IT support in San Francisco can be cutthroat. Mark had begun to carry a taser. He wanted a gun, but didn’t have the time, temperament, or inclination, to practice with one.
He was sure Santiago had cut the brake lines to his vehicle, but surveillance in the street near Il Pirata didn’t show anything. It made him think Brother Corp. had multiple operatives working beneath them. Even after his vehicle was towed, and after he had installed surveillance systems at his personal home and office, Mark remained wary.
Letters came. The worst kind of letters; ones threatening him, his life, his business— but they didn’t cave his resolve. Rather, these letters made Mark more determined than ever to remain independent of Brother Corp.
OneClick Solutions Group was a local institution. For years, they’ve been providing IT support in San Francisco that went largely unmatched and provided customers greater customizability than most services, as well as greater value. Features like:
• Cloud and Hosted Services
• IT Consulting
• Business Continuity Planning
• IT Managed Services at a Flat Fee
…and many others saved clients money while allowing growth, facilitating a kind of upward spiral for OneClick and associated clients. Mark loved his company, those who worked with him to solidify his vision, and the forward strides they’d made. He wasn’t about to give it up because some greedy quasi-national corporation was making underhanded threats. But the threats did make him jumpy, and pushed him into greater security.
Walking to his car one evening, a man in a leather jacket and slacks approached Mark from the shadows, and he used the taser without thinking. It went something like this:
“Hey, are you Mark— AHHHH—” and the man flopped around on the ground while Mark yelled,
“You leave my business be, you flap-eared, beetle-headed corporate son of a jackal!”
“I-I’m w-with th-the a-agency,” stuttered the electrocuted man.
“L-let g-go o-of th-the t-taser—”
Mark released the trigger. The man stood after a moment, splitting blood from a bitten tongue and trembling. Abruptly Mark felt sorry, “I apologize… I’ve had some… interesting times.”
“I… know,” panted the man, “you’ve been threatened.”
“Not directly. It was implied. Who are you?”
“I’m with the agency.”
“You know what agency.”
“Now listen, Mark… Brother Corp. has been going the intimidation route a lot, lately— you’re the only tech company that hasn’t caved.”
“Absolutely. I’m special agent Ryan O’Malley,” the man extended his hand.
Mark shook it. “IT support in San Francisco shouldn’t be monopolized, Agent O’Malley. It’s bad for the economy, local and national.”
“You’re just all business, aren’t you?”
“It’s how I got where I am.”
Ryan nodded. “Well, they said you’d be tough. That’s why we feel like you’re the kind of guy who can really help us, Mark. You can get into their organization.”
Mark whistled low. “That’s a tall order, Agent O’Malley.”
“We know. That’s why we’ll get you what you need. But there’s a force behind Brother Corp., and we need to know who they are, what their goals are, and why they’re buying up all the IT support in San Francisco and beyond. Are you in?”
Mark had to think for a moment, but finally he got a look in his eye… a steely one. “I’m in,” and they shook hands.