(2018-10-28) Pitch Meeting
Marcus and Maggie meet to discuss their progress in their personal battle against TechEase, and what their next steps are.

It's a new number, but you know how sometimes things just feel familiar? Yeah, hopefully Marcus's spidey senses tingle when he gets a text: i'm in. meet @ maude's at 9pm

Marcus grumbles, knowing this was going to happen at some point. he was not so successful in his attempt, so he makes his way to the diner. He wears a black trucker hat and a blue flannel jacket as he makes his way over to the booth where Maggie is sitting at. He nods to her. "Hey." he says, short on both words and cheer at the moment.

Maggie's got a booth, a plate of salad she's eating, a cup of tea, a laptop. People working on computers isn't so bizarre even in Maude's that anyone pays her any attention at all. When Marcus enters, she looks up, sweeping him with a head-tilted squint. "Why are you dressed like a dyke?" It's a serious question.

Marcus raises a brow. "I'm trying to keep low profile." He takes a seat, looking over. "I made it onto the TechEase facility. All I could get my hands on was a cellphone. As soon as I tried to install the backdoor they were looking for me. I think they were waiting for some kind of attack. Either they were tipped off, or just paranoid. Either option is viable."

"Oh," says Maggie. "Well, keep that up, I guess." She listens to his story about TechEase, lips pulled askew when Marcus gets to the part about them waiting for an attack. "Do they know it was you?" Not for nothing, but she clamshells her laptop for now, in case Marcus is BEING WATCHED.

Marcus shakes his head. "No.. I aborted before they caught up with me. And just in case…" He pulls out his phone and taps the button, starting his facial recognition scrambler app. "So, how did you do?"

There is not an ounce of brag in this: "I'm in." Maggie eats some cucumber off her salad, crunching and leaning across the table to look at what Marcus's phone is doing. "Some admin assistant's desktop. He's squeaky clean, but it's a jumping off point." Another bite. "You said last time you guys shut the company down, right?"

Marcus shakes his head. "Not down. We were able to mess up the Infrastructure OS for a couple of years. I think they're re-working it so it's more stealthy… which sucks because all we did was prolong the inevitable. One of the reasons I picked Calaveras is because I figured a town this small would be 'fall into the cracks' enough that it would take longer to get caught up in the net." He shrugs to himself and then looks. "You got their laptop? With full access to their intraweb? Maybe we can install the backdoor on that and slip it back into the assistant's hands.."

"No, this is my laptop. I - " Maggie takes a breath, finishes her tea, tells the waitress that she's fine, thanks, and chews on her thumbnail while Marcus explains what went down in Chicago. Or failed to go down, as it turns out. "I lifted a phone, installed a backdoor, and returned the phone. The guy actually plugs the thing in to his work PC, so I migrated it from there. It's now alive and well on his desktop. I can remote into his workstation." Like it's just that easy. "I don't want a stay of execution for this company. I want its head."

Marcus blinks when he realizes and puts his hands up defensively, serious this time. "Oh! I'm sorry." he says. Number one rule is you never touch someone else's rig unless you're intimate, and even THEN it's iffy. He nods. "Oh wow. That's awesome. I mean, it's not the bullseye I was hoping for, but yeah." He nods when Maggie mentions her goal. "Same here, but… Let's be realistic. It's pretty David and Goliath. These companies are too big to completely fold. The only way we can stop them is if we can totally discredit the company and ruin any way of them making money."

Maggie accepts the apology as a matter of course, a wordless nod and nothing else. "Then that's what we have to do. I was thinking," and she pushes the salad plate away, making room to lean lower over the table, voice quiet, "that we could push out corrupt copies of their coupon booklet. If we get something fatal in their code, something that wipes wherever it's installed, and we can get that out to consumers? It would cripple their credibility."

Marcus leans over as Maggie does, listening and nodding as he gets her idea. "I see. Yeah.. Or even embed some code that steals small amounts of money from the bank accounts of customers, funneling it all into an easily tracked corporate account. With identity theft being huge… It'll definitely hit them hard." he orders a coffee from the waitress so she doesn't accuse him of loitering.

Hopefully, Marcus likes his coffee black, because there are no sugar packets on Maggie's table. There are two of those little packet-holders on the next table over, though, so he can snag one, maybe? Anyway, she looks off into the middle distance, connecting the dots in Marcus's proposal and then nodding slowly afterward. "We could skim that. Or split it - one is traceable, one isn't. Then we still get paid." She refocuses on Marcus instead of some random point in space; "All we'll need is to leave a trail of breadcrumbs for the press."

Marcus nods and places the tip of his index finger to his nose for a second. "Exactly. You get what you want and we take the company down. Win-win." Seeing as he hardly ever sleeps, he's rather used to black coffee. He takes a sip. "So.. we need a dev copy of the app that we can manipulate and slip back to them without them noticing the change in the code." He looks over. "No lie, this should be more your expertise. I can get into places but I'm not a coder. I'm better at working the people."

"I thought you were that good." Maggie raises just the one eyebrow, but it's not really a question, so she doesn't strictly wait for a response. "They're using some big company SharePoint. There's gotta be one for devs on there somewhere. If my guy has access to it, we're golden. If not - you could get hired as a developer. The guy's an admin assistant, it shouldn't be that hard to push you through HR for a company this big." Maggie's all about the back-up plans. "I know a guy that could put signatures on all the necessary paperwork."

Marcus raises a brow. "I can encrypt. Running encryption and writing a program are two totally different things." When she explains further, he nods. "Perfect. It's a good backup plan. I can see what else we can get our hooks in while I'm there, too. I think I can act like an entitled douchebag."

Maggie props her chin on her palm while Marcus explains the totally-different-things, looking at him as if raptly. "Tell me more about computer-boxes, Petey, please go on."

Also, she taps something out on her phone with the hand not holding her chin. "You're going to have to work the press, too. I can't talk to people." IN CASE THAT WASN'T OBVIOUS.

Marcus sighs and shakes his head. "You're a bitch even as I'm giving you credit." When she talks about the press, he shrugs. "There are ways around it. Our faces don't need to be attached to anything. We can put out PSAs and broadcasts online that will tell everyone what's happening. It's the age of faceless reporters."

"I just told you that I can't talk to people." As if admitting it somehow makes her less culpable. Maggie's phone buzzes. More texting. This is probably what's going on at every single booth in here - half a conversation, half people dicking around on their phones. "It'd be a huge story for a real reporter. I thought you had some kind of hero-complex?"

Marcus chuckles and shakes his head. "I can handle getting the info to a reporter. I'm sure there are a few in town I can tip off. There's that investigator one that just loves to rip apart evil companies. Those types love that.. and if we can prove the town and state government have a hand in bringing TechEase into Colorado? Bonus."

Maggie stops dead, right in the middle of sending a text, and looks across the table at Marcus, blinking. "I didn't even think about that." Which seems to disturb her immensely, based on the depth of the frown that precedes her sliding out of her side of the booth. She stuffs the laptop in her backpack. "My friend's phone is broken. I have to go help him." And/or she's mortified that she didn't theorize about the government.

Marcus nods and stands. "Oh…kay?" He shrugs. "Have a good one. I'm sure you'll be in touch." Having an issue with reading Maggie, which is odd since Marcus is good at reading *everybody*, he can't tell if she's upset about her friend or if he said something wrong. When the waitress arrives with the bill for the both of them, he shrugs and pays it off with a decent tip.

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