Ravi should be your first best friend. Have you ever wanted to fly? Ask Ravi. He can hook you up.
Ravi is very insightful and capable. He always has empathy for most people. He knows a lot about technology and applied sciences and, in a broad sense, the way things function. He has a very rational thought process. He is a hacker who can seize any system. He is highly skilled in all maths and sciences.
Ravi likes useful things, rocking out to Latin music, and classical music. Still, he doesn't enjoy working out at the gym, a good dramatic film, or the cacophany of country music. In a typical Ravi day, he will be finishing up some information technology, honing his skills in Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, and consuming episodes of Perfume.
You don't become such an effective person by natural means. Ravi isn't who he is because he was raised well and worked hard. Rather, it was the opposite. His kindness, helpful nature, and efficacy all stem from his willingness to live up to his ideals.
Ravi's mother and father ran a small but lucrative family law practice. As a curious child, he asked lots of questions and they were always prepared with thoughtful, educated answers. But as you may know of curious people—especially children—you can never provide a sufficient explanation. With more knowledge comes more questions and Ravi took the opportunity to explore at every chance.
When he was only 11 years old, he was left alone for a moment in his father's home office and his curiosity did its part. On a number of forms and contracts, he noticed a name he'd seen in the news: Blutsang Neinhaus, the man known as the great unifier of the multi-national drug cartels through the creation and management of the Neinhaus Enterprise.
Mr. Neinhaus was a man who maintained a clarity of mind not unlike Ravi's, but he was nevertheless determined to use it for personal gain. Of all the unproven allegations known to the general public, everyone knew one thing: there were never any warnings. Should you step out of line even once—even in the smallest of ways—you were dead. He forgave mistakes. He showed compassion. He simply did not tolerate disloyalty and made it the core value of his business strategy. This was the man that Ravi's parents worked for—the man they defended against allegations that were likely true.
Ravi's expertise with technology started even earlier in his life. By 11 he'd already hacked several government servers, created detailed reports of their vulnerabilities, and left that and a list of solutions in prominent locations on their servers all while remaining anonymous. He didn't care about the credit or any glory. Ravi was a kid who asked questions and paid attention. He'd seen the families of his friends torn apart by the rampant fraud that went unpolice on the internet and the data leaks that made it all possible. He simply wanted to help.
He determined he'd come to an understanding with his parents, but not before he knew the truth himself. The Immutable Mandates were not yet in place. He wouldn't leave room for lies. If they were told, he needed to know. To that end, Ravi easily breached the security of his family's law firm, read the documents, and filled in the blanks by tracing the online footprints of the Neinhaus family. He found evidence that Mr. Neinhaus trained his three daughters to work as assassins in his regime. He was responsible for innumerable deaths, whether the victims succumbed to the dangers of the products his illegitimate business provided or his extreme sense of loyalty. Ravi's parents had defended against every horrifying allegation against Blutsang Neinhaus and profited greatly for their services. Every bit of privilege in his life came at the cost of so much death.
Ravi wanted to give his parents the opportunity to put an end to their misdeeds and so he sent a mountain of evidence against Mr. Neinhaus to the prosecutors in his parents' files. On the following day they were all found dead with no sign of the evidence. Ravi found honeypot servers now hosting their accounts, clearly put in place to identify the hacker who'd leaked this information to the authorities. Mr. Neinhaus had access to immense surveillance. He valued his operation and his own safety more than any human life. For this, Ravi was determined to stop him.
At dinner that night, Ravi made up a story and told it to his parents. He told them a story about a kid at school who'd made himself vomit to get sent home for the afternoon and asked his parents how they'd feel if he were to do something like that. As talented legal professionals, they weren't so dense or ignorant to answer a question without context and Ravi explained that the kid was bullied. His mother chose to provide her assessment and explained that she sympathized with the boy's actions but would advise him—had she been his parent—to employ a more viable strategy for the long term. She told Ravi that the solution to bullies was fairly simple: remove their source of power and they will have none to exert.
That night, Ravi drained the bank accounts of the Neinhaus family, their businesses, and their investments.
Ravi converted the funds into cryptocurrency, washed the coins in an exchange, and distributed them into thousands of untraceable Monero wallets. He used an encryption scheme he'd devised for a school project to convert the private keys of every wallet to standard email address and password combos, created a community forum for horse breeders, and used a machine learning algorithm to create years of fake content.
While anyone scrutinizing the content of the site would notice it was a facade, he didn't expect any visitors. He simply hid the keys in the only safe place he could: in public, where no one appeared to own them.
The Neinhaus Enterprise devolved into chaos by morning. Without any money, and therefore power, his demand for loyalty held no weight. Several of the lesser druglords made their moves. The Neinhaus sisters protected their father for the night but the people he once controlled couldn't be stopped by three young women, regardless of their dangerous talents. He sent his daughters away, tasking them to find the hacker that destroyed their livelihoods, so that they may seek revenge and live their lives without the protection he could formerly provide. And with his daughters in the wind, Blutsang contacted his most loyal protectors: Helton Family Law. Less than 48 hours after Ravi's incredible heist, his target was sleeping in the guest room next to his.
Moments before it happened, Ravi's parents sat him down and explained the circumstances. Ravi's heart skipped a beat but quickly found its rhythm again. I know you wouldn't bring a dangerous criminal into our house, he said. You've always protected the innocent. That's why you love the law. His mother found his statements curious, but Ravi was already off to his room to check their phone logs, uncover the number of Mr. Neinhaus' active burner, and clone the SIM card to gain access to his communications. It didn't take Ravi long to discover that he wasn't a suspect. The Neinhaus sisters were looking for the hacker and their father was hiding out in his home. He had nothing to fear.
But Ravi understood the world through an imperfect lens: his own experiences and the entertainment he consumed. Despite the immense risk his actions carried, no matter his technical aptitude, he had no practical life experience to teach him this wasn't just a game. He knew it, but the information carried too little weight without emotion and memory. Mr. Neinhaus didn't need more than his intuition to reach the conclusion that someone in the Helton household had ruined him. He didn't know the details, but his suspicions were confirmed the moment Ravi cloned his burner's SIM card.
That night, Ravi awoke to find Blutsang watching him sleep with a primed needle in his hand. I spoke with your parents first, he said. And, by now, you must know how I value loyalty. Ravi nodded quietly, quickly piecing together the situation as best as his young mind could manage. What felt like a game before he fell asleep was suddenly the moment you've realized your parachute won't open. You know, for certain, your death is imminent and you only have so much time to accept it. The moment feels like forever. Each word from Blutsang's lips felt unnaturally slower than the rest. Ravi's brain had shifted into hyperdrive and time seemed to slow to a crawl. He couldn't move. It felt like he couldn't breathe. He knew he couldn't escape the needle but he didn't know what was inside. He couldn't make out the words that sounded like the humming of a radiator, forming too slowly to understand. All he could do was think. It felt like an eternity to just think but never escape the moment he'd determined for himself. The needle would enter his skin, he would overdose on some drug in the Neinhaus' arsenal of illegal substances, and he'd die in a stupor—but none of that would happen for what seemed like an eternity. In reality, the needle was 24 seconds away but, in Ravi's mind, it felt like hours.
"What can I do?" looped in his thoughts, only sometimes interrupted by "maybe I'm already dying" and "this is shock."
Then, it seemed as if he must've blinked somehow, and saw the needle bent heat. It laid, curling into itself, atop a pile of sand that flaked off a cyan-colored ash as it cooled. Blutsang Neinhaus was gone. Or was he burnt to dust?
Ravi felt a hand on his shoulder. He turned to see a barefoot woman wrapped in a turquoise dress. Her skin looked like his. She had long brown hair and eyes with three colored rings each. She looked the way most any person looked but her touch felt like it was showing him the past, present, and future in an instant. He didn't even know the shape of it but Ravi knew it was there. Her touch made him sure because that unwavering belief dissolved the moment she removed her hand from his shoulder.
Come here, she said, and pointed to a paper that was now sitting on his pillow. He turned to look at it and, before he could look back, he already had sensed she was gone. He instead read the paper. It only contained a date and address. The street was Camino Falso. The city was Mountain Viewtopia. The date was January 8th, 2034. Ravi had been granted citizenship and was welcomed on Launch Day.
That's how Ravi and I became friends. Perhaps you get my meaning.
📦 Ryan Gosling's Electrical Engineering Weekly Discovery SeriesRyan Thomas Gosling is a Canadian actor and musician. He began his career as a child star on the Disney Channel's The Mickey Mouse Club, and went on to provide weekly electrical engineering seminars designed to discover the world's best electrical engineers.
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