’ word.
“No, I wouldn’t,” replied Ivy, “but the hacker got into the incendiary systems, and Nova would’ve.”
She pointed. “Nova was on the top rope. The hacker was about to light off Ryan’s pyro. I don’t think Nova would’ve let you off the hook with a ‘Sorry, I screwed that one up!’ and a hug and a sandwich, do you?”
He thought about it. Probably not.
“Ivy, you need to give me three – no, four more security guards,” said Adrian, “and we need to lock the building down.”
Thomas turned and seemed to notice Adrian for the first time. He looked at him with disdain. “I will not lock my adoring public in like… well, like a midget, while you do your weird experiments on them. Not with some… person trying to attack the integrity of the CSWA with these attacks from God knows where!”
“Not necessarily,” said Adrian.
“Don’t speak,” replied Thomas.
“What did you find,” asked Ivy, “and by the way, you’ve got your security.”
She clamped a hand over Thomas’ mouth, ignoring his protests.
“The hacker is in the system right now.”
“Yeah, we know that.”
“But he’s connected from the same network as the production truck.”
The dots all connected.
“He’s here,” said Ivy.
“He’s here,” repeated Adrian.
“Tallman,” repeated Thomas, removing Ivy’s hand from his mouth, “I hired him back as a vendor – slash – sideshow attraction so I could keep an eye on him. He’s here, he’s the one. Go get him.”
“It’s not him,” insisted Ivy, “He couldn’t tell us anything after the PCL crashed, he won’t have anything now.”
“Says you,” countered Thomas, as he turned to the security team, “Go find him and bring him to my office.”
Ivy shrugged and turned back towards her monitors. She knew Red had nothing to do with the actual machinations of the hacker, but she also knew that once Thomas made up his mind, he was unstoppable. Mainly because he was stubborn and trusted his wild ideas instead of hard facts and hard data.
As she typed in some more code to her hex encryption, she noticed the hacker had updated his internal text. Seven words.
You know he needs to be discredited.
But they still made her shiver.