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  • Mars Date/Time:  Year 001, Sur Two, Wednesday, Sol 28 (001.2.28)  20:56 NST
  • Earth Date/Time:  Saturday, 2 April 2016  2:00 PM PDT 
  • Distance traveled:  130,677,480 kilometers   Time Delay:  4 mins 06 secs
  • Distance to Mars Rendezvous:  261,732,272 kilometers

The two ESEP security people had entered the office of SpaceTech. It was an employment agency that found temporary and permanent employees for high-tech industries. SpaceTech was a major recruiter for ESEP on the West Coast, and it was established by two people who left another recruiting agency to specialize in finding people for ESEP and their suppliers.

Bob Williamson became the sole owner of the company, after his romantic relationship with the other founding partner ended. He had three recruiters working for him now, but he was ESEP Recruiting’s main contact.

He welcomed the ESEP people into his office and asked them to sat down. He was nervous, but he didn’t want to show it. “How can I help you?,” he said. One of them replied, “Mr. Williamson, we won’t take up much of your time. We are making security audits of our suppliers, and if we could just ask a few questions, we’ll be on our way.” Bob smiled and said, “Fire away.” The other ESEP person said, “Mr. Williamson, have you ever been approached be someone who ask you to send certain applicants to ESEP…maybe they even offered you extra money to do it.”

The ESEP team could tell that Bob was surprised by their question. He became visibly nervous. Bob felt his core sink, and suddenly he was trying to remember what he did that might be illegal. He tried to seem calm when he asked his next question, “Is that illegal?” The first man said, “Probably not; however, it is an important that we learn about the situation. So you have had someone ask you to send us certain people?” Bob said, “Yes, there is a woman who represents someone who is trying to help people get high-tech job at ESEP, but they are doing it to help these people…and they all have excellent qualifications.”

The other ESEP person pulled out a picture of the woman at the Maui airport and said, “The woman doesn’t happen to look like this does she?” Bob’s eyes grew large and he said, “Yes, that’s her. Who is she?” At that one of the ESEP people stood up and went outside Bob’s office to make a call.

About five minutes later Commodore Ken Hart received an urgent message from his Earthside security office. It said,

URGENT!  We have a hit on the woman. A recruiter at SpaceTech has ID’d her as one who has been supplying ESEP people with excellent qualifications. Protection and recovery protocols ordered. Determining size of breach. FBI informed. Containment in process. Will duck blind SpaceTech for as long as possible.

Ken contacted Jenna and Wendy to meet. A few minutes later they gathered in Jenna’s quarters just as Paige was leaving. Ken said,

“We may have a major breach. A few minutes ago one of our Security teams found a recruiter who has been sending us applicants supplied by our mystery woman. We don’t have any information yet, but we are taking the recruiter and his staff to a safe location to be interviewed, and put in our own people in his office. We are also copying all their records. We should be able to find out what agents of FSB have been sent to us, and if we’re lucky we might be able to get the woman.” 

Jenna said, “How quickly can we arrest the planted employees?” Ken said, “We have teams ready to go once we have names, and we won’t stop with just those hired. We will go after anyone sent by the woman. My best guess is that we have about six hours to act before FSB begins to realize something is happening.”

Jenna said, “When will we know more?” Ken said, “I’ll have them give me an update by midnight.” Jenna said, “Let’s keep this between us and meet again at midnight.” Wendy and Ken left. Jenna contacted Naomi and said, “Naomi, manage all Comm traffic until further notice. Let Ken and my traffic flow. Redirect all other traffic through me.”