I got the call at 4:01 a.m. My screen flashed his name, not surprising since he had called me twice last week to see if I could do it. He never asked if I would do it. The sonofabitch just assumes. If he has a saving grace, it’s only that he doesn’t argue about the price.
“Whatcha think, can you?”
Of course, I can do it, I can get past any firewall on the planet, but I played him a little just to hear him squirm. “It’s a tough one. Someone in their realm has significant experience. This is like breaking into a digital Fort Knox.”
“C’mon, man, there’s not a firewall on this planet that you can’t penetrate.”
I laughed. It was as if he were channeling my own thoughts. How sweet is this?
“Please, Jellybean, I need this. This is my white Rhino, and I want to hang this one over my fireplace. Please, you can do it. Call me.”
After he hung up, I got to work. It was difficult. These guys are good. But I managed to open the door and set up a path where my client had access to every entry into the contest. It was like having a wire into Monmouth and placing bets at the furlong pole. But, of course, I could do it.
He won the contest, all 300 words, and I was paid my usual fee, which was ten times his winnings. I find it hard to understand that kind of ruthless ambition.