Crosscurrents – Chapter 4
Hacker Gary McCracken reunites with his old retired computer teacher — The Oracle — to uncover government secrets while being pursued by young FBI Agent Lily Weeten.
Chapter 4 – Marionette
(Gary McCracken and Lennie Triskett have been sitting at a table in an outdoor cafe on D Street in Washington D.C. for the past four hours, waiting for Jim Ritz a tech blogger for the Washington Post. Gary’s hands are shaking as he’s on his sixth espresso. Solo is napping under the table when a waitress drops off a folded piece of paper..)
GARY: (reading through bloodshot eyes) Filene’s Basement a block west of the cafe. Women’s bathing suit section. Ten minutes.
LENNIE: Well, that won’t be conspicuous.
(Back at Langley, FBI Agent Lily Weeten is sitting with her feet up on her partner Dick Reilly’s desk..)
DICK: So lemme get this straight: This McCracken fella hacked into every major military and top secret government database looking for little green men?
LILY: Seems that way.
DICK: So he’s just crazy. We’re hunting a crazy person.
LILY: What if we feed into his delusion.
DICK: How do you mean.
LILY: We send out feelers, let him think we’re in on the great big conspiracy. Draw him to us.
DICK: Weeten, that might be just nuts enough to work.
LILY: (taken aback by the rare compliment) Thanks, Dick.
DICK: Now get your feet off my desk.
(Gary, Lennie & Solo are awkwardly standing in the women’s bathing suit section of Filene’s Basement when Jim Ritz emerges from behind a female mannequin..)
RITZ: Apologies for the Deepthroat routine, gentlemen. Thought I was being followed. (takes out notepad) Now Mr. McCracken, tell me about The Wow Documents. Everyone on the internet is talking about them. You’ve blown the military-industrial complex wide open. What’s been the most shocking discovery for you personally in the documents you uncovered.
GARY: Well Jim, that would probably have to be Project Solar Warden.
LENNIE: Oh boy.
RITZ: (flips through notepad) I don’t recall that, refresh my memory.
GARY: Project Solar Warden is a DoD/UN joint operation using reverse-engineered alien spacecraft to patrol the skies and distant galaxies, in order for the New World Order to tighten its death-grip on the proletariat; controlling us like puppets, like marionettes.
RITZ: Oh..you believe in..aliens.
GARY: (frowns) Of course. The possibility of there being no life outside of our own planet is a practical impossibility and an affront to centuries of scientific research and discoveries. The Virgo Supercluster alone must have at least–
RITZ: You know what? My editor’s expecting me back in the office. So I, uh, gotta..
(Jim Ritz trails off and wanders toward the exit. Lennie pats Gary on the back and they head for the parking garage while Solo chews on a bikini bottom..)
LILY: (typing away at Dick’s computer) We place posts on a few conspiracy websites we know McCracken visits, saying we’re government employees with information on that Project Solar Warden thing he was looking into. We post a phone number and wait for him to come to us.
DICK: This is ingenious, Weeten. Oh, and if you see a folder on my desktop marked ‘Taxes’, don’t open it. It’s, uh, just tax stuff.
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