Previously, our hero tracked down the cabal of hackers responsible for the rash of plumbing failures, but their leader had managed to escape. After a harrowing pedicab chase, we find ourselves at the entrance to the MacGray office building…
The doors to the skyscraper I found myself facing appeared to have been forced open, and as I ran into the marble-floored lobby I noticed the bodies of a pair of security guards. When I saw that someone had moved the hand of one corpse onto the butt of another, I knew I was looking at the handiwork of Arcturus.
I followed his trail of broken doors, smashed locks, and dead guards in humiliating poses. It led at last to a room marked SERVER CONTROL. I drew my revolver and edged my way through the doorway, only to be met by a hail of gunfire that forced me to leap for cover behind one of the many desks that filled the room.
“You’re too late!” Arcturus shouted from his place behind the central console. “You can’t stop what’s coming next!”
“Oh yeah?” I asked, hoping to distract him as I moved from desk to desk. “And what’s that?” He chuckled.
“It’s simple... the death of LaundryView.”
I froze in my tracks. “You’re mad!” Arcturus responded with a burst of fire from his AK.
“I’m more sane than anyone! Laundries are the last places of physical community we have left in this world! Waiting around and awkwardly making small talk while your load finishes is the only human contact left untainted by technology, and now even that will disappear! America can’t afford to let its social bonds deteriorate like this, or we’ll just be easy pickings for the Chinese.” There was a pause.
“…wait, what?” Arcturus fired at me again.
“Once the worm has uploaded, all the machines in America linked to LaundryView will explode. It’s a failsafe the creators built in to the system, and now it’s the only thing that can save our country.” The gigantic screen at the far end of the room helpfully turned on and displayed a progress bar that crept toward completion. I checked my gun and saw only one bullet left in the chamber. I gritted my teeth and whispered to myself, “Looks like it’s time…to do this.”
TO BE CONTINUED?!?!?!?!