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   `No,' Phoenix answered. `When I went back to the BEAR machine to check

   if Deszip was still there, the program was gone. But the licence

   agreement and other stuff was there. Should have read the licence ...

   truly amazing. It basically went on and on about how the people who

   wrote it didn't want people like us to get a hold of it. Hehe.'

  

   Electron was growing impatient. `Yeah. So, Gand, when you gonna go

   check that JANET system?'

  

   `Now. Fingers crossed, m8! See ya l8r ...' Then he was gone.

  

   The waiting was driving Electron nuts. He kept thinking about Deszip,

   about how he could have had it months and months ago. That program was

   such a prize. He was salivating at the thought of getting it after all

   this time pursuing it around the globe, chasing its trail from system

   to system, never quite getting close enough to grab it.

  

   When Gandalf showed up again, Pad, Phoenix and Electron were all over

   him in an instant.

  

   `WE FUCKING GOT IT GUYS!!!!!' Gandalf exclaimed.

  

   `Good job m8!' Pad said.

  

   `YES!' Electron added. `Have you decrypted it yet?'

  

   `Not yet. Crypt isn't on that machine. We can either copy Crypt onto

   that machine or copy the file onto another computer which already has

   Crypt on it,' Gandalf said.

  

   `Let's move it. Quick ... quick ... this damn thing has a habit of

   disappearing,' Electron said.

  

   `Yeah, this is the last copy ... the only one I got.'

  

   `OK. Think ... think ... where can we copy it to?' Electron said.

  

   `Texas!' Gandalf wanted to copy it to a computer at the University of

   Texas at Austin, home of the LOD hacker Erik Bloodaxe.

  

   Irrepressible, Gandalf came on like a steam roller if he liked

   you--and cut you down in a flash if he didn't. His rough-and-tumble

   working-class humour particularly appealed to Electron. Gandalf seemed

   able to zero in on the things which worried you most--something so

   deep or serious it was often unsaid. Then he would blurt it out in

   such crass, blunt terms you couldn't help laughing. It was his way of

   being in your face in the friendliest possible manner.

  

   `Yeah! Blame everything on Erik!' Phoenix joked. `No, seriously. That

   place is crawling with security now, all after Erik. They are into

   everything.'

  

   Phoenix had heard all about the security purge at the university from

   Erik. The Australian called Erik all the time, mostly by charging the

   calls to stolen AT&T cards. Erik hadn't been raided by the Secret

   Service yet, but he had been tipped off and was expecting a visit any

   day.

  

   `It probably won't decrypt anyway,' Electron said.