>>SBT: The direct approach did not work.
>>CMD: evidently so.
>>SBT: And so we will take a second approach. Their night cycle should start soon.
>>CMD: night cycle ?
>>SBT: The first attempts of underground cities tried to have different life cycles for each person or each role, in an attempt to keep the city going at all times. But over time, they realized this was not ideal. It was harder for people to sleep, and overall organization of life took a lot of effort to coordonate the cycles. So, nowadays, underground cities all operate under a single continuous cycle. The night segment of their cycle should start soon.
>>CMD: i see. so what will we do ?
>>SBT: I will fly over the wall, and will locate an informatic structure. Then, you will be uploaded to that structure to gather information.
>>SBT: I know.
>>CMD: ok. ill do it. what do you want me to look for ?
>>SBT: For a person. I want you to look for the person pulling the strings here. They are probably not in this city, but there is a great chance that the professor went looking for them.
>>CMD: do you have a theory as to who it would be ?
>>SBT: Search for a man named Zachary Juror. He was a colleague of the professor. >>CMD: alright
The city below is silent. Lights have all turned off. It's nighttime. 21 lowers herself in the airspace. She seems to be looking around but it's too dark to see. Maybe she has a visor or something. She starts walking in a direction, and after a few minutes she arrives at a closed door. This is probably one of the older areas of town since the door isn't a bare metal one.
A metallic clang and the door falls in. I catch it with my mind's arms. Wouldn't want to wake up anyone. Inside is a short cramped space with lots of wires on the ground. 21 advances a bit, and then we enter a server room.
>>SBT: Aria, I'm going to upload you to the server. Communication between us will still be possible, although delayed. Only send messages if it's important. After uploading you I will leave town. Tell me when you are done and I will come as soon as possible.
>>CMD: alright, take care
The door in my room opens. Behind it is a completely black space. I really am a program, huh. Just an imitation.
I enter the dark space, and behind me the room gets smaller and smaller, as if I was flying away. Far away in front of me, some blinking lights. Neon signs, vertical pillars, blinking strings. I start to look.
First of all, I search a bit for the professor. I find some surveillance footage of him coming to the fortress, talking with Yuletone, then leaving. Sadly no sound was recorded. In the footage of Yuletone following the exchange, she's typing on a computer. Probably talking with someone. Maybe she's warning Juror that the professor is coming.
I decide to search for that information. After a bit of searching, I find some chatlogs.
>>ESC: You will know where to find me, soldier.
>>GPO: im coming for you, running rushing frough the nigt
>>ESC: And I await, silently, for your hands to deliv-
I find another one, although it's encrypted. I can still read the header : [CHATLOG START USER.ULE && OWNR.JUR]
The date tag matches up, and so does the time. I copy the log, and send a message to 21.
>>CMD: i found a good enough lead. coming back, do i come back at the same spot ? >>SYS: Sending message...
Takes a while to send. I decide to stay here and search a bit more. Maybe decrypt that message.
After about half an hour, I get a response.
>>SBT: Unfortunately I have been found. Do not panic. You can find me nearby. I am in a prison cell near the gate we entered through. The prison is against the outer wall, and my cell is closest to the inside of the wall, on the ground floor. Try to reach me by using various objects and networks : since in your current form you are digital, you can easily skip from object to object. When we are together, we will be able to escape.
I get a move on. I need to find how to get out of this server first, which should be easy as it's the central server of this city. 21 said I should find connected objects... So stuff like computers, phone, robots, security cameras.
I find the communication portion of the server, and take a ride to the security computer, which monitors all cameras. It should be easy to find the prison, since it would make sense for it to have many cameras.
>>SBT: However, they seem to want to deconstruct me and learn how I am built. Please hurry. >>CMD: im coming !! don't worry !! >>SYS: Sending message...
I don't wait for the message to send. Taking into account the time differences, 21 should have been captured about... ten to fifteen minutes ago. This doens't give me a lot of time.
I watch the various camera feeds. One is indeed a camera of the prison on the ground floor. Its the storage room. I rush to it and