Distraction, Part 2

Over two hours in and no sign of letting up. Slaiton had found himself rolling up his sleeves and dusting off decade-rusty skills from his secminion days. He had never been particularly good at the tech work. But for now, they needed anyone who could read a console.

Whent had not been exaggerating. Nearly every single server was being hit, all the way to fourth-tier backups on the other side of the world. There were gaps here and there with no particular pattern. There was no time to figure out any reasoning either. The servers at risk were a much higher priority.

After the second hour, the corps started to notice. Downtime was expected as part of normal business, but they had started to compare notes. Slaiton had to retreat to his office to put out the rapidly growing PR fire that accompanied this fiasco. He had some more skill with that. Unfortunately, he wasn’t much of a liar and there was precious little good news to hand out with the bad.

He had just ended a call with the fiery head of Arestech when Whent burst into the room unannounced. Any other day, Slaiton might have chewed him out for it. Today, it was just part of the new routine.

“Commissioner. New development,” the Secmaster said.

“What now?” Slaiton asked. His voice was low and dripped with exhaustion. Just like everyone else here.

“It’s – well, it looks like the attacks have stopped,” Whent said.

“Stopped? You mean all of them?”

“Yeah. More or less at the same time.”

“More proof of coordination, then,” Slaiton said. He hefted himself from his chair and tried to put his commander voice back on. “Start the traces. And get me a damage tally asap. There is no way in hell we’re just going to let this ghost.”

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