Through The Maze
Managed IT services in San Francisco would not be destroyed by a cartel letting on to be a legitimate business; not on Mark's watch. He had seen what the "Orb" did under the name "Brother Corporation." And Mark knew for sure was that there was no way back--- at least, not the way he had come. He had no choice but to press onward through the dark caverns beneath the roiling landscape of San Francisco proper.
But these caverns truly were a labyrinth. Every time he thought he understood them, he realized he'd come down one that he hadn't been in before. What he tended to do was follow the light where he could find it; but then, when he looked behind, there was only darkness.
After fighting off several guards with a success he couldn't believe, Mark found the source of light which had previously drawn him came from a grate on a wall by a park near a pier. It was at the triangular point where two corridors intersected, and the path continued on into darkness the other way. Mark followed it and realized he was going downhill only after he saw a light that seemed to be above him and a great distance away. As he neared this new light, it became more level--- another hole in another wall.
For hours, Mark traveled this strange maze. He found he was on the north end of town, slightly east of the golden gate bridge; under skyscrapers, no doubt.
He didn't stop his travels of this underground maze until he heard voices. More specifically: Drake Bannon's voice. If managed IT services in San Francisco were ever to regain some semblance of normality, that man's mission--- and his ability to cheat death--- must be found out. Bannon had been Mark's target to begin with.
But the sounds were faint. Mark heard them through one of the walls--- almost as though they came through the very cracks. He only recognized Bannon's voice because he would never forget it. It was indelibly seared into his mind from the man's penultimate plummet from the top of a building only days earlier.
Mark quickly opened the small toolkit full of gadgets he'd received from his briefing with the CIA and NSA in DC. He pulled out a suction cup with a 1/8" jack, into which he plugged a single headphone. He stuck the cup over the most approximate point in the wall where the sound seemed to be coming and caught the tail end of a conversation.
Bannon and Consequences
It was Drake Bannon, alright; Mark didn't know to whom he was speaking, but he knew the man was wrapping it up, saying:
"...it's the guy who owns OneClick Solutions Group. Mark something. Just a regular MSP--- well, more than regular. You know, they do:
- Cloud Computing
- Flat-Fee Services
...the whole shebang. But the man is dedicated. If we're going to fully control managed IT services in San Francisco, and the world, he's got to be taken out, or this super computer virus will never take hold--- what? No... no, that isn't right. Follow me, I'll show you..."
The voices faded into the distance. Mark swallowed. A super computer virus? What could it all mean? He only knew one thing: he had to notify his agency contacts.