At six this morning Ned ran into my office absolutely livid. He was a mess. It looked like he came into the lab right out of bed. And basically he had. He got an early morning visit from a Greystle lawyer.
Ned ranted about how the project was not only going to stop but that I and the whole team was going to go to jail.
What the hell?!?
“Rule Number 1 Rob, Rule Number 1 – Don’t screw the money!” Ned said that every ten minutes for most of the morning.
Someone in the biology team was so excited about the medical possibilities of the VKV that they sent some of the info to some medical students. They went outside the team.
Greystle found out about it instantly. What idiot on our team would put project data on the grid? It doesn’t matter if it was encrypted, that is a fantasy now anyway with every key owned by the government. And now I guess we could say Greystle owns them too.
When Ned ran to meet with Greystle’s lawyers I called all the managers to the main floor. Adit, Janice, Kaitlin, etc. Every group manager was there and I let them have it. I asked them if their CVs were up to date because they were going to need them soon. I was shaking. I think I might have been crying.
I told them that Alpha would most likely die and that Ned was trying to save our asses.
And then it got worse.
Janice just stared at me coldly and said “you would kill them all. All the animals, all that life. You’d kill them all for Greystle?”
I always thought the phrase “the silence was deafening” was crap, but I swear my eardrums were bleeding while all of us just stood there. No one shuffled. No one cleared their throat. A lot of death to think about, and inside I screamed as I thought of what Janice must now think of me.
When I finally spoke again I took a more conciliatory tone. I said that if Alpha was going to continue we’ve got to work better with Greystle. If the VKV is going to be used in medicines and save lives in the REAL world we’d need to work with Greystle or else what we learned here could never be used to help anyone.
I then ordered Pizza. That seemed to help a bit. But there was almost no small talk as we ate. Janice wouldn’t look at me.
During lunch Ned came in with somewhat good news. Alpha would live.
Ned convinced Greystle that the mistake would not be repeated and that Alpha was a proven money maker that could not exist nor be maintained without the present project team.
So now as it stands nothing has changed except that if any of us leaves the green zone we are instantly off the project and possibly even instantly put it jail.
We also lost our write access to the grid.
Okay, this is embarrassing to admit, but I didn’t know it was possible to that. I’m sure Adit will figure out a work around, otherwise half the team will lose their entire social life.
So we’re now prisoners of the campus and the green zone. Just as well I guess, none of us ever left… really. I mean at least now our campus pharmacy is fully stocked of Orexinal. Of course even if I didn’t take some tonight I doubt I’d be able to sleep.
I’m pretty sure we’ll have to push back our “beg for more money” presentation to Greystle yet again.