I read this as if it were a short story. Part of the fact I remember Patrick mentioning the resolution to it at E3 meant I knew it would work out somehow. Each new paragraph had a little tension of “does it get better now?”
My internal thoughts even exclaimed “Patrick, Noooo!” At this bit:
We spoke over the phone several times that evening. I tried to reassure them everything would be fine, that companies threaten to search network traffic all the time, but it doesn’t usually amount to anything. (I was making that up. I had no idea.) This would all blow over.
Still, it’s a cute story and I’m glad it got written out. Though it also made me think “Patrick was news editor at 1UP when he was 22? I’m 22 and am doing nothing!” so thanks for that unnecessary comparison, brain.