Mechanic Job

38 posts / 0 new
Last post
Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Mechanic Job

Fixer waits patiently under the neon glow that basked the windowless underground garage in her red skinned sylph morph. Her equipment is laid out all around, a pair of automech are at rest nearby. The back of the garage is occupied with a large, armored truck.

[Are you sure about this, Fix?] Turing, her muse asked. [This could be a trap, remember last night?]

[Doubtful. But if it is the case, back up will be here in no time.] She said, flipping through sets of entoptic display

[Our guest is requesting permission to enter. He's alone.] Turing said.

[Let him in.] She declared, unlocking the lift to the surface.
_______________________________________________________

((In case you're wondering Fixer (a.k.a Wei) doesn't identify with either gender. And so generally doesn't mind what she's reffered to as in term of pronoun.))

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Grosser stood in front of the

Grosser stood in front of the mechanic's shop door. He tried to send an entrance request but for some reason it wouldn't send.
"Hey Lil?" he asked his new muse, "why can't I ring this guy's doorbell?"
"Something seems to be interfering with our... err your cranial computer's ability to transmit data," Lil replied. "She" spoke in his head in a very child-like bubbly voice. At first having a little girl's voice in his head was somewhat disarming, but she seemed to want to help him. Despite not being able to answer any useful questions regarding his personal investigation into what exactly happened to him, and more importantly why it happened, she had proven her value a few times already. She'd given him a crash course on how to use this new morph and warned him twice now of immediate physical dangers. Confusion was where he lived these days, and she was just one more testament to that.

"Your wireless connectivity could have been damaged in your last altercation," Lil continued.
"I thought the medichines would have fixed that. Can't you do anything about it?"
"Give me a moment," something didn't sound right with her voice, like she was hiding something. Could muses lie? Grosser was really starting to wish he had gotten a more liberal education instead of the drilling and indoctrination that passed for learning back home. Lil apparently came through though as after a minute or so the request sent and a lift entrance opened up.
Well, here goes nothing Grosser thought to himself as he stepped into the lift.

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Rules

Fixer eyed the newcomer intently. Her implants registering everything, a creepy on her shoulder scanning with it's augmented vision all manners of frequencies, broadcasting the result directly to her entoptic displays. As he entered, she leaned against a table, wearing a high quality business suit.

"Welcome. I am glad to see you could make it. You may call me Fixer. I am one of Mars most well connected broker. Triads, Pax, The Night Cartel, Hypercorps, Tharsis. Before we start you will need to know my two ground rules." She spoke in mandarin, letting Grosser's muse translate.

"First; I will not deal in ego-slavery nor will I help anyone engaging in it or those who associate with such individuals, even casually.

Second; Should you attempt to double cross me or work against me, I will ensure you are black marked in every corner of the inner system's society, I do not take kindly to those who abuse my trust. Are these term acceptable for you?"

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
As the lift descended,

As the lift descended, Grosser looked over the shop. He was growing more nervous by the second. Something kept nagging at him; telling him that this was a bad idea and he should get out of here. Why the fuck am I so scared? he thought to himself. I'm an experienced fucking soldier. Getting a check up should be a piece of cake.

If he were still in his original body, Grosser was sure he'd have been shaking in fear by the time the lift came to a stop. Fortunately, this new morph was a lot better at faking calm than his original. He just stood there, arms casually folded over his chest, seemingly completely at ease.

As the mechanic, Fixer, listed off her terms that nagging something in the back of his head got more insistent. This will end badly. Get out before it's too late!

For a moment, Grosser considered hammering the "up" control on the lift and running away as fast as he could. No, he had to find out what was happening. Grosser was sure someone was fucking with him and this morph was a huge part of it. He took a second to clear his mind, the closest thing to taking a deep breath that he could do as a synth, before speaking. Neither the digital face display on his faceplate nor his voice gave away his irrational panic, instead he calmly said, "Your rules are more than fair ma'am. I have less than zero interest in ego slavery, and I don't have much intention of staying in town long enough to double cross you even if I did want to, which I don't."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Freebies

"Excellent." She says with a smile. "As a show of good faith, I've prepared a little gift for you." She declared, taking a thick briefcase from the table beside her. She walks over to him, hips swaying sensuously, she open the case when close to him. The inside contains a weapon, four magazines and a data drive.

"Stinger R.44, medium caliber rail pistol, with fifty round of ammunition. On the drive, you'll find limitless-use combat narco-algorithms for MRDR and Grin as well as nano-fabber blueprint for standard and tungsten-carbide ammunition, the weapon itself and access codes for the hacked fabbers around Elysium. Consider these, freebies, everything else will need to be bought or traded for."

"Now, might I know who I have the honor to be speaking to?"

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Grosser was taken aback by

Grosser was taken aback by Fixer's generosity. "I'm Serg..." he began to give the standard introduction he'd given a thousand times; Sergeant Reagan Grosser, Jovian Defence Force. That wasn't who he was any more though. It was funny, being shot at by his old squad mates didn't drive home how much had changed for him after that night nearly as much as a simple introduction. "You know what, just call me Reagan."

Grosser looked down at the "freebies" Fixer had presented him with. He took a step forward, doing his best to appear non-threatening. Although Grosser wasn't really aware of it, he moved calmly and gracefully off the lift and toward the briefcase. As he did so, his morphs outer shell changed colours to compliment the decor of the shop.

Grosser gripped the pistol, checked to be sure it was unloaded and aimed it at a wall well away from Fixer to check the sights. Satisfied, he placed it back in the case before speaking up, "Not to sound ungrateful ma'am, but I'm not used to random strangers being so," he paused for a second to consider his next word. Trusting? No. Convenient? No. suspicious? Hell no. "...generous."

"If you don't mind my asking, what do you get out of this?"

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Motivations

"It's simple, unless you plan on getting out of the inner system or get a desk job, we will likely do more business in the future, the price of these items is nothing compared to potential revenue that this could bring.

But more importantly Trust is the most dire factor factor to keeping good relations for those in my employment, it is not unheard that people try to off me as to snatch my stock without paying.

I will be honest that I often work as a talent scout for certain organizations. You have skills that are very valuable, you could make it big here on mars with the right friends. But first, you will need to master your own morph."

Fixer's clothing rearrange itself into a clean gray jumpsuit. "Shall we get to it?"

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
"Fair enough," Grosser said

"Fair enough," Grosser said not entirely convinced, "I'm not sure how keen I am with being recruited out of the blue, but fuck it it's not like I have much choice other than to stay on this ride until the end. Let's do this thing."

Grosser did his best to look relaxed and let Fixer get to work.

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Diagnosis

"Recruited wouldn't be the most accurate word. But you may find yourself on the receiving end of freelancer work offers. Ex-military are in high demand for private security and criminal work. You don't need to agree to anything, this service is on the house. Would you deactivate your medichines and grant me access to your diagnosis routines?" She asked, the two drones coming to life. "I will start by scanning for hidden features in your morph."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
In the privacy of his mesh

In the privacy of his mesh inserts, Grosser "spoke" to his muse, "Lil, can you disable the medichines and unlock all systems for examination?" Usually Lil responded instantly, but she took several seconds to respond this time.

"Are you sure you want to do this?" Lil asked, "I'm not so sure we can trust this chick."

"I need as much information as I can get about what happened to me, and it's not like I have a whole bunch of leads to follow. This is a risk I'm willing to take," Grosser explained.

"Well, OK," Lil seemed apprehensive. An apprehensive AI, Grosser could hardly believe it.

"Medichines disabled and systems unlocked," Lil reported.

Grosser turned his attention to Fixer, "You should be good to go."

((OOC, I'm assuming Fixer is going to proceed with the scan, but don't want to put actions on your character. If she does scan Grosser's morph she find's that it's not actually a Galatea, but a very high quality imitation. It's scaled up from the standard model, so Grosser is about a head taller than most Galatea morphs. The only physical mods that are there that weren't mentioned in the other thread are pneumatic limbs and some extra internal armour plating. The morph's cyberbrain has been modified as well, containing a ghost rider module and a puppet sock.))

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"Diagnosis indicate you have

"Diagnosis indicate you have a muse installed. I thought that Jovians were not allowed to use them, did it come with the Morph?

I've noticed a few things, first the model seems to have been engineered to be close to a Galatea, but it appears to be a custom job rather than a market model. Secondly, it seems you have a ghostrider module installed along with a puppet sock, which is a serious security risk and does not normally come installed on upper end synthmorph."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Grosser tried to absorb what

Grosser tried to absorb what Fixer was telling him. He wasn't entirely sure what it all meant, but he thought he could manage a pretty close guess.

"Yeah, the muse came with the morph," he brushed it off more concerned about the rest of the news, "so this ghost rider module and puppet sock... what exactly does it mean that I have them?"

Before Fixer could respond, an anonymous call came over her comm.

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"There could be another ego

"There could be another ego riding in your head. I can't tell if it's a standard module or a monitor. The puppet sock means someone could take control of your body and tele-operate it. While it would require them to hack you, if the previous owner kept a backdoor, they could do it at will.

I would recommended ditching the muse. You don't know what kind of programming it has. It could be spying on you or trying to manipulate you. Getting a replacement could be rather expensive however, you could always reboot it to factory setting, but this would not change anything about hidden codes that could be present."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
"Alright then," Grosser said

"Alright then," Grosser said before pausing, "let's scrub my muse. Sorry Lil, it's been fun, thanks for the help but you're too much of a risk now."

Grosser sent the command to restore his mesh inserts default settings, but received no response. He tried again. Still nothing.

"It doesn't..." he began to speak before abruptly stopping, his morph going momentarily limp as everything went black.

Grosser's morph rebooted itself and spoke to Fixer in a wholly different voice from the one he had been using a second earlier, "We do not wish you or the Reagan Grosser ego any harm. We only wish to observe. Unfortunately despite our best efforts to subtly dissuade Grosser from allowing your examinations, you have discovered our fail safe and forced me to take direct control of this morph." Grosser's morph sat up and looked at Fixer with the best appeal for sympathy a virtual representation of a face could manage.

"This whole experiment is not malicious, we want to help this ego. We can't, however have him know that we can take control of him at will, which we only ever intended to do if the experiment was in danger, like it is now. So... what is to be done?"

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"Who are you? Who do you work

"Who are you? Who do you work for?" Fixer's pose become tense. She's visibly hyperalert, possibly betraying the fact that kick now burst through her system.

The two drones move away from the hijacker. They seem to switch their tool load out rather quickly.

"Why are you doing this?"

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Grosser's morph raised it's

Grosser's morph raised it's hands in submission.

"You misunderstand my intentions," the morph's voice was calm and soothing, "As I said I mean you no harm and have no interest in violence. I also strongly dislike having to freeze the good sergeant's ego longer than I have to, so let's speak frankly." The morph stood quickly looked about the room, taking note of the armed drones.

"I'm working with somewhat... let's say radical group made up of very... proactive Mercurials and Argonauts that are sympathetic to the Mercurial cause. We have been working on a method of using XP to teach violent hate crime offenders empathy for the marginalized. We are effectively attempting to see if we can undo hateful, paranoid indoctrination through a series of of experiences that are expected to cause the subject to consider the individual circumstances and experiences of others before acting. We chose this ego because during his interview he stated that he wasn't entirely convinced by his bio-conservative upbringing, but he still seemed to show prejudices. He seemed like would have high chance of overcoming those prejudices with a bit of guidance. If successful, the data we collect could prove vital to developing the XP scenarios we are working on."

The morph took a cautious step towards Fixer. "It is important for our research that this test be as blind as possible. I ask that you don't reveal this to the subject. Regardless of what you choose however, I won't attempt to fight you or your drones." The morph looked at Fixer waiting for a response.

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"While I can empathize with

"While I can empathize with your goals, Don't you think abducting and controlling Mr. Reagan could be seen as a validation of bioconservative fears of subversion by non-human elements?" She remains standing passively as she speak.

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
"Mr. Grosser is fine. He

"Mr. Grosser is fine. He wasn't resleeved, but forked. The ego in this morph isn't the original. The original is fine and has been returned to Jovian custody. According to Mr. Grosser himself, all that this ego is is a non-living copy. A series of data that generates responses to stimuli. No more, no less. We obviously disagree with that stance, but that is the closest thing to consent we could expect given the requirements of our experiment. As far as we're concerned, the Reagan Grosser in this morph is a wholly new being, that is being given the opportunity to develop a wholly new identity."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"Well, I happen to be of the

"Well, I happen to be of the belief that forks are no different from the original, making the resleeving versus forking aspect irrelevant to my eyes, as I have said to Mr. Reagan, I do not support soul-trading and forknapping. I will have to request that you end your experiment here.

I may not agree with his ideology, but I recognize his rights."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
"I see. Unfortunately I can

"I see. Unfortunately I can't make that call. Even if I could, you said yourself that morphs of this type are far from inexpensive. If the experiment was terminated, it would have to be reclaimed. This would force me to remove any agency Mr. Grosser has. I also wouldn't be able to predict what fate would befall his ego, although I am certain he wouldn't be arbitrarily deleted. I can contact those in charge of the experiment and have them terminate if you insist, or I can return to my position as a mostly silent observer, turning control over to Mr. Grosser and allowing you and him to discuss this, or not, as you see fit. If the experiment is compromised however, I will be forced to recommend termination."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"I can arrange for

"I can arrange for replacement morph. Let Mr. Reagan back in control, I will speak with him. He should have a say in his own fate. Should he decide to remain in your experiment, then so be it."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
The morph simply stated,

The morph simply stated, "Very well." The morph's head dipped like it had fallen asleep just before the whole morph stumbled.

The morph righted itself then spoke in its default voice, "Whoa, what was that?" Grosser shook his head as if to clear it. "Weird, anyhow are you going to tell me what those extra mods you found in my morph mean or just leave me here in suspense?"

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"You were locked out of your

"You were locked out of your very own morph for a few minutes. It seems Mr. Reagan that you have been not resleeved but forked, with a second you remaining with the Jovians. You've been unknowingly put into an experiment prototype seeking to rehabilitate bioconservative without having to resort to mind alterations.

Your muse has been attempting to keep you away from here as to avoid you learning the truth. So now you stand at a crossroad. You may continue the experiment or strike on your own. If you do the former, you will keep your morph but I cannot say if you will also keep the memories of the truth of your condition, if you choose to quit, you will need to be resleeved. Sadly, there is no possibility of regaining your old life."

((Slight note about language, since Fixer is speaking mandarin, he's actually referring to Reagan as Uncle when saying "Mr. Reagan".))

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Grosser sat and digested the

Grosser sat and digested the information for a bit. "Well fuck. I'd pretty much accepted that there was no going home so that's nothing new." Grosser really wished he still had a biological body at the moment so that he could go get a nice stiff scotch.

"So I either stick with this morph and risk having God only know's what happen to me, or I get sleeved into a third body, which I'm not gonna lie isn't a prospect that excites me. I'd like to keep the number of times I resleeve to a minimum, and if I did choose option B here, where is this third morph going to come from? You?" he paused as though he was taking a breath. It was partly a hold over behaviour from when he had a meat body and partly a chance for him to consider his next words.

"Look, not for nothing friend, but I'm not really in love with the idea of being in your debt. Neither option seems all that appealing to be honest."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"Which is completely

"Which is completely understandable as you've just met me." She says sitting down on a tool box. "I see at least three options for you. First is to exist as an infomorph, at least until you can acquire a new body. Second option is to find a work contract that will guarantee you a morph, third is to rent a shell or skin until you can afford your own and settle down.

I hope you understand, but I simply cannot do loans to someone I have no experience with. What I can do is add you to my white list of freelancers which would net you short term work offer, this would not put you under any obligation. Many people come for me to have reliable freelance workers which I help them find. I also can find you equitable work contracts around the inner system for free.

Or if you don't mind a bit of dirty work, I can have a new high-end morph fabbed for you before nightfall. But that would require you to sign a contract for me that would put you on retainer. I will admit, your options are rather unattractive but as an ex-military you have better ones than those unable to accomplish skilled work, you should have little problem gaining any money you'd need."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
"Well, like I said, I'm

"Well, like I said, I'm really not keen on resleeving if I don't have to. I may not be a real boy any more, but old fears die hard, you know? I may be willing to accept that I'm a fully thinking, feeling person, but I'm under no illusions that I'm the human soldier that was sent on this assignment. That guy is, as far as I know, dead. Just like I would be if I took any of your options. Sure there would be something, hell someone, there that had Reagan Grosser's memories, thoughts and behaviours, but it wouldn't really be Reagan Grosser, or me, whoever I am. It's just continuing a seemingly arbitrary cycle of death and creation. And really if a life isn't worth trying to hold on to, what's the point, a million new copies aren't worth shit if one isn't.

"I appreciate your help, but I need some time to make a decision. I'll see if I can't have a chat with the voice in my brain and work something out so that I stay in control. In the mean time, if you're still willing I'd appreciate getting on that freelancer list. I assume so long as I'm reachable, these guys haven't chosen to take my morph back."

Grosser strode up to the "freebie" briefcase and made to reach for it while looking for confirmation from Fixer that it was still OK if he took it.

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
"It's yours, take it." She

"It's yours, take it." She answers. "You know my mesh address if you come to a decision. And hope that you'll fully accept your personhood, Mr. Reagan."

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Grosser nodded at Fixer and

Grosser nodded at Fixer and sealed the briefcase. "It's not about accepting my personhood or not. I am a person, just not the same person that was used to make my ego. Just like if I were to resleeve the result would also be a person, but it wouldn't be me. My experience, my life, would end and the new person's would begin. Ah, nevermind. Thanks again for your help, and give me a call if you need any work done."

Grosser gripped the briefcase by its handle, turned and strode back to the lift. As the lift ascended, he called up his muse, "Lil, we need to have a no-bullshit talk right now."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Once Reagan was out of the

Once Reagan was out of the building, Fixer called on her muse. [Turing, I need you to keep track of Mr. Reagan's action and going, use one of our agent program for it.]

[Do you believe him to be a threat?] The muse answered in English.

[I'm more worried about the ego-nappers. They could be a potential X-threat. I still have the morph's spec, see if you can reference them with anything in the Firewall database, I want to know if we've dealt with them before. Meanwhile, I'll be tracking Reagan's previous location until he meet with the target.]

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
"What can I do for you sir?"

"What can I do for you sir?" Lil responded as Grosser was stepping off the lift and back into the Elysian streets. Grosser started making his way down an ally way, looking for some place relatively private. Chances were good that he was going to be doing some yelling and he didn't want anyone being able to ID him because of it.

"Cut the shit. What's going to happen to me now that I've found out that I'm some kind of guinea pig?" Grosser started to grow angered as he turned down a darkened side street.

"Well," Lil began, "I can't say for sure, but I will probably ordered to take control of your morph and return it to its owners. As for your ego, it will probably be backed up then deleted from this morph."

Grosser stopped walking an leaned against the side of a nearby building. His morph's shell changed colour to blend with the building's exterior. Combined with the shadows in the narrow ally, Grosser assumed that he would go unseen, if not unheard, by any random passers by.

"So you're are going to kill me then," he said. Grosser suddenly wasn't angry any more. He didn't know what he felt. It wasn't sorrow, it was more like a feeling that he simply had no say in his own existence.

"We don't see it as killing you. Your consciousness, memories and personality will all be left intact. You'll probably even get a free morph out of the deal before being sent on your way."

"It doesn't matter how you people see it. My existence is going to end once that delete command is sent. Making a perfect replacement copy doesn't change that." Grosser slid down into a sitting position, his back scraping against the rough building exterior. He heard the scraping, knew that there was probably an ugly scuff on his back now, but didn't really care. The medichines would fix it soon enough, and even if they wouldn't it wasn't like he was going to be around long enough to care.

"I... I'm sorry you feel that way," Lil said trying, to little success, to maintain a tone of professional disinterest. "Your initial interview results indicated that you would have little objection with resleeving so long as your original ego was left intact and you were not placed in a biomorph. You told me that any such creation would just be a thing who's existence was irrelevant. I obviously misjudged you."

Grosser didn't have any well thought out retort, no ideology or philosophy that could make him OK with his fate. "I'm sure Grosser 1.0 or whatever the fuck you want to call him would agree with you. It's different when you're living it," if he were physically capable of doing so, Grosser was sure he would be sobbing, "I don't want to die."

Grosser sat in silence for what seemed like forever until Lil finally spoke up, "I'll see what I can do."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
((Reagan might not object to

((Reagan might not object to progressive resleeving where instead of downloading the ego in a single shot, the ego is progressively moved to another morph, remaining conscious for the whole process.))

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
((Maybe down the road, but

((Maybe down the road, but right now he's neither educated nor open minded enough to see a difference. He's still very tied to the idea that ending an ego's process on a morph is no different than death, regardless of how it is moved to another. Pretty much the only way he'd accept a new morph is if his whole cyberbrain was physically transferred into another morph, and even that would take a lot of convincing))

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
The Return to Elysium

Reagan stepped out into the street. It had been months since he was last in Elysium. He had spent that time meeting with, and doing work for the mysterious parties who had "made" him by copying the ego of a Jovian soldier. Reagan had stopped using the soldier's surname in an attempt to distance himself from his ego's source, and the life he remembered but had never lived.

He now found himself back where it had began. He had more or less satisfactorily resolved the whole being an experiment thing. He was promised that he was now fully independent. He needed to make sure, and he needed work. Luckily, he knew someone that might be able to help him out on both fronts.

"Compose a message," he ordered his muse and began speaking without waiting for a reply, "Fixer. I'm not sure if you remember me. You did a diagnostic on my morph about eight months ago. You also offered me work. I was wondering if the offer was still on the table."

Reagan reviewed the message. Satisfied, he commanded his muse, "Send message."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Fixer sat in his chair. Not

Fixer sat in his chair. Not that he needed to, robotic shells never got tired, it was merely the force of habit.

He did the sixth hundred check on his forks. His Sylph was meeting with corporate contacts in Olympus, his Daitya was infiltrating a construction crew in the northern hemisphere of the planet under a false ID. That wasn’t counting the three offworld Gargoyles, his Venus and Luna offices and the one on the Scum swarm “Get your ass to mars” tracking an important Titanian fugitive for Firewall. That wasn’t counting the dozen suicide forks on a server working in programming and information gathering.

Fixer was legion.

Breaking to monotony of checking on forks and looking at data, someone called him. Someone he hadn’t expected to hear from ever again. He composed a message.

[Good evening, Mr Reagan.

Of course I haven’t forgotten you. My offer still stands in full, if you would like to discuss it, I would suggest coming by my Valles-New Shanghai office. If you require I can arrange high-speed transport for you within the next hour.]

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
Reagan read over Fixer's

Reagan read over Fixer's reply. "Reply to message," he commanded his muse. He thought that he would miss Lil, the AGI that had played the part of his first muse, but he appreciated the cold efficiency of the genetic "faceless" muse he was currently running.

"I'm glad to hear it. Sorry for going AWOL like I did; I had to do some... sole searching. Anyhow, meeting in Valles-New Shanghai should be fine. I'll await your transport."

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
Fixer listened to Reagan's

Fixer listened to Reagan's message and booked transportation, first class seat on a jet plane departing within the hour from Elysium and strait to New Shanghai.

[Turing?] Fixer called his muse.

[Yes, Fix?] Turing asked in his perpetually British voice.

[Give me all of the date we have on the surveillance of Mr. Reagan, I want to know what he and his friends have been up to in the last several month.]

As Turing did, Fixer readied the standard network contract and a list of currently available work offers, both legal and illegal across the system.

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable

Jimalcoatl Jimalcoatl's picture
As he awaited Fixer's

As he awaited Fixer's transport, Reagan reflected on what had lead him to this point. After discovering that he was a guinea pig in some half-baked psychological experiment, he had cut a deal with his "muse" Lil, an AGI that had been loaded into the synthmorph he had been forced into. He had managed to convince her, and apparently her superiors though he had never actually met them, that he was a new person with rights and that it was inhumane to create someone solely to experiment on. It had taken some doing, but eventually they agreed to take out the ghost rider module and puppet sock from his morph in exchange for working off the cost of his morph. He had spent the last six months performing various espionage and security jobs for his mysterious creators. Spy on bureaucrat X, bodyguard scientist Y and the like. He had even managed to meet and have a conversation with the original Sgt. Grosser once when he was sent to gather intel on a Senator Oquendo, who Grosser was providing a security detail for. They got along well enough, and had made an agreement to help one another when possible.

Reagan had considered trying to find out the specifics of who his creators were, but eventually decided to leave well enough alone and looked forward to simply cutting ties with them as soon as he was able. Now all he had to do was make sure that they had actually removed the subversive implants from his morph like they had promised.

Once his flight arrived, he gave his best virtual smile to the loading gate clerk an boarded the plane.

Nerathul Nerathul's picture
((You're going to have to

((You're going to have to tell me what Fixer's agent program found out by tracking Reagan and his "Friends"))

It didn't take long for fixer to have his dossier completed, so he took another look at his forks. Negotiations were going well, the Daitya was installing support beams using the skillsoft he'd installed. It was too early to have more news on his Scum fork.

He checked the spimes in the airport, Reagan was embarking on the plane. Everything was going as planned.

In the sea without lees
Standeth the bird of Hermes
Eating his wings variable
And maketh himself yet full stable