Re: The Show Must Go Off

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Herr D

The Enforcers looked back and forth at me and at each other. I apped down any sign of nervousness. “Well?”
One of them jumped. “Uh–you’re claiming you saw The Shade?”
“I did.” My fake file was all ready. Stored in my memchips. I KNEW it was a lie, but it would read as a real memory since I broke the memchip encryption–that had taken seven months. The jumpy Enforcer waved me toward the kiosk. I held up my dirty hands. “Oh–never mind–KF2 ordered a cleaning bot. Can Gibb go ahead and bring out the body?”
“Officer, if one of you will turn in the I.D.? It’s on the floor, there.” One of them flapped an evidence bag open and took the I.D. He used his suitclamp to seal it and walked to the kiosk first. He put in his data with the suitjack and navigated to Enforcer Voluntary Statement Collection.
“I.D. confirms KF2’s report. Your cheater was up for mass murder. Seven M-R-E’s on your account.”
“Thank you, Officer.”
He pointed at the jackport as he unplugged. “Have you ever been accessed directly by the ‘bumps’ system before?”
“No, sir.”
He waved over the Enforcer with the red armband. “Ginger dose?”
“Please.” It would be good if they thought I was susceptible to nausea from jacking in. I took the pill and a small cup of stale water. I stretched my neck and shoulder muscles for show, as if I was meditating. Then I plugged in. BMPS was older than I was used to directly accessing, and full of bugs, but not really that bad. I GameFaced discomfort, being accessed, and relief as though I really felt it and remembered not to laugh. The pic came up on the screen. Jaws dropped all around.
I had accessed his bio, copied his last footage, added some scars and implant bulges, and changed his getup. Looked like a homemade spacesuit with a lot of unidentifiable hardware attached. It wasn’t identifiable because I made it up. The reaction was pretty much what I thought. A dozen questions asked about fifty times each, as they tried to get me to vary my story too much or too little. They fed me the whole time. Kept me covered with a brand new blanket they forgot to take back. It’s a wonder this isn’t tried more often!