The Let's Play Archive

Uplink: Trust is a weakness

by Porkness

Part 5

Though it increased my power and made my attacks so much more potent, the RTech Lite was a cold and grim machine. Over the next few days, I came to realize that its icy malice was beginning to wear on me. The feel of the machine began to remind me of some sort of gray death.

I was looking forward to the day I would eventually outgrow the RTech Lite, so I could leave it behind, but first I had one more task to accomplish.

File deletions and theft of data I had done before, but the wiping of an entire database was as yet beyond my experience.

The connection was heavily guarded by a high-level proxy and firewall, and constantly watched by a state-of-the-art monitor program. Even connecting to the machine proved difficult:

Even once I had managed to route my connection through the company, I realized I could not beat this machine. Yet.

What do you do when your path is obstructed by a door? Do you bash down the door, or spend some time trying to figure out the secret knock? To break into the Datalink Central Mainframe I would need tools, and to get those I would need money.

The other day, I had broken into the Action Systems Bank. Now I returned, this time not as a spy but a customer.

With my account created, I started sniffing around.

For what I was about to pull, I could actually afford the means to overcome the bank's defenses. I sank an entire third of my net worth into purchasing a top-of-the-line proxy disabler.

I was shaking hands with the bank with one hand, but getting ready to stab them in the back with my other. I returned later that night.

Half of the work had already been done. I already knew how to gain access to the purchaser's account, but only now did I have the means to make changes.

No hack, so no trace. Everything was quiet. I struck, faster than shit off a shiny shovel. Within seconds the bank's proxy server had failed. 802,093 credits, more than forty times my remaining worth, flowed within the server to my new account. The deed was done, and I was nearly a millionaire. Now, it was time to cover my tracks.

I broke into the purchaser's account statement, and deleted the record of the money leaving the account. Not even a blank space remained- the fortune would seem to have simply disappeared.

By now, the administrator had begun a trace, even though he was too late to possibly catch me.

I entered my own account, and deleted all record of ever having received the money.

I looked one more time at the work of art I had made my connection before severing it. Lorenz would have weeped upon seeing such chaotic movement.

All that remained was to remove any record of me having connected to the bank in the first place.

Victory. I could fuel my growth another day.

No client could pay as well as a bank robbery. First now... escape. I needed to escape the gray death for an even more powerful computer.

At last, I was ready to leave this depressing mach/*loif n-> vertex_polygon
;vasse truncate & dex!=0.9999 bias_ccw (index_endpoint;+index) && p
44937, INITIALVOWEL _e_ 739AC REVELATION <<erasecursor>> 9B *


* * * * *

The gray hues of the RTech Lite's personality swam underneath my eyelids, dissipating into darkness. I found myself sprawled once more on the floor, and like in the last dream I could tell without opening my eyes there was someone leaning over me. My clothes were being peeled off.

Footsteps. There was another man here, too, like last time. I felt a scratch on my stomach, and bolted upright, my eyes snapping open. The same malicious thug was crouched over me, and he recoiled in surprise. The man behind him had obviously not expected my movement, and quickly stepped back out of the light, but he was too late.

I recognized him. It was the man in the tie.

The thug pelted me across my face with a blunt object, caving my skull in. Yet still I was alive. From his toolbox he took a metal sphere the size of a baseball and laid it on my stomach. I was helpless to resist, but he looked puzzled. He pushed on it, almost as if hoping it would sink into my body somehow, and even tried making a crude incision with his fingernails to no avail.

Eventually he gave up and slammed the ball into my stomach at such a high rate of speed it broke skin. Standing up, he wiped his gore-soaked hands on his shirt and inspected my mangled body, the metal ball still peeking out of the hole he had ripped in my gut. He wasn't happy with the result, but had obviously been unprepared for the job.

All went black, and with a buzzing head I trudged forward.

* * * * *

The new machine had a warmer, more welcoming feel. It would sustain me for a long time, and with it I began drawing plans to complete my mission:

Hacking, cracking, stealing and spying. Now it was time to kill a computer.