The large warehouse was practically empty, so even though there were only two men in it and only one of them was typing on a keyboard, the clacking sounds filled the space. The man on the computer was wearing a trench coat and heavy black boots. The man over his shoulder was wearing an expensive grey suit, a freshly pressed white button-up shirt, and a pair of brown leather loafers.
"How close are we?" said the man in the suit.
The warehouse was poorly lit, with exposed metal beams and a tin roof. The corner closest to the door was littered with large brown boxes stacked on crates. In the opposite corner was a metal desk with a laptop and some electronic parts.
"How certain are you that this will work?" The man in the suit was scratching his hand. He started pacing. His leather loafers were evidently new, because they kept squeaking and making scratching noises. He was a large man—tall, not wide—but with a lot of mass.
The man on the computer stopped typing. He pulled the USB cord out of his computer and disconnected a small motherboard the size of a deck of playing cards. He looked at the man in the suit with cold dark eyes.
"And what's the signal strength?"
"I said, done. It'll work."
The man in the suit passed a bulging brown envelope across the table. He picked up the motherboard, placed it carefully in another brown envelope and put it in his pocket.
The man at the computer started typing again, but paused and looked up, slightly annoyed. "Yes?"
"Let's stop all online communications."
"See you on the other side, Gabriel."
The clacking sounds resumed.
YOU ARE READING
The Term Sheet | Wattys 2016 WinnerMystery / Thriller
2016 WATTY AWARD WINNER - HQ LOVE THE TERM SHEET is a fast-paced technothriller about entrepreneurship, startups, encryption, and the delicate balance between national security and individual privacy. Its complex characters explore thought-provoking...